But They Can Build Some Impressive Vehicles
Cristal M Clark
I heard this saying a long time ago from someone that I used to work with, “German’s, they can’t build a damn decent road, but they sure can build a car. Well as it just so happens to turn out, that happens to be quite true.
Meet Panther AKA: KF51, the baddest of bad arse tanks, in the entire world.
The KF51, also known as the “Panther,” has some very impressive top of the line new technology, which include but certainly are not limited to; a larger main gun, a digital computer backbone, and a full suite of defensive features. The Panther even has the ability to and get this, counter so-called top-attack munitions, like the American-made Javelin missile, that are currently decimating Putin’s army in Ukraine.
If you are a war buff, the name Panther may be familiar to you because The Panzerkampfwagen V, was the original “Panther,” and it was designed in 1942 to counter Russian tanks. It was hailed as one of the best tanks of the war, albeit it had plethora of mechanical and reliability issues.
The Panther is equipped with a number of new features. The tank includes outward-facing digital cameras, giving the crew 360-degree visibility without exposing themselves to enemy fire. A second 7.62-millimeter machine gun can be remotely operated from inside the tank to target drones and ground targets. The KF51 can launch four reconnaissance quadcopters from the turret, allowing the tanks to conduct their own local reconnaissance. A drone launcher is built into the turret, capable of launching four Hero 120 loitering munitions. The Israeli-made Hero 120 has a flight time of 60 minutes and packs a nine-pound warhead. Hero 120 will allow Panther tanks to engage targets beyond their line of sight, such as behind hills and tree lines.
Panther’s top-attack defense system is the first-known system devoted to tackling top-attack weapons. It’s not clear how the new defense system works, but word on the street indicates that it may involve the quadcopters moving to intercept incoming rockets and missiles.
Panther is the long overdue upgrade to the original Panther’s successor, Leopard 2 which is the German version of the American M1 Abrams Tank. Panther has the basic hull design of the Leopard 2, the shape of the hull suggests newer, thicker armor along the front and sides. The Panther does keep the Leopard 2’s lines over the engine compartment, with a pronounced bulge. Panther reportedly still has a 1,100 kilowatt/1,500 horsepower engine, which is the same amount of power available to the Leopard 2. The Panther’s turret is bigger with sharper angles and a much larger overhang over the engine compartment, the latter to both store larger, heavier main gun ammunition and to act as a counterweight to the new 130-millimeter main gun.
Yes the new gun apparently has a 50% longer kill range.
The technology is really what makes Panther a truly remarkable piece of equipment.
Panther was unveiled at France’s Eurosatory arms show and it did leave many wondering if the world really has a need for a new tank regardless of how impressive she may be.
Cristal M Clark