In an upcoming War Thunder Update, we plan to present a further development of the Soviet PT-76 amphibious tank – the experimental Object 906 tank with its outstanding 85mm cannon.
Several years after the reasonably good PT-76 amphibious tank was deployed, it became clear that the vehicle would very soon become obsolete – the arms race was in full swing. Engineers of the Stalingrad Tractor Factory undertook to improve the PT-76, to make the tank more suitable for the military doctrine of the time. The new vehicle, whose project was designated Object 906, was intended to surpass the PT-76 in all respects, but the engineers’ main task was to significantly improve the tank’s armament.
They chose the 85mm D-58 rifled gun as the tank’s main cannon. Armour-piercing, high-explosive and HEAT fin stabilized rounds were produced for the gun. In addition, the engineers implemented several military innovations of the early 60s in the Object 906: the tank’s hull was welded from aluminum alloy, the gun was equipped with automated loading and a two-plane stabilizer, and its small, but reliable 300 horsepower diesel engine could bring the tank up to 75 km/h. And of course, the tank was amphibious – ensured by the characteristic ‘ship-like’ shape of the hull and two water propellers. In 1961-1962 6 test units of this model were built, two of them were tested in January-August 1963 but never entered service. The sole remaining Object 906 is currently located at Patriot Park, and we’ve decided to reproduce this amphibious tank with UTD engine in War Thunder.
Object 906 takes its place in War Thunder at rank V in USSR’s lightly armored vehicle branch, straight after the ASU-85. This amphibious tank stands out for its excellent mobility – up to 75 km/h on land and a good 12-15 km/h on the water. Its 85mm cannon has three types of shells: high-explosive, armor-piercing with a penetration ability of roughly 200mm, and an excellent HEAT fin stabilized capable of penetrating up to 300mm of armour.
The vehicle has bullet-proof armour, the tank’s hull was made from ABT-101 aluminum alloy, which was advanced for its time’. Object 906’s front armour protects from high-calibre MG fire at close distance and may also ricochet ammunition of some auto-cannons due to sloped angles, however it cannot protect from armour-piercing rounds. The turret’s armor is traditional, wrought and homogeneous, has 15mm in the front and 8mm on the sides and in the rear. On the one hand, this means there’s a chance that some HEAT won’t arm, but even a solid shell that penetrates the habitable section of the turret right through can deal significant damage – the commander and gunner both sit in the turret, and the loading machine’s ammunition is housed there too
In short, you’re best off not getting in your enemy’s sights. Instead, go full throttle and flank your opponent – on land or on water! This tank’s accurate cannon with its good piercing characteristics can take care of any opponent with a shot to the side or rear, and will send many back to the hangar with a frontal shot.