The Turkish Army has nearly 3000 combat tanks in its inventory. But this impressive number masks significant disparities in equipment, since only 350 of them are truly modern tanks, in this case the Leopard 2A4s acquired second-hand from Germany in 2005. The approximately 2650 tanks remaining consist of German Leopard 1s and American M60s and M48s, all from the 60s and 70s. Many of them have been modernized, but they cannot compete with the firepower or armor of modern tanks. This is the reason why Ankara undertook to develop its own heavy tank, the Altay, which was to replace the fleet of obsolete tanks of the Turkish armies from 2018.
Designed with help from South Korea and their K2 Black Panther program, the Altay is largely based on national components. But the Turkish industry, just like the South Korean industry elsewhere, has not yet managed to develop an engine and a transmission chain sufficiently reliable to replace the German-made elements used for the design of the prototypes. In addition, Ankara called on French industry for certain alloys in the field of shielding. Gold, following the intervention in Syria Faced with the Kurdish forces allied with the Europeans and the United States in 2019, Paris and Berlin implemented an embargo on the equipment that could be used in this campaign by the Turkish armies.
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