The production of Russia’s T-14 Armata tank is currently facing many difficulties due to Western sanctions. There are no foreign customers, and even the situation of the Russian military stopping the purchase of this MBT has also been mentioned.
Believed to be the weapon the Russian Army needs to dominate the battlefield in the 21st century, the T-14 Armata tank has not yet shown itself in the Ukrainian battlefield. It is reported that there is at least one Armata operating around the village of Midginskaya near Lugansk, but such numbers are too few.
Production of the T-14 is being “frozen” by international sanctions. Many parts and components became difficult to access, especially high-speed computer chips and advanced electronics. The Rosoboronexport corporation even tried to launch this modern tank on foreign markets, but so far, no country has ordered it, but only at the level of “interest”.
The partner’s biggest concern is that the T-14 Armata is really “magical” as advertised or just as strong on paper? In addition, the removal of Moscow from the global interbank payment system also caused transactions to be frozen.
The Russian Ministry of Defense initially wanted to order 2,300 Armatas by 2025, if so, the unit price would be only 4 million USD / unit. But this number is cut continuously, the Russian defense-industrial complex makes conflicting statements and misses that goal. The number of Armata tanks ordered has been reduced to just 100. Instead, the Russian Ministry of Defense wants to create an unmanned ground combat vehicle to coordinate on the battlefield with the heavy MBT.
The T-14 program also broke with Russia’s tradition of mass-producing cheap and simple tanks, designed to overwhelm the enemy in numbers. But with the T-14, the Russian Army thinks that it can focus on the quality of the tank and create a vehicle that has many advantages in the confrontation with the American M1A2 Abrams, the German Leopard 2, as well as the British Challenger 2.
Armata has not been launched into the Ukrainian battlefield. Caution is necessary because, after all, this is a conflict where nearly every military action is captured on a smartphone with a camera, and immediately posted on social media. Russia cannot afford to lose even one T-14, because this will have an extremely heavy psychological impact. This may be the reason why Russia is limited to sending Armata to Ukraine in large quantities.
In theory, the T-14 Armata looks great. The tank has a lower profile than other Russian tanks, which reduces the possibility of exposure to enemy fire. The unmanned turret and the crew were in an armored compartment providing a better level of protection. 125 mm 2A82-1M smoothbore cannon with autoloader, integrated modern thermal imager. An advanced digital fire control system is also equipped, along with a base of 45 high-tech shells that bring great power.
The most impressive thing about Armata is its survivability, it can fight enemy anti-tank missiles thanks to the Afghanis active defense system – which will detect, track incoming projectiles and shoot them down. This active defense system works in tandem with the new generation explosive reactive armor Malachit. In addition, the tank has cage armor on the rear to protect against RPG-7 rocket shells.
The A-85-3A turbocharged diesel engine produces more than 1,200 horsepower, making the T-14 Armata tank able to reach road speeds of up to 80 km/h. The range of this MBT is about 500 km.
But with the difficulty of testing and manufacturing (the cost has now reached over 10 million USD / unit), the risk that the T-14 Armata is no longer ordered by the Russian Ministry of Defense may become a reality. If so, this is a nightmare for the Russian arms industry.