The Centurion, introduced in 1945, was the primary British main battle tank of the post-World War II period. It was a successful tank design, with upgrades, for many decades. The chassis was also adapted for several other roles.
It became one of the most widely used tank designs, equipping armies around the world, with some still in service until the 1990s. As recently as the 2006 Israel-Lebanon conflict the Israel Defense Forces employed heavily modified Centurions as armoured personnel carriers and combat engineering vehicles. South Africa still employs over 200 Centurions: The vehicles of the SANDF were modernized in the 1980s, and the resulting model is known as the Olifant.
Between 1946 and 1962 4,423 Centurions were produced, consisting of thirteen basic marks and numerous variants.