The United States has now joined Germany and the United Kingdom in committing to send main battle tanks to Ukraine. What are the capabilities and differences of these participating tanks? The American Abrams M1 Tank, powered by a 1,500-horsepower engine, is widely regarded as the most technologically advanced tank available.
The M1 Gram requires a crew of four to operate. It is equipped with a 120mm smoothbore gun for destroying enemy tanks and other heavily armored vehicles. The Abrams tank is also equipped with three machine guns. One heavy machine gun was used to destroy lightly armored vehicles, while two light machine guns were used to kill and injure enemy personnel. The top speed of the Abrams M1 tank is about 65 kilometers per hour, and the maximum cruising range is about 425 kilometers.
The tank’s turbine engines run best on aviation fuel, adding expense and logistics to the tank’s operation. Germany’s Leopard 2 tank uses more readily available diesel fuel to power its 1,500-horsepower turbocharged engine. The Leopard 2 tank has many of the features of the Abrams M1 tank, such as a smooth-bore 120mm cannon and a pair of light machine guns. The German and American tanks are designed to better protect four-person crews than the former Soviet-built tanks currently used by Ukraine and Russia.
Gian Gentile is a former U.S. Army tank commander and RAND Corporation military historian. “So the crews of the M1A1 and the Leopard 2 are much safer because the ammunition for both tanks is outside the turret the crew is sitting in,” Gotti said. Hit, and everything in the turret is normal, the shell will rise and go out. On the T-72 tank, the shell and the crew are in the turret, they are more likely to be detonated and cause catastrophic damage to the crew and the tank itself. ”
The Leopard 2 requires a crew of four to operate and has a top speed similar to the Abrams but has a range of about 340 kilometers. Usability is the biggest advantage of the Leopard 2 tank. More than 2,000 Leopard 2 tanks are in service in various European countries. The British Challenger 2 tank had a 120mm cannon as its primary armament and a pair of light machine guns, just like other tanks. Its ammunition is also stored outside the crew compartment. The Challenger 2 has a slightly smaller diesel engine with only 1,200 horsepower and does not move as fast as other tanks. But its maximum range of more than 500 kilometers is superior to that of American or German-made tanks.