Battle tanks are crucial components of a nation’s army. Often organized into units of armored vehicles, tanks often provide the direct fire unleashed to the enemies. They usually stand in front of the infantry units, taking the brunt of the enemies’ shells as well.
Tanks have come a long way since its introduction in World War I that turned the tide of battle and put an end to those bloody and drawn-out trench battles. They have become even stronger, faster and more powerful. Here is a list of the top 10 most expensive tanks in the world today.
10 T90, Russia - $2.23 million
The T90 is the main tank of Russia. It has laser-warning receivers and has the ability to detect and destroy magnetic mines. It also has an infrared jamming system. Its armaments have been inherited from the old T80. It can go at a maximum speed of 65 kilometers per hour with range of up to 650 kilometers.
9 ZTZ-99, China - $2.5 million
The ZTZ-99 is made in China and is the fastest tank in the world with speed of 80 kilometers per hour. It has a 125mm smoothbore gun and 155mm gun that can fire the next generation kinetic rounds. It is also armed with anti tank missiles made in Russia called the 9m119 Refleks. The tank makes use of sloped turret armor for additional protection for its three crewmembers.
8 Arjun, India - $3.8 million
Arjun is the main battle tank of the army of India. It was named after one of the main characters of Mahabharata, the longest epic in the world. It is armed with a 120mm main rifled gun. It makes use of locally developed and Indian-made ammunition that the army claims can defeat even superior armor used by its enemies. It also has a 12.7mm machine gun and a 7.62mm coaxial machine gun. At 58.5 tons and 10.68 meters, the Arjun can go at a top speed of 70 kilometers per hour. It has the ability to automatically detect and suppress any fire in the vehicle.
7 Leopard 2, Germany - $4.5 million
The Leopard 2 is the main battle tank of Germany’s military forces. It is also used by the armed forces of Canada and Denmark. The tank has seen action in Kosovo with the German Army and in Afghanistan with the Canadian and Danish forces. The tank has the ability to drive through waters of up to four meters in depth by utilizing a specially made snorkel. It can also climb a completely vertical structure of over one meter in height. Its night vision and sight equipment are advanced and it can fire at moving targets even on rough terrains.
6 Merkava, Israel - $5 million
Merkava is the main battle tank of the Israeli Defense Forces. It is the Hebrew word for chariot. At 65 tons, 9.04 meters in length and 3.72 meters in width and 2.66 meters in height, the Merkava can go at a top speed of 64 kilometers per hour. The tank’s four crewmembers are well protected by the rear turret assembly that guards against frontal attack and the clamshell-type rear entrance doors that provides overhead security when loading or unloading the crew or any of its cargo.
5 M1A2 Abrams, United States - $6.21 million
The M1A2 Abrams is the most powerful tank in the world. Named after the former Army Chief of Staff, the tank boasts of sophisticated composite armor and separate storage for ammunition in a blow out compartment. These features provide its crewmembers additional safety elements. At 62 metric tons, it has a top speed of 67.72 kilometers per hour.
4 C1 Ariete, Italy - $7.5 million
The C1 Ariete is the pride and main battle tank of Italy. It has the ability to fight even at night through its state-of-the-art digital and optical imaging and fire control systems. It can even unleash a shot while on the move. It boasts of a 120mm smoothbore Oto Melara gun. It is also equipped with secondary weapons, namely a 7.62mm coaxial machine gun and 7.62mm anti-aircraft machine gun. At 54 tons and 9.67 meters in length, the tank is operated by four crewmembers. Its top speed is 70 kilometers per hour.
3 FV4034 Challenger II, United Kingdom - $7.921 million
The FV4034 Challenger II is the main battle tank of the United Kingdom and Oman. It gained fame during the invasion of Iraq in 2003 when it did not suffer any loss despite heavy enemy fire. As a result, it is known as probably the most reliable main battle tank in the world. The tank has the ability to survive 14 hits from rocket-propelled grenades and one from an anti-tank missile. It is operated by four crew members and can attain a top speed of 59 kilometers per hour.
2 K2 Black Panther, South Korea - $8.5 million
The K2 Black Panther is the main battle tank of South Korea. It is expected to complement the country’s current line up of K1 battle tanks. The tank features a 120mm 55 caliber smoothbore gun capable of 40 rounds. It also has secondary armaments that include a 12.7mm K6 heavy machine gun with 3,200 rounds and 7.62mm coaxial machine gun with 12,000 rounds. It can go at a top speed of 70 kilometers per hour and can accelerate from zero to 32 kilometers per hour in just seven seconds. Its operational range is 450 kilometers.
1 AMX-56 Leclerc, France - $27.183 million
The AMX-56 Leclerc is the main battle tank of the armies of France and the United Arab Emirates. The French company Nexter, which used to be known as GIAT, is the firm behind its design and construction. It was named after General Philippe Leclerc de Hauteclocque, the man who led the 2eme DB, or 2nd Armored Division of the Free French in the drive towards Paris during World War II. It boasts of a 120mm tank gun capable of mustering 40 rounds. It also has a 12.7mm M2HB machine gun capable of 1,100 rounds and a 7.62mm machine gun with 3,000 rounds. It can go at a top speed of 72 kilometers per hour with a range of 550 kilometers.