The Russian Army has begun receiving the new T-72B3M tanks, the Russian Land Forces commander, Colonel General Oleg Salyukov, said in an interview with Krasnaya Zvezda. Salyukov indicated that the army is acquiring the T-72B3M tanks for mechanized infantry units and that the new tanks have better characteristics regarding mobility and armor. The T-72B3M is a modernized version of the T-72B3, known as “Russia’s most armored tank”, without regard to the advanced T-14 Armata.
The T-72B3M differs from its predecessors through a series of changes such as the Relikt Dynamic Protection System, a highly automated combat fire control system, and a more powerful engine. Salyukov also stressed that since early 2018, Russian Ground Forces have received more than 2,200 units of modern military vehicles and equipment, including mid-range air defense systems Buk-M3, Tor-M2 and modernized Tornado-G rockets.
This comes as back in September it was announced that the new T-14 Armata tanks will be equipped with high-precision anti-tank missiles capable of drilling one-meter-thick shields, according to Russian Defense Ministry sources, which the Russian newspaper Izvestiya had access to. Its penetration power is far greater than the 630 mm thick front shield of the M1A2 SEP Abrams, the top US battle car. The missile is part of the projectile assembly of the 152 mm cannon, which has not yet been installed in this tank. Currently the Armata is equipped with a 125 mm cannon, which the Russian military still considers powerful enough.
The new missile consists of a projectile and a firing device, after which its own motor is turned on. The tank aiming system directs the cannon to the target automatically, although the operator can adjust the trajectory at any time. With a range of more than five kilometers and laser guided, it is almost impossible to divert its course and prevent its effectiveness with reactive or active armor systems, as its power of penetration is guaranteed by the great weight of its ammunition and its cargo in tandem.