Vikhr and Ataka ATGMs ‘will smash’ Leopard 2 tanks, Rostec says

MOSCOW, RUSSIA — Russia’s largest arms trading company has named how Russian troops will counter an expected German Leopard 2 tank in Ukraine. Rostec announced that Russian soldiers can safely use some of the anti-tank guided missiles [ATGMs] delivered to them.

Russia sends Mi-28NM with Ataka ATGM against Leopard and Abrams
Photo credit: Wikipedia

Kornet and Ataka ATGMs will successfully counter the German Leopard 2 tanks. Apart from them, the Vikhr ATGM also has the potential and striking firepower to penetrate the armor and blow up the German tank. Rostec also says that 125mm Mango shells will be a nightmare for the Leopards of Ukraine.

“Combat experience has shown that these tanks can be destroyed even with the help of old portable anti-tank missile systems, which are significantly inferior in terms of characteristics to the weapons in service with the Russian army,” Rostes said. recalls that the German Leopard tanks do not have dynamic protection [ERA]. Rostec makes a direct reference to this information, saying that the Russian-made Vikhr and Ataka missiles will simply “deal with tanks”.

A sheet of explosive substance is placed between two metal plates. In a penetrating weapon attack, the explosive detonates, forcing the metal plates apart to damage the penetrator. In this way, the armor provides a greater path for the penetrator, reducing its destructive effects.

Berlin continues to give Leopard 2A4 tanks, 15 go to Prague
Photo credit: Defence View

All this is achieved by moving the plates themselves on the tank. In this way, they constantly change the angle of attack of the opposing projectile, as well as the angle of the charged jet. The continuous outward movement of the plates changes something else – the direction of the warhead’s impact. Thus the point of impact also changes. With this effect, the penetrating projectile needs a much larger jet, which it no longer has.

As previously wrote, anti-tank missile systems will play a key role in the countermeasures against German, British, and American tanks. The Vikhr ATGM, for example, is a missile designed to be launched from a helicopter. Most often these are the Mi-28 and Ka-52, with the Mi-28 supposed to take a major key role in destroying the new Ukrainian equipment.

The Vikhr ATGM can hit a target up to 12 km away, with the missile flying at 600m/s. The guidance system of the missile is built by laser beam riding. Vikhr ATGM is designed to carry a warhead with 8–12 kg tandem HEAT charge, and armor penetration behind ERA, 1,000 mm.

Russia sends Mi-28NM with Ataka ATGM against Leopard and Abrams
Photo credit: Military Watch Magazine

As for the other Rostec missile cited, the Ataka ATGM, it can be launched from a ground or air platform. Again suitable for helicopters, again for Mi-28. Its operational range is twice that of the Vikhr, i.e. up to 6 km. However, the rocket flies at a speed close to Vikhr – 550 m/s. The warhead of the Ataka missile in tandem. According to Russian sources, this missile is most effective against main battle tanks at a distance of up to 4 km.

In January, the former Commander-in-Chief of the Ground Forces of Russia, Colonel-General Vladimir Chirkin, said in an interview with MK that the German Leopard 2 tanks promised to Kyiv by the Western allies were not difficult targets for Russian weapons.


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