T-72M1 (TIGER)

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During 1990 South Africa acquired two T-72M1’s from Poland to be used in Operation Carbenet evaluation trials which took place between 5 March and 18 May 1990. South Africa acquired the T72’s in order to learn its strengths and weakness and how it compared to the South African army’s tanks and armed cars at the time. Once the trials where over three South African defence firms (LIW, Kentron, Eleptro) of the Denel group set out develop a weapon system upgrade package for the T-72 which was unveiled in 1993. The upgrade package included a fully digital day/night fire direction system, new commander cupola, new 125mm barrel and thermal shield, and a new explosion suppression system. The most notable addition to the T72 was the TIGER (GS65) panoramic sight and the TIGER (GS72) gunner sight. The TIGER sights feature fully integrated digital day/night system with full hunter killer capabilities, integrated thermal imager and digital fire control computers. It’s also worth noting the upgraded T-72M1’s equipped with the TIGER system where occasionally referred to as T-72 TIGER. Optional add-on equipment which could also be fitted to the tank is an auto-tracker for the gunner sight, laser warning receivers, new electric gun drives, and navigation system.




Main Armament: 125mm (2A46M) cannon

Secondary Armament: one 7.62 mm (PKT) MG

Crew: 3 (driver, gunner, commander,)

Combat weight: 41,5t

Engine: Model V46-6, V-12

Horsepower: 780 hp

Gearbox: seven forward, one reverse

Top Speed: 60km/h

Thermal/Night sight: Yes

Smoke grenades: Yes

Laser Warning: Yes


Primary sources:

Defence Systems Modernisation 1993 written by Helmoed-Rommer Heitman (page 16)

Denel TIGER (NGFCS) brochure, (introduction, features, technical data)

Kentron GS72/GS65 Sight brochure

Secondary sources:
South Africa Armour Museum: https://www.saarmourmuseum.com/t-72-mi-main-battle-tank-poland


I would love to have this in the SA subtree. +1


+1 Very nice