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Post by Guest on Tue Sep 28, 2010 5:13 pm

De Gaulle decided that France, though formally remaining a member, would no longer participate in the NATO military organization. This caused a rift between France and West Germany, that then started to emphasize standardization with American equipment, especially in armament, and to follow the new NATO policy to use multifuel diesel engines.[23] German defence minister Franz Josef Strauss began to oppose the common tank project.[23] In July 1963 the defence committee of the German Bundesrat decided to procure a purely national tank.[28] In response the same month the French government decided likewise.[17]
Comparative trials were nevertheless held at Mailly-le-Camp, Meppen, Bourges and Satory[17] between five French and five German prototypes between August and October 1963, under Italian, Dutch, Belgian and American supervision.[28][29] The French type had received a separate national designation: AMX 30.[28] The trials indicated that the German type, on 1 October also getting its own name Leopard, had a better mobility and acceleration.[28] The French government decided that it could not procure a new tank until 1965,[30] while the Germans refused to adopt the Franco-German 105-millimeter (4.1 in) tank gun, in lieu of the British Royal Ordnance L7, of which they had already ordered 1500 in the autumn of 1962,[27][31] their efforts to produce for the common type munition of sufficient quality in Germany by Rheinmetall having failed.[23] Suggestions to save the project by combining the French turret with the German chassis failed.[23] As a result, the program was canceled and the French and Germans definitely decided to adopt their two separate tanks.[32]

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