The Flugabwehrkanonenpanzer Gepard (aka Flakpanzer Gepard) is a German rank 6 SPAA in the standard tech tree, based on the Leopard 1 chassis. It possesses 2x35mm Oerlikon KDA cannons with 340 rounds each(680 in total, in 2 continuous belts of ammunition, one for each cannon). The Gepard is equipped with a radar, allowing it to detect and track aerial targets even when they are out of range of it's armament. In real life, the Gepard can track and calculate the lead necessary to effectively engage a target, represented in game by the ability to lock onto a target and display an arcade style lead indicator on the target when they are within effective range, a trait that all radar-guided SPAAs possess.
Survivability and armour
Common among almost all SPAAs, the Gepard's armor can only withstand heavy machine guns and aircraft cannons and such, even other SPAAs and light tanks will pose a threat. Having 30mm of armor at it's thickest point, in the game, the Gepard can be hull broken by shells of a caliber of 75mm and higher.
The Gepard has a crew of 3, consisting of a gunner, a commander and a driver with the first 2 residing in the turret and the third in the hull. The ammunition is stored in it's entirety in the turret basket, below the crew; in practice, the Gepard is rarely ammo racked, and most often it is your crew that will be knocked out or the tank being burned down by chemical munitions fired from enemy aircraft that it faces, such as helicopters and jet attack aircraft which are both a threat and a tricky target.
Having the chassis of the Leopard 1, the Gepard is almost identical in mobility to the rank 5 MBT, posessing the same engine power (734HP stock;830HP fully upgraded), making it useful at capturing zones and getting out of harm's way.
It's top speed is 57km/h forward and 22km/h backwards, with acceleration time and neutral steering speed depending on the installed modules
The armament consists of 2x35mm Oerlikon KDA cannons with 340RPG with a quick, fixed fire rate and can make use of 3 types of munitions :
- High-explosive incendiary tracer (self-destroying, note that the self-distruction range coincides with the radar's lead indicator maximum distance, making the shell inadequate at longer ranges)
- Armor piercing incendiary tracer, which can be used against lightly armored vehicles and enemy SPAAs, though the damage to enemy aircraft is reduced, shell can be used outside radar range since it does not self destruct
- High velocity armor piercing tracer (APDS), which can be used against targets mentioned above and additionally, can be used to attack the side profile of enemy MBTs with reasonable effectiveness. Use against air targets is possible but the damage output is highly reduced.
Usage in the battles
The Gepard performs best when stalking enemy aircraft, scanning the sky for a target and waiting until it gets in range of the radar, and only attacking when the radar can provide a lead estimation, thus preserving ammunition which is critical since the cannons will expend it quickly in combat situations. Helicopters will more than often chose to keep a reasonable distance, usually outside your radar's range but this can be countered by using the API-T rounds in short burst, until the range of the enemy has been deduced, it only takes a few rounds to destroy an enemy aircraft.
Engaging ground vehicles comes with the risk of being destroyed without doing any significant damage so weigh your options carefully, unsuspecting light tanks are fair game but most tanks will pose a threat even when attacking their side without the appropriate ammunition belts.
Capturing points is also an option thanks to the good mobility of the vehicle, although you will have to make sure the capture point is clear and there is no risk of being attacked by en enemy tank.
Pros and cons
- Has the mobility of the Leopard
- Very fast turret rotation
- Mobility of the Leopard tank
- Good stock grind
- Can kill most of the tanks from the side using its default belt
- High penetration with DM23 belt it's also cheap
- Twin 35 mm cannons are very deadly against both aircraft and tanks
- Has stabilizer can shoot targets while on the move
- Good amount of ammo
- Very thin armour can be easily destroyed
- Cannons are mounted on the sides of the turret shooting weak spots at close range almost impossible
- Can only take 40 x DM23s to battle
- War Thunder