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A cut-through diagram of Leopard 2A4/2A5 and T-80U/T-90 shows a direct comparison of LOS thicnkness of the turret armor.
Note that the effectiveness of the Kontakt-5 reactive armor (of the T-80U/T-90) is not shown in this picture. Only the basic turret armor (LOS thickness) is being portrayed. With the Kontakt-5 ERA bricks, the armor protection of T-80U/T-90 would be even increased.
The Kontakt-5 reactive armor was first used in 1985 with the T-80U. It was designed to "break" the long-ROD penetrator (APFSDS) of NATO tank ammunition, so that they couldn't penetrate the main armor of the T-80U where the Kontakt-5 covered the armor. It was very effective in the mid-80's and made early NATO ammunition quite ineffective. The American and European Main battle Tanks (M1 Abrams, Leopard 2 and Challenger 2) had no sufficient APFSDS munition to penetrate the Kontakt-5 ERA in 1985. For example, the early M1 Abrams used the M829A1 and the Leoaprd 2A4 used the DM33/43, both of which failed to penetrate the
Kontakt-5. Only 6 years later, the Americans first developed a new APFSDS penetrator M829A2 in 1991, that could effectively penetrate the Kontakt-5 plus the basic armor of the T-80U.
However, other NATO countries such as the UK and Germany still lacked sufficient APFSDS rounds to defeat the Kontakt-5 until 1999.
For example, even the Leopard 2A5 in 1996 still used the outdated DM33/43 munition from the 1980's ERA, and the british Challenger 2 still used the outdated L-23/L-26 CHARM 1 APFSDS rounds from 1983 to 1999. Which means that neither Leoaprd 2A4/2A5 nor Challenger 2 had sufficient ammunition types to defeauntil the Kontakt5 until the early 2000's.
Only in 1999 the Germans finally developed a sufficient penetrator round DM53 for the longer 120mm L/55 gun used by the new Leopard 2A6 from 2001. And the British developed the more powerful L-27 CHARM 3 in 1999 for the Challenger II. Both of these ammunitions can now penetrate the Kontakt-5.