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M1A2 SEP TUSK: Up Close & Personal
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The M1A2 SEP is the first of a series of upgrade packages developed for the American Abrams MBT in the late 1990s. Coming to War Thunder as part of the next major update “Fire and Ice”, veteran U.S. tankers may look forward to the arrival of one of the most advanced iterations of the Abrams MBT also featuring the TUSK field kit!

Briefly: An advanced modification of the M1 Abrams tank, featuring improved firepower and protection.

M1A2 SEP, main battle tank, USA, Rank VII


  • Improved thermal imaging
  • TUSK add-on armor kit

In September 1994, just one month prior to the delivery of the first M1A1 HC, which would subsequently evolve into the M1A2, General Dynamic Land Systems was awarded a contract to conduct studies on the development of a modernization package for the upcoming M1A2. The work was intended to study the possibilities of equipping the M1A2 with the latest technology in the areas of firepower, protection and digital assets.

Becoming known as the System Enhancement Package (SEP), the upgrade was envisioned as a whole new production standard for newly produced units as well as being a refit for previously built ones. In 1995, the requirements for the upgrade package were formulated and the production contract was awarded to General Dynamic in 2001, with production lasting up until 2004.

While the M1A2 SEP was still in production, experiences from the US Invasion of Iraq unveiled in 2003 the vulnerability of tanks in urban combat environments. In response to this, American engineers designed the ‘Tank Urban Survival Kit’ (TUSK). It used readily available components to provide a substantial protection upgrade for M1 Abrams tanks, which could be flexibly fitted onto the vehicles by troops in the field, depending on mission requirements. In 2006, a total of over 500 of such kits were ordered and by 2008 all of the M1 Abrams stationed in Iraq were fitted with this modification.


In War Thunder, the M1A2 SEP TUSK will be the new crown jewel awaiting veteran tankers at the top of the American ground forces tree in the next major update “Fire and Ice”. Bringing with it a slew of improvements, predominantly in the area of protection, this new Abrams modification will noticeably augment the platform’s fighting capabilities and will be a ‘must-have’ for fans of modern ground vehicles!

Although simply being a further development of the M1A2 Abrams, the SEP upgrade package provides the vehicle with several handy improvements, including an improved thermal vision. However, what likely already stood out to tankers on the pictures provided in this devblog, is the ‘TUSK’ kit fitted to the vehicle. So let’s get into more details on this then, shall we?

The TUSK kit significantly improves the M1A2’s protection in urban fighting environments. While originally designed to improve protection and survivability against infantry threats in close quarter fighting, this doesn’t mean that the kit is useless in vehicle combat! Namely, the TUSK kit provides the M1A2 with ERA blocks on the sides of the hull. As a result, the M1A2 SEP is more likely to survive an ATGM or HEAT-FS strike with only minor sustained damage.

However, due to the increased weight that comes with the installation of the TUSK kit, the M1A2 SEP’s power-to-weight ratio decreased accordingly. As a result, commanders should expect the vehicle to respond a bit slower to movement commands compared to previous modifications. On the other hand, this won’t impede the vehicle’s mobility to such a great extent. Lastly, the M1A2 SEP still retains its classic M256 120mm smoothbore cannon as its primary armament, known to tankers from previous modifications.

The M1A2 SEP TUSK will soon be arriving at the top of the American ground forces tree as part of the next major War Thunder update “Fire and Ice”. In the meantime, be sure to keep an eye out on the news for more sneak-peeks into what the upcoming update has in store for you. Until then, happy hunting tankers!

You can greatly speed up the research on this vehicle with:

XM-1 General Motors Pack
The Kit Includes:
  • XM-1 General Motors tank (Rank 6, USA)
  • 2000 Golden Eagles
  • Premium account for 15 days
  • Desert camouflage
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