German Company Rheinmetall will soon be modernizing part of the Bundeswehr’s fleet of Leopard main battle tanks, implementing a comprehensive array of upgrade measures. The German Federal Ministry of Defense has announced that the German parliament approved two submissions in the total amount of $484 million (€ 428 million) for increasing capabilities of the German Bundeswehr. 101 Main Battle Tank Leopard 2 variants A6M A2 and A6 are to be brought to a similar design level as the latest version Leopard 2 A7V. The aim is to adapt to the Leopard 2 A7V in terms of operation and logistics. The tanks’ systems will be standardized to make them more effective, increase protection, and allow for the exchange of crews.
Rheinmetall will be transforming a total of 101 main battle tanks, bringing them up to A7V standard. In the process, Rheinmetall specialists will be eliminating obsolescent features in the fire control computers and control consoles as well as installing a new laser rangefinder and thermal imaging device. Rheinmetall will be supplying the new L55A1 gun for the 68 Leopard 2A4 MBTs to be modernized. All upgraded Leopard 2A7V tanks will be capable of using Rheinmetall’s new programmable DM11 multipurpose round. The Leopard 2A7V is fitted with a new armored modular system for the upper front glacis plate of the hull and a more powerful Auxiliary Power Unit of the current APU used on the Leopard 2A7 model.
The Leopard 2A7V is the latest version of German-made main battle tank (MBT) in the Leopard 2 family, that was unveiled in June 2016, at Eurosatory, the international defense exhibition which was held in Paris, France. The first serially retrofitted Leopard 2 A7V tanks will reach the Bundeswehr starting in 2020. Another part of the approved allocations is allocated for the purchase of over 30,000 pieces of 155 mm ammunition for the Panzerhaubitze (PzH) 2000 self-propelled howitzer.