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The Ramses II tank is a main battle tank designed for the armed forces of Egypt. A single T-54 was sent to the United States for upgrading. A primary prototype was sent to Egypt where extensive trials were completed in late 1987. The tank finally entered production in 2004-2005. 260 units have been produced with plans for additional units. The tank was originally called the T-54E ("E" stands for "Egyptian"). At early stages, the upgrade was concerned with the firepower and mobility of the tank solely, while latter stages included the improvement of the level of protection as well. The tank's hull was modified to accommodate the new engine which had a great commonality with the one used by the M60A3 (the most numerous main battle tank in active Egyptian service), as a result an additional road wheel was added. The tank is armed with the same main gun used by Egyptian M60A3's. In addition the tank is using sophisticated fire control system.

History of development

In November 1984, Teledyne Continental Motors (taken over by General Dynamics Land Systems) of the USA was awarded a contract to upgrade the firepower and mobility of a single T-54 tank. This was originally called the T-54E but was subsequently renamed Ramses II. The first prototype of the Ramses II was sent to Egypt for extensive firepower and mobility trials in January 1987 and these were completed in late 1987. Late in 1989, Egypt signed a technical assistance agreement with TCM to support the continued Egyptian testing of the Ramses II, with testing commencing in the summer of 1990. The tank finally entered production/conversion in 2004-2005 with 260 units so far modified from the stock of the T-54 available in the Egyptian Army arsenal.


The upgrades and modifications, which resulted in an increase in the weight of the tank to 48 tons, are:

Fire Control System

SABCA Titan Mk I

A SABCA Titan Mk I laser fire-control system has been installed which includes:

  • A modified Avimo TL10-T sight incorporating the laser range-finder
  • An integrated in-eyepiece CRT alphanumeric graphic display
  • An original SABCA double digital processor
  • An image intensification periscopic night sight
  • Automatic attitude and atmospheric sensors and associated control boxes
  • A new communications system


The hull section has been modified to accommodate the new power pack, consisting of:

  • A TCM AVDS-1790-5A turbocharged diesel developing 908 hp (which has 80 per cent commonality with the engine installed in the M60A3 MBT)
  • A Renk RK-304 transmission
  • Two new exhaust pipes, one either side of the hull rear, replace the single exhaust outlet in the left side of the hull
  • A new fuel tank. As a result of the lengthening of the hull (the Ramses II is nearly one meter longer than the T-54/55 and with an added wheel on each side)
  • A new final drives
  • A new General Dynamics Land Systems, Model 2880 in-arm hydro-pneumatic suspension units each fitted with:
    • An M48-type road wheel
    • Idler at the front
    • Large drive sprocket at the rear
    • Two new track-return rollers and US pattern tracks replacing the original Russian tracks


  • The Gun system has had the following modifications:
    • The gun and turret stabilisation system are provided by HR Textron Incorporated of the United States
    • The original DT-10T 100 mm gun has been replaced by the 105 mm M68 ordnance which is already fitted in the Egyptian M60A3 MBTs
    • The original breech of the 100 mm DT-10T gun has been retained and modified and the recoil system has also been modified
    • A muzzle reference system is fitted as standard
    • An M60 day/ night searchlight is mounted over the 105 mm gun
    • A collective type NBC system has been installed
    • Has IR vision for the gunner and driver
    • An image intensification for the commander
    • A laser range-finder with ballistic computer for the gunner


  • Active and passive protection has been upgraded by:
    • Armor protection has been added and has armored side skirts
    • A modern NBC overpressure system
    • A new air filtration system
    • A fire detection and suppression system
    • Mounts 6 electrically operated smoke grenade launchers on each side of the turret
    • The hatch layout has been retained
    • British Blair Catton tracks
    • A new turret basket


  •  Egypt
    • Egyptian Army - 260 with plans for additional conversion of 140-160

See also

Related developments

Comparable vehicles

Related lists


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