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M60A2

Main battle tank

M60A2 MBT

The M60A2 main battle tank did not prove successful and was withdrawn from service

 
 
Country of origin United States
Entered service 1972
Crew 4 men
Dimensions and weight
Weight 44 t
Length (gun forward) 7.3 m
Hull length 6.95 m
Width 3.63 m
Height 3.1 m
Armament
Main gun 152 mm
ATGW MGM-51 Shillelagh
Machine guns 1 x 7.62 mm, 1 x 12.7 mm
Elevation range - 10 to + 20 degrees
Traverse range 360 degrees
Ammunition load
Main gun 33 rounds
ATGW 13 missiles
Machine guns 5 560 x 7.62 mm, 1 080 x 12.7 mm
Mobility
Engine Continental AVDS-1790-2G diesel
Engine power 750 hp
Maximum road speed 48 km/h
Range 480 km
Maneuverability
Gradient 60%
Side slope 30%
Vertical step 0.9 m
Trench 2.6 m
Fording 1.2 m
Fording (with preparation) 4.1 m

 

   The M60A2 is a variant of the M60 main battle tank and was developed as a force multiplier for units, operating the M60A1 MBTs. Its development began in the late 1960s. This vehicle entered service with the US Army in 1972. A total of 526 M60A2 main battle tanks were built. This vehicle was nicknamed Starship due to its sophisticated technology. However the M60A2 was not a successful tank. It was withdrawn from the US Army.

   The M60A2 was completed with a new turret, housing the M162 152 mm gun/launcher. A similar gun was previously used on an M551 Sheridan light tank. This gun could fire both ordinary munitions and MGM-51 Shillelagh anti-tank guided missiles. The ordinary munitions were short, fat, with combustible cases and had to be carefully handled. These rounds had a range of effective fire of 1.5 km and were sufficient for infantry support role, but had poor accuracy on longer ranges. The Shillelagh anti-tank guided missiles were intended to deal with hostile tanks at longer ranges. Missiles were stored in aluminum cases and had a range of up to 3 km. Apparently operational experience of this unusual tank revealed that the 152 mm gun was inferior in terms of range and accuracy to 105 mm and 120 mm tank guns, firing ordinary munitions. Furthermore the Shillelagh anti-tank missiles could not penetrate armor of the emerging heavily protected Soviet MBTs, such as the T-80. The tank and Shillelagh missiles had complicated electronics and guidance systems. These were expensive to produce and troublesome to maintain. These missiles ended up almost never being fired, except for crew training purposes. Initially there were a number of problems with the new gun, but eventually most of them were solved.

   Secondary armament consists of 7.62 mm coaxial machine gun and 12.7 mm anti-aircraft machine gun, mounted in the cupola. This weapon is fired, loaded and serviced form a fully-protected position.

   Vehicle is powered by the Continental AVDS-1790-2 diesel engine, developing 750 horsepower. This engine, powertrain and suspension are similar to those, used on the M60A1 main battle tanks. It has the same level of cross-country mobility as the M60-series tanks.

   The M60A2 main battle tanks were withdrawn from active service, but were still operated by reserve units for some time. Later most of them were rebuilt to the M60A3. Some hulls were converted to M60 AVLB bridgelayers and engineering vehicles.

 

Video of the M60A2 Starship main battle tank

 

 
M60A2 MBT

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M60A2 MBT

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M60A2 MBT

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M60A2 MBT

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Personal appeal from Andrius Genys

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