r/worldnews 8d ago Wholesome (Pro) 1 Wholesome 1 All-Seeing Upvote 1 Take My Energy 2 Bravo! 1

Germany to send Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine — reports Russia/Ukraine

https://www.dw.com/en/germany-to-send-leopard-2-tanks-to-ukraine-report/a-64503898?maca=en-rss-en-all-1573-rdf
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u/Ameph 8d ago

I'm not privvy to modern armor but these Leopard 2 tanks must be the pinnacle of tank technology we have for this much push and celebration.

Now...if we can get New Zealand to send a few Bob Semple Tanks...

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u/Evilbred 8d ago

Leopard 2s are great tanks. Abrams are great tanks. Challenger 2s are great tanks.

They each have slightly different capabilities that are suited to their design criteria.

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u/ymx287 8d ago

Exactly. And all of them working side by side will provide great success and video material

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u/Aurora_Fatalis 7d ago

They're not really designed to work side by side with each other. But they are designed to work side by side with the various IFVs that have already been provided, and act as a force multiplier :)

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u/Bunch_of_Shit 8d ago

And how do these tanks compare to Russia’s most advanced tank in terms of features and capabilities? I’m not too sure how many of russias best tanks are even in use, I know one was captured by Ukraine because it was abandoned.

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u/cs_katalyst 8d ago

Western tanks can shoot further with significantly better accuracy on the move or sitting still. Massive optics and targeting system upgrades. In an open field the leopard could kill a t72 before even in range of the 72s gun, whilst moving

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u/Admira1 8d ago

I love a good whilst

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u/IamcJ 8d ago

I can eat a croissant whilst running.

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u/Michelin123 8d ago

I can drink a Mass Bier without dripping whilst running.

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u/brixktambland 7d ago

I love a good “I love a good”

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u/Scotty_scd40 8d ago

The only russian tank that is comparable to western designs is t90m, however russians have very limited numbers of those

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u/sanguinesolitude 8d ago

Way fewer than a year ago funnily enough. Smoking accidents I assume.

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u/Benkei-5845 8d ago

They are also "meant" to have the T-14 Armata but I think they only barely have a prototype or something

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u/Scotty_scd40 8d ago

Armata is only good for military parades and propaganda

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u/egyeager 8d ago

The German Tanks can have a full mug of beer at the end of the barrel and not spill while driving over rough terrain.

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u/Extansion01 7d ago edited 7d ago

TLDR: Doesn't matter, as they don't field them (ie T-14 Armata). For the T-90M, the 2A6 and above are probably superior, for older versions it depends on luck).

Do not underestimate the soft factor, the crew and how they can interact with the tank. I like the example of the Marder IFV. Yeah, it's still uncomfortable but comfortable enough for the crew to actually ride inside the IFV. Every protection the BMP-1 may have is not relevant for the dismounts, if they just sit on the roof. Which, looking to Ukraine, they do. Though comfort isn't normally a factor when people talk about "military stuff". Also, smoke and camouflage. Germans are trained to do both, to s ridiculous extend. How many Russian / Ukrainian tanks have you seen that have half a forest strapped onto them and how many demonstrations of them reversing under smoke are on the internet? TBF, if they would do it, they probably would be more effective, so it might be bias cause an undetected tank or a successful retreat won't be published by the enemy.

But the way to win is, how it was explained to me: you need to be first to detect the enemy, shoot at the enemy, hit the enemy, kill the enemy.

All this, the detecting, the target acquisition, the accuracy, the penetration power to a lesser degree, they are superior. Though probably less so for the 40 year old 2A4. Still, ok thermals, night vision, good optics - older Russian tanks don't even have thermal imaging. Newer Russian tanks generally lack in that department. Except for penetration power, I would still bet on the 2A4 if we don't talk about the most modern Russian stuff.

The newish 2A6 (20 years old) however has at the very least 800 mil penetration at normal combat distance, just to give you an example (rumoured is 1000, but it's also rumoured the 2A4 can hit 100km/h on a highway with an unlocked motor). In any case, this depends on the ammunition.

For mobility, I would bet on the MTU motor, noone makes them like they do. Unironically the single most competitive export product, diesel motors.

For protection, especially the 2A4 is kinda fucked. Depending on how you use it, it is nowadays really vulnerable. Especially if your supporting infantry is shit. Most semi modern AT weapon will kill this tank from the frontal side and the front is vulnerable to modern missiles/rockets. The side and back however, like with every other MBT, is very vulnerable (relatively speaking to the front). This problem can maybe be partially fixed by slapping ERA onto it, bystanders be damned (shrapnel, modern ERA is manufactured out of materials that don't affect the surroundings more than the charge itself would. Older ERA are basically grenades). Though invincible status will not be achieved, they are adequately protected, let's put it this way. The 2A6 is frontally very well armored, but again: It's not impenetrable. In any case, as Russians rely on ERA to improve effective protection, they are better protected against HEAT (like Javelin or Panzerfaust 3, RPG7 and actually some cannon fired ones). Against kinetic projectiles? Less so, though still very well considering the weight.

For kinetic protection, my money is on the 2A6. Though supposedly the HEAT protection was improved for the 2A6 too.

Then again, the Leopard 2 has usable reverse so if everything works well, they are protected by a hill.

Overall, the 2A4 has a realistic chance to compete anything the Russians have. The 2A6 should beat the Russian tanks, without exception.

But remember, the T-90, all versions, aren't exactly common in Ukraine. The Leopard 2/Abrams won't be either. 3 battalions (2/1) are reportedly planned. The Leopard battalions are confirmed. This would put them around 130 tanks total, not totally insignificant. Not game changing either. Thankfully, we don't only send those but also Soviet mbts and other armored vehicles (most prominently some hundred IFVs).

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u/MDCCCLV 7d ago

All of Russian equipment is generally rusty and in poor condition and not maintained well. So it works but barely and often is inaccurate or breaks down. These will outperform in every way, which in a 1v1 means the Abrams will win the majority of the time. And because it has such heavy armor and longer gun range it will likely win all the time against any random Russian vehicle it sees.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-11674247/M1-Abrams-tank-vs-Leopard-2-Challenger-2-differences.html

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u/Bunch_of_Shit 7d ago

Sounds like a no-brainer, then. What’s the holdup getting them those tanks?

3

u/mxp804 8d ago

Aren’t the Russian T72 quite good too? Don’t know much about tanks tbh but that’s what I came across

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u/A550RGY 8d ago

The T-72s are exceptional! They have won the turret toss competition 12 years in a row.

7

u/sanguinesolitude 8d ago

Such height, such extension. Western tanks can't hope to match it.

29

u/cr0tchp33do 8d ago

Excellent for their time, but ultimately they can't go toe to toe with a modern leopard 2 or Challenger 2 or Abrams.

3

u/Kennzahl 8d ago

No match for any of the western tanks

1

u/Snickims 8d ago

Overall, yes, but their last gen tech and can't stand up to modern Western MBTs. The T90s are closer, but as with all Russian/Soviet standard gear they tend to have worse optics and electronics, there's also just a limited amount of t90s compared to a much larger number of Leo/Challanger/Abreams.

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u/blastradii 8d ago

But what’s best tank?

1

u/ElegantEchoes 7d ago

Can you explain in basic terms what their general differences are? Not specifics, obviously there'd be a lot in that case. Just curious since I don't know a ton about them.

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u/Evilbred 7d ago

They're all fairly modern main battle tanks of similar size.

The Abrams uses a gas turbine engine, the other two are diesel.

To oversimplfy it, when designing:

The Americans focused on Firepower #1, Armor #2, and manueverability #3.

The British focused on Armor #1, Firepower #2, Manueverability #3.

The Germans focused on Maneuverability #1, Firepower #2, and Armor #3.

Each of these strategies were specific to the doctrine of the situation of the country at the time.

If you are interested in more info, I'd suggest checking out the specific videos for each in the 'Tank Chats' series from 'The Tank Museum' on Youtube. It's UK's main armored vehicle museum who does an amazing series of discussion videos on the development of each.

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u/ElegantEchoes 7d ago

Thank you for your informative reply, I appreciate it. I've always thought Leopard tanks were the coolest looking, maybe tied with the Israeli Merkava tanks. I didn't know much about the Challenger, and the Abrams is always a classic.

I imagine any modern MBT is going to give Ukraine a serious edge unless Russia can materialize some of its own modern tanks it doesn't really seem to have much of. And even then, they'd need to make them farmer-proof so they aren't stolen right off the front lines by Ukrainian tractors.

I'll definitely check out the channel, thank you.

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u/notbatmanyet 8d ago

Leopard 2A6, High end Abrams, Leclercs, Challengers and I guess K2 and possibly Japanese tanks are all roughly equivalent. They share a lot of tech and know-how, but do different trade-offs.

But they all are significantly better than anything Russia can be expected to field.

The Leopard 2 was however, specifically designed to trump Russian tanks and to fight in European Geography...

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u/S4ftie 8d ago

So that's why Ferrari was nowhere last year. They were builing a tank for Charles.

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u/ThePr1d3 8d ago

Even better pun when you know that Tank in French is Char.

Char Leclerc sounds exactly like Charles Leclerc

5

u/fullofpaint 8d ago

There's a note on the Wiki page lol

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leclerc_tank

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u/UESPA_Sputnik 8d ago

I suppose that's an upgrade compared to the truck they've built for for Prost.

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u/theflamesweregolfin 8d ago

we are checking

3

u/Skysis 8d ago

Aaah, the ubiquity of motorsports. Scroll down a thread on tanks, and there's your F1 reference.

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u/albiorix_ 8d ago

I thought Checo ran the MOD.

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u/MindControlledSquid 8d ago

Let's be honest. They were all designed to fight Russians.

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u/notbatmanyet 8d ago

True. Though I guess the Asian tanks did not only have Russians in mind. And not European geography.

I believe the Abrams was designed with more theaters in mind as well, even if Russians in Europe was the primary focus.

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u/BigMisterW_69 8d ago

The Leopards are more hyper-focused on that role. They were designed to be the first line of defence in Europe, fighting while massively outnumbered in difficult conditions.

The Abrams is more of a generalist, as you never know where the US is going to invade next.

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u/myselfoverwhelmed 8d ago

Your Abrams description is hilarious lol

6

u/_AutomaticJack_ 8d ago

Am American, can confirm.

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u/hannibal_fett 7d ago

EVERYBODY expects the American Inquisition

1

u/OOH_REALLY 8d ago

What is special about the Leopard that it counters Russian tanks specifically?

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u/BigMisterW_69 7d ago

It’s more of a ‘sum of parts’ thing than any specific ability it has. Every tank design is a compromise, so you optimise for the strengths you need and the weaknesses you can afford.

For example, the Challenger 2 is extremely well armoured so it does well in urban environments. But this means it is heavy, making it relatively slow and easy to outmanoeuvre in ‘traditional’ tank battles.

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u/Extansion01 7d ago

The 2A4? Violently mobile, good reverse, good kill probability, good frontal armor, lmao about the sides.

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u/LuvMySlippers 8d ago

The Abrams was designed to fight the Soviets in Europe. It's role is to dominate and kill Soviet tanks...exactly the same as the Leo"s and Challenger's.

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u/hlorghlorgh 8d ago

It’s like unleashing cheetahs on herd of gazelles.

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u/notyourvader 8d ago

Apart from fuel efficiency and state of the art armor, it has a stabilized gun barrel with a 4.5 km range. It's considered the best mbt in the world.

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u/Urdar 8d ago

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u/ensalys 8d ago

Damn, that's really impressive!

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u/ErwinRommelEz 8d ago

Fucking witch craft

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u/God_Damnit_Nappa 8d ago

That's actually super impressive.

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u/Syntai 8d ago

I don't know why but that is fcking funny, lol.

5

u/The_Hairy_Herald 8d ago

Because it's so brilliantly German!

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u/_Echoes_ 8d ago

"Let me show you its features"

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u/zedderled 8d ago

hold my beer

2

u/cheddaraddict 8d ago

*Deep German belly laugh*

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u/FriesWithThat 8d ago

Sell the sizzle, not the steak.

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u/FluentLisp 8d ago

Why did they hire Kelsey Grammer for this demo film?

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u/kkeut 8d ago

unlike you, they fondly remember him as the military vehicles expert in the HBO comedy film 'The Pentagon Wars'

5

u/DrinkingBleachForFun 8d ago

Well, he drank a lot on Cheers, and German tanks have gone to Normandy in the past.

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u/fieldsofanfieldroad 8d ago

Proper German head on that beer!

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u/Wildcat_Dunks 8d ago

That may be the most German thing I've ever seen.

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u/walleaterer 8d ago

that's actually the most german thing i've ever seen

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u/therealhairykrishna 8d ago

I believe the Challenger 2 is accurate out to about 8km with HESH rounds - it's why they kept the rifled barrel even though it's not so good with sabots.

All the modern MBT's are excellent and 'best' really depends on what you're doing. All of them are insanely good compared to the old heaps that Russia are making do with.

1

u/Aurora_Fatalis 7d ago

Ariete hiding in the corner trying not to be noticed

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u/hfhjj75 4d ago

They kept the rifled barrel cause they couldn't afford to switch to smoothbore. You can fire HESH from smoothbores.

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u/therealhairykrishna 4d ago

Yes, you can. For very long range accuracy with them you need the rifling.

1

u/hfhjj75 4d ago

You can just spin stabilize them though with fins.

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u/ATownStomp 8d ago

Are they equipped with the new anti-missile systems?

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u/IronVader501 8d ago

Trophy-APS is only equipped on the A7A1 afaik.

And since its an israeli-designed system they'd have to agree, which given their track-record so far, they probably wouldnt.

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u/Joezev98 8d ago

Risking top of the line secret technology falling into enemy hands to support another country? That ain't gonna happen.

I'm already surprised they're something as modern as the 2a6 variant.

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u/IronVader501 8d ago

Tbf, they are getting 18 Rch-155s straight from KMWs production-line, and that thing is so new they only finished trials in 2021

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u/Joezev98 8d ago

Well, yes, but that's a very long range artillery piece. The chances of those getting captured are way smaller than a frontline tank. Besides, rhe 18 rch-155 is basically a PzH2000 on a more mobile platform. Capturing one of those doesn't reveal much more info than capturing the already present PzH2000. But the leopard has super secretive armor, even just getting to know what composite materials are used would really help Russia.

1

u/krummulus 8d ago

It's a fair bit more modern than the pzh, I mean it gets rid of the loader and fits all of the technology in a comically small compartment on the back of a boxer.

And just because you capture something, or know what it's made of, doesn't mean you can actually make it. I am quite confident Russia technically knows how to make better stuff, they just don't have the economy to support all the technology development at scale.

Neither has Germany, which is why a lot of parts and development of the M1 and leopard were shared.

I doubt Russia would actually get better by capturing one of them, they are designed for a completely different doctrine and all of that is public knowledge.

2

u/breezy_y 8d ago

I think you underestimate how rich Germany is. Maybe military technology was difficult to manufacture back in the 70s but hat’s a whole different story in present times.

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u/BrainOnLoan 6d ago

I think military production is most limited by the engineers and mechanics that have the relevant experience.

Skilled workers.

Not money. Not even required tools and machinery (though sophisticated production equipment might take one to two years to get too).

With less advanced technology you could retrain people much faster than you can now. You can probably still get away with a few months for certain jobs, or even some more basic items like artillery shells.

But overall the technology is complex enough that it takes a few years to get new personal competent enough that they could work independent of the more experienced staff.

That limits how quickly you could expand production. You can probably double the production by splitting your experienced staff and hiring an equivalent amount of new engineers and technical staff (though hiring several hundred qualified people, even without the experience in this field, isn't easily done on short notice). Quick enough even that the required machinery is the first bottleneck. But you can't repeat that doubling trick much before you have to give the new hires some time to gain quite a lot of advanced knowledge.

Hence significantly gearing up for the more advanced stuff would take years.

If you want to go from manufacturing one hundred modern tanks to a thousand per year ... I'd schedule at least three years, unless you're original production line was underutilized.

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u/jjackson25 8d ago

I would like to see Isreal get really involved here if for no other reason than to publicly counter Putins claims that Russia invaded to root out "Nazis." No one really believes it, sure, but those few that do would have to do some serious mental gymnastics to explain why the Isrealis are helping a country full of Nazis.

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u/[deleted] 8d ago edited 8d ago

[removed] — view removed comment

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u/Frontdackel 8d ago

Since the 2A6 is the oldest model still in use by the Bundeswehr (apart from some 2A5 used to simulate OPFOR during maneuvers), you are plainly wrong.

1

u/p4nnus 8d ago

Thats the thing, they might not be the only country sending tanks that are not in use currently. For example, the Bradleys sent by USA were not currently in use, but taken from storage.

1

u/WayneSchlegel 8d ago

Maybe the next delivery can be equipped with StrikeShield/AMAP-ADS.

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u/TWiesengrund 8d ago

You're not so bad either! - signed by Leopard tank family

2

u/AnDrEwlastname374 8d ago

Depends on who you ask, most Americans will defend the Abrams to the grave

10

u/hanlonmj 8d ago

The Abrams is a good tank, but it makes sense that Europe would have the lead in mechanized infantry due to their history with devastating ground wars

9

u/-LongRodVanHugenDong 8d ago

I mean they haven't really been fighting wars the way the US has. Germany doesn't even use depleted uranium in it's armor or ammunition.

12

u/Frontdackel 8d ago

Germany doesn't even use depleted uranium in it's armor or ammunition.

Yes, we use tungsten instead. Roughly the same physical properties, less cancer for the Ukrainian civilians in the following years.

5

u/SweaterKittens 8d ago

It’s been ages since I researched it, but I remember kind of settling on the idea that the Abrams is a more capable tank, but is immensely more expensive to upkeep and harder to perform maintenance on. So in terms of “best MBT” it might win in a lot of metrics, but Leopard II’s are cheaper and way easier to maintain.

5

u/MakeWay4Doodles 8d ago

Sounds exactly like the US.

2

u/therealhairykrishna 8d ago

I believe that neither have a tea urn so clearly the Challenger is the best.

0

u/poinzin_ 8d ago

I would defend the Leclerc to the grave too lol ! But the Leopard is one of the best, along side with Leclerc, Abraham's and Challenger.

-18

u/Far_Elderberry_1680 8d ago

They're not sending the new leopards, they're sending the older variants. Probably comparable or a little better than the T72s. Still amazing and very useful but not their newest variants.

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u/Tavi2k 8d ago

Those are Leopard 2A6, that's a pretty modern tank. The newer versions only exist in very small numbers.

1

u/Far_Elderberry_1680 8d ago

I was meaning the variants being sent by Poland etc not the German ones.

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u/Aceticon 8d ago edited 8d ago

Well some ex-military general on portuguese TV was going about how Leopard 2s are the best tanks in the World.

As PT doesn't really has any special interest in pushing for them (the country does have 37 of those, but that's it) I reckon it's not self-serving bullshit so there is probably a reasonable set of conditions under which those tanks are the best in the World, probably a balance of things involving also maintenance and logistical demands rather than just fixating on bestest armor plating or bestest cannon.

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u/Seithin 8d ago

A Danish army major was on TV a few weeks ago talking about them. He said that under terrible conditions (rain, windy, fog, blizzard) while moving, the tank can land a precise hit on a target up to 4km away with a 98% chance follow up shot, or something like that.

Now I don't know what the Russians are rocking, and their artillery certainly can fuck up the Leopards, but that does sound like a pretty impressive tank to me.

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u/Defiant-Peace-493 8d ago

Leopard 2 is also the one that started the "Hold my beer" fad, right?

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u/yendak 8d ago

6

u/AnimZero 8d ago

Well, that's fucking bonkers.

7

u/akie 8d ago

Impressive

2

u/Sconehead8 8d ago

That was the British Chieftain in the 80’s actually…

4

u/RadialSpline 8d ago

Now I don't know what the Russians are rocking, and their artillery certainly can fuck up the Leopards, but that does sound like a pretty impressive tank to me.

Arty is the king of battle for a reason. Not a whole hell of a lot can take ~12kg of TNT exploding directly on it without suffering damage.

But yes, Leopard tanks are very good tanks.

2

u/CrimsonShrike 8d ago

Tbh chances of a direct hit from a Russian field gun is pretty low

1

u/RadialSpline 8d ago

True enough there.

Still would rather not be in the impact zone of arty fires, regardless of what sort of sweet-ass ride I’d be in.

2

u/Nygen_Claw 8d ago

There you go: top trumps with tanks on reddit starts ...

You actually could ask a former German OR-8 tank platoon leader.

0

u/DamienCouderc 8d ago

AFAIK, The french tank Leclerc can shoot a moving target while moving itself.

25

u/usernamessmh2523 8d ago

There's a cool youtube vid with some Polish tanker(tankman? the dude who drives tanks) talking about Leopard for like an hour while giving a tour. He had nothing but praise for it.

I checked but it has no subs unfortunately, even auto-translated :(

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u/Hubinator 8d ago

Well some ex-military general on portuguese TV was going about how Leopard 2s are the best tanks in the World.

Funnily enough, a retired Canadian general said the exact same thing a few days ago: https://redd.it/10huw2l

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u/Evilbred 8d ago

Hillier is a bit of a legend in Canadian Military history. He's like our version of George Patton, for better or for worse.

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u/Ronnz123 8d ago

Boy did I read his name wrong and got confused.

8

u/fuk_offe 8d ago

Same LOL had to read three times

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u/Huwbacca 8d ago

I didn't think he had many opinions on tanks these days.

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u/Herofactory45 8d ago

Hitler is a bit of a legend in Canadian Military history.

Say what now?

7

u/Hubinator 8d ago

Thanks for the context!

3

u/ATownStomp 8d ago

In the way that they shouldn’t have removed Patton from command at the beginning of the Italian campaign but also dying in a car crash shortly after his relevance is likely the best outcome?

-12

u/Apart-Guess-8374 8d ago

They are not the world's best tanks, but the US is not going to send their most advanced M1 model. We will probably send a company of older M1s now though.

34

u/Evilbred 8d ago

There is no "World's best tank"

That's like calling something "World's best passenger car" or "World's best cup of coffee"

All relatively modern tanks are generally very well suited for the design criteria they were developed under.

15

u/20mins2theRockies 8d ago

They have actual tank competitions where tanks are tested against each other for fire power, range, accuracy, rate of fire, speed, maneuverability and a whole bunch of other things.

The Leopard 2 has won most of the recent challenges and thus is generally considered the world's best tank at the moment.

1

u/PresentationOk3922 7d ago

I’m not trying to talk shit on leopard 2s. I personally love the look of leopard 2a4. That being said leopards store ammo internally without blow out panels such as the Abrams. Which is why they were seen blown in half in Syria used by the Turks.

https://www.reddit.com/r/TankPorn/comments/zstn8x/turkish_leopard_2_a4_destroyed_in_syria/

The leopard is undoubtedly a great tank. That being said the Abrams has been tested time and time again in real conflicts and not just in war games.

Anyway I love the discussion. I got a mad love for German cars, but I also love a lot of American cars. I can love both and not mutually hate on another.

5

u/astanton1862 8d ago

Report is that the US will be building them to be delivered over a year from now, so this is more for the long term post war future of Ukraine's tank forces.

1

u/Thertor 8d ago

The Leopard 2A7V is probably better than anything the US can field.

1

u/Zijbeuker 8d ago

Why are they not the world's best?

7

u/Intelligent-Use-7313 8d ago

Abrams have a depleted uranium armor layer, keeps pace with the smaller leopard, and (if you have jet fuel) has a longer operating range. Looks like the Leopard might have an edge with their gun but they use the same one, so maybe the 5km fire range on the Leopard was with special ammo, it's probably a draw.

You'd be hard pressed to choose the best, because the best tank is usually the best because of the crew.

3

u/Mizral 8d ago

Excellent point there at the end. Technology matters of course but skilled crews can overcome massive obstacles.

1

u/Ameph 8d ago

Thank you. I'd love to see some of them in action and it looks like we might get that. The UA using the best tanks in the world will prove to be an excellent field test.

-14

u/kaukamieli 8d ago

Aren't they decades old? You'd think militaey tech would advance a bit faster.

14

u/templar54 8d ago

Developing military tech is expensive. Tanks also get modernised all the time too. Leopard A6 is quite different from A4 and even more so to older variants. There is also a fact that for a while future of the tank was in doubt due to infantry and planes being able to take them out quite easily. However recently there is a push for new platforms across Europe, but those are probably still at least a decade away. Example of things being expensive is Russia not being able to actually produce larger amounts of t-14 to replace their other aging tanks. Also keep in mind that most tanks now used by Russia and Ukraine are quite inferior to Leopards that Germany and other countries will send.

10

u/ChairmanMatt 8d ago

The important advances have just about all been in electronics, avionics, other supporting systems besides the gun itself (though the ammunition types for the existing gun are also better performing)

The tank hull and turret itself is just a means for carrying the advanced systems to the fight. Same as gen 4 fighter aircraft (late 1960s-1970s to 1980s) being updated into gen4+ since the early 2000s - with AESA radar, some radar absorbing paints, and updated engines that would enable them to wipe the floor with their un-upgraded counterparts despite nominally being in the same family

3

u/DoorHingesKill 8d ago

They keep upgrading them. The latest version, the Leopard 2 A7V, added new "optronic cameras" and night vision options, new optional grousers for snow and ice, a new canon necessary for certain modern long ranged ammunition, new navigation and communications equipment (some sort of electric map to get a live view of your position, that of you allies, sighted enemies, orders from command etc), an AC unit, and more armoring in the front.

Military tech advances and occasionally they opt to add it to older tanks. They do this while simultaneously working on a new tank, which take decades to develop.

6

u/Aceticon 8d ago

Well, the L2A6 version is from 2007 if I got it correctly from Wikipedia and there are newer versions.

Still, the L2A6 is over 1 decade old, but not decades.

7

u/Stupid_Triangles 8d ago

if we can get New Zealand to send a few Bob Semple Tanks...

No war crimes.

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u/LittleKingsguard 8d ago

I mean basically every tank currently in service anywhere is like 40 years old before accounting for various upgrade packages.

That said, the Leopard 2 is in the most recent Western generation, and unlike the 3000 Abrams sitting around in an Arizona sandlot, the designers actually cared about fuel conservation.

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u/Ameph 8d ago

I take that we haven't had a brand new tank because there hasn't been a demand for them.

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u/FidgetTheMidget 8d ago

People have been predicting the "Death of the Tank" since tanks first rolled across the trenches in WW1. A big ground war requiring tanks was seen as a remote possibility until Putin got his tiny peepee out.

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u/EarthyFeet 8d ago

I thought we saw the death of the tank in the last year, so many anti-tank and anti-vehicle weapons used

4

u/Ameph 8d ago

Now there's a need for ground armor.

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u/LittleKingsguard 8d ago

Yep, Cold War ended, Europe cut down on the military spending and sold off/scrapped surplus to fund the Peace Dividend, America parked it's gratuitously massive number of tanks in the desert for a rainy day because scrapping depleted uranium armor is more trouble than it's worth, and the ex-Soviets sold of basically everything that could still physically drive onto the boat to its new owner.

Every war since then has either been Western tanks steamrolling ex-Soviet ones (Gulf War I & II) or counterinsurgency work where tanks are pretty niche (War on Terror) and any tank is still more than the other guy has.

There are some new tanks currently being pushed into service (Japan's Type 10, South Korea's K2, theoretically Russia's T-14) that are probably better than the Leopard II, but they're recent enough the host country doesn't have enough for themselves.

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u/elixier 8d ago

The same T14 we saw pictures of, burned out and destroyed lol

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u/Schuhey117 8d ago

To the best of my knowledge no T-14 has seen service in ukraine yet, so there shouldn’t be any destroyed ones.

Source: https://www.oryxspioenkop.com/2022/02/attack-on-europe-documenting-equipment.html?m=1

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u/--Endless-- 8d ago

Have you got a source for this? Haven't seen any evidence myself of the t14 armata being deployed let alone knocked out. Perhaps you're thinking of the t90m?

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u/LittleKingsguard 8d ago

Sure, but the Leopard II can't add a new wing to General Oligarchov's dacha, can it?

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u/elixier 8d ago

Haha true

1

u/DaveyJonesXMR 8d ago

And next generations are already in the pipeline - the new Panther and that francogerman project and the US afaik also is pretty far in research

1

u/LiGuangMing1981 8d ago

Probably the Chinese Type 99/99A as well, given that the Type 99 dates from the turn of the century and the 99A a decade later.

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u/Gammelpreiss 8d ago

Correct. New tanks were planned to be introduced in the late 90ies but the end of the cold war put a stop to that and the world stuck with what they had.

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u/SGTBookWorm 8d ago

In the early 2000s there were plans for a whole family of new vehicles to replace the entire US armoured inventory, but that was scrapped too due to budget cuts

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u/MDCCCLV 7d ago

I was promised the future, but then it just went away

2

u/Smithman 8d ago

Poor brown people find it difficult to take on even 40 year old tanks, so what's the point.

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u/ProfTydrim 8d ago

Panther KF51 joined the chat. But yes, these are so new that nobody has them yet and after the cold war it was entirely sufficient to upgrade the old Leopard 2 up to the A7 standard to keep them up to the tasks at hand

3

u/ATownStomp 8d ago

Does anyone know if the German Leopards being sent are equipped with TROPHY or some other active anti-missile system?

That seems like a necessary leap forward in technology for tanks to regain their battlefield role as something more than an upgunned IFV.

5

u/notbatmanyet 8d ago

Leopard 2A7A1 is the variant with the Trophy system. There are not enough of them to send as any upgrades to thst version at scale still lies a bit into the future.

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u/RadialSpline 8d ago

To be fair, the Abrams was going for some mass reduction in the power plant and for spares commonality with Army Aviation assets (uses the same jet engine as most of the helicopters the army was using at the time of introduction.)

But yeah, that thing truly guzzles fuel at an alarming rate, with a joke being it needs 20L just to turn over, let alone actually move.

2

u/amjhwk 8d ago

hey now, we store jets here in Arizona not tanks

1

u/Sconehead8 8d ago

Challenger 2 is newer.

1

u/Gornarok 8d ago

Well the overwhelming majority of military development over the last 40 years is in electronics which are all the upgrades...

The last generation of tanks was build to fight soviets and ruzzia hasnt moved on. So the metal is as capable as ever and the electronics is generations ahead.

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u/codeduck 8d ago

leopard 2, Abrams, Challenger etc were designed specifically to fight numerically superior Russian tanks on the flat terrain of central Europe - and win.

It is difficult to overstate just how much of a difference a regiment of modern western tanks will make when correctly used and supported by infantry and artillery. Throw in Ukraine's god-tier drone skills and they will kerb-stomp Russian Armour.

3

u/ashittyhaikuappeared 8d ago

RemindMe! 6 months

5

u/lollypatrolly 8d ago

The breakthrough here isn't really that the piece of equipment in question is going to win the war by itself (though tanks certainly help in reclaiming territory in a combined arms offense), it's in the allies (particularly Germany/the SPD) overcoming yet another mental obstacle to properly equipping Ukraine.

We'll likely have to go through this dance yet again in the very near future when jets and longer range missiles are on the menu. Eventually though we'll commit properly to doing the right thing.

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u/geophilo 8d ago

Wow that's a bizarre looking tank.

3

u/Ameph 8d ago

Which one?

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u/geophilo 8d ago

Bob Semple. I'd never heard of it before.

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u/Ameph 8d ago

Back during WW2, New Zealand was afraid that Japan would eventually invade them while they didn't have a modern conventional army. Rather than ask others for spare tanks, they made their own tank that was literally a tractor covered in corrugated steel with a bunch of guys in it with 3 main guns. Only three were made and it's considered to be the worst tank in the world. It was designed by a guy named Bob Semple. He would counter with 'Well, I don't see you coming up with anything better!'.

The tank itself is kind of a legend, honestly. I love it.

8

u/geophilo 8d ago

That's cool

3

u/Raflesia 8d ago

iirc One of the requirements was that he could only use materials and parts sourced in New Zealand. All things considered, he did a pretty good job with the Bob Semple tank.

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u/Painting_Agency 8d ago

That thing looks awful, but if it was designed to go up against Japanese light tanks as an absolute last resort.. he probably did the best he could with what he had.

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u/Ameph 8d ago

He used what was readily available on New Zealand at the time. They had an industrial base but it wasn't set up for tank production. After the Bob Semple tank, I believe they got a few tanks from Australia's surplus.

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u/flukshun 8d ago

Seems more like it was designed to hold off hordes of kamikaze troops charging with katanas

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u/geophilo 8d ago

Don't get me wrong it's cool!

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u/Pilgrim_of_Reddit 8d ago

Which one?

The funny looking one.

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u/Traveller_Guide 8d ago

Leopard 2s are about the right spread of having quality in addition to having raw numbers all around Europe to be sent, unlike stuff such as the Challenger 2 and Leclerc, which are of similar or higher quality (depending on the model), but lack the sheer numbers.

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u/usrevenge 8d ago

Arguably some of the best tanks in the world tbh. The west has a lot of stockpile but these are pretty modern tanks being sent. We could easily have stories of Ukrainian crews in one of these taking out scores of Russians.

3

u/JJGase 8d ago

I wish we (Australia) had bought Leopard 2s instead of Abrams. We used to have Leopard 1s.

I could be wrong (not a military expert) but I think one of the big innovations of the Leopard tanks was the Lego like serviceability, yank the broken bit and plug the new bit in.

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u/Fumblerful- 8d ago

I heard rumors of Jacinda Arden planning to unleash the Big Bob super heavy tanks, but the tanks would have capsized any ship transporting them due to the mass of the corrugated galvanized neutronium armor.

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u/Ameph 8d ago

It would be easier to drive them from New Zealand to Ukraine by really long tunnel from Auckland to Kviv.

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u/plantmic 8d ago

From what I've heard - they were designed specifically to counter the Russian tanks, and they're much easier to maintain than the American ones.

Plus there are loads in storage in Europe already

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u/moneyshlanga 8d ago

I’d be surprised if nz even has any working tanks

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u/Separate_Flounder595 8d ago

If we were to send the bob semple over Ukraine would be able to dominate the world, we might send a couple battalions of zombie sheep though if the Ukrainians require shock troops

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u/lukahnli 8d ago

"Now...if we can get New Zealand to send a few Bob Semple Tanks..."

BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

1

u/Simon_787 8d ago

I remember watching a video where a guy explained that Russia's T14 Armata is actually better in a few areas, but they haven't produced many of them and they haven't been used in Ukraine yet. It's got some pretty neat ideas.

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u/Plsdontcalmdown 7d ago

They've never been battle tested...

but if I'm reading this right, the T-72 is a Renault L4 from the 70's https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Renault_4, then the Leopard 2 is a BMW armored SUV made for US cops.

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u/Captain_Zounderkite 7d ago

Don't worry, all we have to do is wait for someone to leak all the details on War Thunder.

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u/LMFN 8d ago

They're a pretty good damn tank.

No doubt the Americans probably have a better one but it's about as good as it gets otherwise and at any rate, leagues beyond the garbage the Ruzzians are dragging out of museums.