The M2 Bradley is a tracked infantry fighting vehicle which has a crew total of 3, being the commander, driver and gunner. The Bradley first entered service in 1981 and was named after the general in World War 2; General Omar Bradley. BAE Systems is the manufacturer of this vehicle in today’s versions and upgrades as formally ‘United Defence’ was the manufacturer of the vehicle however since 2005 BAE System’s is now the manufacturer and owner of the Bradley Fighting Vehicle family.
1 x 25 mm Bushmaster cannon (900 rounds)
7.62 coaxial weapon (2,200 rounds)
TOW (Anti-tank – 7 rounds)
M257 Smoke Grenade system (Fires four smoke grenades at a time)
Since the TOW missile is a “Tube-launched, Optically-tracked, Wire command data link, guided missile” it has to be stationary to fire at targets since the gunner tracks and guides the missile when fired. As mentioned in this article the vehicle has a crew of three, however it can hold an additional 6 fully equipped men.
The vehicle is protected via an aluminium hull with reactive armour. The Bradley also has ERA type armoured tiles fixed to certain points of this vehicle, around 96 tiles protect the vehicle in vital areas. In 2008, BAE was awarded a contract to improve the armour to be able to take vbIEDS and mine blasts. This was completed between 2008 to 2009 where 433 Bradley’s were upgraded with this armour.
The US Army have manufactured over 6,000 of these vehicles which makes them the main operators of this vehicle. Saudia Arabia have also purchased quite a few of these Bradley IFV.