M26 Pershing


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M26 Pershing/M46

Development continued with different interests in , starting around the concept to mount a 90 mm cannon to fight the heavily armoured German tanks and fortifications in Europe. The first was the T25 series, which was an up-gunned T23 with a 90 mm gun, but they also designed a bigger and more armoured design T However, the design has a weight of about 40 tons, which decreased its mobility and durability as it still uses the old Sherman engine. Though starting with an electric drive, the design proved too complicated for field use and was replaced by a torqmatic transmission in the T26E1.

The designs were eventually finalized as the T26E3 , which would be the production version of the T26E1.

M26 Pershing

Production started in November , with 10 being produced by the end of the month, 30 by December, 70 in January , and by February. The reasons why the M26 Pershing was delayed since its time as the T20 series brought much controversy. Today it is agreed that the reasons why the Pershings did not get into combat faster were the combination of the Tank Destroyer Doctrine, logistics, and complacency. The TD doctrine dictated that tank destroyers were the primary anti-tank force while the armoured forces were a support and exploitation force, so tank firepower against other tanks was not prioritized, leading to much opposition when Ordnance attempts to develop heavy tanks with the 90 mm cannons.

Logistics for supplying a battlefield more than 3, miles away from the factories would prove more difficult if the M26 Pershing and its ammo must be supplied as well when the more common Sherman could be easily supplied. The deployment of the M26 Pershings still called T26E3s at the time as they are not formally adopted in Europe was made under the Zebra Mission headed by General Barnes. The Zebra Mission was a form of combat evaluation of the M26 tanks in Europe. In January , the shipment of M26 tanks deployed in December arrived at Antwerp with only 20 tanks.

Two civilians also arrived from Fisher Tank Arsenal and Aberdeen Proving Ground, the latter an expert on the 90 mm guns. These men helped expedite the training and equipping of the 20 M26 tanks into the units.

M26 Pershing/M46 Heavy Tank | World War II Database

The officers and the new tank crew members spend the period from 11 February to the 23rd training in the new tanks for familiarization. The M26 tanks underwent their first combat mission on February 25th. On the 26th, the first M26 Pershing knocked out in combat was reported at Elsdorf. The Pershing named "Fireball" in F Company, 33rd Armored regiment was penetrated by a German Tiger I tank through the gun mantlet; this killed the gunner and loader instantly. After firing two more shots that damaged the components of "Fireball", the Tiger itself tried to reverse away from the position and disabled itself on debris.

The captured loader of the Tiger crew confirmed the kill, as well as photographic evidence. The same crew killed another Panzer IV as they drove towards Cologne. Another Pershing was disabled on March 1st by artillery fire, killing the tank commander Sergeant Kay and causing massive damage to components of the M26, forcing it back to be repaired for several weeks. Other Pershing breakdowns include engine failures and components breaking, but these were all fixed easily in a few days.

Around March 6th, a Pershing led by a Captain Gray was ambushed by a Nashorn that penetrated the front armour at a range of meters. The crew all survived, but their Pershing became the only one of the original 20 that arrived to not make it through the war. Other resistance faced at Cologne and the approach to the Rhine River were emplaced anti-aircraft guns, but the high explosive payload in the 90 mm proved very effective in destroying them.

A platoon of five Pershings led by Lt. Grimball in March 7th and 8th assisted in the taking of the Ludendorff Bridge in the Battle of Remagen. The bridge was damaged during the battle, but was still intact, though the M26 Pershings were unable to cross it compared to the M4 Shermans and tank destroyers due to their heavier weight and width, an indication on how the M26 Pershings are not logistically sound in Europe's infrastructure. It would not be until March 12th when ferries are made available to transport the Pershings across the Rhine.

In March 25th, additional shipping of M26s arrived at Europe, a total of 40 tanks, 22 going to 2nd Armored Division and 18 going to the 5th. Additional Pershings came in from then until the end of the war on VE Day at 8 May ; by that time, a total of Pershings have made it to Europe, in combat units, and only the first 20 ever seeing action against the enemy. The end of the war in Europe shifted attention to the Pacific Theater, where the Battle of Okinawa was still underway.

Pershing tank

The increasing US armoured losses due to the Japanese 47 mm anti-tank guns and the demands for a better tank by US tankers caused Ordnance to send a mission similar to the Zebra Mission to reinforce the US troops at Okinawa. The ship carrying the Pershings left on May 31st and was expected to reach Okinawa at June 30th, but constant stops due to transport priorities caused the tanks to arrive July 21st, at which point hostilities ended a month ago. Only 4 of the 12 Pershings were unloaded before the rest was diverted to Naha due to typhoon warnings.

The Pershings on Okinawa were to be allocated to the rd and th Tank Battalion with familiarization starting on August 10th. After World War II, the M26 Pershing was reclassified as the Medium Tank M26 Pershing to fill the army's tank needs, but its specifications were not satisfactory for the role of it due to low mobility and heavyweight. South Korea and the US Forces stationed there had no armour except the M24 light tank and no adequate anti-tank weaponry to fight off the T onslaught.

Though in a poor state, they were quickly refurbished and landed in Korea on 16 July , the only medium tanks available in Korea. These three tanks moved to the front line on July 28 and fought with North Korean forces on the 31st, but were lost when the engines overheated due to lack of fan belts. The nd Tank Battalion from Japan was also sent, redesignated the 89th when it arrived to Korea.

All the Tank Battalions arrive at Korea around August 8th. The first combat mission with the Pershings in this group was at the north of Taegu, a location known as the "Bowling Alley". It was here that the Pershings faced off against three Ts and managed to destroy them.

The Patton series of tanks would basically be based off the M26 Pershing's design.


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Belgium received units of this tank, and France and Italy received Pershings as well, though later replaced by the M47 Pattons. Its story began in , when U. Army Ordnance received the go-ahead to begin working on the M20 medium tank.

It did not turn out to be particularly successful, though it boasted potential for modernization. In and several T22 and T23 prototypes and experimental models were built. However, their weapon caliber had fallen behind current requirements and in priorities shifted to a program developing T25 and T26 tanks with 90 mm cannons.

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The T26 appeared to be the more promising option. It was equipped with a Torquematic hydraulic transmission, torsion bar suspension, and cast hull, while its significantly increased weight and sized resulted in a move to the heavy tank category. At the beginning of several pre-production T26E3 models were released, 20 of which were sent to Europe for combat trials. Tankers reported that the T26E3 was a match for the Pz. V and Pz. VI, even somewhat outperforming them in maneuverability. One battle saw a T26E3 taking out two Pz. Equipment General Performance Setup View Range Setup Hover your cursor over the images for more information on each piece of equipment.

Call for Vengeance Reports the enemy vehicles' location for two more seconds after the destruction of the own vehicle. Clutch Braking Increases the traverse speed of your vehicle. The higher the skill progress, the higher the effect. Concealment Increases the camouflage value of your vehicle. Controlled Impact Increases the ramming damage dealt and decreases damage taken by ramming.


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  2. M26 Pershing;
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  4. Deadeye Increases the chance of landing a critical hit. Designated Target Keeps targetes vehicles visible for two more seconds. Firefighting Reduces the duration and damage taken by fire.

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    Intuition Grants a slight chance of changing the shell type without having to reload again. Doesn't work with autoloaders. Works also while reloading. Jack of All Trades Reduces the performance penalty of wounded crew members. Mentor Increases the Crew XP gained for each member apart from the commander. Off-Road Driving Increases the mobility on medium and soft terrain. Preventative Maintenance Reduces the chance of taking fire. Recon Increases the view range of your vehicle. Relaying Increases the signal range of your allies' vehicles within your signal range.

    Repair Reduces the repair time of destroyed modules. Safe Stowage Increases the durability of your vehicle's ammo rack. Signal Boosting Increases the signal range of your vehicle. Situational Awareness Increases the view range of your vehicle.

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