It has medium- and long-range firepower capable of defeating any vehicle on the battlefield. It can provide fire support to cover dismounted infantry and can destroy enemy tanks.
The vehicle, whose namesake is General Omar Bradley, a World War II leader known as the “GI General,” entered U.S. Army Service in 1981.
The Bradley Fighting Vehicle family consists of two vehicles: the M2 Infantry Fighting Vehicle and the M3 Cavalry Fighting Vehicle.
The original Bradley could withstand the impact of 14.5 mm projectiles, while current models can absorb the force of 30 mm rounds.
The Bradley’s primary protector is the 25 mm M242 Bushmaster chain gun, currently manufactured by Alliant Techsystems Inc., and originally designed by the Boeing Co. The M242 offers the gunner a rate of fire of standard 200 rounds per minute, delivered in either single or multiple shots. Additionally, the vehicle is equipped with an M240C machine gun, which sits to the right of the Bushmaster and fires 7.62 mm rounds.
The Bradley also relies on the TOW anti-tank missile system, located to the left of the gun turret. The Bradley must stop in order to fire the missiles, which reach a speed of almost Mach 1 on its way to the target. This weapon is capable of destroying any armored vehicle in existence today and is deadly accurate.
The Bradley can be transported by truck, rail, ship or transporter aircraft, and it is amphibious. Initial models were outfitted with a water barrier, while current editions feature an inflatable pontoon that nearly encircles the vehicle. In the water, the vehicle’s tracks can propel it at a rate of around 4 mph.
Made by United Defense, L.P., it weighs 25 tons and can carry nine soldiers in its infantry role and five in its cavalry role. It runs at 45 mph.