38 x 70 mm Hydra-70 M247 rocketSetup 3
2 x 7.62 mm M134 Minigun machine gunSetup 5
38 x 70 mm Hydra-70 M247 rocketSetup 6
|This page is about the American attack helicopter AH-1Z. For other uses, see AH-1 (Family).|
- 1 Description
- 2 General info
- 3 Armaments
- 4 Usage in battles
- 5 History
- 6 Media
- 7 See also
- 8 External links
The AH-1Z is a rank VII American attack helicopter with a battle rating of 10.0 (AB/RB/SB). This helicopter was introduced in Update 1.81 "The Valkyries".
| Max Speed
(km/h at 1,000 m)
| Max altitude|
| Max Speed
(km/h at 1,000 m)
| Max altitude|
Survivability and armour
- 12 mm steel - engine
- 20 mm composite boron-carbide - pilot/gunner seats
- 12 mm steel - pilot seat
When fighting the AH-1Z, it is always a good bet to get the "High Ground" or altitude advantage of this vehicle. Try to strafe it and get around to its blinds spot, as it can't use the tail rotor effectively when moving, and will yaw and flip when making a strong attempt to turn-on-target. Always aim for the cockpit, as one the gunner is knocked out the turret becomes unusable. When coming up against a Zulu with gun pods, or and secondary weapons (Especially the lethal AIM-9L), know that the pilot can still fire these even if the Gunner in knocked out. However, it is unlikely that a Zulu will take a gun pod over a full missile rack.
The AH-1Z is outfitted with the following offensive weapons:
1 x 20 mm M197 Minigun (750 total rounds)
The AH-1Z can be outfitted with the following ordnance:
- Without load
- 76 x Hydra-70 M247 rockets
- 2 x 7.62 mm M134 Minigun machine guns
- 38 x Hydra-70 M247 rockets + 2 x 7.62 mm M134 Minigun machine guns
- 4 x BGM-71 TOW missiles
- 8 x BGM-71 TOW missiles
- 38 x Hydra-70 M247 rockets + 4 x BGM-71 TOW missiles
- 38 x Hydra-70 M247 rockets + 8 x BGM-71 TOW missiles
- 4 x BGM-71 TOW missiles + 2 x 7.62 mm M134 Minigun machine guns
- 8 x BGM-71 TOW missiles + 2 x 7.62 mm M134 Minigun machine guns
- 4 x BGM-71 TOW-2 missiles
- 8 x BGM-71 TOW-2 missiles
- 38 x Hydra-70 M247 rockets + 4 x BGM-71 TOW-2 missiles
- 38 x Hydra-70 M247 rockets + 8 x BGM-71 TOW-2 missiles
- 4 x BGM-71 TOW-2 missiles + 2 x 7.62 mm M134 Minigun machine guns
- 8 x BGM-71 TOW-2 missiles + 2 x 7.62 mm M134 Minigun machine guns
- 16 x BGM-71 TOW missiles
- 16 x BGM-71 TOW-2 missiles
- 8 x AGM-114B Hellfire missiles
- 8 x AGM-114B Hellfire missiles + 2 x 7.62 mm M134 Minigun machine guns
- 38 x Hydra-70 M247 rockets + 8 x AGM-114B Hellfire missiles
- 16 x AGM-114B Hellfire missiles
Usage in battles
Using the AH-1Z Viper after the AH-1F requires learning time, the playstyle between this and the AH-1F has some unique differences such as ammunition, views and overall playstyle.
The AH-1Z is an attack helicopter, it does this role very well, in fact, it is one of the best attack helicopters in the game, with speed up to 411 kph (255 mph). The AH-1Z offers a large array of ordnance selections, from mini-guns, rockets, TOW, TOW-2 and Hellfire missiles. In addition, the AH-1Z Can carry a combination of missiles, rockets or mini-guns together. To get one of the best configurations, specialize in what you want to do, air protection or ground attack, either way, this attack helicopter can do it.
To utilize the AH-1Z viper, make sure to adjust the tactics to the map, for example, maps, with rocks and hilly terrain, stay low and use it as cover whilst you get to into a position which will allow you to dominate the battlefield. For maps which are open and flat, climb to a high altitude and assess the situation, just make sure to scan the map and not get fixed on a location.
The AH-1Z has three main playstyles, the playstyles of this attack helicopter are focused around dominating in the following roles: Air Protection/Support, Medium & Close Range and Long Range.
However, the AH-1F does have one drawback, due to the increase in size changes to the centre of gravity in high pitch and tight turns, it is possible to lose control. It is advisable to always counteract by keeping the nose of the helicopter level or to lessen the turn radius. If required to do one, such as evading surface to air missiles, make sure that there is enough room to recover the helicopter in – ideally at least 1000 feet and make sure to increase the pitch of the blades to a 100% adjust for yawing.
The AH-1Z offers a combination of wing-mounted ordnance and ordnance packages which are available from TOW, TOW-2, Rocket pods, Machine guns.
The AH-1Z has the BGM-71 TOW and BGM-71 TOW-2 ATGM missile systems which perform very well. The BGM-71 TOW-2. The BGM-71 TOW-2 is faster than the BGM-71 TOW And in addition, it contains a higher explosive amount. Nevertheless, both versions of the TOW missile system are able to be very decisive in combat, it is ideal to use the BGM-71 TOW-2 system over the BGM-71 TOW since it is a better system, due to its higher explosive and speed.
It can carry up to 16 TOW or TOW-2 missiles, that is enough lethality to terminate up to 16 enemy units. The TOW missiles work in the same way as on the other series of Cobra attack helicopters, they are able to hit, fast and hard. Combined with the speed of the AH-1Z, these make a lethal combination. The AH-1Z can find a great tactical location, engage the targets and knock them out of the fight without them even knowing.
An AH-1Z also can carry additional ordnances which are wing-mounted only, these are rocket pods & machine guns or a combination of Hellfire’s, TOW’s, Rockets & machine guns. The rockets are standard FFAR Mighty Mouse rockets which are equipped on the version of the Cobras and Huey helicopters. A good choice of combined ordnance are Mighty Mouse and TOW's or just Mighty Mouse. That way you can increase the engagement range when you are flying in combat after consuming all the TOW missiles or getting at close range and blasting the enemy with Mighty Mouse rockets which will cause a lot of damage and could destroy up to 76 enemy units
Long Range - Hellfire missiles
To utilize the long-range performance of the AH-1Z, hover outside of the combat zone. It is important that you check and make sure that there are no threats in the vicinity which could shoot you down. Once the combat zone has been declared safe from vehicles which could destroy you. Increase altitude, until you have a good visual on the objectives. Hover the helicopter, change the view to the gun camera and locate a target ground vehicle and fire! The Hellfire missiles offer up to 1100mm of penetration with a speed of 475 meters per second.
Firing the Hellfire missiles, you will notice that you cannot see them compared to the previous TOW missiles. This is normal, you need to keep the laser designator on the target. On the HUD, left-hand side, you will see a countdown, it takes 10 seconds for the missile to hit the target. When the Hellfire gets close to the target you will see the rocket, this where you can adjust the missile trajectory.
It is very important that after a few Hellfire missile launches that, you disengage the hover and relocate to another part of the battle zone. Performing this action will substantially reduce the chances of being shot down by enemy vehicles.
One of the drawbacks of the Hellfire missiles is, at close range they cannot engage a target, due to how the Hellfires are launched from the wing racks. The Hellfire missile drops from the wing rack then engages the rocket motor and immediately ascend in height, making it impossible to track from launch.
|The hellfire missiles require time to adapt, however once learnt they become one of the most potent missiles in the game.|
Best role armament selection: Sidewinder missiles and machine guns
An AH-1Z Viper offers a unique set of capabilities compared to any other helicopter on the battlefield! It can be equipped with Sidewinder air to air missiles. The Sidewinder missiles provide great capacity to shoot down up to two enemy aircraft. They can shoot down other rotary-wing aircraft (helicopters) or fixed-wing aircraft (airplanes). The missiles can also be equipped with the additional payloads, such as Hellfire, TOW missile, machine gun and rocket pod configurations, providing a versatile offensive and defensive solution.
The AH-1Z can outmanoeuvre and outperform, many of the rivals in air to air combat. The AH-1Z has a triple rotary M197 cannon with 750 rounds. Combined with a twin 7.62 mm M134 mini-gun, which also has 1500 Rounds per gun. That’s 3000 rounds plus the 750 rounds that’s 3750 Rounds of ammunition! Then the wing-mounted AIM-9L Sidewinder missiles which are installed on both wings. To attack other helicopters with the Sidewinders, come in the from the side or rear – get a lock on and fire one of the Sidewinder missiles! Bang the enemy aircraft explodes.
To attack using the cannon and mini-guns, line up with the foe, come in fast and slow down – align your angle of attack with the side of the enemy, this will yield the best chance of success since the enemy unit has exposed the largest elements of the air-frame to your firepower. Aim for the critical components such as cockpit, engine, fuel tanks and rear rotor elements.
|I||Compressor||Flak jacket||Offensive 20 mm||TOW||Flares|
|II||Helicopter frame||New 20 mm cannons||TOW-2||AIM-9||M261|
|III||Engine||Gun pod XM-18||TOW 4||TOW-2 4||AGM-114|
|IV||Replacing helicopter blades||Cover||New 7 mm MGs||TOW 8||TOW-2 8||AGM-114 2|
Pros and cons
- Can carry up to 16 TOW ATGMs (TOW-2 with modification)
- One of the fastest helicopters in the game
- Can carry air-to-air missiles to take down aircraft
- Excellent ground attack capabilities
- Weak airframe can be taken down even by roof-mounted MGs from enemy tanks
- Cannon fodder for dedicated SPAAGs
- Very slow, easy target for SPAAs and aircraft
- Priority target for the enemy team as you are extremely dangerous
- No armour whatsoever
In 1996, the USMC launched the H-1 program in cooperation with the Bell company. The H-1 program was a plan to upgrade and modernize the Navy’s existing fleets of AH-1 and UH-1 helicopters, in order to extend their service life and lower future operating costs. This was achieved by developing a new version of each helicopter model respectively. The new AH-1Z Viper, also known as “ZuluCobra”, received upgraded avionics, fire control systems, engines and an improved four-blade rotor system, among other improvements. Furthermore, both the new Viper and UH-1Y were designed in a way to use mostly identical parts, achieving the desired reduction in operating costs and ease of maintenance as a result. The AH-1Z Viper conducted its maiden flight in December 2000, with three prototypes being built for testing in 2002. Small-scale production began in 2003 before the Viper was approved for full-scale production in November 2010. The USMC has ordered for 189 Vipers to be delivered to the fleet by 2021, with only a few dozen machines being in service today.
- From Devblog
An excellent addition to the article will be video guides, as well as 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 aircraft;
- links to approximate analogues of other nations and research trees.
|Attack||AH-1F · AH-1G · AH-1Z · AH-64A · AH-64A Peten · AH-64D · H-34|
|Utility||UH-1B · UH-1C · UH-1C XM-30|