Challenger II takes 70 RPG hits and survives: true?

Wikipedia states a Challenger II sustained 70 RPG hits in Basra, 2003. All crew survived.

Their reference is a BBC news article where a defence consultant repeats the claim (trustworthy?).

Is this true or not?

The article does have a cite for it.

It’s possible the actual number was exagerrated by witnesses - combat reports tend to be like that - but it certainly would not be anything unusual for a Challenger II to take RPG hits without any substantial damage. Challengers are covered in Chobham armor, which is famously robust. A hand-held RPG will mess up your Hummer pretty bad, but should not be able to seriously damage the armor of a modern tank like a Challenger.

Former M-1 Abrams Tanker here ('86 - '91)

I’d been told (by senior NCOs) that the Challenger had thicker armor than the Abrams, and that the Chobham (sp?) armor the Brits shared with her Allies wasn’t the really good stuff.

270 RPG hits? To frontal armor, I’d believe it on almost any modern MBT (Leopard series, LeClerc series, etc). Flank? Eh. Rear? Doubtful.

Armor can’t be “battle thick” everywhere.

Wait, it’s 270 now?

Does this story involve fish?

Ex, it says 70, not 270.

Here’s the quote which the Wiki assertion is based on:

There was a show on the Military Channel about Chobham [armor] which reported this story, but slightly differently - it said that the tank was hit by 70 rounds, including some RPGs. I presume that the rest were small-arms fire.

I’m a bit skeptical purely because I seriously doubt any of the insurrectionist groups operating in Iraq would ever have had 70 RPG rounds in one place. That’s a lot of materiel to be carrying around.

Don’t RPG’s have to hit at a nearly direct angle to do any damage, owing to the geometry of the shaped charge? With that being the case, wouldn’t even a modestly armored vehicle be able to take any number of RPG hits from shallow angles?

270 sounds better.

Seriously, I don’t know where that extra “2” came from.

Cosmic: yeah, “angularity” does matter to some degree, but metallurgy counts even more, and I don’t think light armored vehicles have the really good stuff (composite armors).

Could you take one of those out with an A10?
I’m flashing back to an incident from the Gulf in the last decade where we (Yanks) screwed up and hit some British forces

I’m just envisioning the driver brewing up some tea while getting hit by 70 RPGs in a row…

The armor atop a tank isn’t as thick as the frontal and side armor. An A-10’s gun could probably defeat the top and rear armor of any tank.

A-10s also carry Maverick missiles, a direct hit from which will blow a tank apart from any angle.

The RPG-7 has been widely produced in many countries for many years, and the types of warheads available range from barely-WWII-vintage shaped charges to ultramodern Russian dual stage to thermobaric warheads which don’t need to penetrate anything to kill the crew. You would need to define what type of warhead is being used.