Russia doesn’t grow T-90 tank production but starts that of T-80

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Introduced by the esteemed Kirov Plant, the T-80, a premier main battle tank, was officially incorporated into the Soviet Army’s arsenal in 1976. The emergence of this formidable fighting vehicle marked a significant milestone in military technology. Moreover, the T-80 holds the distinction of being the world’s first tank to be outfitted with an in-built jet armor.

Photo credit: MWM

Historically, the manufacture of these specific tanks during the Soviet era was initiated at three major production facilities: the Kirov plant in Leningrad, the Omsktransmash plant, and the plant named after Malyshev in Kharkiv. It is noteworthy that the Malyshev plant, following the dissolution of the USSR, remained within the borders of modern-day Ukraine.

Located in the heart of Russia, the Omsk plant stands as the sole manufacturer of the T-80 tank. At present, the production of new T-80 tanks has been curtailed, with the facility primarily focusing on the modernization of pre-existing machinery.

Despite the passage of time, the T-80 has not been relegated to the annals of history. This formidable combat vehicle continues to hold a significant place in the strategic calculations of the military.

Photo credit: Army Technology

Resumption of production

The revelation that Russia will recommence the production of T-80 tanks was recently made public. Rather than merely upgrading or refurbishing existing models, this initiative signifies the full-scale production of these combat vehicles from scratch. This important announcement was delivered by Alexander Potapov, the esteemed director of the Uralvagonzavod concern.

The individual in question reported that this particular task was assigned to the concern by the military. The current state of affairs involves negotiations with the Ministry of Industry and Trade, given that the recommencement of production is contingent on the acquisition of additional capacity.

Photo credit: Wikipedia

The T-80BVM, the latest variant of the tank, is powered by an imposing gas turbine engine that boasts an impressive 1250 horsepower. This state-of-the-art update has been integrated into the armored divisions of the Russian military as of 2019, thereby marking a significant stride in military technology.

Strange decision

In an insightful development, the Russian military appears to be on a favorable trajectory. Concurrently, it instigates a pertinent query. Indications suggest that Russia is contemplating reinstating manufacturing operations at the Nizhny Tagil facility [Uralvagonzavod].

One might naturally question why Russia, a global player in the production of advanced military machinery, does not escalate the manufacturing of the T-90M Proriv tanks – a model that has already proven its robustness and modernity. Indeed, this tank, by virtue of its superior design and performance, has earned the distinction of being the world’s finest production tank.

Photo by Stanislav Krasilnikov

One might surmise that the decision to incorporate the new T-80 into the military fleet is primarily driven by its cost-effectiveness, given the vast number of tanks required. However, it is equally plausible that the T-80BVM, specifically designed for operation in extreme polar conditions, has been earmarked for deployment within Arctic units.

The US is also bringing back an old Abrams

Unexpectedly, the Pentagon has recently made it public that they plan to cease the further improvement of their leading battle tank, known as the Abrams System Enhancement Package Version 4 [SEPv4]. This development, which has caught many off guard, has significant implications for the future of armored warfare. 

In an unexpected and fascinating development, the military establishment has embarked on a mission to revive a once-forsaken endeavor, specifically the M1E3 Abrams.

Through meticulous scrutiny, it becomes decidedly clear that the prolonged delay in the highly anticipated and eagerly awaited release of the M1A2 Abrams SERp4 tank is primarily ascribed to the persisting hostilities in Ukraine.

‘Because of Ukraine’

“The unfolding events in Ukraine have underlined the pressing necessity of an internally devised, holistic defense framework for our servicemen and women. This is in stark contrast to a system that is pieced together in a disorganized, makeshift fashion,” stated Maj. Gen. Glenn Dean, the incumbent head of the Army’s Ground Combat Systems Program, during a formal proclamation.

Photo: Wikipedia

He further expounded on the matter, stating that the Abrams tank, in its current state, “finds itself at a critical juncture where any further enhancement to its functionalities would inevitably result in an increase in weight. Additionally, there exists an urgent requirement to significantly reduce its logistical footprint.”

As the week progress, the political epicenter of Ukraine, Kyiv, is expected to be the beneficiary of a proportion, if not the totality, of the pledged American Abrams tanks, with particular emphasis on the M1 variant. It is highly plausible that Washington will seize this occasion to scrutinize the Ukrainian employment of these armored machines, thus acquiring invaluable knowledge that could be instrumental in augmenting the characteristics of the impending M1E3 Abrams iteration.


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