Type 90

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Type 90
General characteristics
3 peopleCrew
96 %Visibility
front / side / backArmour
40 / 25 / 25Hull
35 / 80 / 25Turret
50.2 tWeight
2862 hp1500 hpEngine power
57 hp/t29.9 hp/tPower-to-weight ratio
81 km/h forward
38 km/h back
73 km/h forward
34 km/h back
120 mm Type 90 L/44 cannonMain weapon
42 roundsAmmunition
18 roundsFirst-order
5 sReload
-7° / 10°Vertical guidance
12.7 mm M2HB machine gunMachinegun
1000 roundsAmmunition
8 / 10.4 sReload
200 roundsBelt capacity
577 shots/minFire rate
-8° / 40°Vertical guidance
-120° / 120°Horizontal guidance
7.62 mm Type 74 machine gunCoaxial weapon
4500 roundsAmmunition
8 / 10.4 sReload
250 roundsBelt capacity
500 shots/minFire rate
390000 Rp icon.pngResearch
1020000 Sl icon.pngPurchase
Sl icon.png4090 / 6085/5400 / 8035/3500 / 5208Repair
290000 Sl icon.pngCrew training
1020000 Sl icon.pngExperts
2100 Ge icon.pngAces
232 % Rp icon.pngReward for battle
140 % Sl icon.png150 % Sl icon.png120 % Sl icon.png
This page is about the Type 90 MBT. For other usages of "Type 90", see Type 90 (Disambiguation). For the variant with mounting plates for a Type 92 Mine Roller, see Type 90 (B).


GarageImage Type 90.jpg

The Type 90 is a rank VII Japanese medium tank with a battle rating of 10.3 (AB/RB/SB). It was introduced in Update 1.79 "Project X".

The Type 90 MBT was initially accepted into service in 1990 as a replacement for both the Type 61 and Type 74 models. Despite its appearance being similar to the Leopard 2A4 and mounting a license produced Rheinmetall L44-based cannon, it is significantly different in a number of aspects.

General info

Survivability and armour

The Type 90 MBT was designed with inspiration from the Leopard 2A4, but sacrifices much of the 2A4's protection and survivability in order to attain a smaller profile and a lighter vehicle overall (vehicle weight is important in Japan in order to pass over their many bridges). As such, most 'improved' rounds available to other 10.0-10.3 MBTs (such as the Leopard 2A5's DM33, or the Leclerc's OFL 120 F1) will punch through even the Type 90's turret cheeks or upper front plate. It's important to keep in mind that even some autocannon ammunition will easily penetrate some of the weaker sections of the Type 90 from the front.

Despite the mediocre protection, the Type 90 has one main survivability feature: its primary ammunition is stored in blowout-protected compartments, sparing the crew from side shots on the rear of the turret, providing no more than 19 rounds are carried. Unfortunately, however, due to the autoloaded cannon the Type 90 is crewed by only 3, increasing the chances of being disabled from an initial shot.

Armour Front (Slope angle) Sides Rear Roof
Hull 25 mm (78°) Driver's hatch

35 mm (53-82°) Upper glacis 40 mm (50-51°) Lower glacis

35 mm (0°) Hull

10 mm (0°) Side Skirts

20 mm (17-70°) All rear

15 mm (0°) Engine grille

25 mm (0-8°) Hull roof incl. engine deck

15 mm (0°) Engine grille

Turret 35 mm (0-6°) Cheeks incl. Gunner optics

35 mm (1°) Mantlet 35 mm Rear Mantlet Plate

35 mm (0°) Forward

80 mm (0°) Middle

15 mm (0°) Rear

25 mm (0°) Turret 35 mm (81-84°) Forehead Armour

20 mm (90°) Rear turret incl. cupola

Composite armour Front Sides
Hull Upper glacis320 - 1100 mm Kinetic

550 - 835 mm Chemical

Lower glacis

143 mm Kinetic 100 - 200 mm Chemical

Turret Turret cheeks400 - 450 mm Kinetic

650 - 750 mm Chemical

Gun mantlet

200 - 452 mm Kinetic

260 - 530 mm Chemical

Side forward

360 - 400 mm Kinetic 560 - 600 mm Chemical Side middle

80 mm Kinetic 80 mm Chemical


Game Mode Max Speed (km/h) Weight (tons) Engine power (horsepower) Power-to-weight ratio (hp/ton)
Forward Reverse Stock Upgraded Stock Upgraded
Arcade 81 38 50.2 2032 2862 40.48 57.01
Realistic 73 34 1327 1500 26.43 29.88

The Type 90 is powered by a 10-cylinder two-stroke diesel engine producing a maximum of 1,500 horsepower at 2400 RPM. Combined with its relatively light weight of only 51.6 tonnes, this gives it an excellent power-to-weight ratio of 29.07. As such, the Type 90 is often one of the first vehicles to reach cap points in a match, and can comfortably flank or move into advantageous positions earlier than many of its contemporaries. This power is transferred to the drive sprockets via an automatic transmission with 7 forward and 2 backward gears, unfortunately limiting the otherwise extremely mobile vehicle to 72 km/h (RB/SB) forwards and -33 km/h (RB/SB) backwards - speeds which it will reach with ease on-road.

The Type 90 also mounts hydropneumatic suspension, allowing it to actively change the vehicle's ride height and angle. This can be used to improve traction on angled surfaces.


Main armament

Main article: Type 90 L/44 (120 mm)

The Type 90 L/44 120 mm cannon is a license-produced clone of the Rheinmetall L/44 cannon found on the Leopard 2 series and the M1A1/M1A2. As such, it shares their excellent accuracy and firepower characteristics, with a key advantage: the Type 90 is autoloaded. This results in a flat 5 second reload, better than the peak manually loaded speeds available to the other L/44-mounting vehicles (6 seconds). Additionally, reloads are not hindered by fire or the loss of crew members. The Type 90 has two rounds available to it; the powerful JM33 APFSDS round (based off the NATO DM33 round) and the JM12A1 HEAT-FS round (based off DM12A1). These rounds are more than capable of penetrating any opponent the Type 90 may face, although when facing some later vehicles such as the M1A2 or Leopard 2A5, weak points must be targeted.

120 mm Type 90 L/44 Turret rotation speed (°/s) Reloading rate (seconds)
Mode Capacity Vertical Horizontal Stabilizer Stock Upgraded Full Expert Aced Stock Full Expert Aced
Arcade 42 -7°/+10° ±180° Two-plane 28.6 39.53 48 53.08 56.47 5.0
Realistic 17.9 21 25.5 28.2 30.0


Penetration statistics
Ammunition Type of
Penetration @ 0° Angle of Attack (mm)
10 m 100 m 500 m 1,000 m 1,500 m 2,000 m
JM12A1 HEATFS 480 480 480 480 480 480
JM33 APFSDS 481 478 470 461 450 440
Shell details
Ammunition Type of
Mass (kg)
Fuse delay
Fuse sensitivity
Explosive Mass
(TNT equivalent) (g)
0% 50% 100%
JM12A1 HEATFS 1,140 13.5 0.0 0.1 2,150 65° 72° 75°
JM33 APFSDS 1,640 4.3 N/A N/A N/A 78° 80° 81°

Ammo racks

Ammo racks of the Type 90
rack empty
rack empty
rack empty
Recommendations Visual
42 38 (+3) 19 (+23) 1 (+41) Hull empty: 19 No

Optics and night vision

The Type 90 receives night vision imagers once the tier 3 modification 'NVD' is researched. This unlocks standard 500 x 300 resolution thermal sights for the gunner, as well as standard image intensifiers for all crew (available in third person view in AB/RB additionally).

Type 90 Optics
Type of optic Magnification Night Vision Devices
Image Intensifier Thermal Imager
Resolution Light Mult Noise Level
Gunner's Sight 8.0x - 16.1x -- -- -- 500 x 300 Intensifier & thermal sights unlocked by 'NVD' modification (tier 3)
Commander's View 6.0x 1600 x 1200 9.0 High N/A Intensifier unlocked by 'NVD' modification (tier 3)
Driver's View 1.0x 800 x 600 5.0 High N/A Intensifier unlocked by 'NVD' modification (tier 3)

Machine guns

The Type 90 mounts two machine guns; one pintle-mounted 12.7 mm and one coaxial mounted 7.62 mm. These can be used as deterrent for low-flying aircraft, clearing light obstacles or crew from open-top vehicles, or spotting enemy vehicles.

12.7 mm M2HB
Mount Capacity
(Belt capacity)
Fire rate
Pintle 1,000 (200) 576 -8°/+40° ±120°
7.62 mm Type 74
Mount Capacity
(Belt capacity)
Fire rate
Coaxial 4,500 (250) 500 N/A N/A

Usage in battles

The Type 90 is an extremely capable vehicle in the hands of an experienced tanker, but heed must be paid to the vehicle's weaknesses at all times.

Rural Combat

The Type 90 is very capable in rural combat where cover is plentiful and flanking routes are available. It should ideally be used for early flanks where available (such as the eastern flank on Maginot Line) or when unavailable, pushing quickly for early captures before moving to a nearby protected location to hold that point. It's important to be aware of which routes might be sniper-covered early, as many snipers (such as the Challenger 2 or Ariete PSO) will easily penetrate the Type 90, even at range - avoid giving them the opportunity.

Urban Combat

The Type 90 can prove itself to be an excellent urban combat vehicle, primarily due to its mobility and reliably fast reload. As in rural combat, an early push for a cap can prove viable before moving into a protected position, although often by the time the capture is completed enemy targets will be nearby. Early flanking (such as around the sides of American Desert) is also viable.

Notable Targets

  • Challenger 2: The Challenger 2 is often found as a sniper due to its pin-point accuracy, good reload and excellent turret armour. The Type 90 should never be used to face a sniping CR2 head-on, but instead should attempt to flank or force engagements at close range where weak spots are easily targeted.
  • M1A2 Abrams: The M1A2 Abrams has excellent frontal protection and can prove tricky to discern from earlier models in the heat of a battle. As a general rule it's preferable to aim for the gun mantlet or turret ring on any Abrams, despite the fact that JM33 will penetrate nearly anywhere on early models - better safe than sorry.
  • Leopard 2A5: The Leopard 2A5 is very well protected, although JM33 will punch through its hull without any significant trouble. Avoid fighting a hull-down 2A5 head-on, rather taking flanking routes when available. If no choice is presented, aim for the gun mantlet or the turret ring.
  • T-80U: The T-80U is extremely well protected from the front, and care should be taken when engaging - aim for the driver viewport or the lower front plate; or where these are not options try to disable its gun through the mantlet. If flanking, side shots will often despatch the T-80U quickly.
  • Leclerc: The Leclerc is extremely fast, with a power-to-weight ratio not far short of the Type 90's. When pushing early for caps or flanks, be aware that the Leclerc may be one of the first vehicles you'll counter.
  • Leopard 2K: The Leopard 2K has the best power-to-weight ratio of any MBT currently in War Thunder, and it will often be capable of getting to positions before the Type 90. Keep in mind that it can be penetrated anywhere, but aware the 'bouncy' armour; aim carefully.
  • AMX-40: The AMX-40 is extremely mobile and caution is advised when pushing early. Fortunately, the AMX-40 has negligible protection and JM33 will make quick work of it.


Tier Mobility Protection Firepower
I Tracks Parts Horizontal Drive
II Suspension Brake System FPE Adjustment of Fire LWS/LR
III Filters Crew Replenishment Elevation Mechanism JM33 NVD
IV Transmission Engine Smoke grenade Artillery Support Laser rangefinder

Pros and cons


  • Relatively small profile despite visual similarities to the Leopard 2A4.
  • Autoloaded 120 mm cannon, 5 second reload unaffected by crew or fire.
  • Extremely mobile, high power-to-weight of 29.07.
  • Fitted with Hydropneumatic suspension, although this can only be operated when stationary.
  • JM33 APFSDS round is competitive (identical to DM33, the 'improved' round on the Leopard 2A5).
  • Primary ammunition storage protected within blow-out containment in the rear of the turret.


  • Despite having composite protection in the turret and upper front plate, it's insufficient protection for many of the tanks it will face.
  • Only three crew, a well-placed shot can easily cause a crew knockout.
  • Can only carry 19 ammunition before additional ammo is stored in the unsafe hull racks.


Development of the Type 90 began almost immediately after the introduction of the Type 74 into service, with the Japanese High Command already looking for a superior replacement. A central aspect of the new machine would have to be the ability to take on and defeat the new Soviet T-72 main battle tank. With that in mind, Japanese engineers began working on a prototype design, which would see completion in 1980. Two prototypes of this initial design were built, tested and improved upon between 1980 - 1986.

Testing resumed in 1986 with a second batch of four prototype vehicles, featuring a number of improvements over the initial two. The most significant change included the replacement of a Japanese-made 120mm smoothbore gun with the established Rheinmetall 120 L/44, most notably used by the M1A1 Abrams and Leopard 2 at the time. The decision to change the gun from a domestic one to a licence-built alternative most likely came as a measure to reduce production costs. However, unlike the MBTs of western armies, the designers of the Type 90 opted to equip the tank with an autoloading mechanism, making it the only production vehicle that did so in combination with the Rh 120 cannon. Further testing and army trials of these prototypes was conducted during the late 80s before the Japanese army formally introduced the tank into service in 1990 as the Type 90. Production of the Type 90 began in 1990 and continued until 2009, with 341 vehicles made.

- From Devblog



See also

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.

External links

Japan medium tanks
Chassis Chi-Ha  Chi-Ha · Chi-Ha Kai · Chi-Ha Short Gun
Chassis Chi-He  Chi-He · Chi-He (5th Regiment) · Ho-I · Chi-Nu · Chi-Nu II
Chassis Chi-To  Chi-To · Chi-To Late
Chassis Chi-Ri  Chi-Ri II
Type 61 MBT  ST-A1* · ST-A2* · Type 61
Type 74 MBT  ST-B1* · Type 74 · Type 74 (F) · Type 74 (G)
Type 90 MBT  Type 90 · Type 90 (B)
USA  ▅M4A3 (76) W
  *ST-X Is prototype stage for said MBT