US Army Unveils New ‘M10 Booker’ Combat Vehicle

The US Army has introduced its first major armored vehicle in two decades, the M10 Booker Combat Vehicle.

The vehicle was unveiled during the army’s 248th anniversary celebration last week at Fort Belvoir in Virginia.

Formerly known as the Mobile Protected Firepower, the M10 Booker was named after two American soldiers who died 60 years apart.

Staff Sgt. Stevon A. Booker was a tank crewman killed in action during the 2003 Iraq invasion, while Pvt. Robert D. Booker was an infantryman cited for heroism that cost his life during World War II.

“The stories of these two hero-soldiers articulate the exact needs for the M10 Booker Combat Vehicle,” US Army acquisition official Doug Bush said.

He further stated that the infantry assault vehicle would bring “a new level of lethality” to ground forces, providing soldiers with increased protection on the battlefield.

‘Not Classified as a Tank’

The M10 Booker is a tracked vehicle built by General Dynamics that provides a mobile, direct offensive fire capability to the US Army’s Infantry Brigade Combat Teams.

Although it has similarities with the M1 Abrams main battle tank, the service clarified that it has decided against classifying it as a tank for several undisclosed reasons.

Like the Abrams, the M10 is manned by four crew and boasts a heavy 105-millimeter direct-fire cannon.

It also features an enhanced thermal viewer, a lightweight hull and turret, and a modern diesel engine for improved performance.

However, the army revealed that the Booker is much lighter and less expensive than the well-known main battle tank.

While the vehicle cannot be air-dropped, two can fit inside a C-17 Globemaster transport aircraft to support missions abroad.

M-10 Booker
Artist’s rendering of the Army’s new M10 Booker Combat Vehicle. Photo: General Dynamics

Prototype Issues Fixed

In 2022, the Director Operational Test and Evaluation reported that a prototype of the then-Mobile Protected Firepower possessed several issues, including toxic fumes filling the vehicle after soldiers fired the main gun.

There was also an airflow problem with the cooling system, causing the vehicle to overheat “under hot performance conditions.”

“I’m happy to report that toxic fumes were one of our concerns at the production decision and we’ve been doing some engineering and testing, and I can confidently say today that that is an issue that is behind us,” program executive officer Maj. Gen. Glenn Dean told reporters.

The first M10 Bookers are expected to be handed over to the US Army in November, with initial operational tests scheduled for late 2024.

Once operational, the service will build M10 battalions and integrate them into its light infantry brigade combat teams, including airborne units.

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