The Cold War
Soviet domination of the Warsaw Pact led to effective standardization on a few tank designs. In comparison, NATO adopted a defensive posture. The major contributing nations, France, Germany, the USA, and the UK developed their own tank designs, with little in common.
After World War II, tank development continued. Tanks would not only continue to be produced in huge numbers, but the technology advanced dramatically as well. Medium tanks became heavier, their armour became thicker and their firepower increased. This led gradually to the concept of the main battle tank and the gradual elimination of the heavy tank. Aspects of gun technology changed significantly as well, with advances in shell design and effectiveness.
Many of the changes in tank design have been refinements to targeting and ranging (fire control), gun stabilization, communications and crew comfort. Armour evolved to keep pace with improvements in weaponry - the rise of composite armour is of particular note - and guns grew more powerful. However, basic tank architecture did not change significantly, and has remained largely the same into the 21st century.
Read more about this topic: History Of The Tank
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