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Osprey New Vanguard 16 : Leopard 1 Main Battle Tank 1965-1995

Development of the Leopard I can be traced back to November 1956, when the operational requirement for a new battle tank was formulated by the Federal German Armed Forces (Bundeswehr). Originally a Franco-German project, the tank under design was named the 'Standard-Panzer'. The French later dropped out however and, on the October 1 1963 the 'Standard' tank was officially named 'Leopard', an appropriate choice considering Germany's wartime pedigree with the formidable Tiger and Panther. The first 500 tanks were built between September 1965 and July 1966, and since then the tank has served in the armies of many countries, becoming renowned for its excellent capabilities. Michael Jerchel examines the development and service record of this tank. The many differences between different marks, and even different production batches of the weapon are dealt with, and the tank's control systems are studied. The Leopard in foreign service is also looked at: modifications made by countries as diverse as Greece and Canada, Norway and Australia are all examined. Finally, variants of the weapon are looked at, including the Bergepanzer 2 Standard Armoured Recovery Vehicle and the Bruckenlegepanzer I Biber Bridgelayer. The whole is admirably backed up by a good selection of photographs and colour plates. Illustrations by Peter Sarson.

    Contents
  • Design and Development
  • Series Production
  • First Modernisation
  • Second Modernisation
  • Upgrading the Leopard I
  • Inside the Leopard IA5
  • The Leopard I in Foreign Service
  • Variants

 

Osprey New Vanguard


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