United Arab Emirates to Donate 80 Leclerc Main Battle Tanks to Jordan

United Arab Emirates to Donate 80 Leclerc Main Battle Tanks to Jordan

According to a post published on September 15, 2020, by ArmyRecognition, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), users of the Leclerc Main Battle Tank (MBT) for more than 20 years, have decided to donate 80 of these tanks to Jordan. This number should allow Jordan to equip two of the four tank battalions belonging to its 3rd Armored Division. This transfer from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to Jordan could allow the creation of new synergies around the upgrading of the Leclerc Main Battle Tanks in the three user countries, which are now the United Arab Emirates with a little over 300 units, Jordan with these 80 tanks, and of course France with 200 tanks.

In production since 1991, the Leclerc entered French service in 1992, replacing the AMX 30 as the country’s main armoured platform. In 1993, the UAE has signed a contract with the French Company Giat Industries (now Nexter Systems) for the purchase of 436 combat vehicles, including 388 Leclerc MBTs, two driver training tanks, and 48 armored recovery tanks based on the Leclerc MBT chassis. Partnership with a foreign state was sought to limit the cost per unit, and this was found when the United Arab Emirates ordered 436 vehicles, adding to the 426 units already planned for the French Army.

As of August 2015, Leclerc tanks of the United Arab Emirates were deployed in combat operations in Yemen (near Aden) as part of the Saudi-led coalition. It is estimated that 70 Leclerc MBTs were deployed by the UAE in Yemen, 15 of them equipped with the AZUR package. During one month, three tanks were damaged, two by antitank mines and one by an RPG, which damaged the grid without piercing the hull. In a single incident; one Leclerc tank was hit and penetrated in the driver’s hatch by an ATGM, possibly of Konkurs or Konkurs-M type, resulting in the death of the driver and injuries to the legs of the commander. None of these main battle tanks were completely destroyed.

The Leclerc tank (French: char Leclerc) is a main battle tank (MBT) built by GIAT, now Nexter of France. It was named in honour of General Philippe Leclerc de Hauteclocque, who led the French element of the drive towards Paris while in command of the Free French 2nd Armoured Division (2e DB) in World War II. The Leclerc is armed with a 120 mm modèle F1 smoothbore gun designed by the arsenal of Bourges (EFAB) under the designation of CN120-26. Its barrel is 52 calibres long instead of the 44 calibres common on most main battle tanks of its generation, giving the projectile a higher muzzle velocity. Located inside the turret bustle, the autoloader is designated CHA and was designed by Creusot-Loire Industrie. The price in 2011 was €9.3 million, which made it the most expensive tank in history at the time.

United Arab Emirates to Donate 80 Leclerc Main Battle Tanks to Jordan