TechRussian Forces Find Weakness in American Abrams Tanks in Ukraine

Russian Forces Find Weakness in American Abrams Tanks in Ukraine

M1A1 Abrams tanks during training in Germany.
M1A1 Abrams tanks during training in Germany.
Images source: © 7th Army Training Command
3:30 PM EDT, March 14, 2024
It has become evident how Russian forces are neutralizing the American M1 Abrams tanks deployed by Ukraine. Forbes experts report that the aggressor army employs anti-tank guided missiles, highlighting an urgent need for modifications to the Abrams to counteract this threat, as detailed by the Unian agency.
Forbes has calculated that Ukraine has lost three out of the 31 American M1 Abrams tanks it received, with at least one sustaining damage. The destruction of these tanks has increased as they have been actively deployed to the front lines, a shift from their earlier use primarily for reconnaissance due to their advanced vision system capable of identifying enemies from up to 5 miles away. With the tanks now engaging directly with Russian forces, who prioritize the destruction of these American vehicles, the tactics have changed.
Forbes experts have identified the primary method of disabling the Abrams at the front as guided anti-tank missiles. They suggest that retrofitting the tanks with a laser detection system could have prevented the loss of at least two of the three destroyed vehicles.
Despite these adaptations, the threat to American tanks persists. "The coming weeks and months will almost certainly see more losses as the war continues, and the remaining 28 Abrams stay in combat. Mines, artillery, and enemy tanks will contribute to their attrition," Forbes notes. Unian adds that while the loss of Abrams tanks is expected, equipping them with missile detection systems could diminish the rate of these losses.

M1 Abrams in Ukraine

Let's note that the discussed Abrams tanks are 63-ton behemoths, stretching nearly 33 feet in length. Their primary armaments include a potent 120 mm cannon and machine guns of 12.7 mm and 7.62 mm calibers, making them formidable against both heavily and lightly armored opposition.
In the standard American version, the M1 Abrams utilizes armor incorporating depleted uranium. However, the models dispatched to Ukraine are fitted with tungsten plates to preclude the transfer of sensitive technology to Russia. Additionally, the Abrams used in Ukraine feature ARAT-1 armor packages from the TUSK set, incorporating single-layer reactive armor.
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