Great Britain’s Challenger tanks are similar to the M1A2 Abrams for the United States and Leopards for Germany. You don’t hear much about these British tanks because, in the past few years, only the aftermath has been mentioned. This was abandoned in favor a complete upgrade of the current Challenger 2 and Challenger 3. You will find below details about these British tanks. Their roots date back to 1986. We became interested in them after an informative announcement from Great Britain.
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From 1983 to 2001, the British Army used the first Challenger. The newer Challenger 2 was introduced in 2001. After service with the British Army, a total of 420 Challengers were produced. They went on to be used by the Royal Jordanian Army which, after major modifications, performed the role of the basic tank. This is not the first tank to be named after it.
Actually, the Challenger 2 doesn’t rank second. In fact, it’s the third Challenger 2 in a row bearing that name. The firstCromwell tank chassis. It was a WWII creation. The tank that is currently in service dates back from 1986, when Vickers Defense Systems began to work on the successor to the Challenger 1. After the staff demanded a new generation tank, the British Ministry of Defense requested their results.
Vickers Defense Systems won the contract despite some being skeptical about the domestic design. Under it, she received £ 90 million in December 1988 for the development of a demo version by September 1990, which was to meet 11 key criteria for tank construction.
Apparently it worked, as it was the British company that received an order worth £ 520m to supply 127 Challengers 2 and 13 driver training vehicles. This was in 1991, while in 1994 an order was placed for a further 259 tanks and 9 training vehicles worth £ 800 million. British authorities rejected American M1A2 Abrams (French Leclerc), West German Leopard 2 and French Leclerc. Oman was also interested in the project and ordered 38 Challengers 2 special export versions.
Production was finally started in 1993. It involved over 250 subcontractors, and the first tanks were delivered to the army in 1994. They failed the test so three units were put through progressive tests that simulate 285 days of front-line operations. These were successful, and the design was refined. In 1998, Challengers 2 entered service. The subsequent demonstrations far exceeded all staff requirements.
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