|This page is about the British medium tank Valentine XI. For other versions, see Valentine (Family).|
- 1 Description
- 2 General info
- 3 Armaments
- 4 Usage in battles
- 5 History
- 6 Media
- 7 See also
- 8 External links
The Tank, Infantry, Valentine XI was a British infantry tank. Its development started as a private venture of Vickers-Armstrong in 1938, based on experience with the A9, A10 and A11 cruiser and infantry tank designs. The War Office initially wasn't satisfied with only a two-man turret: a three-man turret was fitted so the commander would not become overwhelmed with tasks during battle. With the situation in Europe worsening, the design was approved in April 1939 and first deliveries were made in May 1940. The Valentine XI was an upgunned version of the earlier X, featuring an Ordnance QF 75 mm gun and 210 hp GMC 6004 diesel engine; the armour was also welded rather than riveted. Nearly all variants of the Valentine tank except Mk I were sent to USSR as part of the Lend-Lease act.
The Valentine was introduced along with the initial British tree line in Update 1.55 "Royal Armour". Featuring a deadly 75 mm gun paired with quite fast reload and excellent armour protection, the Valentine XI is a formidable opponent. While angled, the majority of its opponents will struggle to penetrate its hull armour. The turret, although more vulnerable, can also deflect a few rounds due to its shape. The main drawback of the Valentine is its very slow turret rotation speed, only 2.4 km/h reverse speed and low maximum speed of only 24 km/h, making the Valentine slower than even the Maus.
Survivability and armour
Rank 1 guns will have difficulty penetrating this tank because their penetration is generally around 60 mm or below, and the Valentine XI's frontal armour is 60-65 mm. Sometimes vehicles with a larger calibre gun (e.g. Na-To, Marder III H) will make short work of this tank because of their high penetration for their battle rating via turret, flat plates or with overpressure. The hull side of the Valentine XI is also reduced to 50 mm comparing to the Valentine I's 60 mm, which worsens its protection against vehicles with penetration values between 50 and 60 mm, for example Chi-Ha and Pz.35(t). This leads to the Valentine XI's armour only being effective against low rank tanks and some SPAAs when facing the enemy flat. The Valentine's crew is also low in number (3) and closely sat, reducing its survivability further more against all penetrating shots, especially those in the turret which can immediately kill 2/3 crew members. The Valentine XI does have access to 2 smoke grenade launchers (launched, so use them to conceal yourself if your armour seems to not hold up.
When facing the Valentine XI in battle if in possession of a gun unable to penetrate the Valentine XI from the front, flanking around to the sides or rear could also work. Once towards the Valentine XI's rear, repeat this process by running circles around this vehicle and setting it on fire repeatedly until it burns down, especially since the turret is well armoured all around with 60 mm minimum.
- Rolled homogeneous armour
- Cast homogeneous armour (Gun mantlet)
|Hull|| 60 mm Front plate
30 mm (66-68°) Front glacis
20 mm (72°), 60 mm (22°) Lower glacis
| 50 mm (57-58°) Top
20 mm (65°), 60 mm Bottom
|17 mm||20 mm|
|Turret|| 65 mm (0-66°) Turret front
65 mm (0-62°) Gun mantlet
|60 mm||65 mm (1-57°)||20 mm|
- Suspension wheels and bogies are 15 mm thick, while tracks are 20 mm thick.
- Belly armour is 20 mm thick.
|Game Mode||Max Speed (km/h)||Weight (tons)||Engine power (horsepower)||Power-to-weight ratio (hp/ton)|
The top speed of the Valentine XI is very limited at 25 km/h as it was designed as an infantry tank. This speed can only be reached after accelerating on flat, hard ground for quite a long while. Any hill or imperfect road condition will reduce the speed to around 20 km/h which is only comparable to heavy tanks like B1. Medium counterparts such as Pz.IV E and Strv m/41 will easily overtake you on any terrain. The speed drops significantly when turning on the move.
The hull traverse speed is awful especially when stock: the tank must move forward or backward a bit in order to really turn the hull. The reverse speed might be the slowest in game, at only -2 km/h (in line with British tanks). This of course will not let you get out of any danger quickly, and you will either be saved by your armour, small size, or you will be destroyed. Overall, the low speed, slow acceleration, poor traverse and reverse all make the Valentine XI bad at getting to places, repositioning, or escaping in time, greatly limiting its flexibility on the battlefield. Due to this it is recommended to use the Valentine XI for slow advances on an enemy location, or hull down where you do not need to rely on your mobility.
A slight remedy for the poor turret traverse is to use track brakes when turning from a stationary position. The Settings for the Short Brakes can be found in the settings via: (Controls > Ground vehicles > Short brakes).
Modifications and economy
Suggested research order:
- Tracks, Brake System, Filter, etc: A stock Valentine XI has poor mobility, so it might be a good idea to research the mobility modifications first.
- Parts and FPE: They allow you to stay in a fight longer by repairing damaged parts and putting out a fire.
- M61 APCBC: The Valentine XI will start encountering classic WW2 tanks like T-34 and M4 which are more spacious. An accurate AP with good velocity will be very useful to deal with them. If you intend to snipe with the Valentine XI, this shell can be useful to research first.
The Valentine XI is armed with a 75 mm OQF Mk.V cannon. The cannon has an adequate reload speed of ~6 seconds which is on par with most guns of this calibre. This is slower than the Valentine I's 3-second reload as we've moved from a 40 mm cannon to a 75 mm one, so the player must get used to disabling if not destroying the target with a single shot, which will be easier as the gun is very accurate. The gun has a good gun depression of -12° which means the Valentine XI can fight in most uneven environments. The turret rotation of ~12°/s is average, allowing the Valentine XI to target opponents in time, but not really fast enough to quickly respond to agile flankers. This tank loses the horizontal shoulder stabiliser of the Valentine I, meaning that it must fully stop and wait for the gun to stop wobbling prior to shooting, which delays the shot and may or may not be fatal. This is moderately remedied by the good suspension, but requires the player to have better situational awareness in order to stabilise the cannon in time.
|75 mm OQF Mk.V||Turret rotation speed (°/s)||Reloading rate (seconds)|
The 75 mm OQF Mk.V behaves quite similarly to the American 75 mm M3 cannon, and they use the same ammo too.
- The stock M72 AP is a solid shot with average penetration (~90 mm) and velocity, being able to frontally penetrate most opponents. Its shrapnel can often knock out all crew in cramped tanks, for example T-80, but not necessarily spacious ones like the M3 Lee.
- The M61 is an APCBC with better penetration (~100 mm). This makes it the first choice ammo of the Valentine XI.
- The M48 HE is not as effective, as it lacks enough explosive filler to damage a tank with overpressure, and most players will also not have the time to switch ammo just to shoot at lightly armoured targets. However if they do, this HE can deal considerable shrapnel damage to unprotected vehicles like the GAZ-MM 72-K.
|Ammunition|| Type of
|Penetration @ 0° Angle of Attack (mm)|
|10 m||100 m||500 m||1,000 m||1,500 m||2,000 m|
|Ammunition|| Type of
| Fuse delay
| Fuse sensitivity
| Explosive mass
(TNT equivalent) (g)
|Smoke shell characteristics|
| Screen radius
| Screen deploy
| Screen hold
| Explosive mass|
(TNT equivalent) (g)
|45||37 (+8)||28 (+17)||19 (+26)||10 (+35)||1 (+44)||Yes|
|Valentine XI Optics|
|Which ones||Default magnification||Maximum magnification|
|Main Gun optics||x1.85||x3.5|
|7.92 mm BESA|
|Mount||Capacity (Belt)||Fire rate||Vertical||Horizontal|
The small calibre of the BESA machine gun makes it largely ineffective against all armoured vehicles but the ones with an open compartment. It still can be used to ping targets as a rangefinding help or to mow down minor obstacles blocking your line of sight.
Usage in battles
The Valentine - despite its historical role as an infantry tank - holds a fine balance between offensive firepower and defensive armour, leaving something to be desired for mobility. The Valentine is defended by a reasonably-effective armour setup, with a strong armour setup in the turret. But, the armour around the chassis is lacking. It's reasonably well-sloped, and angling can greatly increase its protective capabilities. The lower glacis is small, but particularly poorly protected. This means that a hull-down playstyle can be very effective in this vehicle, since it hides the tank's weak spots while only exposing the stronger turret armour. This is also more easily accomplished due to the vehicle's small size.
Such a passive playstyle is also helped by the tank's cannon. It does good damage, and has a reasonable reload rate. However, it does not have access to APHE shells, so knock-outs by a single shot are rare, unless you know where to shoot. Again, this bodes poorly for close-up one on one combat. At range, on the other hand, the gun can focus on gradually destroying key components in enemy vehicles while retaining its good penetration values. Finally, the tank's small profile makes it even harder to hit at long range, and the weak spots in particular are very hard to hit accurately.
Of course, a long-range sniping playstyle isn't the end all and be all for this tank. It is certainly possible to fight closer to the enemy. When doing this, it is important to keep three things in mind. Firstly, since the gun usually won't kill enemy tanks in one shot, focus on disabling the enemy's gun, mobility or both before aiming for anything else. This will give the player time to destroy the enemy without worrying about return fire. Secondly, this vehicle only has three crew members; it is very likely that a penetrating shell will destroy the vehicle outright. Therefore, be cautious of exposing this tank in areas without cover, and when there are few teammates nearby. Lastly, like many British tanks, the Valentine has poor mobility. It is often too slow to flank around the enemy, and its slow top speed can leave it stuck in messy situations with no way out. The tank's reverse speed is especially lacking--be sure that the way is clear before advancing, or else you may find yourself coming under fire with no way out.
Enemies worth noting:
- ZiS-30: This is a deadly Soviet machine. Despite the small chassis, it carries a deadly 57mm cannon with a penetration of around 140 mm, which is more than enough to pierce the Valentine XI's armour at any distance. It is also quite narrow and short, so it is difficult to spot especially when camouflaged. Therefore, its great gun and unnoticeable size will usually be used to their advantage. If it's planning an ambush, unfortunately there's no way to detect it unless it shoots first and reveals its location. Once it has been spotted, aim for these two main areas: if it's facing you, shoot at the right side of its gun mantlet to deactivate its gunner; if you are outside its horizontal gun traverse range, target the frontal hull to disable its driver or transmission so it cannot turn the hull around to aim at you.
- T-34: The Valentine will start seeing more advanced tanks like the T-34. The T-34 has superior speed and agility, well-sloped armour, and great firepower, resulting in it being able to control the fight and destroy the Valentine easily. But with an upgraded 75 mm gun, the Valentine XI is able to fight back. Aim at the T-34's unsloped areas on its turret front to knock out its turret crew. Do not shoot its hull unless you are facing the armour perpendicularly and up close (<500 m). If fighting in uneven terrain, make sure to utilise your great gun depression and hull down. The T-34 has bad gun depression and thus cannot perform as good in hilly environments.
Pros and cons
- Powerful 75 mm gun with fast reload, deadly and accurate shells
- Strong armour against low rank tanks like Pz.38(t), and against mid-rank rank Pz.IIIs when angled
- Rear-mounted transmission and engine will not get destroyed easily, keeping the Valentine mobile
- Great -12° gun depression, useful on uneven maps
- Small size making weak spots difficult to hit
- Small three man crew will get knocked out easily
- Quite slow, can't relocate quickly
- Loses the vertical stabiliser. Targeting will take longer compared to the Valentine I
The experiences taken from the development of the A9, A10 cruiser tanks and the A11 infantry tank prompted Vickers-Armstrong to begin development of a new tank. As a private venture, the design did not receive any designations from the British General Staff during its creation. The designing of the tank focused on the tank having the weight of a cruiser, but with the armour comparable to the infantry tanks. The basis was to have the vehicle with 60 mm of frontal armour and a 2-pounder gun in a two-man turret. To make it as light as possible, it was small and featured a cramped interior. The design used features taken from the A9 and A10 tanks so the design was easier to produce and cheaper to make. Vickers unveiled the design to War Office at February 10, 1938. While they initially viewed it unfavourably for its tiny two-man turret, they took it in April 1939 due to the growing tense situation in Europe with Nazi Germany, with the first order coming in May 1940 after the losses suffered by the British Expeditionary Forces in the Battle of France. The name Valentine was given to the tank sometime between its introduction to War Office and its adoption. The origin of the name is disputed, some say it was due to its introduction on February 14 in 1938 or 1940, other say it was the middle name of Sir John V. Carden, who helped design the Valentine's predecessors. Other sources say it is a name from the Vickers' company full name (Vickers-Armstrong Ltd Elswick & [Newcastle-upon] Tyne), and David Fletcher from Bovington Tank Museum say that "Valentine" was a code name used by the company for its development.
The Valentine was put into service as quickly as possible under the designation Tank, Infantry, Mk.III. Vickers, Metropolitan-Cammell Carriage & Wagon, and Birmingham Railway Carriage & Wagon Company were all involved in the construction of this vehicle. During World War II, Canada was also contracted to build the Valentine to build up their own tank forces. The United Kingdom produced a total of 6,855 Valentines during the war between the three company while Canada built 1,420 Valentine tanks in their factories, for a total of 8,275 tanks produced, making the Valentine the most produced British tank in the entire war.
The Valentine is one of the most modified British tank in World War II, up to eleven variants were made during its entire production life.
- Mark I: The first one, it was built with a rivet construction, a 135 hp petrol engine, and a 2-pounder, but was not sent to combat due to mechanical problems.
- Mark II: Uses a 131 hp diesel engine and has an auxiliary fuel tank added to the left hull.
- Mark III: Has a slightly thinner side armour (60 mm to 50 mm) and a modified turret design, giving room for a loader in the tank, freeing the commander to do his job.
- Mark IV A modified Mk.II using an American 138 hp GMC diesel engine and an American-produced transmission, making the tank more reliable.
- Mark V: The same as Mk.IV, except using the Mk.III as the basis.
- Mark VI: A Canadian built Valentine, using Canadian and American parts and a GMC diesel engine, plus later switching the BESA machine gun into a Browning machine gun.
- Mark VII: A Canadian Mk.VI with a new radio set and a modified interior. Another Mk.VII named the Mark VIIA has jettisonable fuel tanks and new tracks, oil cooler, and headlights.
- Mark VIII: Uses a British AEC diesel engine and a modified turret to use the 6-pounder. The modification eliminated the coaxial machine gun from the design.
- Mark IX: A Mk.V modified to take the 6-pounder as well, but with an armour reduction. Later version also had a stronger 165 hp GMC diesel engine installed.
- Mark X: Features another modified turret design using the 6-pounder, but made it able to use a coaxial machine gun again and still uses the 165 hp diesel engine. Uses a welded construction
- Mark XI: The Mk.X using the QF 75 mm gun instead of a 6-pounder, with the 210 hp diesel engine. However, these tanks only served as a command tank in the battlefield. Uses a welded construction
The Valentine mostly saw service in the North African Campaign, where the crew reported on it very favourably as a reliable and well-protected tank. The first unit who saw action with the Valentine was the 8th Royal Tank Regiment in Operation Crusader, where it was in the process of replacing the Matilda II. The reliability is expressed when some Valentine were reported to have travelled a distance of 4,800 km by the time the British reached Tunisia. The Valentine tanks soon saw wide-spread use by mid-1941 when they were issued out widely to armoured regiments due to the lack of cruiser tanks available to fill in the ranks.
However, the biggest weakness of the Valentine tank is the lack of high-explosive rounds for the 2-pounder, a weakness suffered by every other tank using the 2-pounder. This and the 2-pounder's growing deficiency against tank armour was remedied by the usage of the 6-pounder on the Valentine after the Mark VIII version, and then the QF 75 mm gun. However, these larger guns were harder to mount on the small Valentine turret and made for a cramped interior, even removing the established loader's position made in an enlarge turret for the 2-pounder. By the time these larger guns were introduced for the tank, better tanks were being introduced, such as the Churchill heavy tanks from Britain and the M4 Shermans from the Americans. Despite the better tanks, the Valentine's low height is able to exploit small cover on the battlefield and take up a good hull-down position behind hills.
Some Valentines were sent to the Soviet Union as part of the Lend-Lease program, most of the Valentines came from Canada's production lines. The Valentines saw use from the time of Battle of Moscow in 1941 all the way until the end of the war, though the Valentines saw use more as a second-line tank due to its relative weakness. It was criticized for its slow speed and weak gun, but was liked for its small size, reliability, and armour protection and thus the Soviet Supreme Command continue asking for it and its production to continue until the end of the war.
By 1944, the Valentine is mostly taken out from the front-line services and replaced by the newer tanks. A few were retained for special purposes and command vehicles for Archer units, which is a tank destroyer based off the Valentine chassis. The tank continue to see use in the Pacific in limited numbers until May 1945 in the 3rd New Zealand Division, some had their armaments changed to the larger 3-inch howitzer to use it stronger high-explosive ammunition against the Japanese. New Zealand kept the normal and modified Valentines all the way until 1955. The last known combat usage of the Valentine was on Cyprus in early 1960s when a turret-less Valentine was used by the Greek militia, added with a make-shift armour and a machine gunner position with a Bren gun.
About forty Valentines and vehicles based off the Valentine chassis exist in various conditions in the world. Valentines in running condition exist in the Bovington Tank Museum and in private hands in New Zealand and United Kingdom. The Valentines survivors can be seen in UK, Canada, Belgium, France, Russia, Australia, and New Zealand.
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.
|Tribal-class||HMS Eskimo · HMCS Haida|
|Light Tank Mk VI||Light AA Mk I|
|Light Tank Mk VII||Tetrarch I|
|Light Tank Mk VIII||Alecto I|
|Tank, Infantry, Valentine||Valentine I · Valentine IX · Valentine XI · Archer|
|Vickers MBT||Vickers Mk.1 · Vickers Mk.3 · Vickers Mk.7**|
|Export||▂МК-IX "Valentine" · Vickers Mk.E*|
|See also||Vickers-Armstrongs Aircraft Limited|
|***Previously Armstrong Whitworth|
|*Previously Vickers Limited|
|**Vickers Defence Systems|
|****Built for Japan|
|Britain medium tanks|
|Valentine||Valentine I · Valentine IX · Valentine XI|
|Cromwell||Cromwell I · Cromwell V · Cromwell V (RP-3)|
|Cromwell derivatives||Challenger · Avenger · Comet I · Comet I "Iron Duke IV" · Charioteer Mk VII|
|Centurion||Centurion Mk 1 · Centurion Mk.2 · Centurion Mk 3 · Centurion Mk.5 AVRE · Centurion Mk 10 · Centurion Action X · FV4202|
|Vickers MBT||Vickers Mk.1 · Vickers Mk.3 · Vickers Mk.7|
|Chieftain||Chieftain Mk 3 · Chieftain Mk 5 · Chieftain Mk 10|
|Challenger 1||Challenger Mk.2 · Challenger Mk.3 · Challenger DS|
|Challenger 2||Challenger 2 · Challenger 2 (2F) · Challenger 2 TES · Black Night · Challenger 2E|
|Australia||A.C.I · A.C.IV · Centurion Mk.5/1|
|South Africa||Olifant Mk.1A · Olifant Mk.2 · TTD|
|India||Vijayanta · Bhishma TWMP|
|Israel||▄Sho't Kal Dalet|
|Sweden||▄Strv 81 (RB 52)|
|USA||Grant I · Sherman II · Sherman Firefly · Sherman IC "Trzyniec"|