The AMX-56 Leclerc is a French-made Main Battle Tank (MBT) built by Nexter. It entered service in 1992 and an improved Mk2 version entered service/production in 1998. The improvements were better equipped engine control systems and improved computer software. The French born tank has also been exported to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and they have 388 of these Leclercs while France’s army is equipped with 406 Leclercs. These are the only two countries in the world which operate this armored vehicle.
The AMX-57 Leclerc is armed with a CN120-26 120mm smooth-bore cannon which is able to fire standard NATO rounds and uses an auto-loader system. The tank is normally loaded with French made ammunition.
Auto-loader enables the tank to fire 12 rounds per minute and the loader itself holds 22 rounds of ammunition which it can readily load and fire to which end it can fire 5 different types of ammunition in the same batch of 22 rounds. The coaxial gun is also fitted with a heavy 12.7 mm machine gun, where most other tanks are fitted with the 7.62 mm machine gun. The turret like in the picture to the right hand side can be fitted with a remotely operated machine gun of 12.7mm; similar to that of the M1A2’s TUSK upgrade.
However the Leclerc (MBT) is seen usually with 12.7 mm weapon without remote positioning. The vehicle is also armed with smoke grenades 4 x 4, anti-personnel grenades and infra-red screening rounds. (Powered by the Galix Combat vehicle protection system)