Dragon DRA60015 USMC M1A1H1 Abrams Main Battle Tank - 1st Marine Tank Battalion, 1st Marine Division, Operation Iraqi Freedom, Baghdad, 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 M1 Abrams was the next stage in American tank development after the M60 series. Chrysler completed the prototype in 1978 and the first production vehicles appeared in 1980 with 30 tanks a month being built in the years that followed by General Dynamics, then a division of Chrysler Motors. Its advanced Chobham armour makes the M1 the best protected US main battle tank yet devised. Its gas turbine engine is smaller and easier to service than a diesel engine, but the extra fuel requirement negates the space saved, which is perhaps why the idea was rejected for acquiring the German-built Leopard 2. Thermal sights, laser rangefinder equipment, and a sophisticated gun stabilization system give the M1 excellent firepower on the move, be it day or night. In the 1991 Gulf War, the Abrams proved itself the best tank in the world, knocking out Iraqi T-72s with impunity. In fact, no Abrams were lost due to enemy fire.
According to General Dynamics, international sales of the Abrams tank are strong. Egypt has purchased 777 M1A1 tank kits. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia purchased and fielded 315 M1A2 Abrams tanks in the Royal Saudi Land Forces, and lest we forget the Government of Kuwait, which purchased and fielded 218 M1A2 Abrams tanks in the Kuwaiti Land Forces. All of these nations are considering additional orders or configuration upgrades for their existing fleet of M1A1/A2 tanks.
This particular 1:72 scale M1A1 Abrams main battle tank was used by the 1st Marine Tank Battalion, 1st Marine Division during their drive on Baghdad in 2003. Sold Out!
Length: 5.25 inches
Width: 2 inches
Release Date: May 2004
Original Issue Price: $12.99
Historical Account: "Fire-Breathing Dragons" - The 1st Tank Battalion was activated on November 1st, 1941 and is located at Twentynine Palms, California. Its mission is to provide combat power to 1st Marine Division in the form of amphibious and/or Maritime Preposition Forces; conduct operations ashore utilizing maneuver, armor protected firepower, and shock action in order to close with and destroy the enemy. As a separate battalion, 1st Tank Battalion is responsible for providing armored assets as well as anti-armor systems and staff expertise in their employment. The 1st Tank Battalion is equipped with the M1A1 Abrams main battle tank.