Bradley Fire Support Team Vehicle M3A31-4

M3A3: General
Manufacturer United Defense, L.P. Crew
4 men:
  • Commander in turret
  • Gunner in turret
  • Driver in hull left front
  • Forward observer in passenger compartment
M3A3: Dimensions
Combat weight 65,900lbs
29,900kg
Height 133"
338cm
Length 258"
655cm
Gun overhang forward 0"
Width 129"
328cm
Tread 96"
240cm
Ground clearance 18"
46cm
Turret ring diameter 60"
150cm
M3A3: Armament
Type Mount Traverse Max traverse rate Elevation Max elevation rate
25mm Chain Gun M242 Bushmaster Turret 360°
(manual and electric)
60°/sec +57° to -9°
(manual and electric)
60°/sec
7.62mm M240C MG Coaxial to 25mm gun 360°
(manual and electric)
60°/sec +57° to -9°
(manual and electric)
60°/sec
Rangefinder
Laser
Stabilizer
Azimuth and elevation
Night vision
Thermal
M3A3: Armor
Assembly
Welding
Hull
Steel and 5083 aluminum armor
Turret
Steel, 5083 aluminum, and 7039 aluminum armor
M3A3: Automotive
Engine Cummins VTA-903T; 8 cylinder, 4 cycle, vee, turbosupercharged diesel
Horsepower Gross: 600@2600 rpm Torque Gross: 1225 ft-lb@2350rpm Fuel capacity 175gal
662L
Transmission General Electric HMPT-500-3 or HMPT-500-3EC hydromechanical, automatic range selection
Steering Hydrostatic, steering yoke
Brakes Multiple plate, oil cooled
M3A3: Suspension
Type Road wheels Track return rollers
Torsion bar 6 individually sprung dual/track 1 dual/track, 2 single/track
Drive sprockets Idlers Shock absorbers
11-tooth front drive Dual adjustable at rear of track On first 3 and last road wheels/track
M3A3: Track
Center guide, single pin, steel with detachable rubber pad
Width 21"
53cm
Pitch 6"
15cm
Shoes/track Left side: 84
Right side: 82
Ground contact length 154"
391cm
M3A3: Performance
Max level road speed 40mph
65kph
Min turning diameter Pivot
Cruising range ~250mi, roads
~400km, roads

Introduced in 2000, the M7 Bradley Fire Support Team (BFIST) vehicle was based on the M2A2ODS Bradley and was intended to replace the slower M113-based FIST-V M981. The twin TOW missile launcher was replaced by a housing containing a laser rangefinder and sights for the artillery fire support team, and the passenger compartment had a communication station installed within. Additonal hardware included an inertial navigation system, precision lightweight global positioning system, and the battlefield combat identification system. In contrast to the M981, the M7 allows the team to perform targeting functions while the vehicle is moving.

Beginning fielding tests in 2001, the M3A3 BFIST utilized the hull of the M3A3 Bradley. Changes from the M7 dictated by the newer hull included moving the M7's inertial navigation unit into the turret from its spot in the hull. Originally planned to be called the M7A1 BFIST, the M3A3 BFIST proved to have greater accuracy than even the M7.

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References

  1. Hunnicutt, R.P. Bradley: A History of American Fighting and Support Vehicles. Navato, CA: Presidio Press, 1999. Reprinted with permission from Bradley, R.P. Hunnicutt ©1999, available from Presidio Press, 505B San Martin Drive, Suite 160, Navato, CA 94945.
  2. Green, Michael, and James D. Brown. M2/M3 Bradley at War. Minneapolis: Zenith Press, 2007.
  3. "BFIST Bradley Fire Support Team M7A3 M7 FIST." Army Recognition. 9 Dec 2017 <http://www.armyrecognition.com/united_states_us_army_artillery_vehicles_system_uk/bfist_bradley_fire_support_team_m7a3_m7_fist_technical_data_sheet_specifications_pictures_video_10201175.html>.
  4. Gourley, Scott R. "M7 Bradley Fire Support Team Vehicle." Association of the United States Army. 15 Feb 2017. 9 Dec 2017 <https://www.ausa.org/articles/m7-bradley-fire-support-team-vehicle>.

Last updated 9 Dec 2017.
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© Copyright 2017 Chris Conners