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​russia's Tank Stocks Are Running Out: More and More Outdated Equipment Is Being Used by Invaders Against Ukraine

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​russia's Tank Stocks Are Running Out: More and More Outdated Equipment Is Being Used by Invaders Against Ukraine

During February, the number of cases of using outdated equipment of the Russian Armed Forces on the battlefield rapidly increased

The supply of T-62 tanks to the russian army began at the end of 2022, and the first T-55s appeared at the front in the summer of 2023, with these tanks, were armed units on the second and third lines of defense and were used to a limited extent in a role of mobile artillery. However, towards the end of the battle for Avdiivka, according to the reports of the soldiers who took part in the battles, the enemy began to throw units into the battle on T-62, and, as noted, not modernized, but bare tanks without so called “grilles” and dynamic protection. After Avdiivka, russian troops stepped up their attempts to attack Robotyne, where they actively used outdated T-55 and T-54 with no signs of modernization, except for the anti-drone “grill” (which did not help these tanks evade from Ukrainian drones).

russia's Tank Stocks Are Running Out, More and More Outdated Equipment Is Being Used by Invaders Against Ukraine, russia's outdated T-55 tank on a batlfield in Ukrain, Defense Express
russia's outdated T-55 tank on a batlfield in Ukraine / Open source photo

It is obvious that the increase in the number of T-62, T-55/54 on the front line is due to the high losses of tanks of the russian Armed Forces, the insufficient pace of their production at factories and the gradual depletion of warehouse stocks. The russians also have similar problems with infantry fighting vehicles, as evidenced by the increased use of MT-LB as infantry fighting vehicles.

Read more: ​Newly Reactivated BMD-3 Infantry Fighting Vehicles Hint at Secret russian Stockpiles

Returning to tanks, it is worth understanding that although the Soviet Union produced thousands of these tanks, there are not so many of them left in storage, and it is an open question how many of them are used as spare parts donors and how many are generally subject to restoration or use as donors.

russia's Tank Stocks Are Running Out, More and More Outdated Equipment Is Being Used by Invaders Against Ukraine, Many of tanks in russia's stocks were in rather bad condition, Defense Express
Many of tanks in russia's stocks were in rather bad condition / Photo: twitter.com/HighMarsed

As of August, analysts of the Viyskovy Vischun intelligence and analytical platform counted 219 T-55s in storage. About a hundred were removed from the bases and now we see them at the front. With stocks of T-62s, the situation of the russians is a little better. As of August, about 600 of them were withdrawn from storages, and about 800 are still in storage. They are being upgraded to 103 armour repair plant (BTRZ), receive additional protection and new equipment. However, according to various estimates, the production capacity of 103 BTRZ is limited to approximately 20 tanks per month. Probably, because of this T-62s, which were not modernized, but hastily restored from bases, appeared at the front, immediately sent into battle, where they were destroyed. As of mid-February, according to Oryx, the destruction of more than a hundred T-62 in various modifications has been confirmed.

Recently, the OSINT researcher high_marsed conducted a study of the stocks of relatively modern Soviet T-80U and T-80UD tanks, which were in service with the 4th tank division. It was discovered that the possibilities of restoring the T-80U have been exhausted, there are several dozen of these tanks in warehouses, which are probably not suitable for restoration. The 4th tank division suffered significant T-80U losses at the beginning of the invasion, and at the moment these machines rarely appear in reports. Presumably, the 1st guards tank army, which is conducting combat operations on the front from Kupyansk to Svatovo, suffers from a significant lack of equipment, which partially explains the inability of the russians to achieve success in this area, although the number of tanks according to the deployed units can reach more than 500 units.

russia's Tank Stocks Are Running Out, More and More Outdated Equipment Is Being Used by Invaders Against Ukraine, russia's Soviet-made T-80U tanks, Defense Express
russia's Soviet-made T-80U tanks / Open source photo

As for T-80UD, there are 170 of them in stock, but they are suitable for use only as spare parts donors, since the 6TD diesel engines were manufactured in Kharkiv and the russian federation does not have them for the restoration of this T-80 modification. Therefore, units of the 1st tank army gradually switched to the T-80BV. But the russians also have problems with them, since the marine units traditionally equipped with T-80BV and T-80BVM will receive the above-mentioned T-55 from the beginning of 2024. Tank reserves of T-80BV and various versions of T-72 are counted as hundreds, but the scale and pace of losses are already bringing us to a situation where the bottom can be seen in the infinite tank reserves of the russian federation.

russia's Tank Stocks Are Running Out, More and More Outdated Equipment Is Being Used by Invaders Against Ukraine, Nothing help russia's tanks to be saved in Ukraine, Defense Express
Nothing help russia's tanks to be saved in Ukraine / Open source photo

And the russians can’t not to understand this. Nevertheless, the political demands of the Moscow leadership dominate military expediency. Instead of reducing the pace of attacks on Ukrainian positions along the entire front and stockpiling weapons and ammunition, Putin is going all-in, trying to capture as many Ukrainian towns and villages as possible before the elections. The price of these political decisions may be a significant reduction of the offensive potential of the russian troops in a few months.

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