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Friday, May 8, 2015

Russia's T-14 Object 148 Armata MBT Fails To Impress

R & D work on Russia's clean-slate design T-14 Object 148 Armata main battle tank (MBT) commenced in 2011, with Moscow so far investing 15 billion Rubles (US$239 million) in this R & D project, with another 39 billion Rubles ($622 million) due to follow. To date, the Russian Army has taken delivery of only 12 pre-production prototypes of the T-14 Armata, all of which were ordered in 2013. 
Even though a procurement contract for series-production T-14s is in place for deliveries through to 2017, no long-term contract has been signed as yet. According to the T-14’s OEM, Uralvagonzavod JSC, large-scale series-production is key to reducing the unit price of the Armata. Consequently, the Russia Army is required to order no fewer than 40 Armata MBTs in 2016, 70 in 2017, and 120 annually beginning in 2018 in order to maintain stable, affordable production-levels. Even then, it will take more than 20 years to produce Russia’s desired number of 2,300 Armata MBTs—thereby pushing the deadline for completion of series-production into 2035, while the original target date had been 2020 at an estimated cost of $9.2 billion.
The T-14 Armata, weighing close to 55 tonnes and powered by a 1,500hp multi-fuel engine, features an unmanned turret, with all three crew members (driver, gunner and commander) being accommodated within a crew capsule located in the frontal section of the MBT’s hull. Main armament is a 2A82A 125mm smoothbore cannon that is fed by a bustle-mounted armoured automatic loader equipped with 32 rounds. The MBT’s sides are fitted with a new appliqué armour package along three-quarters of the MBT’s length, with the rear three-quarters being protected by slat armour.
On the whole, in my personal view, the T-14 Armata, touted as being Russia’s first new-generation main battle tank (the previous tanks starting from the T-54 till the T-90 were all medium battle tanks), appears to be poorly engineered, and when compared to the Arjun Mk2, the latter is still superior in several aspects.


Siddharth said...

Prasun da,

Can you please elaborate how T-14 is inferior to Arjun Mk2.

To my understanding T-14 still in design phase and the one displayed recently before and on May 9th parade is a prototype.

Seeing our General obsession with Russkie tanks, in future they are going to order T-14 for sure.


Jay Bhanushali said...

What makes this a main battle tank? At 48 tons its closer to the t90 than to any western mbt.
Also,what exactly is soo new generation about it other than this crew capsule?
Does it have hydropneumatic suspension like the arjun mbt?

Prav said...

My guide to posting about the armata.
guide to posting about the Armata.

6 wheels? Obsolete, no modernization potential.
7 wheels? Excessive, heavy.

Side? Hard to conceal, makes tank vulnerable.
Rear? Impedes the tank's movement in a column.

Direct optical channel: makes the tank expensive and complicated, signifies primitive electronics.
No direct optical channel: the system is unreliable, the tank becomes blind after the smallest mishap.

Side armour is insufficient (always)
Top armour is insufficient (always)

Active protection system:
No? Any tank without active protection has no future.
Yes? Active protection reveals the tank and impedes cooperation with infantry.

Reactive armour:
Poor (always)

Fire control
Poor (always)

Poor (always)

AA machinegun:
12.7 mm: excessive obsolete caliber, all the cool kids have 7.62
7.62 mm: insufficient obsolete caliber, all the cool kids have 12.7

125 mm: insufficient and obsolete caliber for an MBT.
152 mm: excessive caliber, signifying primitive shell technology

Less than 5 million: disposable garbage
More than 5 million: kickbacks

Rajesh Mishra said...

Armata seems to be more concerned about safety features.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

PA's Mi-17 crashes in Gilgit-Baltistan:

Rajesh Mishra said...

Now the Pakistanis are going to blame it all on the Indian agencies as usual.

Jon said...

LCA continues to disappoint.


Dear Prasun,

You were correct. Mi-35 can't be game changer for PA as it evident from today's crash of Mi-17. It will be a chicken sheet for insurgent.

Rajesh Mishra said...

HAL and others had a great opportunity in the form of Tejas development but they surely missed the flight.

Vikram Guha said...

Prasun Da,

1.Taliban claiming that they shot down the Mi-17. However, they wanted to target Sharif.

2.Full text of CAGs audit report about the LCA. States progress is un satisfactory.

Vikram Guha said...

3. India[Aviation Research Centre] now wants 4 V-22 Ospreys

Rajesh Mishra said...

The rate of firing of Armata is almost double than Arjun-Mk1.

Kaku Sh said...


The BrahMos Block-3 recently tested from Car Nicobar Island.

Sir whats the purpose of this? Are we targeting Indonesia?

Anonymous said...

why does CAG never does audit of foreign products.... are all those foreign products are really so superior that there could not be any report about them.... and if they are couldn't there be study for indian entities like OFB, DRDO and HAL to emulate them.... is this something out of world that we cannot pursue such a path for our products development..... I simply don't undersand....

Your opinion about these.

Amol Gupta

Vikram Guha said...


Based on Parikar's reply in Parliament regarding the FGFA it seems the project is making slow progress.

As per the draft R&D Contract, the delivery of FGFA can commence after 94 months from the start of the contract. The Contract has not yet been signed

Mayur M Manapure said...
Was this your source to that Boat incident?
And what about the Taliban's claim for recent chopper crash in gilgit?

Anonymous said...


Is LCA really as bas as CAG report makes it to be?
Will it stand in WVR battle against JF-17 or J-20Bs, without Python-5?
Can you please throw some light on WVR combat parameters like ITR & STR of LCA ?

Prav said...

@Amol Gupta .. The CAG has audited the scorpenes , the rafales and the t 90 .. Google is your friend.

pm said...

sir can u give us a comparative analysis over chinese type 54 A and indian counter part

bhoutik said...

* a little enlightenment on north korean underwater launched missile - (1) underwater pontoon or actual sub launch? (2) cruise or ballistic? (3) could pakistan access the tech?

* a chinese article compared jf-17 and lca. claims about foreign participation and systems - are they accurate?

* could you please compare the new antonov and embraer twin engine transports.


Anonymous said...

Comme promis, vous êtes en mesure d'influencer le gouvernement indien dans l'achat de nos jets (vraiment que vous êtes des gens lol si naïf) s'il vous plaît nous dire si maintenant la voie par laquelle nous pouvons transférer les Rs promises. 1 million de vous


Prav said...

Lol that machine translated french hurts my eyes ....

Jay Bhanushali said...

Rs 1 million is too little, 1 million euro sounds much more respectable. I urge people to make allegations which are believable.

Anonymous said...

Hey Prasun , Found this very interesting ..ur comments please

ak_hmr said...

Another view on china policy..

Magicbullet said...

Hi prasun... could you shed some light on or new carrier at works INS Vishal..

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon@9.51PM: You will find this equally interesting:

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

Will answer all outstanding queries from this thread & the previous thread in this thread itself, later today.

Magicbullet said...

Hi prasun... could you shed some light on or new carrier at works INS Vishal..

Anonymous said...

Hi Prasun,

It is good that you are posting frequently now however you have said that you would post the details of the GE design suggestions for LCA. Plese do post them.

Anonymous said...

The T-14 is an evolutionary design against the revolutionary one people were expecting and perhaps for good reason. A century of armor best practices cannot be wished away in a stroke. The only major leap is in making the turret unmanned. I cant fathom how it is inferior to Arjun.

Anonymous said...


Hey buddy I already did that...

Now for your sake, Lets see this, India's 60% arms inventory is made up of foreign equipment. Do you really believe that all of these are super awesome and has zero fault. I doubt it very much.

Ok now lets come to audits you are talking about.... CAG cannot audit what is not inducted and used by armed forces. In case of scorpenes CAG just talked about delay and cost overrun in that report but never did it once criticize submarines..

Same is case of rafale, when rafale has yet to enter indian armed forces how could CAG audit it?

Third is the case of T90, now CAG report about them talks only about absence of air conditioning on these tanks and held MoD responsible for this. But never does it hold T90 liable of any deficiencies. Now you and me both know that T90 wasn't as good as Arjun as was shown by those comparative trials but did you ever find any CAG report criticizing T90? Why this sort of bias.

Kindly instead of advising me to google, put some views here if you have any, could be a healthy discussion.