|Leopard 2||Leopard 2A1||Leopard 2A4||Leopard 2A5|
|Class||Main Battle Tank|
|Variant(s)||Leopard 2A1, Leopard 2A4, Leopard 2A5|
|Armor||Front 15 / Side 4 / Rear 4 / Top 3|
|Road Speed||110 km/h|
|Fuel Capacity||1200 L|
|Main Gun||L44 (120mm)|
|“|| The Leopard 2 is one of your best cards in this battle, with its strong armor and its powerful gun. However, you have to keep them away from ATGM.|
- Der Kessel briefing
The Leopard 2 is a main battle tank developed by Krauss-Maffei in the early 1970s for the West German Army. The tank first entered service in 1979 and succeeded the earlier Leopard 1 as the main battle tank of the German Army.
The Leopard 2 had its origins from the failed KPz 70 (MBT-70) project in the 1960s who was for American and West German looking for a counter to the Soviet T-62 the Germans withdrew from project in 1969 and the American project continued until 1971 when congress cancelled the project altogether.
The Leopard 2 is a main battle tank developed by Krauss-Maffei in the early 1970s for the West German Army. The tank first entered service in 1979 and succeeded the earlier Leopard 1 as the main battle tank of the German Army. Various versions have served in the armed forces of Germany and twelve other European countries, as well as several non-European nations. More than 3,480 Leopard 2s have been manufactured. The Leopard 2 first saw combat in Kosovo with the German Army and has also seen action in Afghanistan with the Danish and Canadian ISAF forces.
There are two main development batches of the tank, the original models up to Leopard 2A4 which have vertically-faced turret armour, and the "improved" batch, namely the Leopard 2A5 and newer versions, which have angled arrow-shaped turret appliqué armour together with a number of other improvements. All models feature digital fire control systems with laser rangefinders, a fully stabilized main gun and coaxial machine gun, and advanced night vision and sighting equipment (first vehicles used a low-light level TV system or LLLTV; thermal imaging was introduced later on). The tank has the ability to engage moving targets while moving over rough terrain.
The Leopard 2 was operationally fielded for the first time in the Kosovo War as part of the peacekeeping force. Similarly, it has been utilized in the War in Afghanistan following the US invasion of the country after 9/11. While not as combat tested as some of her contemporaries, the Leopard 2 combines a perfect blend of mobility, firepower and protection to see her crew through. The Leopard 2 joined the American M1 Abrams and British Challenger 2 as some of the finest examples of Western tanks anywhere in the world.
All Leopard 2 models feature superior aspects in all areas at a high price, at 120 points and up. Compared to other high-end NATO tanks, they suffer from a lack of side armor compared to the Abrams (the base model has 4 side armor, all others have 5), but make up for this with frontal armor (9 for all models except the A4 at 10) great mobility, accuracy, and efficiency.
The Leopard 2A4 is probably the mightiest tank NATO has to offer, at a whopping 145 deployment points. Despite this disadvantage, it has excellent maneuverability, phenomenally good frontal armor, and is extremely accurate, long-ranged (2275m), and powerful, with an accuracy rating of 10, an excellent stabilizer, and an AP power of 10. In most engagements, L2A4s will probably hit what they're aiming for the vast majority of the time, even when moving and firing at targets at long range, making them effective at ground dominance in the open. If used properly and supported by some supplies and AA, they can be very cost efficient.
However, Leopard 2s are very vulnerable to higher-end antitank helicopters such as later model Mi-24s and the Havoc, as their 7.62mm MG3s are ineffective at defending them from anything that isn't very close to them, and, even then, are poor at inflicting damage to well armored helicopters. It is essential that Leopard 2s operate with some AA support, otherwise their high cost is probably not justifiable. They are also vulnerable to the longer-ranged ATGMs used by advanced Pact tanks, as those have potentially longer range than the L44 main gun mounted on the Leopard 2.