Germany may provide Ukraine with the latest 2A6 Leopard tanks. They are considered one of the “icons” of tank building.
Germany will finally consider the transfer of Leopard tanks to Ukraine on January 25 during a meeting of the Bundestag. However, the media, citing their own sources, write that the country is ready to provide Ukraine with at least a company of Leopard 2A6 tanks. Channel 24 painted the main characteristics of these tanks.
Help.The Leopard 2 is a 3rd generation main battle tank developed in the 1970s for the West German army. The tank entered service in 1979 and replaced the previous Leopard 1 as the main battle tank. Armed with a 120mm Rheinmetall smoothbore gun and powered by a MTU Friedrichshafen twin V-12 turbodiesel engine.
There are two main batches of the tank's development: newer versions and original Leopard 2A4 models, whose characteristics differ from modern ones, already starting with the Leopard 2A5.
Leopard 2A6 characteristics that Germany can transfer to Ukraine
Military Ordnance magazine calls the Leopard 2A6 the best main battle tank of our time in terms of the development of the main characteristics: firepower, armor protection and mobility.
The Leopard 2A6 is considered an example of quality and reliability. This tank has a classic overall layout with the propulsion and transmission in the rear of the hull. The crew consists of 4 people.
The main gun of the Leopard 2А6 is a 120 mm Rh120 smoothbore gun (Rheinmetall). Its technical rate of fire is 10 – 12 rounds per minute. This 44-caliber gun is easily stabilized, allowing it to fire effectively on the move. The sub-caliber projectile of such a cannon can hit armor 350 millimeters thick at a distance of up to 2,000 meters.
In addition, an elongated Rh l 120/L55 cannon with a barrel length can be mounted on the Leopard 2А6 in 55 calibers.
The German EMES 15 fire control system deserves special attention. It allows high-precision shooting regardless of time, from a place and while moving. At the same time, processing of all the necessary data for making a shot takes only 4 seconds.
The EMES 18 weapon control system allows the Leopard 2А6 tank to hit a moving target from the first shot at a time when he himself moves around the area.
Auxiliary armament of the Leopard 2A6: German 7.62 mm MG3 machine guns, one of which is paired with the main gun of the tank, and the second is mounted on the hatch and can be used as an anti-aircraft weapon.
Price. By According to 2017 data, the cost of one unit of the Leopard 2A6 was estimated at 6.79 million US dollars.
The turret and hull of the Leopard 2A6 have projectile-resistant form. The upper front plate of the hull has a large angle of inclination to the vertical, which, together with the use of multilayer armor.provides sufficiently effective protection against armor-piercing sub-caliber projectiles and anti-tank guided missiles. In addition, the fuel tanks have a special filler that prevents an explosion when they are damaged.
Despite its overall size and durability, the tank is quite mobile . Mobility is ensured by a single power unit that combines a powerful diesel engine MB 873 Ka-501 and an automatic hydromechanical transmission HSWL – 354/3, providing four forward gears and two reverse gears. Among the main advantages of combining the engine and transmission into a single unit is the ability to quickly replace them. Even in the field, this process takes about 15 minutes.
In addition, the Leopard 2A6 has a modern 360° laser warning system. It notifies the crew of the threat of the use of laser guidance by the enemy.
Pay attention. A movement began on the network calling for Leopard to be provided to Ukraine. The hashtag “FreeLeopards” is actively spread to attract the attention of ordinary people and officials in Western countries.