Taiwan abandons the American M41A3 Walker Bulldog light tanks after more than 60 years in service

Taiwan abandons the American M41A3 Walker Bulldog light tanks after more than 60 years in service

Currently, Taiwan has several dozen light tanks M41D265 CM-11 Brave Tiger100 CM-12200 M60A3 TTSand in the years 2023-2026 it will start to acquire 108 MBTs ordered three years ago M1A2T Abrams. These will replace the aforementioned CM-12s, which are also in for retirement, as well as the US M41A3 Walker Bulldog light tanks which have just been completely discontinued.

The American M41A3 Walker Bulldog light tanks are retiring from the Taiwan Army

The well-worn M41A3 Walker Bulldog light tanks first entered Taiwan in 1958. The USA gave them to the state as part of military aid, and the numbers were not in the tens, but hundreds (775 to be exact). No wonder that the process of their withdrawal is still ongoing, although it began in the 1980s, when they were replaced by the M60 family.

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It did not even help that in the second half of the 1990s a small part of them were modernized using domestic companies. This is how the M41D versions were created, which received reinforced side armor of the hull, a new fire control system with a thermal imaging camera, and the Detroit Diesel 8V-71T diesel engine, which finally increased the speed and range of the tanks. The armament was also changed, and so the M1919A4 rifle was replaced with a Type 74 (of the same 7.62 caliber), and the 76mm M32A1 rifled gun was replaced with its locally modified M32K1 version.

The last of the M41A3 Walker Bulldog tanks has just been retired. They were stationed on the island of Lieyu, and the ceremony itself took place at the Hsinchu Infantry Training Command in the northwest of Taiwan. It was attended by both veterans and military representatives, while the tanks themselves were put in motion for the last time in front of the public.

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