posted on Jun, 30 2006 @ 03:32 PM
with cost politics is always an issue. I remember back in the late 1970s there was the contract to replace the M-60 tank with the M-1. As a
competition the M-60 was upgraded as a back up option incase the Abrams failed...not as odd as it sounds since its two predicessors had failed
[XM-803 and MBT-70]. We all thought...no problem all the front line M-60 will get the upgrade while they await the Abrams replacement...which looked
like it would take another 5 years or more.The upgrade included addon armor , improved ammo , FCS and option for automotive overhaul etc.
NO chance, M-60 Mod was rejected without further discussion. Why ? because if Congress got wind of the M-60 with mod , being 'good enough', Abrams
would be passed over...since they had painted the Abrams as the minimum needed for the 1980s , it would have undermined years of effort. It was either
money for Abrams or M-60 mod; not both....in the mean time they would have to hope and pray there would be no war.
Meanwhile there allies the Germans upgraded their old Leopard 1 tanks with addon armor, improved ammo & FCS etc, while awaiting their LEOPARD -2
replacement which happened before the USA replacement did. So not only did they end up with better tanks before the USA, but their reserve tanks were
also overhauled in the process.
[edit on 30-6-2006 by psteel]