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Ukraine receives 8 Leopard 2A4 tanks from Norway following those received from Poland and Canada.

| 2023

According to a statement published by the Norwegian Ministry of Defense on April 12, 2023, the eight Leopard 2 tanks donated by Norway arrived in Ukraine just before Easter. The Leopard 2 tanks delivered by Norway to Ukraine are of the 2A4 variant.
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Ukrainian soldiers conduct live fire exercises with Danish Leopard 2A4 MBT Main Battle Tank. (Picture source Danish MoD)

Citing information from the Norwegian Ministry of Defense, before Easter, the training of Ukrainian personnel began. All those receiving training have some form of combat experience. The Ukrainians are quick learners, according to the Norwegian instructors:

"Some joined the Ukrainian army as early as 2014. They enlisted after the invasion of Crimea. One person shares that right after the invasion in 2014, he was assigned a tank and given the task of driving on the runway to attract fire so they could evacuate the wounded. He is one of those in Poland receiving retraining," says Thomas.

Others enlisted when the war started last year and have a year of experience with combat systems and extensive combat experience from the front lines.

According to the count by the editorial team of Army Recognition, the Ukrainian armed forces have already received 18 Leopard 2A6 tanks from Germany, 8 Leopard 2A4 tanks from Canada, 6 Leopard 2A4 from Spain, and 14 Leopard 2A4 tanks from Poland. With the addition of the 8 Leopard 2A4 tanks received from Norway, the Ukrainian army is now able to create one tank battalion

The number of tanks in a tank battalion can vary depending on the country and its specific organizational structure. Typically, a tank battalion consists of around 40 to 60 tanks, divided into three or four tank companies, each with 10 to 15 tanks. However, the actual number of tanks in a battalion may differ based on the country's military doctrine, available resources, and operational requirements.

According to open source military information, the Norwegian armed forces have 36 Leopard 2A4 and 16 more in store. On March 17, 2023, Norway announced the purchase of 54 German Leopard 2A7 Main Battle Tanks for an amount of around €2.68 billion with an option for an additional order of 18 more tanks. The new Leopard 2A7 will replace the old Leopard 2A4 tanks.

Ukraine receives 8 Leopard 2A4 tanks from Norway following those received from Poland and Canada 925 003
Ukrainian soldiers train to operate the Danish Leopard 2A4 MBT Main Battle Tank. (Picture Danish MoD)

The Leopard 2A4 is a main battle tank developed by Krauss-Maffei, a German company, and has been in service since the 1980s. It is one of the earlier variants of the Leopard 2 tank family, which is known for its reliability, firepower, and mobility. The Leopard 2A4 is equipped with a 120mm smoothbore gun and advanced armor protection, making it a formidable tank in battle.

Norway has operated Leopard 2A4 tanks in its armed forces, which have been well-maintained and upgraded over the years. As mentioned earlier, Norway has donated 8 Leopard 2A4 tanks to Ukraine, further strengthening Ukraine's armored capabilities and allowing them to create a tank battalion with other Leopard 2 tanks received from Germany, Canada, and Poland.

The Leopard 2A4 is armed with a 120mm L/44 smoothbore gun, which can fire a variety of ammunition types, including armor-piercing fin-stabilized discarding sabot (APFSDS), high-explosive anti-tank (HEAT), and high-explosive (HE) rounds.

The Leopard 2A4 has composite armor protection, which includes spaced armor and advanced materials to provide a high level of protection against kinetic energy penetrators and shaped-charge warheads. Additionally, it can be fitted with modular armor upgrades and explosive reactive armor (ERA) for enhanced protection.

The Leopard 2A4 is powered by a 1,500-horsepower MTU MB 873 Ka-501 turbocharged diesel engine. The tank is capable of reaching a top speed of approximately 68 km/h (42 mph) and has a range of around 550 km (340 miles). Its torsion bar suspension and wide tracks ensure excellent off-road mobility and the ability to traverse various terrains.

Defense News April 2023

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