Home » Weapons » Armor » New Details on Russia’s T-95 Tank Emerge

New Details on Russia’s T-95 Tank Emerge

by John Reed on March 18, 2011

Check this out. These grainy images are supposedly pictures of the prototype of Russia’s T-95 tank which was to have been the basis for a 21st Century Russian armor fleet. Moscow is said to have scrapped funding for the tank last year yet still withheld most details of the behemoth. However, thanks to a tipster, DT has some speculative info on the beast.

From what I’ve been able to learn from a translated data sheet found on the website, Tankpower.

Apparently, the vehicle, which Russian defense officials apparently envisioned as a “fundamental leap forward” in Russian armor, features a completely automated turret with its 152-millimeter main gun being fed via autoloader, leaving the entire crew in the heavily armored front section of the tank’s hull, separated from the turret by blast walls. All of this is done in an effort to dramatically increase crew survivability in the event of an anti-tank round piercing the turret. It looks like the Ruskies were also working to protect the tanks weapons from being taken out easily; the gun’s auto-loader is set high above the turret’s floor to minimize the risk of being taken out by an anti-tank mine.  Fuel cells are also kept separate from the turret area in an effort to keep a round that penetrates the turret from igniting the tanks fuel.

The beast was also supposed to come with a digital information management system, showing the crew how many rounds of ammunition are left, fuel levels and the overall health of the tank. The T-95 was also supposed to be able to share information with other tanks in battlefield formations, kind of like the U.S.’ net-centric approach to fighting.

Here are some more images of the tank. Have additional details? Share em in the comments.

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{ 157 comments… read them below or add one }

mrsachmo March 18, 2011 at 2:23 pm

second image looks like a king tiger

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ssnst March 19, 2011 at 5:59 pm

i thought more like a SP artillery. pretty tall for the crew being in hull also. would like to see some country in the middle east buy/use it evaluate it, . .

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Tim W March 18, 2011 at 2:52 pm

I agree Cisco , and all these idiots bleating on about Russian gear its hilarious. The Pak 50 , Russian ecm ,Radar , Missiles, Subs , etc etc etc . 90 percent of their current equipment wouldn't have stood a chance against Western forces in 1985 never mind now.

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Lance March 18, 2011 at 3:32 pm

Looks crappy with no sloped armor and looks bulky. But this is a BIG leap ahead of the crappy T-72 and its regurgitated version the T-90 which its combat performance has proven the T-72/90 is inferior to US and NATO tanks both same and even earlier generation tanks.

If Russia wont produce this tank they should buy and field the T-84 tank for its newest and best tank divisions.

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Stratege March 19, 2011 at 3:01 am

You are too much biased, sir.

"Looks crappy with no sloped armor and looks bulky."

There's no need for sloped armor. It should have been equipped with 'heavy' ERA armor – last gen 'Relikt' ot something newer.

"But this is a BIG leap ahead of the crappy T-72 and its regurgitated version the T-90 which its combat performance has proven the T-72/90 is inferior to US and NATO tanks both same and even earlier generation tanks. "

Where it was proven to be true? Iraq had no real T-72 tanks. In 1980's, most numerous NATO tank guns (105 mm) in Western Europe's armored forces were not able to reliably penetrate frontal armor of Soviet made T-72 tanks.

"If Russia wont produce this tank they should buy and field the T-84 tank for its newest and best tank divisions."

Ukrainian T-84 is based on old T-80 baseline. Russians had their own heavily redesigned T-80 based tank, the "Black Eagle" ("Omsk turret"), but it was rejected.

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crackedlenses March 19, 2011 at 9:50 am

Tell that to the Israelis who were knocking out T-72s head on with 105 mm.-armed Merkavas……

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Stratege March 19, 2011 at 12:08 pm

Myth.
Tank-tank battles with 105mm vs T-72 in Middle East were extremely rare.
Merkava's and T-72 had never faced each other in tank battles.
Few Syrian T-72 were ambushed and destroyed by Israeli ATGMs, but not in tank to tank battle.

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William C. March 19, 2011 at 3:21 pm

The 105mm M833 DU APFSDS could probably penetrate the armor of the T-64B, T-72A, and T-80B at typical combat ranges. Yet the 120mm cannon would have been needed to deal with the next "generation" of Soviet tanks, those being the T-72B and T-80U.

Older types of 105mm ammo could have dealt with the original T-72. Earlier models of the T-80 and T-64 also weren't as heavily protected as their "B" versions.

brad April 8, 2011 at 4:09 pm

I don't quite understand why you would say that sloping armor is not needed. Sloping the armor on any tank by 30 degrees increases its effective defensive capability by 50 percent. To be fair to you however, the Japanese and Britain have incorporated non-sloping armor in some of their latest tank designs so there is precedent for your observation.

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Bman March 21, 2011 at 10:52 am

Lance the russians make the T-80. It has so many problems with its engine and vulnerabilities that the Russian armies on internal reviews after the initial portion of the Chechen invasion was that the russian army should not procure any additional tanks that use turbine engines and that the T-72 was more suited for the current war. The russians have always designed world class equipment but built absolute garbage.

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Lance March 21, 2011 at 4:11 pm

@Bman

Im Not saying the Russian dont make good equipment. But the T-72/90 is NOT one of them.The tank is a death trap for its crew and its so small only small men can man it.

Yes some T-80s where lost in Grozny BUT it was due to bad armor tactics and no infantry support is why tanks where massacred there. The Ukrainians have fixed many problem on the T-80s engine and have improved the design with the T-84. Most CIS countries are buying T-84s now and NO T-90s except Russia. The Russian T-80s will be in service for years too Since T-90s are built to replace older T-72s in Russian service.

I think Russia would be better off with either going to the T-84 or goto a new tank design like the new T-95.

I do like Russian weapons the AK-74, T-80 and MiG-29 are some of my favorite Russian weapons. I also like the Alkal Class attack subs they have too. They have such a cute conning tower on them being so low profile.

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Stratege March 22, 2011 at 7:01 am

""Im Not saying the Russian dont make good equipment. But the T-72/90 is NOT one of them."

No. T-72 is decent tank. Reasonably good armored (real T-72 with all armor upgrades, i am not talking about "monkey models" or Iraqi made fake T-72s with steel armor). Relatively cheap. Light weight, great operational mobility. Reliable. Good offensive tank. Survivalibility isn't good, but it was not designed for that.
T-90 is another tank which is based on 72. Great machine for its price. Crew has enough space for combat conditions.
T-84 isn't better than T-90S and latest T-90M. T-84 has ancient sighting system (unlike T-90). T-84 is also diesel powered tank (not gas turbine). Latest T-90M has better armor, ERA, FLIR.

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Lance March 18, 2011 at 3:35 pm

Never undermined the Russians remember Hitler had the same thoughts in 1941!

The T-80, AK-74 and MiG-29 are superb weapons and have proven a match to western equipment of the same caliber.

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Thorolf March 18, 2011 at 5:46 pm

Hitler got beaten by the Russian Winter, NOT the Russian equipment! The same thing happened to Napoleon!

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darkshadows March 18, 2011 at 8:32 pm

Hitlers ego and paranoid nature after the assasination attempts did almost as much damage to the German war effort in Russia as the Russian winter and Russian weaponry did. Taking a great deal of control away from his most competent generals so he, not a very good strategist and far to prone to let his emotions rule his decisionmaking, was a fatal mistake. Take the battle of Stalingrad for instance….

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Stratege March 19, 2011 at 3:15 am

Myth. Hitler's armies got beaten by the Soviet Army in summer campaigns as well as in winter battles.
Soviet equipment was good, reliable and easier to produce. Some Soviet equipment was superior to German counterparts. IL-2, T-34, BM-8, ZIS-3, PPSH, PPS etc. for example.

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Guest-2011 March 19, 2011 at 6:12 am

Russian equipment reliable… hahahaha the T-34 was a POS in reliability the IL-2 had serious deficiencies as well, the only thing it had going for it was that it was cheap and the armor was slanted, OH and the gun was powerful enough to kill a P4…

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icedrake March 19, 2011 at 11:13 am

False. The T-34 started out unreliable, but given that mass production began in 1940, and all (already planned) modernization efforts were completely halted when the USSR entered the war, a significant part of the early losses should be attributed to the Russian armor crews' unfamiliarity with the machine.

Though it can certainly be argued that focusing on production volumes over badly-needed design improvements was a mistake, (engine failures in particular were a major problem in the original design), the design was finally modernized in 1944, with the T-34-85 being able to defeat the newer Panther and Tiger I German models.

Despite this, as early as October of 1941, Gen. Guderian authored a report highlighting the advantages the T-34 had over the Pz. IVs.

One of the more accomplished tank commanders of the Wehrmacht saw something in the T-34s; a shame you weren't there to set him right.

Stratege March 19, 2011 at 12:18 pm

Yes, T-34 was reliable and easy to fix, compared to hyper expensive and prone to malfunctions German monsters.
T-34-84 was capable to kill Tiger and Panther as well with its much less price and production time.
IL-2 was better CAS aircraft than German Ju-87.

tonar March 18, 2011 at 3:51 pm

t-95 who cares? Best tank: probly German Leopard

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@Earlydawn March 18, 2011 at 3:54 pm

I can spot one immediate problem; if the crew is physically separated from the gun assembly (a crew-in-hull design), then this tank is out of the fight if the autoloader fails.

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blight March 18, 2011 at 4:11 pm

Wasn't that true of the standard autoloader configuration to begin with? Or could their autoloaders manual feed as backup?

God knows, maybe manual loading is possible. There might be engineering solutions, but they'd require better information on the internals.

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TROJANII March 18, 2011 at 4:33 pm

Didn't the Russians used to get caught up in the earlier autoloaders in the '80's? Maybe that is why they got them out of the turret.

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Pat March 20, 2011 at 12:43 pm

According to tanker I spoke to, if the loader caught the gunner's arm, it could load it as well. I'm not familiar with what safe guards were on the mechanism, if any. I imagine it was possible but probably more of a myth than a fact.

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chaos0xomega March 18, 2011 at 4:07 pm

Its easy to say that their stuff is inferior when the 'evidence' you have to support your arguments is largely made up of testing done on export versions which were largely stripped down pieces o' scrap. Russian gear – REAL Russian gear- is something that should not be underestimated (nor should it be grossly overestimated).

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LtWashington,M March 21, 2011 at 1:20 pm

Exactly. We have never faced the Red Army in battle. If we did…well, we all know what happens then. But the PAK FA, as well as the T-95 Black Eagle, represent something different, namely that Russia is becoming much more powerful. Furthermore, and most importantly, Russia now has the oil money to pay for expensive weapons. Not like we spend, but the fruits of their hypernationalistic and unregulated capitalism are being invested deeply into military modernization. Mainly because of the follies of the Bush misadministration, whose actions were taken as threats (they were) to Russia.

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ForrestCantrell March 18, 2011 at 4:13 pm

And is a 152 mm gun truly required? That means a lot of space for ammunition and a highly reliable and heavy duty autoloader.

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Stratege March 19, 2011 at 3:27 am

The 152 mm tank gun (hight-velocity, smooth-bore) is required for guaranteed superiority over existing or future Western/Chinese tank designs. Also this gun can be used to launch a heavy long range ATGMs and SAM-missiles.

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William C. March 21, 2011 at 2:09 pm

The United States and NATO were actually developing some 140mm cannons to counter this T-95. So if the Cold War continued it looks like both sides would have up-gunned their tanks again.

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Taffster March 18, 2011 at 4:44 pm

Cast your minds back to WW2, Germans had some good tanks, but it was Russian quantity not quality which turned the tide.

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Matt March 18, 2011 at 8:47 pm

True but:
1) Russia cant out purchase the West (less in money for defence in 10 years than US in one) and modern tanks are harder to just "throw together" during a war
2) The difference between good tank and cheap tank is bigger now than in WW2. King Tger only had some advantages over the T34; where as the Abrams has tons over the T72/T80 and likely this new generation

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asdf March 19, 2011 at 10:55 am

the t-34 were actually quite decent tanks for the day. it was the right fit in the terms of gun/armour/mobility/protection tradeoff. and its 85mm gun was quite powerful, better then the 75 on the panzer4.

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Nick Christie March 21, 2011 at 4:04 pm

Two things: First, the T-34 was an excellent tank. Second, even if you disagree with that premise, that was before the era of attack helicopters. Quick Quiz: 6 Apache helicopters with 16 anti-tank missles can take out… a max of 96 Tanks). Inferior armour wouldn't stand a chance on a modern battlefield with superior missle gunships, let alone an Abrams or Leopold with Depleted Uranium and composite armour.

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Stratege March 22, 2011 at 7:05 am

Adequately equipped armored unit should fight with mobile SAM protection

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Rodney September 6, 2012 at 10:25 am

In the decisive Tank Battle of WW2 the Russians had about 3,400 tanks and the Axis had about 2,500 from memory including some Tigers. The Russians won and had enough surviving tanks to stay on top from then on. In the decisive air battle Russians had about 900 of there top line fighters. The Germans went in with about 600 top fighters. The Russians won and then stayed on top right back to Berlin.
Russian equipment had one advantage in an often wet boggy Russian spring with there lighter simpler equipment – crews could often get them going again themselves. The Axis at times had up to 85% of equipment out of action. Resupply was just as difficult for the Russians. It all depends on what type of war you are in. In Iraq with an advantage of say 10-1 against a few inferior poorly maintained T-72′s and mainly old 1960′s era tanks it was good to have the latest Western tanks etc. Then again a similar number of well maintained Russian crewed and equipped T-72 and T-80′s also probably would have had an easy time with good Air support. Fortunately we will never know who has the best equipment for a prolonged War of attrition like WW2 which is what Russians always prepare for. My guess is the Russian gear would go very well but not as well in a short sharp encounter against an inferior fore.

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blight_ September 6, 2012 at 10:43 am

You're also under-estimating the logistical contribution of Lend-Lease. Whereas the Germans were still using horses and foot infantry and only mechanized a portion of their army, the Russians got trucks a foreign resupply, and devoted all of their production to military goods. The Germans had no such benefactor, and had to divide their production so many ways they could never really keep up.

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takedat April 16, 2014 at 1:12 pm

Same thing happened in North Africa. America supplied the Limeys with hundreds of tanks that then outnumbered the ones Rommel had by far. Allied mass-production won the day, not superior equipment or tactics. The American Sherman was a piece of junk compared to what the Germans had, it's just that they had a shitload of 'em. Speaking of tactics, the US still uses those developed by Rommel to this day.

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Dean March 18, 2011 at 7:27 pm

If autoloaders were a good idea, we would have had them long ago. I don't care if connects with an iPod, electronics are usually more things that can break and take you out of the fight. The pictures certainly don't suggest any advance in finding the optimal balance of armor, firepower and mobility.

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MikeB March 18, 2011 at 8:40 pm

Russian tank are normally very low profile. These pics do not fit the traditional pattern of Russian tanks. Given that they expect to fight in the same enviroments, it would surprise me that they would make that radical a change in profile. This would seem more like a technology demonstrator then a final configuration.

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Stratege March 19, 2011 at 2:40 am

It's early more likely prototype that dates to 90's.

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Annie Mauss March 18, 2011 at 8:42 pm

This tank was cancelled by RF Deputy Defense Minister for Armaments Col. Gen. Popovkin on 08 April 2010.

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Stratege March 19, 2011 at 7:56 am

Now they are working on "integrated combat platform" which will be partially based on Object 195's research and technology.

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Annie Mauss March 19, 2011 at 11:57 pm

Correct, the press reports that program is OKR Armata.

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Kiwiwalkabout March 18, 2011 at 9:03 pm

FWIW, T-84 is a Ukrainian tank, so Russia wouldn't buy because it only buys domestic. They've also not had any Tank Divisions since 2009.

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S O March 18, 2011 at 9:25 pm

This turret isn't only not low profile as all Soviet/Russian post-KV2 tank turrets – it#s even looking like a SPAAG turret.

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Stephen Russell March 18, 2011 at 9:25 pm

Russian MilTech is that good?
Why cant we modify some Abhrams tanks with those features:
Autoloader
Digital mapping etc
& cocoon crew cab module?
Like 2 see this new Abhrams 2 Tank model

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Bman March 21, 2011 at 10:55 am

Congress has said we cannot build an all new tank. FCS was supposed to make tanks obsolete.

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blight March 21, 2011 at 3:16 pm

Look up the Expeditionary Tank.

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Mike March 18, 2011 at 10:26 pm

The T-34 was a good tank that could be cheaply and quickly made. No it was not the most advanced tank but it did the job. The German tanks were better but were complicated and hard to maintain. The T 95 looks like an attempt to be competetive with the modern equipment fielded by other powers. The 152 millimeter gun might have been chosen to insure a kill on the modern armor of the newest western tanks and be able to destroy future tanks. Maybe it was cancelled because it was to expensive or their technology couldn't bring it off. Or maybe they decided that tanks wouldn't be that important in the type of conflicts occuring in the future.

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Gaston March 18, 2011 at 10:30 pm

Autoloaders are notoriously unreliable. US vehicles have had digital maps for more than 10 years. If the crew is in the hull then any high mounted sensors will need to pass data through the turret bezel. Although this is done today using copper contacts, higher data rates lead to a fiber optic coupler and these are both high tech and high cost. Finally this looks like it has a flat belly profile, which isn't the best thing when dealing with IED's.

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Stratege March 19, 2011 at 2:44 am

"Autoloaders are notoriously unreliable."

What reason to think that Russian tank autoloaders should be unreliable. Their tanks equipped with automatic loader for decades.

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Ben March 19, 2011 at 7:01 am

Because the Russian auto-loader systems have proven unreliable in several previous conflicts perhaps?

I know the Iraqis had some problems in the first gulf war. Does anyone know how the ones being used against the Israelis have fared?

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Stratege March 19, 2011 at 7:46 am

You mean auto-loader problems in domestic Iraqi made T-72s (which were assembled from garbage spare parts) and Chinese clones of T-62's from Iraqi armored forces?
I didn't hear or read about any reports with numerous complains on auto-loaders in Soviet/Russian tanks.

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orly? March 19, 2011 at 11:17 am

The soviets gave honest reports?

William C. March 19, 2011 at 1:20 am

Good to finally see some photos of the long awaited (and now canceled) T-95. I hope we get some higher quality ones soon.

I wouldn't want to face this thing on the battlefield. Yet it may not be well suited for Russia's current needs. In the post Cold-War environment, the 152mm gun is simply overkill. Putting the entire crew in the hull may have also posed some situational awareness problems. To compensate it looks like there are all sorts of different optics and sensors on this thing, but the Russians have often lagged behind in this category compared to the West.

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Stratege March 19, 2011 at 6:35 am

"To compensate it looks like there are all sorts of different optics and sensors on this thing, but the Russians have often lagged behind in this category compared to the West."

I don't see major problem here. For example, years ago they got latest French infrared imaging technology for T-90S/T-90M tanks and now they developing and producing their own high-class thermal imaging systems.

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rf3 March 19, 2011 at 4:04 am

That is not T-95.

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Stratege March 19, 2011 at 4:11 am

That's "Object 195" which is known as T-95's prototype

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LtWashington,M March 21, 2011 at 1:00 pm

That's right. It is NOT a T-95 Black Eagle. Search it on youtube and see the T-95 Black Eagle being put through testing. It is definitely the best tank ever created. Problem is, the Russians can't field something so complex and expensive. By the way, this is really not a BS comment. That is NOT the T-95. T-95 has an extremely low profile turret, it is extremely fast, well armored, stocks plenty of ammo, etc. It is really quite amazing. I'm disappointed that you guys are calling this thing, whatever it is, T-95. That's just wrong.

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Stratege March 19, 2011 at 5:16 am

"I am not a strong believer in moving all the crew out of the turret and into the hull. How do you expect to fight your tank? With teleoperated cupola mounts?"

The crew in their armored 'capsule' should get situation awareness and guidance from sensors, cameras, IR, from external sources in 'network warfare' environment (UAVs, helicopters, mobile SAM vehicles etc.).

"Why does the Russian tank retain a turret if nobody's in it? To store ammunition, presumably?"

For significantly increasing the survival potential of tank on the battlefield.
Anyway, the ammunition in 'circular-type' storage with large 152mm caliber munitions and autoloader surely requires 'unmanned turret' configuration.

"The weight required to protect a seperate turret is probably inefficient compared to storing ammunition and fuel internally in a more heavily armored hull…"

The weight of turret could be considerably reduced because there's no crew members inside it, so there's no need for heavily armored(or heavy-weight) and big turret. Saved weight could be used to improve armor of hull. It's much smarter solution than 'classic' crew-in-turret configuration.

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Matt March 20, 2011 at 2:49 pm

If the turret isnt heavily armored then it can be taken out very easily and theyll just be sitting in an over priced apc with no weapons…

Also what if the auto loader breaks? I know youll say its extremly reliable or something but even if thats true theres still a chance it will break; look at the S.Koreans who instaled a manual backup to their K2's autoloader…

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Stratege March 21, 2011 at 4:00 am

Unmanned tank turret is significantly smaller compared to the 'classic' manned turret. So:
1. it's harder target due to its small size.
2. It could be protected with strong ERA armor (effective against HE and KE)

How often autoloader would broke? If it's on the regular proper maintaince, it should'nt break. T-95's critical components would have electronic self-diagonstic systems. So critical breakdowns would be prevented.
Autoloader is much better idea than human loader after all.

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blight March 21, 2011 at 11:54 am

/If/. How often can you keep an autoloader working under just-in-time logistical nightmares like OIF? Recall that at one point they were cannibalizing Abrams for spare parts during the rapid drive to Baghdad, and that if autoloaders started to fail during the Thunder Run all hell would break loose. A loader will be upset and tired in Iraqi sand, but an autoloader might choke on fine sand and die at the wrong time.

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Stratege March 22, 2011 at 2:24 pm

You've got a point.
But i am not sure about "logistical nightmare". Autoloaders in tanks are being used for decades. It's just needs to get more technical care.

Stratege March 19, 2011 at 6:00 am

Here some publicity known and speculative facts about the T-95 tank program:

- Tank weight is nearly ~55 tonnes. It's larger and heavier than T-72/T-80/T-90 series but it have significantly less size(LBH) and weight compared to modern Western design (M1/Leo2/Leclerc etc.).

- Maximum speed up to 80 kmh.

- Crew(3) in armored capsule.

- The ammunition storage, crew section(capsule), and fuel storage are separated from each other with armored walls. High survivability.

- An unprecedented level of situational awareness for crew, net-centric integration

- Auxiliary 30 mm automatic gun, two MGs

- Munitions inside the hull in "circular-type" storage

- Few types of munitions for main(152mm) gun:
long range barrel-launched ATGMs;
rounds with a DU penetrator;
HE / antipersonnel rounds;
barrel-launched SAM missiles (9M311 152mm SAM missile). It's presumable that guidance for tank's surface-to-air missiles could be provided by mobile SAM vehicles(which are radar equipped) in tank unit;
- tactical nuclear munitions;

-Titanium parts in construction of the tank (weight reduction)

-New generation of active protection systems of both "soft kill" and "hard kill" types to protect tanks from various types of anti-tank weapons. Simply the successors of "Arena" and "Shtora" APS .

- Advanced composite armor, built in ERA armor (last gen of 'Relikt" or something newer)

- 1500hp diesel engine

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William C. March 19, 2011 at 3:04 pm

Any sources for some of these claims? I mean a secondary 30mm autocannon, a gun-launched SAM, and tactical nuclear weapons for the main 152mm cannon? I'm pretty sure those would violate some sort of treaty.

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William C. March 19, 2011 at 3:05 pm

I mean the nukes would violate some treaty, not the other components.

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asdf March 20, 2011 at 7:32 am

the us tanks had the nukes in the DS i think. 30mm cannon has been tried on the predecessor of the leclerc and was abandoned and a SAM in impossible or useless would be a better word.

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Stratege March 21, 2011 at 2:51 am

"Any sources for some of these claims? I mean a secondary 30mm autocannon, a gun-launched SAM, "

Secondary autocannon and SAM missiles in armament of tank are coming from Russian official sources (translation of the article was available) that dates to 2010.

"and tactical nuclear weapons for the main 152mm cannon? I'm pretty sure those would violate some sort of treaty. "

Nuclear munition is coming from rumors. But that's possible and logical solution for 152mm. Treaty violations? Yes, but They can deploy nuke equipped tanks near the Chinese border (there are no any restrictions for tactical nuclear weapons).

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blight March 21, 2011 at 3:22 pm

Sounds like a Bolo to me…

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alex March 21, 2011 at 3:44 pm

It would have to have better anti-air for it to qualify for Bolo status, also better software. thoe there are some very impresive advances being made in that field.

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So? March 19, 2011 at 8:09 am

It's a testbed for the 152 mm gun.

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Stratege March 19, 2011 at 9:19 am

No, it's not. You can apparently see the hull of new design. However, the turret design looks unfinished or partially hidden.

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ArmchairTanker March 19, 2011 at 10:04 am

It may be canceled, but I have to wonder if it wasn't more research prototype than a pre-production model. Take the best ideas and systems you have, put them together and see how well they work. Take the lessons learned and put them into the real design.
It's a guess, but an unmanned turret would be designed to be a smaller target. If it isn't designed for a crew, I have to wonder how easy it is to get those 152mm rounds into a tight turret. Any real tankers out there with thoughts about this?

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asdf March 19, 2011 at 11:03 am

the turret is probably not teleoperated, but similar to what the other tanks have (visors, panoramic view etc), except that the crew sits in the hull. like the marder IFV, it too has an "unmanned" turret, but it's still not a xbox-like telecontrol. the operators actually rotate with the turret and everything else is the same to a normal ifv.

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Tim March 19, 2011 at 11:27 am

No chobham armour ? The Russian military

leaders had sense to not bother with this pile of

atypical junk.

As the one of the above posters mentioned Russias

GDP, shrinking and ageing population along with its size

preclude it from ever being a global military super power.

Back to anti-freeze Ivan

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Stratege March 19, 2011 at 1:48 pm

"No chobham armour ?"

You mean composite armor?
It's Soviet invention that dates to early 1960's (T-64)

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Cato March 19, 2011 at 12:53 pm

Remember reading about early Russian autoloaders grabbing a guy's arm and feeding it into the breech. Lots of left-armed kids in soldiers and sailors homes. When the autoloader here fails, exactly who gets the task of crawling out from behind the blast walls for a little live fire maintenance? Maybe they could start buying the latest Merkava's?

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Stratege March 19, 2011 at 1:41 pm

"Remember reading about early Russian autoloaders grabbing a guy's arm and feeding it into the breech. Lots of left-armed kids in soldiers and sailors homes."

What tank? Any source?

"When the autoloader here fails, exactly who gets the task of crawling out from behind the blast walls for a little live fire maintenance? "

I am always thought that autoloader are usually designed to be simple(as much it's as possible) and reliable mechanism.

"Maybe they could start buying the latest Merkava's?""

I think that Russian army is unlikely have an interest in limited mobile pillbox.

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asdf March 20, 2011 at 7:35 am

I am always thought that autoloader are usually designed to be simple(as much it's as possible) and reliable mechanism.

yes, but they still have to have a secondary manual function in case the AL fails to perform. that also means that they have to be open to allow the operator to do it which means there is an increased risk of grabbing you by the sleeve or sth.

and ALs are used on the newest gen of mobile artillery (Donar, the french gun on a truck and similar swedish gun), without any option to (swiftly) manually reload it, so i guess the reliability has gone up somewhat.

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Matt March 20, 2011 at 2:58 pm

To be fair though thats in artillery, where people are not likely to be activly shot at from close range if their autoloader fails…

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So? March 19, 2011 at 6:44 pm

Tom Clancy is not a reliable source.

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Clay Craig March 19, 2011 at 1:09 pm

I thnik it is one of their new blow up tanks.

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qual March 20, 2011 at 9:23 am

Thats looks a like an upgrade of the "2S25 Sprut-SD" (BMD-3 chassis with 125mm turret) – a light tank/assault gun mostly used by Russian airborne units.

Maybe they're looking for more HE, something learnt from the Caucasus Wars.

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Stratege March 21, 2011 at 1:27 am

It's nothing to do with a light aiborne tank
T-95 weight is about 55 tonnes

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LtWashington,M March 21, 2011 at 1:04 pm

To bad this isn't the T-95.

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Darrel Kemble March 20, 2011 at 7:00 pm

All the negative comments about the monster, may well be true, but how many times have all the "big thinkers" in the US Government "Under Estimated the Enemy"?
The Germans laughed at the T34. Mr. Charles was small and uneducated.!!!

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Sean March 20, 2011 at 10:46 pm

Just a few points i'd like to make here.

1) Dismissing Russian capabilities in weapons design is a dead give away that the dismisser is ignorant of the facts. The Russians have designed superb weapons in the past and will continue to do so. In A-Stan our troops deride the M-16 and M4 as unreliable and lacking stopping power and marvel at the ability of the AK-47 to shoot straight full of dirt and mud. Our troops have a dread respect for the RPGs that are simple, cheap and reliable in nominally trained hands. How old are those designs? mid 1950s?

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LtWashington,M March 21, 2011 at 1:06 pm

This tank is also not even the T-95. Look at it on wiki, or youtube. It is completely different. The REAL T-95 is quite amazing, but I can see why it was cut. It's so remarkable that it must cost a fortune to build. These pictures are WRONG!

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William C. March 21, 2011 at 1:44 pm

No this is the real T-95. Many Youtube videos claims the Black Eagle is the T-95, yet the Black Eagle was built by a different design bureau and is a development of the T-80 series.

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Stogie March 20, 2011 at 11:19 pm

Blight,
The turret is required to aim the main gun. No turret makes the beast nothing more than a SP-gun from WWII. The only "battle" tank without a turret is a Swedish design (Stridsvagn 103) and it has minimal adjustment. You have to aim the tank to aim the gun.

The biggest issue if this is a production type model, is the armor. Unless they are using something new that the West has never seen, the lack of armor slope makes this pretty weak. Part of the reason Soviet WWII tanks had some success, beyond production, was a steeper angle to the armor. I think these images are meant to mislead. I have a hard time thinking the Russians forgot everything from the past centuryof warfare.

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Stratege March 21, 2011 at 4:05 am

Armor slope ??? We are no living in WW2 era anymore!
Advanced composite armor and ERA would deal with incoming enemy rounds/missiles ten times better than any sloped steel armor.

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LtWashington,M March 21, 2011 at 1:48 pm

The real T-95 is very low slung, covered with ERA, and designed with maximum slope in the necessary locations. These photos are of some shitty old tank prototype.

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William C. March 21, 2011 at 2:07 pm

No these pictures are of the T-95 to the best of my knowledge. The turret isn't as small as much of the guesswork concept art but there is a lot inside of that turret.

Also the Black Eagle is a different tank built by a different design bureau.

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Rob March 21, 2011 at 9:36 am

I thought it was the T-64 that had that problem. The ongoing joke was that it loaded the gunner's leg .A source of singers for the Russian Army choir!

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CavScout62 March 21, 2011 at 11:55 am

There are 4 Tanks that are real, here, now and viable. M1, Merkevah, Challenger, Leopard. Any & Everything else is 2nd and we all know that 2nd is nothing more than 1st last or, dead. (Yes I know I left the French tank out but, it's French!)

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William C. March 21, 2011 at 1:52 pm

The American counterpart to the T-95, the Block III main battle tank was canceled in the 1990s. I was disappointed when these programs were canceled and I'm sure many Russians are disappointed by the cancellation of the T-95. Yet the huge conflict between the USSR and NATO is never going to happen and that is a good thing.

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blight March 21, 2011 at 3:08 pm

What I find bizarre about Block III is how it was supposed to have all sorts of tidbits, but these never trickled, even for a cancelled program.

"Each is composed of the engine, transmission, cooling system, air-handling system and final drive, all integrated into a compact package. The Cummins/Allison XAP-1000 is based on the advanced Cummins XAV-28 V-12 diesel, a low-heat rejection engine, which while not purely adiabatic, uses only oil coolant and has no water in the cooling system at all; it uses the energy of the higher temperature exhaust gasses to run an auxiliary power unit (APU). The General Electric/Textron Lycoming LV100 AIPS features self-cleaning inlet air filters, greatly reduced fuel consumption over the AGT-1500 and claims not to require a separate APU to power the vehicle's electrical system."

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William C. March 21, 2011 at 6:22 pm

Development of the LV100-5 turbine actually continued for the XM2001 Crusader. This turbine was also supposed to replace the AGT-1500 on the Abrams. However when the Crusader was canceled this plan fell apart.

I don't know what happened to the other engines in development but hopefully some of that technology is still around.

The XM291 140mm gun was unique in that it was capable of being converted to a 120mm gun with a barrel change and some minor changes. Later the XM291 was used to test ETC technology.

I don't know much about the other components planned for the Block III however.

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blight March 21, 2011 at 3:09 pm

This is probably because IBA mitigates the impact of fighting against hordes of enemies with AK's. Now that the plates are reliable stoppers of 7.62×39…

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blight March 21, 2011 at 3:15 pm

It's hard to imagine any tank that is designed to survive in an environment with contested airspace. At least, short of putting a CIWS on top of a tank…

The Merkava may be survivable, but it's survivability modifications are designed with ground attack in mind. All modern tanks remain vulnerable to top-attack ATGMs and aircraft due to compromises in top armor to maximize avalable weight against ground attackers. It's unlikely this paradigm will change for quite some time; though maybe in the future we will use modular drop-in turrets for a multi-threat environment or a ground-only threat environment.

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Joe Schmoe March 22, 2011 at 9:07 am

Actually, the Merkava 4's modular armor was designed to resist (not impervious) to top-attack missile like the TOW, etc.

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blight March 22, 2011 at 10:57 am

People are waking up to the fact that Top-Attack is going to change the game, like the tandem warhead, the and the shaped charge. Tank weight must go up again, or armor will diminish accordingly.

Next will be modifications to have ATGMs do modified top-attack profiles against the engine in the rear (in which case the Merkava will be well disposed).

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Joe Schmoe March 22, 2011 at 2:11 pm

In addition, the addition of the Trophy system negates top-attack missiles.

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Stratege March 22, 2011 at 7:16 am

Why dismiss mobile SAM systems which are usually being used along with tank units? Russians even tried to put SAM missiles into the tank(T-95) for additional protection from air threats.

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blight March 22, 2011 at 8:52 am

The T-95 has no mounting points for SAMs, and if they're something that is guntube launched then by the time the threat is identified it is too late to load and fire a missile.

I recall that AMRAAMs had a ground launcher that used the missile's seeker as the guidance system, obviating the need of a particularly powerful guidance radar. However, if the unit itself needs a radar, then you protect the radar by hiding it on a vehicle that conceals itself far away with powerful long-range missiles.

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Stratege March 22, 2011 at 2:01 pm

"The T-95 has no mounting points for SAMs, and if they're something that is guntube launched then by the time the threat is identified it is too late to load and fire a missile."

Why? The surface to air missile from T-95 could get radar guidance from external sources i.e. from mobile SAM vehicles such as SA-22. While specialized SAM vehicles has a limited combat load (limited amount of missiles), tanks(not front line units, but reserves of units of "second wave") could carry additional pack of missiles. That's not bad idea.

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Stratege March 22, 2011 at 2:19 pm

Many flaws were fixed in late prototypes.
It was canceled due to economical reasons.
It was truly revolutionary top notch heavy tank for its time.

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Joe Schmoe March 22, 2011 at 8:34 pm

No.

It failed because it was too cramped inside, gun ammunition took up too much space and was too heavy/large. It was based on many false promises that proved impossible in design.

Don't try and rewrite history

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@#$%^ March 26, 2011 at 3:54 am

Typical Russian bashing from the "US IS BEST F**K THE REST" bunch. You losers will never learn until a real war against contemporary Russian equipment comes. And then you scumbags will realise how wrong and brainwashed you were but then in will be WAY too late.

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Paul May 21, 2014 at 3:37 am

I totally agree with you, that most of these fools are brain washed and have no idea just how bad they are. First the russians are not going to post nore will they let pictures be taken of a tank that they know will be an abrams killer, The Russians are not spending billions of tax payer dollars on machines of war for aggression like america. The political elites are stuck in a cold war mind set and are trying to start a war with any country that is not willing to kiss its ass.

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JIM April 13, 2011 at 10:59 pm

MAD DOG 22 A GOOD LOADER ON A M1 TANK CAN LOAD A SHELL EVERY 3 SECONDS . AUTO LOADERS YOU CAN KEEP THEM …

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searchert May 13, 2011 at 12:40 am

If I was Putin I would make it mandatory for every russian woman that is not a drunken mess to spew as many babies as possible with gov't help and also stop the drunken binge period. They will have no country left if they don't start getting birth rate over death rate. As for us Americans we could use some of this same incentive as well. we have the wrong breeders breeding.

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mac December 18, 2011 at 11:04 pm

why did they scrap the turretless design? that's what it's supposed to follow if they want the entire crew inside the hull. imagine how much weight there is and power needed to traverse a turret with a 152mm gun.

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Stratege April 9, 2012 at 1:15 pm

It's just an early prototype. The turret design is not final technical solution.

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Spectre January 23, 2012 at 6:02 am

Most autoloaders are problematic at best and require a LOT of maintennance but, Russian autoloaders seem to be notoriously worse. Therefore, IF you removed the crew from the turret AND made the turret smaller, then the available internal turret space to safely remove a jammed round in the autoloader is at an absolute minimum. So, where do they get the thought that this is a good idea ? It IS hazardous at best and downright dangerous at the worst.
The use of 152 mm rounds seems like the Russians are getting despairate for battlefield parity. At present, we can destroy their tanks with 120 mm ammunition while they cannot destroy allied tanks. Therefore they MUST increase the size of their ammunition or fall way behind the western powers. — Spectre —

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Stratege April 9, 2012 at 1:13 pm

"The use of 152 mm rounds seems like the Russians are getting despairate for battlefield parity. At present, we can destroy their tanks with 120 mm ammunition while they cannot destroy allied tanks. Therefore they MUST increase the size of their ammunition or fall way behind the western powers. — Spectre —"

You have no clue what you talking about

Russian 125 mm gun is good enough to destroy any modern MBT.

152 mm gun was designed to be superior in firepower oven any Western or Chinese tank.

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blight_ April 9, 2012 at 1:24 pm

Sure, but at what ranges? Do they have digital FCS like their western counterparts?

At close ranges, with front-line Soviet gear instead of export-grade steel penetrators…maybe. I'm not sure a Soviet equivalent exists for the Abrams though. I know the T-72 and its Soviet equivalents superseded M48's and M60's and perhaps West German, French and British tanks.

If you're going with bigger bore rounds, it means you're going the HE/HESH route, whereas Western tanks opt for sabots, where bigger bores don't count as much. You can have more powerful propellant, stronger barrels and longer cases with more propellant.

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godzillajet January 25, 2012 at 10:51 am

It might be possible that this tank overpowers the abrams but not the leopard 2.

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nil February 16, 2012 at 7:04 am

one day T-95 will be the member of Indian MBT family………. very soon. God luck.

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Tanker john February 22, 2012 at 4:08 pm

dont be too concerned about the 152mm gun, to achieve good anti-armour capability, you need massive breach pressures to achieve muzzle velocities needed to penetrate modern armour. This vehicle simply isnt stable enough to provide an accurate firig platform for the gun. At the moment, the 120mm is at the pinnacle of development, with the Challenger 2 hitting over 2500 metres per second, which would pass through the reactive armour before it had a chance to detonate. This is a re-hash of old soviet equipment, I go along with what the FIRST poster said 100%

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Godagesil March 12, 2012 at 3:25 pm

I just finished a book called Hitler Vs Stalin: Deathride, by Moiser, who like him or not, has a way of goring sacred cows. He's done it with regard to the First World War and the Blitzkrieg myth, and now does it with the Ost Front. After reading the book, and taking it in light of the last 20 years I have to say, he is probably right. His thesis was no history based on anything coming out of the Soviet Union lie factory is reliable. Not the myth of the Soviets single handedly winning the war, their production numbers, the marginal contribution of Lend Lease or the superiority of Soviet arms. He cites the casualty figures where the Germans had a lopsided 1 to 7 advantage in KIA rates. The losses in armor were similar. He also highlights how production numbers could not support the Soviet losses, and comments by German commanders on US and British equipment in Soviet use. How many pictures of such equipment have you ever seen coming out of the Great Patriotic War propaganda mill?

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Stratege April 9, 2012 at 1:09 pm

"He cites the casualty figures where the Germans had a lopsided 1 to 7 advantage in KIA rates. The losses in armor were similar."

That's simply BULLSH1T

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blight_ April 9, 2012 at 1:26 pm

Considering one hundred divisions went into the Eastern Front on day one, and its voracious appetite for German Army units…there has to be something the Soviets were doing right.

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godagesil March 12, 2012 at 3:25 pm

He goes on to show how Soviet production numbers were wishful thinking just like their agricultural numbers. They were losing armor and men faster than they could be replaced. They turned draws into wins, buried defeats and turned withdrawals into winning offensives. He points out that most of what is accepted about Op. Citadel was based on the near fantasy written by aviation writer and author of the book Cybor aka 6 Million Dollar Man, Martin Caidin. His book "The Tigers are Burning" was basically a regurgitation of the Soviet line of it being a Heroic Triumph of Soviet Arms, when in fact, the offensive was called off on the verge of victory due to Allied landings in the Mediterranean. The string of Soviet victories had more to do with the withdrawal of the Luftwaffe to meet the growing bomber offensive in the West, the withdrawal of elite SS and Panzer units to N. Africa, Italy, and France and a corresponding reduction in combat power, than it did with Soviet martial prowess. The Soviets benefited by the continual drain on German combat power, especially what Moiser calls armored Super Units, those being the SS armored divisions which got a preponderance of new equipment.

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godagesil March 12, 2012 at 3:26 pm

The Wehrmacht on the Eastern Front still managed to dish out a lopsided tally of losses to the Soviets right up to their final defeat in Berlin. Moiser says the Soviets never recovered from the wounds inflicted by the Germans, some 27million deaths and like a gangrenous wound led to the ultimate death of the system in 1991. Most of these casualties were due to callous indifference of Stalin and his generals, who were all sycophants and lickspittles, else they would have all been executed. Hell, the Soviets executed an estimated 110,000 of their own men for such heinous acts as surrender or lack of patriotic zeal. That is the equivalent of 10, yes, count 'em, 10 US divisions. But I am sure those are chalked up to the Germans too. Stalin didn't care about body counts. He murdered by starvation 10 million of his own countrymen in the 1930's. What is 27 million in a fight for preserving his despotic state? My point is that the Soviets may have always been a bumbling paper giant.

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Jacket Canada Goose November 4, 2012 at 10:30 am

You made some really good points there. I looked on the internet for more information about the issue and found most individuals will go along with your views on this web site.

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Robert Elkins December 5, 2012 at 4:40 pm

Whether T95 or T whatever,. It matters not. There is no infrastructure for medical and other supplies to keep the Russian army on the ground. They still need wheat from Canada and the U.S. to feed the populace. If Russia would start a war of sorts, the U.S. would have to feed them. Rail roads are a mess in that nation, and to move supplies would be a horrendous nightmare. Forget the thing. Pass the vodka komrad, tomorrow we die.

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MontyB December 27, 2012 at 5:17 am

Oh gosh! With a comment such as that what bets your American?

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Pieter January 12, 2013 at 1:18 pm

The name T-95 has been placed on every "new tank" from Russia since 1992. It is likely a testbed for new technology. Just look at Russia's openness on the new Sukhoi aircraft. About auto-loaders being unreliable, it is just something that has to be developed just like the auto-loaders for infantry weapons. If that was not possible we would not have M-16's and AK-47's but still use bore-loaders. Most tank commanders (in the rank of general's and colonel's) are very conservative and prefer to stay with manual loading.

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Alex September 8, 2013 at 4:43 pm

I can only laugh at those that are already condemning the Russian new tank without even have seen it in real life. Assuming that it would be outperformed by the US counterparts… Why would the biggest country in the world have a product that performs about 70% of what the US tanks twenty years a go did… It is pretty unrealistic. If so even Putin would have voted to buy a fleet of Leopard 2's.. But he hasn't . Hence I assume he has some more under his sleeve. Just wait and see. He ain't that stupid..

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Paul May 21, 2014 at 3:42 am

All of you need to remember one thing, the russians got very very little help against the germans, and manage to kick their ever loving ass. Go ruskies!

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icedrake March 19, 2011 at 1:54 am

"Which helps explain why in Chechnya , top of the range Russian kit was taken out left right and centre."

Sort of like in Afghanistan and Iraq, top of the line US gear was being taken out left, right, and centre?

Because of course, what an asymmetrical conflict demonstrates is the unreliability of gear developed for a completely different type of engagement.

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Stratege March 19, 2011 at 7:50 am

The 152mm smooth-bore tank gun was developed and successfully tested by Russian developers in late 80's – 90's. The picture of T-80 based experimental "object 292" tank with 152mm gun: http://img217.imageshack.us/img217/4733/o292wb5.j
It's more likely T-95 gun.

With 'crew-less' turret in Obj. 195(T-95), tank configuration has enough of saved mass and dimensions to reinforce the turret and reliably fire the 152mm stuff.
The possible munitions are AT rounds with DU penetrators, HE, anti-personnel, special munition(tactical nuke), different types of missiles.

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asdf March 19, 2011 at 10:47 am

that' s for the export stuff.

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ssnst March 19, 2011 at 5:56 pm

seriously, on the mark!

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john.krats@gmail.com January 17, 2013 at 4:17 pm

There are grave yards full of armies that underestimated the Russians. There are five thousand Americans alone buried somewhere in Russia and Eastern Europe.

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LanceAtlas July 8, 2013 at 6:47 pm

just like what hitler said right before he invaded russia during the winter…

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brandy July 8, 2013 at 7:17 pm

are you talking about Russian equipment or American equipment, like the F-22?

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asdf March 19, 2011 at 10:49 am

also the israeli experienced similar things in 2006. with the lack of explosive armour you can do only as much…

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asdf March 19, 2011 at 10:57 am

the main concern that the russia has right now are the chechens (and other muslim fundamentalists) and the chinese. the latter probably has 10 tanks for one of russia's, but they have all the fission warheads you need.
and that's the only doable deterrent in siberia (where the chinese may invade to take over the mineral-rich territory).

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orly? March 19, 2011 at 11:16 am

autoloader usually = crewman losing an arm

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Stratege March 19, 2011 at 12:31 pm

If it was a significant problem with auto-loader, we should have known.
Russians tanks were widely exported around the world. Where is any reports about problematic auto-loaders?

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Stratege March 19, 2011 at 12:51 pm

"autoloader usually = crewman losing an arm"

1. That's exceptional, extremely rare event which is coming from poor training

2. Autoloader could be separated from crew (Leclerc, T-95)

Autoloader has important advantages compared to human loader.

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So? March 19, 2011 at 6:43 pm

For 140+ mm guns, there is no other option.

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Pat March 20, 2011 at 12:38 pm

Considering the T34-85s fought on roughly equal terms with the M4A3(76) Shermans in Korean, I generally have to doubt the claim that they were equivalent to Panther. The Russians just did a much better job of strategic level planning and execution, massing armor and artillery assets, than the Germans did. They also had far more tanks (though before I hear it, the 50,000 T34s in WWII claim is wrong; 16,000 were built after the war and on into the 1960s for export).

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Pat March 20, 2011 at 12:46 pm

Autoloader also means extra maintenance, which is pushed onto a smaller crew. So not only are you adding the workload that would be divided up to that 4th guy onto the remaining 3 (an automatic 33% increase in their maintenance load), but also whatever extra effort might be required by the autoloader. Not all of the work can be handled by specialized maintenance units; a fair amount has to be done by the crew of the vehicle themselves.

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Lance March 21, 2011 at 3:54 am

Sorry Staratgate

But your mistaken

The USMC and Israelis used M-60A1s and had destroyed over 400 T-55, and T-72 tanks in the tank battle south of Beirut in 1982 and easily killed T-72s.

Sloped Armor has been vital in Tank design since WW2 the US M-1 and British Challenger and Russian T-80 all used sloped armor. Im just saying there will be damage in battle when modern APTDS rounds hit a non sloped tank.

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Stratege March 22, 2011 at 1:22 am

Yeah, 105mm could PROBABLY penetrate the armor of early T-72 and T-80 armor. Without any guarantee.

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Stratege March 21, 2011 at 4:54 am

Supposed T-95's electronic self-diagnostic system should prevent critical breakdowns before entering combat.
Yes, 4th guy could be useful and helpful., but additional crew member require too much additional armor (that means large and heavy-weight turret). The disadvantages are more obvious than advantages.

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Stratege March 22, 2011 at 1:23 am

"The USMC and Israelis used M-60A1s and had destroyed over 400 T-55, and T-72 tanks in the tank battle south of Beirut in 1982 and easily killed T-72s."

Any source available? Any there proofs that T-72s were "easily destroyed" my M-60 ?

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Stratege March 22, 2011 at 7:21 am

Russian military equipment such as IS-7 tank or Tu-160 supersonic bomber unlikely follow the doctrine "quanity over quality"

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blight March 22, 2011 at 8:49 am

I was gonna say Mig-15, as those were clearly superior to their western counterparts during early Korea. To be fair, the Mig-15 only achieved superiority when the British gave the Russians some engines…proof that the Soviets don't /want/ to field equipment that individually is less capable, but are forced to out of technical necessity.

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jay March 18, 2012 at 11:22 pm

The Mig-15 was the best fighter in Korea until the late models of the Saber were introduced. The F86A was not exactly a match to the Mig. At high Altitude the Mig held the advantage until the last day of the war.

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Jim Franklin April 11, 2013 at 2:55 pm

I think you will find the NK T-34's in the Korean Theatre in the early days totally decimated US Sherman equipped units, this was part of the reason for their lightning success from the time of the invasion until the UN forces invaded at Inchon to redress the balance.

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