Before the publication of the news Integrated Strategic Review, many rumors had circulated in Great Britain concerning clear cuts of certain key capacities of British Defense. Among them were a severe downward revision in the number of F35s ordered by the Royal Air Force, the decrease in the number of Royal Navy frigates, as well as the outright elimination of the 3 heavy tank battalions available to the British Army today, and which are equipped with the heavy tank Challenger 2. Finally, the heavy tank will remain in service in the British Army, since 148 Challenger 2 will gradually be brought to a new standard called Challenger 3, in order to process its observed obsolescence, to be delivered between 2027 and 2030.
It is true that in spite of certain indisputable advantages, in particular in terms of protection, the Challenger 2 began to mark the weight of the years. As expected, the new British tank will be equipped with the German Rheinmetall's 120 mm L55 smoothbore cannon, the same that equips the modernized Leopard 2, allowing to fire the new NATO arrow shells designed to penetrate the armor. thicker. This is a significant step forward since the Challenger 2 was the last Allied tank to use a rifled tube and the corresponding ammunition within NATO. Above all, the Challenger 3 will receive an automatic loading system instead of its current loading and firing system with divided ammunition (projectile + propellant), which will give the armored vehicle a much higher rate of fire, as well as a extended flexibility of use.
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