The M901 ITV (Improved TOW Vehicle) is a United States Army armored vehicle designed to carry a dual M220 TOW launcher. It is based on the ubiquitous M113 Armored Personnel Carrier chassis.
About this creation
The M901 ITV provides the crew and weapon system protection from small-arms fire and artillery fragments. The squad leader has a 270-degree range of view through the squad leader's periscope. The turret launcher has the capability for day and night acquisition and tracking of targets, and it provides firing coverages of 360 degrees around and +35 to −30 degrees in elevation. The ITV has stowage provisions for tripod-mounted TOW components configured so the ground system can be dismounted and set up in three to five minutes. In addition, the ITV is completely amphibious and is air transportable.
The M901A1 is equipped with a hydraulically and electrically powered "hammerhead" turret, attached to a modified M27 cupola, that can be operated manually. Inside the turret are two M220A2 2 TOW missile systems. The daysight tracker and nightsight (AN/TAS-4 or AN/TAS-4a) are mounted in an operational ready state at the head of the turret. The missile guidance system is also connected at the base of the turret.
The system is capable of firing two missiles without reloading and carries ten TOW rounds in the missile rack. Reloading is performed under armor protection and is accomplished by tilting the launching apparatus back so that the crew can reach the turret through the carrier's rear roof hatch.
A major limitation of the M901 is that it is practically unable to move while the turret is in firing position, and unable to fire while it is in the stowed position. A common work-around is to move the vehicle while the turret is in the loading position, thereby reducing the amount of time to get the turret in a fire position as opposed to the stow position. Moving from the firing to the stowed position is a procedure that takes several seconds and some skill on the part of the operator.
The M901 is currently used by the US Army, the Egyptian Army, the Jordanian Armed Forces, the Royal Moroccan Army, the Portuguese Army, the Hellenic (Greek) Army, the Royal Thai Army, the Tunisian Army and the Royal Bahraini Army.