Leopard 2 A5
Initial Operational Capability (IOC):
Also Known As: Leopard 2 PSO and Strv 122
Krauss-Maffei Wegmann and Rheinmetall Defence
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Description: The Leopard 2 is a heavyweight Main Battle Tank (MBT) designed to replace Leopard 1 in the German Army countering the soviet-made T-72. The Leopard 2 features high mobility, protection, improved survivability over previous main battle tanks and a 120mm smoothbore gun. More than 3,000 Leopard 2 have been produced to date for 11 European nations. Due to this fact the Leopard is truly called the Euro Leopard 2.
The Leopard 2 main battle tank is the result of cooperation between Krauss-Maffei Wegmann and Rheinmetall. As the proven Leopard 1 technology follow-on, the Leopard 2 features high availability and low life cycle costs. It can operate day/night and in all-weather conditions.
The Leopard 2 modular design clears the way for rapid and easy modernization and upgrading programs. It was deployed for the first time in the 1990s during the former Yugoslavia conflict. It has not been involved in military campaigns, like the M1 Abrams and the British Challenger, but it is considered as one of the best main battle tanks currently in service.
The Leopard 2 A5 is an improved version of proven Leopard 2 with improved armor and survivability. The A5 model has specially located add-on armor to counter top-attack munitions and latest generation anti-tank missiles. A new commander's thermal sight has been provided in addition to the gunner's one. The German Army ordered new-built Leopard 2 A5 tanks and Sweden also ordered the A5 model under the Strv122 designation and featuring some minor modifications.
Leopard 2 PSO (Peace Support Operation) is a Leopard 2 A5 variant intended for peacekeeping operations in urban and non-urban terrain. It was developed by Krauss Maffei-Wegmann using its own funds and introduced at Eurosatory 2006 in Paris, France. Leopard 2 PSO leverages the Leopard 2 A5 protection and firepower adding a secondary turret-mounted weapon station operated under armor, an option for equipping with non-lethal effective means, a high-performance camera system for close observation, an enhanced reconnaissance ability, search light and a dozer-blade for barricade removal.
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