Australia buys SEPv3 with 120mm M256 gun and better networking
CANBERRA, ($1=1.40 Australian Dollars) – The Australian army will acquire at least 75 US Abrams M1A2 SEPv3 tanks, learned BulgarianMilitary.com, citing a press release issued by the Australian government on December 18. The purchase of these tanks is under the Australian project LAND 907 Phase 2 for the modernization of the main battle tank, armored recovery vehicle, and tank supporting systems.
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SEPv3 is the latest upgraded version of the popular American Abrams tank. The United States began testing the prototype of this version nearly six years ago, and in 2017 a “green light” was given for their production. The first produced unit leaves the production line only in 2020. According to the characteristics, SEPv3 has better communication and networking capabilities, as well as increased overall performance and power distribution.
Manufacturers from General Dynamux have integrated into the SEPv3 version a brand new control system, as well as linearly replaceable modules. This version has a significantly improved IED protection package, as well as an upgraded Ammunition DataLink [ADL] for air projectile use. The tank is integrated with optical infrared solutions from another well-known manufacturer – Flir.
The SEPv3 turret features a 150mm M256 smoothbore gun and passive ballistic protection. The latest version integrates fasteners, new and with better features. The explosive jet armor and protection system is Trophy.
LAND 907 Phase 2
Australia is modernizing its combat armored vehicles. The Royal Australian Armed Forces currently has 59 units of M1A1 Abrams tanks, which the government bought in 2004 and was to replace the German Leopard AS1 tank.
The LAND 907 Phase 2 program envisages Australia producing the necessary equipment using supplies from the United States. Earlier this year, it became clear that Canberra was ready to purchase at least 160 M1A1 tank structures/hulls to use for the production of seventy-five  Abrams M1A2 SEPv3 tanks, twenty-nine  M1150 Assault Breacher Vehicles; eighteen  joint assault bridges M1074; six  M88A2 Hercules Combat Recovery Vehicles; and one hundred and twenty-two  AGT1500 gas turbine engines.
The main contractors will be General Dynamics Land Systems, Sterling Heights, MI; BAE Systems, York, Pennsylvania; Leonardo DRS, Arlington, Virginia; and Honeywell Aerospace, Phoenix, Arizona.
Abrams M1A2 SEPv3 has a problem – its weight
Earlier this year, the U.S. military completed testing of the Abrams M1A2 SEPv3 in cold climates. The testers concluded that the Abrams M1A2 SEPv3 works great at subarctic temperatures in Inner Alaska.
But whether this war machine will be able to reach distant battlefields during conflict is a question that has not yet been answered, writes Forbes contributor David Axe.
According to him, the upgraded version of the classic Abrams M1A2 SEPv3 is really a very, very heavy vehicle. The increased weight will complicate the tank’s transportability in the long run, which is a cause for concern among Pentagon experts.
Thanks to design features, including new electronics and an improved auxiliary power unit, the third version weighs almost 74 tons.
And if you add to this additional armor, anti-missile active defense system and mine cleaning unit, then the mass of the tank will increase to a staggering 92 tons, the author of the article emphasizes.
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