Military Factory logo
Icon of F-15 Eagle military combat fighter aircraft
Icon of Abrams Main Battle Tank
Icon of navy warships
Icon of AK-47 assault rifle


Laser Designator Battlefield Support Vehicle

The M981 FIST-V was used during the 1991 Gulf War but was eventually given up in favor of the Bradley and Stryker series.
Authored By: Staff Writer | Edited: 10/10/2016
National Flag Graphic


Year: 1987
Manufacturer(s): United Defense LP - USA
Production: 550
Capabilities: Anti-Tank/Anti-Armor;
Crew: 3
Length: 15.94 ft (4.86 m)
Width: 8.79 ft (2.68 m)
Height: 11.19 ft (3.41 m)
Weight: 13 tons (12,000 kg); 26,455 lb
Power: 1 x Chrysler A-710-B V-8 engine delivering 215 horsepower at 4,000rpm.
Speed: 40 mph (64 kph)
Range: 199 miles (321 km)
Operators: United States
The M981 FIST-V vehicle was developed as a derivative (and upgrade) of the M901 ITV Anti-Tank Guided Missile (ATGM) carrier. The FIST-V was used strictly for designating targets (via laser) for attack and did not take on targets directly as the original M901 ITV vehicle was designed to do. The FIST-V series was intended to be used as an artillery observation platform, its chassis based on the original ubiquitous M113 APC (detailed elsewhere on this site).

The complete M981 system was fielded with a Targeting Station Control Device (TSCD), a Ground Vehicle Laser Locator Designator (G/VLLD), a periscope and a single 7.62mm M60 machine gun (the latter for close-in self-defense or suppression of nearby enemy forces). Four SINCGARS radios were also showcased in the design as were 8 x smoke grenade dischargers (for self-screening). Much like the M901 ITV before it, the M981 FIST-V could extend and collapse the turret component for laser designation or travel respectively.

FIST-V vehicles were used during the 1991 Gulf War but their role was eventually overtaken by the M2 Bradley and Stryker family of vehicles.


1 x 7.62mm M60 Medium Machine Gun (MMG)
2 x 4 Smoke grenade dischargers

8 x Smoke Grenades

Variants / Models

• M981 - Base Series Designaion
• M981A3 - Improved variant
Site Disclaimer  |  Privacy Policy  |  Cookies  |  Site Map Site content ©2003-, All Rights Reserved.

The "Military Factory" name and logo are registered ® U.S. trademarks protected by all applicable domestic and international intellectual property laws. All written content, illustrations, and photography are unique to this website (unless where indicated) and not for reuse/reproduction in any form. Material presented throughout this website is for historical and entertainment value only and should not to be construed as usable for hardware restoration, maintenance, or general operation. We do not sell any of the items showcased on this site. Please direct all other inquiries to militaryfactory AT

Part of a network of sites that includes, GlobalFirepower, a data-driven property used in ranking the top military powers of the world, and, the World Directory of Modern Military Aircraft.

Facebook Logo YouTube Logo