Challenger 2...

...Photosniper 30, from Kagero, via Casemate Books

Title:  Photosniper 30, Challenger 2

Author: Dick Taylor

Publisher:  Kagero

ISBN:  978-83-65437-85-3

Number 30 in their Photosniper series, author Dick Taylor and Kagero have done a very neat job of presenting us with excellent coverage of the Challenger 2 MBT, along with the specialist vehicles based on the same chassis.  It tells the story of the design and development of Challenger 2, moving on from the Cold War Chieftain and later Challenger 1. The delayed entry into operational service, which was finally achieved in 1998, with the Scots Dragoon Guards. Chapter 2 is Challenger 2 Described, in excellent detail, and with sub-sections on Fire Control and Survivability. Chapter 3 provides the organisational details of the Armoured Regiment and Squadron, while chapter 4 takes on Operational Use & Variants. These include the first deployment to Bosnia and then Iraq, plus the Titan Bridgelayer, Trojan Engineer vehicle, and Driver Training Tank (DTT) versions. At the back of the book are a couple of pages of artwork, profiles illustrating different camouflage schemes.

The 86 page soft-cover book is heavily illustrated throughout, showing us Challenger 2 in pretty much every imaginable situation.  Nice and clean for parades, fitted with simple bazooka plates or the extra Dorchester Armour packs, bogged in on the BATUS training grounds, covered with camouflage nets or Mobile Camouflage System covers and bar armour round the rear aspect of the hull. There are also a few pictures of the interior. It brings us up to date with the latest plans to upgrade the Challenger 2 fleet to keep it in service into the 2030's.

I imagine a lot of current and ex-'tankies' will be interested in this one, while the references of the tank actually in service will be a boon for armour modellers looking for that touch of extra detail/authenticity for their models.

Distributed by Casemate Books, who kindly provided my review copy.