Sunday, December 20, 2009

A Worthy Opponent for the Leopard 2

Peru is acquring MBT 2000 tanks from China as it tries to close the gap against Chile's potent armor. The MBT 2000 doesn't normally match up to Chile's Leopard 2. But China is adding reactive armor and other improvements that Peruvian officials say put the MBT 2000s on equal footing with the Leopard 2. The MBT 2000 can launch anti-tank missiles from its 125 mm gun, which give the tank a kill range of 5 km. Theoretically at least, that's a longer range than the Leopard 2's. Press reports say the deal is for 30 tanks at a cost of $5 million each. The MBT 2000 won out over the Russian T-90, the Polish PT-91 and Ukraine's T-84. The deciding factor was cost. Peru also hopes to purchase self-propelled artillery and other systems to supplement its new tanks.