T-14 Armata: Russia’s Tank Gamble Could End Up Becoming a Nightmare

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Summary: The T-14 Armata tank, unveiled in 2015, was intended to be a revolutionary advancement in armored warfare.

-Featuring an unmanned turret, advanced armor, and a new 125mm smoothbore cannon, it aimed to outclass Western tanks.

-However, its high cost ($5-9 million) and technical issues have hindered mass production and deployment. Reliability concerns, particularly with the engine and thermal-imaging equipment, have further delayed its service readiness.

-Consequently, despite its advanced features, the T-14 remains largely untested in significant conflicts, leaving its true capabilities uncertain.

Russia’s T-14 Armata: Revolutionary Tank or Paper Tiger?

The Russian T-14 Armata tank has emerged as a symbol of innovation of power.

At least on paper.

Unveiled in 2015, the T-14 Armata was hailed as a groundbreaking advancement in armored warfare. It was designed to be a game-changer a tank that would outclass its Western counterparts and solidify Russia’s position as a military powerhouse.

But as time has passed, the T-14 Armata’s true capabilities remain shrouded in mystery and speculation.

That’s largely because the Russian T-14 is so expensive and complex (and hard to build or replace) that Moscow is afraid to even risk these systems in combat!

The T-14 Armata is built upon the Armata Universal Combat Platform, which was intended to serve as the basis for a variety of armored vehicles. The tank boasts a number of impressive features, including an unmanned turret, advanced armor, and a new 125mm smoothbore cannon.

The crew is protected in an armored capsule at the front of the hull, a design that was supposed to offer unparalleled protection against enemy fire.

Is the T-14 Reliable?

One of the main issues facing the T-14 Armata is its high cost. The tank is estimated to cost between $5 million and $9 million, which is significantly more expensive than other Russian tanks like the T-90M. This has led to concerns that the T-14 Armata is more of a “prestige tank” than a practical weapon of war.

There are also concerns about the T-14 Armata’s reliability.

In 2018, the Russian military announced that the tank had failed to meet the required standards for mass production, citing issues with the engine and thermal-imaging equipment. These problems have delayed the tank’s introduction into service, and it remains unclear when the T-14 Armata will be ready for full-scale deployment.

T-14 Armata

So, the T-14 Armata is a fascinating piece of military technology, but its true capabilities remain uncertain. Until the T-14 Armata is deployed in a significant conflict and its performance can be evaluated, it is difficult to say whether it is a revolutionary tank or a paper tiger.

Any Hope for the T-14 Armata Tank?

Don’t get me wrong, this is a lethal tank. Probably one of the most technically advanced in the world. But Russia’s defense industrial base cannot support it in the kind of war it is currently waging against Ukraine.

T-14 Armata

Instead, the old T-72 is the workhorse. Quantity has a quality all of its own, after all. And the T-14 just isn’t in abundance (so it can’t make much of a difference for Russia).

About the Author

Brandon J. Weichert, a National Interest national security analyst, is a former Congressional staffer and geopolitical analyst who is a contributor at The Washington Times, the Asia Times, and The-Pipeline. He is the author of Winning Space: How America Remains a Superpower, Biohacked: China’s Race to Control Life, and The Shadow War: Iran’s Quest for Supremacy. His next book, A Disaster of Our Own Making: How the West Lost Ukraine, is due October 22 from Encounter Books. Weichert can be followed via Twitter @WeTheBrandon.

All images are Russian Military photo handouts. 

Источник: nationalinterest.org


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