Dragon DRA60353 US M3A2 Bradley Infantry Fighting Vehicle w/ERA (Explosive Reactive Armor) - Operation Iraqi Freedom, Iraq, 2003 (1:72 Scale)
"We will carry out a campaign characterized by shock, by surprise, by flexibility ... and by the application of overwhelming force."
- CENTCOM commander General Tommy Franks commenting on the conduct of Operation: Iraqi Freedom, March 21st, 2003
The M2 Bradley is the US Army's first mechanized infantry combat vehicle. The first production models appeared in 1981 (at the height of the Cold War), and they were soon being produced at the rate of 600 per year. The hull of the M2 is made of aluminum, with a layer of space laminated armor applied for added protection. The Bradley is equipped with a 25mm Bushmaster cannon and stabilizer to allow for firing on the move. Its troop compartment, located in the rear, is fitted with firing ports and periscopes to allow troops to fire from within the vehicle. Night vision capability and a nuclear, biological and chemical (NBC) defense system are standard on all of the different variants. The Bradley plays a key role in the US Army's combined arms concept, but critics say it is too big, too expensive, and too difficult to maintain and is insufficiently armored to operate with main battle tanks on the battlefield.
The M3A2 has served continuously in Iraq since 2003, facing the constant hazard of insurgent IED or RPG attacks. To enhance protection, an ERA (Explosive Reactive Armor) kit consisting of 105 box-shaped tiles was designed by GDLS and Rafael, and these are fitted as standard in Iraq.
Now, Dragon Armor has released a fully assembled M3A2 fitted with an ERA kit. Each of the reactive tiles is fully represented to give the Bradley its unique look, and it is painted in a sand-colored camouflage scheme to represent a vehicle serving in Iraq. Various details such as the headlights have been picked out in their correct colors. The sophisticated TOW launcher on the left side of the turret is displayed in the ready-to-fire position. Additionally, the vehicle has been carefully weathered to replicate the effects of Iraq's sandy and dusty environment. This collectors' item from Dragon Armor marks a new 'ERA' for the M3A2 ODS! Sold Out
Length: 4.5 inches
Width: 2 inches
Release Date: January 2008
Historical Account: "Action, Reaction" - Reactive armour is a type of vehicle armour that reacts in some way to the impact of a weapon to reduce the damage done to the vehicle being protected. It is most effective in protecting against shaped charges and long rod penetrators. The most common type is explosive reactive armour (ERA), but variants include self-limiting explosive reactive armour (SLERA), non-energetic reactive armour (NERA), non-explosive reactive armour (NxRA), and electric reactive armour. Unlike ERA and SLERA, NERA and NxRA modules can withstand multiple hits, but a second hit in exactly the same location will still penetrate.
Essentially all anti-tank munitions work by piercing the armour and killing the crew inside, disabling vital mechanical systems, or both. Reactive armour can be defeated with multiple hits in the same place, as by tandem-charge weapons, which fire two or more shaped charges in rapid succession. Lacking these weapons, emulating this effect is difficult as it requires either precision artillery, luck, or close-quarter use of either shoulder-launched anti-tank weapons or adhesive explosives such as satchel charges.