Abrams upgrade names changed

By Ashley Tressel / September 4, 2018 at 4:29 PM

The Army has adopted new names for its current and future upgraded versions of the Abrams tank following lawmakers' direction in the Fiscal Year 2019 National Defense Authorization Act.

Maj. Gen. Brian Cummings, program executive officer for ground combat systems, in an Aug. 15 memo, directs M1A2 system enhancement program versions 3 and 4 to be renamed M1A2C and M1A2D, respectively.

Cummings agreed with lawmakers that the name "should be easily recognizable and convey the most recent upgrade," according to his memo, obtained by Inside Defense.

The FY-19 NDAA provision came from the House Armed Services tactical air and land forces subcommittee, which desired clearer terms for the Abrams upgrade program. The subcommittee in its mark of the bill argued using the longer terms failed “to clearly and concisely convey the significant capability upgrades resident” in those efforts.

General Dynamics Land Systems won a $310.6 million contract modification last year to deliver seven prototype M1A2D tanks, as it completes deliveries of the M1A2C version.

The Army last month issued a market survey seeking information on industry's ability to support the next iteration of the vehicle, the M1A2D.

The Abrams product manager stated the Army was also "considering integrating additional capabilities" into the current M1A2C effort, according to the survey posted Aug. 3 on Federal Business Opportunities.