Taiwan will receive the first two of 108 M1A2T Abrams tanks in June from the US, Liberty Times has reported.
The M1A2T is a customized version of the M1A2 SEPv2 (System Enhancement Package).
Taiwanese military officers will receive the General Dynamics tanks in the US on June 30, and undertake training on the platform, including driving, live firing, and vehicle maintenance, the Taipei-based outlet added.
The first batch of 38 Abrams tanks is scheduled to arrive in Taiwan by 2024, followed by 42 in 2025, and 28 in 2026.
The Taiwan Army will also begin a bunker-building project this year to provide a “greater battlefield survival rate” for the machine. Additionally, expansion and renovation work on two combat vehicle training grounds in Chang’an Camp and Kengzikou will begin this year.
The Kengzikou ground construction work contract has already been awarded, and the first phase of the work is expected to start this week. The three projects are reportedly worth $87.49 million.
The tanks are part of a potential $2.2 billion deal the US State Department approved in 2019. It included “250 Block I-92F Stinger missiles, BAE Systems M88A2 armored recovery vehicles, Oshkosh M1070A1 heavy equipment transporters, and an assortment of machine guns, munitions, smoke grenade launchers, tank engines and transmissions, and communications equipment.”
$15M Tank Upgrade Contract
The Taiwanese government also awarded a $15.6 million M60A3 main battle tank upgrade contract to the state-run National Chung-Shan Institute of Science and Technology last week.
Forty M60A3 tanks will receive major upgrades under the contract, including the “main gun, ballistic fire control computer and sighting systems,” and the replacement of the “original 105 mm M68 rifled gun with a 120 mm smoothbore cannon.”