5 features of Israel’s Merkava main tank that make it unique

In the 1970s, Israel’s military leadership began to consider the creation of its own main tank in the country. So there was the project “Merkava”, which was destined to give the world one of the most specific tanks. Serial production of the new weapon began in the mid-1980s. The tank was extremely successful. Having under endured several modernizations, Merkava continues to be in service with Israeli ground forces. What makes it so unique?

1. Reservations

merkava tank

The Merkava tank has been using a modular booking system since the beginning of its history. The staff protection of the Israeli tank is quite weak. However, on top of the hull and tower, you can attach additional modules with armor, which take over the main portion of the incoming tank damage. The advantage of this design is that the tanks can be booked according to the situation. In addition, the modular design makes repairs very much easier.

2. Motor

merkava tank

Most tanks have a motor in the stern. Merkava has an engine installed in the bow, just like the infantry armored vehicles. This is also done to improve the survival rate of the crew. However, there are such design and disadvantages. Because of the engine in front of the tank is much more swaying when shot. In addition, the engine compartment needs exceptional insulation, so that the hot air from the motor does not prevent the arrow from using a thermal imaging camera.

3. Landing compartment

merkava tank
There’s an amphibious compartment in the tank

Merkava is currently one of the few tanks in the world equipped with an amphibious compartment. It is not very comfortable and spacious. But still it can fit up to 4 people. The amphibious compartment can also be used to evacuate 2 wounded.

4. Dimensions

merkava tank

The dimensions of “Merkava” are 7.45 x3.72 x2.66 meters, which makes this combat vehicle the largest in its class. A dubious “achievement” for the tank, but the fact remains. It is noteworthy that the Israeli tank is almost twice the size of the American “Abrams” and almost two and a half times larger than the Soviet-Russian tanks.

5. Survival

The designers have done everything that is possible for the survival of the crew.
The designers have done everything that is possible for the survival of the crew.

Finally, it is impossible not to mention that today it is this Israeli tank that is considered to be the vehicle with the highest survival rate. Much of this has been achieved through the use of the active protection system, which was introduced in the early 2000s. It is noteworthy that even Americans with multibillion-dollar military budgets could not afford such luxury.

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