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M1 Abrams vs Leopard 2

Discussion in 'Military History' started by Leopard2, Oct 12, 2008.

  1. Leopard2

    Leopard2 Member

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    So I watched so many shows on both tanks independently and while most seem to claim the Leopard 2 is the best tank in the world, it has not seen much combat yet. We know both tanks share the german Rheinnmetall 120mm L44/55 gun.

    What's your opinion and why?
     
  2. Vet

    Vet Dishonorably Discharged

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    The Abrams is combat tested. While the Leopard has nice qualities it most likely will never see combat where it can be truly tested. The Abrams is a good tank but I saw a T-55 take one out by hitting it in the side in Gulf war one.
     
  3. Leopard2

    Leopard2 Member

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    Thanks. Interesting.
     
  4. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    Some of the Leopards have gone to the L55 version of the gun. The US decided not to do so for some of the same reasons the Germans decided to do so.

    If you are not worried about fuel consumption the Abrams may have an edge if you are worried about it the Leopard may have an edge. Also depends on how you are planning on fighting.

    From the flank all modern MBTs have vulnerability to the previous generation or two of MBTs.
     
  5. 4th wilts

    4th wilts Member

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    can anyone see these 2 tanks ever meeting in combat?if so,where?.will we ever know which is best?.i think not.cheers.
     
  6. Triple C

    Triple C Ace

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    The US Army initially chose the M-1 Abrams over the Leopard 2 because the evaluators felt that the M-1 was superior in the armored protection, ballistic shape and survivability due to compartmentalized ammo storage. The Leopard 2 was found superior in firepower due to its 120mm smoothbore compared to the 105mm rifle of the base model M-1 and better FCS. However, 105mm rifle was adequate against T-72/T-64 at the time, and M-1 turret can readily accomodate a 120mm gun when future Russian tank developement necessistates it.

    There is little to choose between modern M-1A2 and Leopard 2A6. US tank vets I have talked to felt that the Leopard 2 is a design that emphasizes good mobility and lethality. M-1A2 has massive frontal armor protection, good tactical mobility and equal lethality but more taxing on logistics, especially fuel. With the US Army that isn't much of a problem. Both can defeat modern APFSDS at battle range and have great FCS. The German L/55 is a better weapon than the L/44 M256 but Americans use dU penetrators which equalized muzzle velocity with heavier momentum.
     
  7. T. A. Gardner

    T. A. Gardner Genuine Chief

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    I don't think there is much to choose between the two. Technology develops on an inverse square curve. That is, past a certain point it doesn't get much better than it already is.
    You can see the parallel in automobile technology. Cars today are not much better than they were 10 years ago and not alot better than they were 20 years ago. Now, prior to that (say about 1980) automobiles were gaining substancial ground in performance and reliability almost yearly.
    Tanks are the same way. Gun technology has pretty much reached its limits. Armor may still have some developmental way to go but, without another major breakthrough such as modern composite armor, it too is quickly reaching a developmental end. Automotive performance has likewise flatlined. There is only so much power to be gotten out of an engine of a specific size and suspensions are now pretty much all hydropneumatic torsion bar types that are about as efficent as practical.

    So, I really don't see much difference between the latest versions of MBT. They all are pretty much the same each just has a few different "bells and whistles" on them. It is going to take another major revolutionary step forward to really differentiate tank development.
     
  8. Vet

    Vet Dishonorably Discharged

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    I have read that the T-80U is a very good tank.
     
  9. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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    Where was that? And when?

    "The M1A1/M1A2 can survive multiple hits from the most powerful tank munitions (including 120 mm depleted uranium APFSDS) and anti-tank missiles. In the Persian Gulf War, Abrams tanks survived multiple hits at relatively close ranges from Iraqi T-72's, ATGM's. M829 "Silver Bullet" APFSDS rounds from other M1A1 Abrams were unable to penetrate the front and side armor (even at close ranges) in friendly fire incidents as well as an incident in which another Abrams tried to destroy an Abrams that got stuck in mud and had to be abandoned."

    " Only 23 M1A1s were taken out of service in the Gulf and none of these losses resulted in crew deaths from Iraqi fire. Some others took minor combat damage, with little effect on their operational readiness. There were only 3 tank crew members wounded beyond doubt by enemy action."

    "Nearly all sources claim that no Abrams tank has ever been destroyed as a result of fire from an enemy tank, but some have certainly taken some damage which required extensive repair. There is at least one account, reported in the following Gulf War's US Official Assessment (scan), of an Abrams being damaged by three kinetic energy piercing rounds. The DoD report indicates that witnesses in the field claimed it was hit by a T-72 Asad Babil. The KE rounds were unable to fully penetrate and stuck in the armor, but the damage was enough to send the tank to a maintenance depot. This is the only verified case of an M1A1 knocked out by an Iraqi MBT."

    MarineCorps.com | Spotlight: M1 Abrams
     
  10. Vet

    Vet Dishonorably Discharged

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    It's BS propaganda. I stand by my words and know what I saw. I saw the number being 59 on a documentary on the history channel so who knows what the actual total really is? By the way, it was close to Basra highway where I participated in this battle.
     
  11. von Poop

    von Poop Waspish WW2|ORG Editor

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    Seems a sensible point of view, or as Stan Freburg(?) once said: "you see one dragon you’ve seen ’em all!"

    Other 'big boys' at the moment? :
    Challenger 2. ('Most sophisticated protection'?)
    Leclerc (Though they seem to have had some infrastructure problems with it).
    Merkava? (perhaps less so as the essential core of it's design is a little long in the tooth now?)
    Latest T90? (though I seem to read rather mixed reports of it)

    Many other recent types look to often be derivatives of previous generations of armour.
    I wish I was better at keeping up with the modern gear but tend to content myself with just marvelling at the size of 'em and the astonishing levels of protection that have been achieved... Though I marvel just as much at the power of some recent man-portable anti-armour gear, those missiles used recently against the Israelis in Lebanon looked to be vicious things.

    Cheers,
    Adam.
     
  12. Joe

    Joe Ace

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    I think the Abrams looks better. And if it looks good, it usually is good.
     
  13. Vet

    Vet Dishonorably Discharged

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    Joe you have confused the Abrams for a woman.:D
     
  14. Triple C

    Triple C Ace

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    The operant word in the USMC article about M-1 is no tank losses with crew fatalities due to enemy fire, I think. The article might be propaganda, but that doesn't mean the information provided is untrue. M-1 hull sides aren't particularly well protected against anything bigger than hand-held AT weapons and 100mm cannon might get through. Still, inflicting crew fatality in a M-1 is pretty damned hard.
     
  15. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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    Really? Seems kind of strange propaganda. What does it matter if it was a T-55 or T-72? I wonder what purpose it would serve to claim a T-72 rather then a T-55?
     
  16. T. A. Gardner

    T. A. Gardner Genuine Chief

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    I also would add that at some point, as we know all-to-well from WW 2, quantity has a quality to it too. In a major conflict it may be very likely that tanks like the M1 and Leopard 2 are unsustainable in manufacture. But, we may never know as it is also likely that the age of mass conscript armies is at a close replaced by smaller professional hi-tech ones.
     
  17. Vet

    Vet Dishonorably Discharged

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    That article implies a lie. That the Abrams is invincible. I know for a fact that the second armored div lost three Abrams alone. I'm not going to turn this into a debate because the U.S. is no different than anyone else when it comes to inflating weapons capabilities and the strength of the enemy in general. I remember being told we would face 5,500 tanks when we left for Iraq. What a joke as what I saw was not even half that much and my unit covered over 200 miles of combat. I know what I saw. But that is not the debate here. The Abrams easily was destroyed by that T-55 to the extent that it shocked me. You can believe what you want because that does not matter to me. I won't even go into detail about the more than a dozen Bradleys we lost. I'm just sharing a little about what I saw. As a matter of fact, I do not even like to talk about my combat experience and I did well out there and have no regrets. I'm not going to even discuss this ever again. Nothing personal.
     
  18. Leopard2

    Leopard2 Member

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    does anyone know if the Leo2 uses the same Chobham armor as the Abrams?
    Wikipedia.org claims this to be false, and that the Leo2 uses pure perforated/composite armor.

    Any idea?
     
  19. Za Rodinu

    Za Rodinu Aquila non capit muscas

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    Vet likes this.
  20. Triple C

    Triple C Ace

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    Not Chobham, but IIRC it is speculated to have used ceramics in its armor in conjuction with laminated plates (spaced armor).
     

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