The Armoured Car, AEC AA is a rank II British Self-Propelled Anti-Aircraft Gun with a battle rating of 2.7 (AB/RB/SB). It was introduced in Update 1.55 "Royal Armour" along with the rest of the British tree.
This is a low rank British AA car, which, while lacking armour, can pack quite the punch. It has two 20 mm autocannons on its turret, and good manoeuvrability and speed. Unlike the AA of many other countries at this rank, this is a closed top vehicle, and performs well in anti-tank roles.
Survivability and armour
The AEC AA lacks armour, although it is protected from most smaller calibre machine guns at its battle rating. It is advisable to attempt to position yourself above an enemy, so that: A) they will have a lower ability to see you, and B) so that they will most likely end up shooting the lower part of the tank, which juts out. If they shoot here with an AP shell, it will most likely go straight through and merely take out your transmission.
- Rolled homogeneous armour
- Structural steel (Sand skirts)
|Hull|| 17 mm (62-78°) Front glacis
10 mm (42°) Lower glacis
17 mm (49°) + 31 mm Joint plate
|25 mm (0-1°)|| 10 mm (58°) Top
14 mm (13°) Bottom
| 12 mm |
10 mm Rear
|Turret|| 50.8 mm (1-6°) Turret front
50.8 mm (13-60°) Gun mantlet
|50.8 mm (7-9°)||50.8 mm (6-38°)||20 mm|
- Wheels are 2 mm thick, structural chassis is 5 mm thick.
- A 14 mm RHA plate separates the engine from the crew compartment.
|Game Mode||Max Speed (km/h)||Weight (tons)||Engine power (horsepower)||Power-to-weight ratio (hp/ton)|
The AEC AA is decently manoeuvrable and has high top speeds, especially on the road. Warning: do not attempt to drive this vehicle on the snow or sand, as it will go more slowly than most heavy tanks at its BR.
Modifications and economy
The AEC AA sports dual-mount 20 mm autocannons, which excels at devastating planes and even light or medium tanks. The AP rounds provided will shred through almost anything, and it is always advisable to take these. Additionally, these allow you to down heavy bombers.
|20 mm Oerlikon Mk.II (x2)||Turret rotation speed (°/s)||Reloading rate (seconds)|
|Mode||Capacity (Belt)||Fire rate||Vertical||Horizontal||Stabilizer||Stock||Upgraded||Full||Expert||Aced||Stock||Full||Expert||Aced|
- Default: · · - This belts carries an equal mixture of HEF-I and AP-T.
- HET: · · - This is the belt you want to research first, since its rounds are the best against aircraft.
- APT: - These are purely AP belts that are not very useful with 42 mm of penetration. However, it is always a good idea to carry a few for self-defence- it can knockout lightly armoured vehicles.
|Belt||Penetration @ 0° Angle of Attack (mm)|
|10 m||100 m||500 m||1,000 m||1,500 m||2,000 m|
|Belt|| Type of
| Fuse delay
| Fuse sensitivity
| Explosive Mass
(TNT equivalent) (g)
|10||8 (+2)||6 (+4)||4 (+6)||2 (+8)||Yes|
|AEC AA Optics|
|Which ones||Default magnification||Maximum magnification|
|Main Gun optics||x1.85||x3.5|
Usage in battles
The AEC AA can be used as a support tank in most battles and excels at ambushes. It works well at holding down a capture point, or setting traps along roads. It is advisable to always stay near allies so that you can receive help if necessary. If you choose to play the original role of anti-aircraft, make sure to stay in an open (but safe) area, allowing you full range of fire. Sometimes it is advisable to "harass" planes by giving scattered fire to make them think you are a light tank, and then pretending you don't notice them turning to attack you. Aim down the scope until they are within firing range, and shred them to pieces before they have time to react.
Due to the heavy ammunition consumption as SPAA in AA fights, stay at an allied capture point to get free ammunition reload during battle.
When encountering an enemy that's armour can't be pierced, attempt to immobilise the vehicle by disabling the tracks. From here, multiple options are available for the AEC AA depending on the foe. If the enemy has known weak spots, the AEC AA could attempt to manoeuvre to a favourable position. If the enemy is known to be impervious to the AEC AA's armaments, simply keep them disabled (hit the gun barrel as well to increase the enemy's repair time), drop artillery, and withdraw to a safe position until a friendly with a bigger gun can handle the situation.
Pros and cons
- Excellent rate of fire
- Fast and mobile with good acceleration
- Closed top, can't be strafed from the sky or hit by artillery shrapnel
- Good turret armour
- Fast turret rotation speed
- 20 mm cannon velocity gives good anti-air capability
- Can decimate lightly armoured tank destroyers
- Useless against heavily armoured tanks
- Low ammo capacity can't allow for reckless firing
- Poor hull armour
- Taller than other vehicles, making it a large target (easier to hit)
- Has wheels, therefore it can't turn on the spot
- Terrible at driving off-road and on sand or mud
- Turret ring is fairly large, therefore it may become jammed often if hit
- Not enough gun depression (be careful when getting up hills)
The basis of the armoured car comes from Associated Equipment Company (AEC) of Southall, Middlesex. AEC was a manufacturer of truck and bus chassis and the Matador artillery tractor. The armoured car was privately developed in 1941 and was based off the Matador. The design was shown to British officials in the same year during the Horse Guards Parade and was received favourably by many, including Winston Churchill. Orders started filing in for the armoured car, and AEC tried to give it comparable firepower to current tanks at the time. Thus, the first version, Mk.I, came with a turret adapted from the Valentine tank equipped with the 2-pounder. The next version, Mk.II, had this upgraded with a heavier turret and a 6-pounder gun, then with the QF 75 mm gun on the Mk.III. An anti-aircraft version using the same turret from the Crusader AA Mk II and the twin Oerlikon guns was also developed onto the armoured car. During its production life from 1942 to 1943, 629 Armoured cars in total were built.
The Armoured cars equipped with the tank guns were used in North Africa in late 1942. Some on-field modifications include changing out the Valentine turret for a Crusader turret with the 6-pounder. The armoured cars continued to see fighting in various parts of Europe in combination with other armoured cars and remained in service until replaced by the Alvis Saladin in 1958.
Though the anti-aircraft version was made, it never entered production due to the growing Allied air superiority over the Axis forces, making the anti-aircraft version unnecessary to guard the advancing Allied units from air attacks.
Excellent additions to the article would be video guides, screenshots from the game, and photos.
Links to the articles on the War Thunder Wiki that you think will be useful for the reader, for example:
- reference to the series of the vehicles;
- links to approximate analogues of other nations and research trees.
|Britain anti-aircraft vehicles|