Russia’s tank losses during its invasion of neighboring Ukraine surpassed 2,000 this week, according to the latest data from Oryx, an open-source intelligence analysis website.
According to Oryx’s report, 1,238 of these tanks were destroyed in combat, 106 damaged, 113 abandoned on the battlefield and 544 captured by Ukraine.
However, the real number of Russia’s tank losses could be up to 20% higher as Oryx’s analysis is based on open-source visual evidence, according to Jakub Janovsky, a contributor to the tally.
The public tally maintained by Ukraine’s defense ministry currently estimates Russia’s tank losses on the battlefield at 3,802, while the U.S.-based Center for Strategic and International Studies said in April that the count could range anywhere between 1,845 and 3,511.
Oryx’s count reached the 1,000 mark in early September 2022, when the largest share of losses was attributed to Russia’s attempted seizure of Kyiv in the first weeks of the war.
“It doesn’t appear at all that those huge material losses affected Russia’s strategic thinking,” Janovsky told The Moscow Times on Wednesday.
“Russia was already aware that it has problems, but decided to continue with the annexation of four Ukrainian regions in September,” he said.
Since then, Ukraine’s successful counteroffensive in Kharkiv and Russia’s attempted offensive near Vuhledar generated some of the highest numbers of tank losses for Russia, according to Janovsky.
Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine with around 3,000 operational tanks and used predominantly modern equipment at the start of the war.
But as its tank losses have mounted, the share of “reactivated” older models engaged on the battlefield has been growing every month and is estimated to have reached 50%, the analyst said.
“The share…could shift again quickly depending on Russia’s ability to move equipment from storage and reactivate it,” said Janovsky.
“Based on available information Russia can reactivate [around] 50 or maybe up to 100 tanks per month and make around 10 or 20.”