|This page is about the German medium tank Leopard 2A5. For other versions, see Leopard 2 (Family).|
The Leopard 2A5 is the sixth variant of the Leopard 2 main battle tank family. The Leopard 2A5 variant (introduced in mid-1998) is visually distinct from previous variants due to the addition of wedge-shaped spaced add-on armour over the entire front as well as the forward sides of the turret. The ideology behind this wedge-shaped, spaced add-on armour is that it may deflect and erode kinetic-energy penetrators as well as neutralize a hollow charge before it reaches the base armour. The shot-trap effect was investigated and avoided as a result of the first layer, which does not deflect penetrators into the hull, as well as angle calculations and the material utilized for the outer layer. As a result, the gun mantlet had been modified to fit in with the new add-on armour. Furthermore, the entire composite armour composition was revised and improved. To prevent fragmentation, spall liners were installed in the crew compartment, and the frontal area of the side skirts was improved and strengthened. To reduce weight and simplify maintenance and reliability, the turret traverse and systems were entirely electric. The tank commander's sight was relocated behind the hatch, and separate thermal imaging equipment was installed. The gunner's sight was also relocated to the turret roof (previous versions had it built into the cavity in the front turret armour). The driver's hatch has also been modified. Since this variant was designed to be upgraded to the new 120 mm Rheinmetall L/55 tank gun in the future Leopard 2A6 variant, the entire gun brake system was modified as well.
Introduced in Update 1.87 "Locked On", the Leopard 2A5 variant provides higher turret protection than the preceding Leopard 2A4 variant due to the addition of spaced add-on armour covering the frontal area and forward flanks of the turret. Despite being a spaced add-on armour, the distinctive wedge-shaped design effectively disrupts and decreases the energy of incoming enemy tank ammunition rounds, resulting in significant armour penetration reduction. The tank layouts are identical to the Leopard 2A4, but there are minor differences in crew locations. The tank commander's sight has been substantially upgraded, providing the tank commander with an independent sight equipped with thermal imaging equipment, introducing the hunter-killer capabilities.
Survivability and armour
The Leopard 2A5 has improved armour compared to its predecessor, the hull is much better protected and the already impenetrable turret cheeks have more protection on the side of the turret. Add-on armour boosts the ability to protect against HEAT-FS and early APFSDS rounds. The wedges on the front of the turret are able to be blown off if a round with enough energy hits it.The gunners optic is also moved into the roof to eliminate the weak spot which was easily penetrated by any tank.
One big changeover along with the armour wedges in the front is the repositioning of the gunner's sight. In the 2A4, the gunner's sight in the turret front presented a weakness that was easily compromised. In the 2A5, the gunner's sight was relocated to the turret roof, and so this weakness is no longer present on the 2A5. Additionally, the large mantlet of the 2A4 has been replaced by a far smaller and more armoured mantlet, making it far harder to hit, though most ammunition at top tier can still penetrate it easily.
Be aware of Soviet tanks though! Most of them will carry their HE rounds that can easily destroy you anywhere they hit. A hit directly to the turret will most likely send fragments into your hull, penetrate and lets your fuel tank explode or at least set a fire and knock out the gun barrel.
|Armour||Front (Slope angle)||Sides||Rear||Roof|
|Hull|| 35 mm (53-82°) Upper glacis
40 mm (50-51°) Lower glacis
| 10 mm (5°) Upper hull
35 mm Lower forward hull
20 mm Lower rear hull
|20 mm (12-50°)||20 mm (0-8°) Hull roof incl. engine deck|
|Turret|| 80 mm (57-59°) Right cheek add-on
80 mm (55-58°) Left cheek add-on
30 mm (63°) Upper mantlet add-on
400 mm Mantlet armour
250 mm (9°) Mantlet shroud
| 80 mm (20-22°) Right add-on
80 mm (22°) Left add-on
35 mm Forward
15 mm Rear
| 20 mm (10°) Basket
20 mm (70°) Turret underside
| 35 - 40 mm (80-89°) Forehead Armour |
14 mm (68-82°) Forward sides
20 mm (89°) Rear turret
20 mm (83°) Basket
|Hull|| Upper+Lower glacis
400 mm Kinetic
600 mm Chemical
|Turret|| Turret cheeks
800 mm Kinetic
1200 mm Chemical
Gun mantlet (Center)
260 - 325 mm Kinetic
600 - 690 mm Chemical
Gun mantlet (Outer)
425 - 460 mm Kinetic
825 - 905 Chemical
| Side armour |
260 mm Kinetic
230 - 285 mm Chemical
- Upper hull and Lower rear hull overlap (10 + 20 mm thick)
- Upper mantlet add-on and Mantlet armour overlap (30 + 400 mm thick)
- Holes in the engine deck are covered by 8 mm of mesh
|Game Mode||Max Speed (km/h)||Weight (tons)||Engine power (horsepower)||Power-to-weight ratio (hp/ton)|
The only drawback compared to the previous model would be the Leopard 2A5's mobility since, despite the 4 tons increase in weight, the engine remains the same, so the Leopard 2A5 is both slower and less manoeuvrable compared to the Leopard 2A4, but it can still keep up with the other nations MBTs. The engine remains the same MB 873 Ka-501 engine which produces 1,500 hp (1,100 KW) at 2,600 RPM.
Modifications and economy
The first modifications to research should be Parts and FPE. After those, aim for the NVD, DM33/DM53, laser rangefinder, or mobility upgrades, depending on the desired playstyle.
The Leopard 2A5 has access to DM53 APFSDS shells which make it a deadlier foe as few tanks can stand against it.
|120 mm Rh120 L/44||Turret rotation speed (°/s)||Reloading rate (seconds)|
|Ammunition|| Type of
|Penetration @ 0° Angle of Attack (mm)|
|10 m||100 m||500 m||1,000 m||1,500 m||2,000 m|
|Ammunition|| Type of
| Fuse delay
| Fuse sensitivity
| Explosive mass
(TNT equivalent) (kg)
|42||16 (+26)||1 (+41)||No|
- The 2nd rack serves as first-stage ammo stowage.
|7.62 mm MG3A1|
|Mount||Capacity (Belt)||Fire rate||Vertical||Horizontal|
Usage in battles
The Leopard 2A5 is slower, but it has much better armour and access to the DM53 round. With these new changes, the playstyle changes a bit too:
- Hull down: In the 2A4, the gunners optic was easily penetrated so the hull-down was still vulnerable. However, in the 2A5, this weak spot is eliminated and the armour of the turret is much better, so a hull-down position can now leave the Leopard 2A5 invulnerable, but try to keep your turret protected as well, so then the armour package could last longer throughout the battle.
- Sniping: With the DM53 APFSDS round, the Leopard 2A5 can now make use of the great distance in combat to deal damage while tanking incoming shots. Try also make use of hull-down positions whilst sniping.
- Flanking: Due to the worse mobility compared to the 2A4, it is better to stick to more stationary tactics like hull-down and sniping. However, with a little bit of caution, flanking can still be successful.
- Staying with nearby teammates: Try and stick to nearby teammates as this can improve your lifespan throughout the game.
Pros and cons
- Excellent 120 mm gun, DM53 APFSDS is capable of penetrating up to 623 mm maximum at point-blank range
- Impenetrable turret cheeks, the add-on wedge armour makes the turret immune from every shell in the game (average of 850 mm against long rod APFSDS and 1,450 mm against HEAT)
- Good armour on the UFP (430 mm against APFSDS), immune to older shells; though many top-tier tanks possess shells which can go straight through
- Great gun handling: 40°/s turret rotation speed (with Ace crew) and -9°/+20° of vertical guidance
- Side turret covered by add-on armour can bounce early APFSDS shells
- Gunner optics are now mounted on top of the turret, removing the annoying weak spot present on the Leopard 2A4
- Cannon barrel and cannon breech absorbs impact rounds which may otherwise penetrate the turret and injure crews
- Gun breech and mantlet has a smaller profile than other western MBTs
- Good thermal imaging quality (Generation 2 for Binoculars, 800 x 600, and Generation 1 for Gunner's view, 500 x 300)
- Very good all round tank especially when played properly
- Lower glacis can still be penetrated by most shells (but is expected for most MBTs)
- 16 shells in the ready-rack may be insufficient when playing in Arcade Battles
- If your turret ammo rack is shot, you might survive but then you lose all your unloaded ammo storage
- Huge hull ammo-rack if more than 16 shells are carried consequently making the tank extremely vulnerable to HE shells
- A penetrating shot on the left side of the hull will most likely knock out the driver, gunner and commander, thus destroying the tank
- A penetrating shell on the right side of the hull will most likely hit the ammo-rack, destroying the tank
- Just like all Leopard series, raised engine deck means less gun depression when the turret is facing the rear
- The wedges can be shot off with several hits, though the turret cheeks alone provide 650 mm against KE
- Tank's weight is 4 tons increased while the engine is still the same, making the Leopard 2A5 slower compared to the 2A4
- Despite all the added armour, the turret ring and driver's hatch are both easily penetrated, and the enemy will most likely aim at these two spots to disable or destroy the tank
- Is outperformed by its successor, the Leopard 2A6, in terms of firepower. The longer L/55 cannon on the Leopard 2A6 increases the performance of both DM33 and DM53 shells.
The Leopard 2A5 is a third-generation main battle tank (MBT) developed by the German company Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW). It is an upgrade to the Leopard 2A4, which was the mainstay of the German Army in the late 1990s. The Leopard 2A5 was first introduced in 1995 and served as the backbone of the German Army until the Leopard 2A6 replaced it in 2001.
The Leopard 2A5 features improved armor protection and a new gunner's sight. The tank's armor consists of composite armor, reactive armor, and spaced armor, providing it with superior protection against anti-tank weapons. The Leopard 2A5 also features a modified turret design, which provides better protection for the crew.
The tank's main armament is a 120 mm smoothbore gun, which is capable of firing a variety of ammunition types, including high-explosive anti-tank (HEAT), armor-piercing fin-stabilized discarding sabot (APFSDS), and high-explosive, variable time fuze (HE-VT) rounds. The Leopard 2A5 also features a secondary armament consisting of a coaxial 7.62 mm machine gun and a 12.7 mm machine gun mounted on the commander's hatch (which on some versions may be a 7.62mm one).
The Leopard 2A5 has been used in several conflicts around the world, including in Kosovo and Afghanistan. The tank has proven to be highly effective in combat, with its superior armor protection and firepower providing a significant advantage on the battlefield. During the Kosovo conflict, the German Army deployed a battalion of Leopard 2A5s, which saw significant action against Serbian forces. The tank's superior protection and firepower proved to be critical in the success of the German mission.
The tank proved to be incapable, though, of urban combat, as German forces suffered heavy losses to shoulder anti-tank weapons, like the RPG-7 and M136, which were highly used by guerilla and insurgency forces from rooftops and areas where the Leopard's defenses couldn't reach. Around 1997, the Leopard 2A5M TUSK I prototype was created, featuring an all-around ERA protection, as well as blowout panels, an autoloader, a shorter barrel, and a remote-controlled machine gun (to prevent the commander/loader from having to turn out of the tank to fire it). Although some units were produced, the project was abandoned quickly due to the replacement of the tank by the Leopard 2A6, along with the high production cost of the new variant.
Production of the Leopard 2A5 began in 1995, and the tank was in service until it was replaced by the Leopard 2A6 in 2001. The Leopard 2A5 was produced in Germany and exported to several other countries, including Austria, Canada, Denmark, Sweden, Spain, Norway, and Poland.
Despite its successes, the Leopard 2A5 was not without its production issues. The tank was initially delayed due to problems with the new armor technology, and production costs were higher than expected. The tank also had some reliability issues, particularly with its engine, which was prone to overheating.
In conclusion, the Leopard 2A5 is a highly effective third-generation MBT that provided a significant upgrade over its predecessor, the Leopard 2A4. The tank's superior armor protection and firepower made it a formidable opponent on the battlefield, and it has seen successful combat deployment in several conflicts around the world. While the Leopard 2A5 had some production issues, it was a critical asset for the German Army during its time in service.
In 1988, German engineers began work on modernizing the Leopard 2 main battle tank. Improvements were made to the tank’s defensive capabilities, primarily the turret armour. Moreover, the 2A5 model was fitted with an electric stabiliser instead of the electro-hydraulic variant that the previous versions used.
The gunner received improved and less vulnerable optics, and the tank commander – a panoramic periscope with thermal imaging. The build of the driver’s hatch was also modified, along with several other minor improvements made to the general design.
Leading to the 2A5 modernization program being officially approved by the military officials of Germany, Sweden and the Netherlands. It is interesting to note that the models exported to the last two countries on the list were actually different from the ones issued to the German army – for instance, the Bundeswehr tanks received no extra frontal hull armour. Production of Leopard 2A5 tanks began in 1995. Overall, 350 earlier-version Leopards were upgraded as a result of the program.
- Related development
|Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW)|
|Leopard 1||Leopard I · Leopard A1A1 · Leopard A1A1 (L/44) · Leopard 1A5 · C2A1|
|Leopard 2||PT-16/T14 mod. · Leopard 2K · Leopard 2A4 · Leopard 2 (PzBtl 123) · Leopard 2 PL · Leopard 2A5 · Leopard 2A6|
|*By the Deutsche Entwicklungsgesellschaft consortium, in collaboration with the General Motors Company.|
|SPAAs||Gepard · Gepard 1A2|
|Leopard 1||▄Leopard 1A5 · Leopard 1A5NO|
|Leopard 2||Strv 121|
|See Also||BAE Systems AB|
|Germany medium tanks|
|Pz.III||Pz.III B · Pz.III E · Pz.III F · Pz.III J · Pz.III J1 · Pz.III J1 TD · Pz.III L · Pz.III M · Pz.III N|
|Pz.IV||Pz.IV C · Pz.IV E · Pz.IV F1 · Pz.IV F2 · Pz.IV G · Pz.IV H · Pz.IV J · Pz.Bef.Wg.IV J|
|Pz.V||VK 3002 (M) · Panther A · Panther D · Panther F · Panther G · Ersatz M10 · Panther II|
|M48 upgrades||M48A2 G A2 · M48 Super|
|Leopard 1||Leopard I · Leopard A1A1 · Leopard A1A1 (L/44) · Leopard 1A5 · C2A1 · Turm III|
|Leopard 2||PT-16/T14 mod. · Leopard 2K · Leopard 2AV|
|Leopard 2A4 · Leopard 2 (PzBtl 123) · Leopard 2 PL · Leopard 2A5 · Leopard 2 PSO · Leopard 2A6|
|Trophies||▀M4 748 (a) · ▀T 34 747 (r)|
|Other||Nb.Fz. · KPz-70|
|USA||mKPz M47 G · M48A2 C|