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FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Contains threads on British Army equipment of the past, present and future.
RetroSicotte
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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby RetroSicotte » 13 Sep 2020, 19:05

Ron5 wrote:
RetroSicotte wrote:- Cut to 70 F-35B (We knew it'd be anyway, but formalised)


Minor niggle but you can't cut something you don't have or haven't budgeted the money to buy.

But I'd go along with you on cutting the Navy's amphib ability to close to zero. That would save a shed load of current money and in my opinion, is a capability the UK can do without. Not sure if there's any other current capability I would say the same about. But that's for another thread.

Crucial clarirfication, I am heavily against cutting amphib.

I was simply saying it's what I think they might pick if they can't choose Challenger. Those are not ones I'd be okay with in the slightest.

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby RetroSicotte » 13 Sep 2020, 19:07

ArmChairCivvy wrote:
RetroSicotte wrote:- Vikings
Why would they go - the BVs are much older - having gone tru a re-manufacture fairly recently?
RetroSicotte wrote:Titan/Trojan
Would be a fair guess, except that your assumption was an MBT on the same chassis remaining part of the line up

Not saying it makes sense, just what I feel they could feel they'd get away with because they aren't big "public eye" ones.

Tanks are easy to sell to the public as "oh no it's being cut". Vikings/Trojan etc aren't. Which is my worry that if Challenger stays, the supporting elements go because these reviews aren't about capability, they're about how much they feel they can cut this time without getting backlash.

That's all these reviews ever are.

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby Ron5 » 13 Sep 2020, 20:47

mr.fred wrote:
Ron5 wrote:Pretty sure you could buy a brand new M1 if you really wanted one. Folks have been buying used and refurbishing them to save money not because there wasn't an alternative.

You could have many things if you want them enough, but it’s going to cost...

Ron5 wrote:I've read authoritative estimates of up to an average of 12 million pounds per upgraded CH2. Whether that includes R&D, I do not know.

Any chance of a source?
In case it’s Nicholas Drummond, I would not consider him to be an authoritative source.


No it was not him. I did say authoritative :D

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby Ron5 » 13 Sep 2020, 20:49

RetroSicotte wrote:because these reviews aren't about capability, they're about how much they feel they can cut this time without getting backlash.

That's all these reviews ever are.


Ain't that the truth.

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby Lord Jim » 14 Sep 2020, 09:55

I cannot see the Vikings going and the Bv206s are up for replacement with the latest version of the Viking the leading contender. IF we are going to make the "High North" a major commitment these vehicles are essential as well as being very useful in other theatres.

I can only see Titan and Trojan going if the CR2 is totally withdrawn as all three are closely linked as is the Challenger Armoured Recovery vehicle with the former being some of our newest AFVs and again very useful. Until we actually get Combat Engineering platforms based on either Ajax or Boxer they are all we have in this category as their roles cannot be carried out by Terrier either.

As for looing to Japan (Type 10) or South Korea (K2), both these are very expensive platforms, probably the most expensive platforms actually. If we decided to go for new build the only real option would be a version of the Leopard 2A7, but if the figure of £12M per tank for the CR2 LEP is accurate, it will be far cheaper than any possible nee vehicle.

The condition of the CR2 fleet is actually pretty good as the fleet has been rotated through storage and has an annual millage limit imposed on, something the UK has done for decades. There shouldn't be any nasty surprises, more likely the biggest danger is the size of the LEP increasing as those in charge keep finding things that could be replaced/upgraded for a small cost. The problem is these small extras will add up and eventually become a considerable cost increase.

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 14 Sep 2020, 10:04

RetroSicotte wrote: supporting elements go because these reviews aren't about capability
While I agree with you, this time around there is a blunt weapon around, with which to counter the craziest ideas:
"What will this do to Global Britain?"
Lord Jim wrote:cannot see the Vikings going and the Bv206s are up for replacement with the latest version of the Viking the leading contender
One being protected mobility and the other not ( a logs/ support platform), one could claim other, cheaper contenders
- I just want to see how they would get around in a meter of snow; any 'advance' force, in the form of Royal Marines, becoming road bound would be absurd
- there is a reason for the original Archer platform looking like it was/ is: the 1 m snow was part of the spec or rqrmnt

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby mr.fred » 14 Sep 2020, 10:29

Lord Jim wrote:As for looing to Japan (Type 10) or South Korea (K2), both these are very expensive platforms, probably the most expensive platforms actually. If we decided to go for new build the only real option would be a version of the Leopard 2A7, but if the figure of £12M per tank for the CR2 LEP is accurate, it will be far cheaper than any possible nee vehicle.

The numbers I’ve been able to browse up suggest that all new or upgrades are fairly similar in price and that the £12m for CR2 is extreme high end. What price estimates have you been using?

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby seaspear » 14 Sep 2020, 12:38

Are there signs internationally that development of heavy tanks are on pause, there was the U.S interest in the replacement of the Abrams with the XM1202
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Future_Co ... d_Vehicles,
Is there a possible view of a medium type tank that is easily moved by air quickly and can maneuver better than heavily armoured tanks and that such vehicles protected by Elbits Iron fist for example may be able to accomplish the same objectives as the tank .
Would such operators have the advantage of getting these vehicles to distant theatres quicker because of the easier logistics?

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby RetroSicotte » 14 Sep 2020, 13:05

seaspear wrote:Is there a possible view of a medium type tank that is easily moved by air quickly and can maneuver better than heavily armoured tanks and that such vehicles protected by Elbits Iron fist for example may be able to accomplish the same objectives as the tank .
Would such operators have the advantage of getting these vehicles to distant theatres quicker because of the easier logistics?

I don't believe so, because the moment it encounters actual MBTs coming the other way, it'll crumple like wet paper. Iron Fist doesn't do much against a nearly meter long rod of depleted uranium moving at almost 1.7km a second.

APS is quickly becoming an essential supplement on main frontline vehicles, due to the rise of ATGMs, but it isn't a replacement for armour as that approach would invalidate the primary benefit of an MBT's staying power in the face of direct fire.

The program linked was effectively cancelled. The few images we've seen of potential future US tanks look a lot like an Abrams still, just with some different turret concepts.

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 14 Sep 2020, 13:43

RetroSicotte wrote:crumple like wet paper. Iron Fist doesn't do much against a nearly meter long rod of depleted uranium moving at almost 1.7km a second.

Agreed... it is all about having a mix; and then re-mixing them at battle group level for any task on hand
- but as I have been saying for the last 5 yrs; the Big Gun is back, thx to APS
- and, the piercing qualities within a given caliber will reach their limit (130, not if - but when?

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby Ron5 » 14 Sep 2020, 15:59

I wonder how vulnerable these APS systems are on a battlefield. Seem kinda fragile.

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 14 Sep 2020, 17:31

Ron5 wrote: APS systems [ are] on a battlefield. Seem kinda fragile.


Yes, the Armata was coming out looking like a Xmas tree... the sensor bit is the vulnerability.

Good old shrapnel (the great Somme mistake) will ride again? Perhaps gene mutated, in some way

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby RetroSicotte » 14 Sep 2020, 18:12

It already happens. Tanks getting CITVs and daysights shot out is moderately common today, and has been for a long time. Challenger 2, Abrams, and Leclerc all had this happen to them, Russian ones too (although you don't hear about it).

APS is just the next part of that. The Israelis didn't have too much trouble with it. It being there caused a dramatic reduction in impacts.

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby seaspear » 14 Sep 2020, 22:46

https://www.janes.com/defence-news/news ... ergy-round
This article suggests that iron fist has some capability against anti-tank 120mm kinetic rounds but of course how that as any protection works in a real engagement is of interest

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 15 Sep 2020, 09:49

A slight problem:
"a later presentation by Rheinmetall Protection Systems[, which indicated] that an APS with a 200 W-radar system could be detected from a range of 500 km by electronic intelligence assets."
You can switch it on when expecting to engage; but if it not 'on' then could be ambushed, without being aware of being under threat.

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby seaspear » 15 Sep 2020, 12:23

The article suggests that "Iron fist" had addressed that problem ,I understand the Russian T-14 can deploy a thick muti spectral smoke that amongst other things masks millimetre radar emissions , apologies for going off-topic with my comments .

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby jedibeeftrix » 15 Sep 2020, 13:25

ArmChairCivvy wrote:A slight problem:
"a later presentation by Rheinmetall Protection Systems[, which indicated] that an APS with a 200 W-radar system could be detected from a range of 500 km by electronic intelligence assets."
You can switch it on when expecting to engage; but if it not 'on' then could be ambushed, without being aware of being under threat.

the same problem faced by air defence assets since Harm was invented (if not before).

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby RetroSicotte » 15 Sep 2020, 15:19

Aye. Even if you do get the odd ambush, you'd have gotten ambushed with or without the APS anyway.

The vast majority of heavy conflict zones are ones you know you're going into. And once the first shot is fired, you turn it on anyway.

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 15 Sep 2020, 21:11

RetroSicotte wrote: once the first shot is fired, you turn it on anyway.
of course, but covering "the 500km" in a round-about way first, to OpFor's flank

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby seaspear » 15 Sep 2020, 22:19

Doesn't flanking require a higher degree of speed and maneuverability over terrains that sometimes does not lend to heavy tracked vehicles ,

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 15 Sep 2020, 22:35

Only the Qattara depression stopped Rommel from repeating his party trick?

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby seaspear » 16 Sep 2020, 14:13

This is an article from 2014 perhaps showing the directions of research in tanks and armour then is it known if this line of direction was continued ?
http://www.defence-and-security.com/fea ... r-4483944/

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby RetroSicotte » 16 Sep 2020, 18:11

seaspear wrote:This is an article from 2014 perhaps showing the directions of research in tanks and armour then is it known if this line of direction was continued ?
http://www.defence-and-security.com/fea ... r-4483944/

Ceramics were used in armour construction long before 2014 really, and are still used since. They're often a component in layered composites.

Electric armour was discontinued because it was simply impractical compared to ERA and bar-slat.

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby military » 17 Sep 2020, 00:04

Here are some thoughts on the Challenger 2 replacement or upgrade.

1. The new tank should be upgradeable in another 15 years. This does not favour the Rheinmetall replacement of the CR2 turret, as this turret would be likely a boutique option for Britain and so a future upgrade would require new R&D.

2. Leopard 2A7 is said to have the same armour as the Leopard 2A5 from 1995. If true, this is an armour package that entered service three years before Challenger 2. This outdated armour puts Leopard 2 behind recent Russian tanks like T-72B3, T-90M and T-14. Some sort of armour upgrade would be needed, like Sweden and Switzerland did in the 1990s for Leopard 2, which might be cost prohibitive for Britain.

3. Ideally, an active protection system like Trophy would be included, although that is expensive.

4. South Korea is proposing a new version of its Black Panther, called the K2PL, for Poland. The pictures released suggest added armour. I wonder if buying from South Korea instead of Germany would be cheaper and result in a better protected, more recent tank.

5. The new Abrams SEP v3 may be the only western tank that has armour comparable to the top Russian tanks. It would likely be pricy for the UK to acquire.

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Re: FV4034 Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Postby Tinman » 17 Sep 2020, 00:51

You do understand that the M1 uses British armour?


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