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This tank was developed during the First World War to break the deadlock imposed on the Western Front by trenches, machine-guns and barbed wire. However, the mechanical unreliability of the first of these new war machines resulted in limited success on the battlefield.

The Mark V tank was introduced in the spring of 1918 in an attempt to improve performance. A new system of brakes and gears permitted a single driver to control the vehicle, a purpose-built Ricardo tank engine gave increased power, and refinements were made to bodywork. It first saw action at Le Hamel in July 1918 and went on to serve with the British Army for the rest of the war and into the 1920s.

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