Armata main battle tank during the annual Victory Day military parade
A T-14 Armata main battle tank during the annual Victory Day military parade (Picture: Planetpix/Alamy Live News).
Russia

Ukraine: Russian troops 'reluctant to accept first T-14 Armata tanks due to poor condition'

Armata main battle tank during the annual Victory Day military parade
A T-14 Armata main battle tank during the annual Victory Day military parade (Picture: Planetpix/Alamy Live News).

Russian troops in Ukraine were reluctant to accept main battle tanks in Ukraine because they were in such poor condition, the Ministry of Defence (MOD) has said.

In an intelligence update on Twitter, the MOD said Russia worked to "prepare a small number of T-14 Armata main battle tanks for the type's first operational deployment in Ukraine".

"However, in recent months, deployed Russian forces were reluctant to accept the first tranche of T-14 allocated to them because the vehicles were in such poor condition," the update said.

The MOD said it was "unclear" which aspects of the vehicle prompted the reaction from Russian troops, but officials have "publicly described problems with the T-14's engine and thermal imaging systems".

"In 2021, Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu described the planned production run for 2022 as only an 'experimental-industrial' batch," the intelligence post said.

Watch: Why does Ukraine need Western tanks in the war against Russia?

"Therefore, it is unlikely that any deployed T-14 tanks will have met the usual standards for new equipment to be deemed operational."

It comes after the US is expected to announce it is sending Abrams tanks to Ukraine.

Alongside the pledge from Washington, it is expected Germany will also announce their intention to approve Poland's request to send Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine.

The UK has already sent Challenger 2 tanks, but one expert told Forces News the British tanks "won't make a big difference" to Ukraine on their own.