The UK has sent 14 Challenger 2 tanks to Ukraine in a bid to support the country amid the conflict with Russia. These tanks are part of a military aid package that includes self-propelled howitzers and armored vehicles.

Challenger 2 tank delivery

The Contact Group in Ukraine confirmed the arrival of the 14 British Challenger 2 tanks in the country. Although precise information on the delivery time was not provided, sources suggest that the first tank arrived at the end of March.

Along with the tanks, the Ukrainian Army also received 32 AS90 155mm self-propelled howitzers and more than 150 Bulldog armored vehicles. In addition, the UK delivered hundreds of missiles and promised to supply 300,000 artillery shells.

This is significant, as Ukraine has been facing a shortage of artillery shells and missiles, which has weakened its position vis-à-vis the Russian armed forces.

Challenger 2: UK reinforces Ukraine in its fight against Russia

Status of tanks shipped

The status and capabilities of the Challenger 2 tanks shipped to Ukraine are of interest, as the model has not received updates since 1998. However, the tanks have likely been upgraded or at least configured into a full battle kit before their delivery.

The Russian press suggests that these 14 tanks might not be the only ones shipped by the UK and that more deliveries could follow in the future.

Comparison with Russian tanks

The Challenger 2 is heavier than the Russian tanks and has a crew of four instead of the three that make up the Russian crew. This is because Russian tanks have an automatic loading system for their guns, while Western tanks require an additional crew member for manual loading.

One advantage of the Challenger 2 is its 120mm rifled gun, which is considered more accurate than the Russian 125mm smoothbore guns. The range of the British Royal Ordnance L30 gun is 4 km.

the Ukrainian offensive

Despite reinforcement provided by British and German Leopard 2 tanks, the Ukrainian offensive has yet to start. Terrain conditions, with muddy and wet roads, have made it difficult for vehicles and tanks to move on the front lines.

The British Ministry of Defense notes that a counter-offensive could begin when ground conditions improve, which is expected to be in late spring and early summer.

Summary

Britain has sent 14 Challenger 2 tanks to Ukraine as part of a military aid package, which includes self-propelled howitzers and armored vehicles, to support the country in its conflict with Russia.

Despite not having been upgraded since 1998, the tanks shipped could have been upgraded prior to delivery. The Challenger 2 features a 120mm rifled gun, which offers better accuracy than Russian guns.

The Ukrainian offensive is expected to start when ground conditions improve, probably in late spring and early summer.