Brigadier Ben Barry, a land warfare specialist at the International Institute for Strategic Studies, said two features on the Armata would threaten Nato forces.
“Firstly, it is the first tank designed with an unmanned turret. This will potentially improve crew survivability,” he said. “The turret also looks to have the stretch potential to accommodate a larger-calibre gun of up to 150mm. If fielded, this would overmatch the guns and armour on existing Nato tanks.
“Secondly, it appears to be the first tank designed from the outset with an active protection system, to intercept incoming anti-tank guided missiles and shoulder-launched anti-tank weapons.”
He added: “This has the potential to greatly reduce the firepower of Nato infantry. Of course, there are few Armata yet, and it is not clear how rapidly they will enter service. But as they do, they will increase the effectiveness of Russian armoured forces.”
The Russian defence ministry announced in September that it had signed a contract for the delivery of the first 100 Armata tanks. Another 2,200 are expected to follow.
By contrast, the British Army has 227 Challenger 2 main battle tanks, dating from 1998. Germany has 410 Leopard 2 tanks, and France has 200 Leclerc tanks. America has 2,338 M1 Abrams main battle tanks – although just 250 tanks and armoured fighting vehicles are stationed in Eastern Europe.
UK military intelligence issues warning over Russian supertank threat – Telegraph.co.uk