Leopard A1A1 (L/44)

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Leopard A1A1 (L/44)
Leopard A1A1 (L/44)
9.0 9.0 9.0
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GarageImage Leopard A1A1 (L 44).jpg

The Leopard A1A1 (L/44) is a gift rank VI German medium tank with a battle rating of 9.0 (AB/RB/SB). It was introduced in Update 1.81 "The Valkyries".

General info

Survivability and armour

Players who have purchased the Leopard A1A1 L44 should be familiar with the armor of non-premium Leopard 1s. If not, well, the Leopard is not really what people expect a tank to be. It was developed at a time where HEAT shells were effective that in order for RHA to be effective, it would be so thick that it would not be practical, and before composite materials were discovered. Hence, the designers of Leopard 1s, knowing that there was no possible way of stopping HEAT rounds, they completely removed the concept of armor. In essence, the Leopard A1A1 has no armor. The front hull, accounting slope, is only some 130mm thick. The turret and gun mantle is some 100mm depending on angle. BMP-2’s auto-canon, racked with APDS will penetrate your turret and will cause major damage. Any HEAT projectile impacting the tank will likely result in instant death. However, the engine block will reliability save your crew from HEAT shells. APDS and APFSDS are a different story. The armor on the Leopard A1A1 is so thin that most non-explosive-filled shells will seldom shrapnel upon penetrating the side of the tank. Frontal penetrations will cause much damage, as the armor is just enough to cause spalling.

The ready rack ammo is stored vertically within your turret to the left side of the tank. So AP penetrations to the right side of your tank may not set off the ammo. But, ¾ of your crew are sited in a single file on the right side. So a penetration will kill you nonetheless. Try to take no more than 20 shells, as it will increase the likelihood of ammo cook-off. The point is not to get hit, because if anything hits you, it will go through, and it will cause damage.

In some cases, you could operate the tank backwards, and use your engine block as shield, as most HEAT shells will be absorbed by your transmission, radiator and engine. 

The mobility of the Leopard A1A1 is between the XM-1 and T-55 AM-1. Forward speed off road, expect some 40-50km/h. Reverse is about 15km/h off road. The neutral steering is absolutely amazing, you are able to swivel your tank easily. The suspensions are also great, very soft with great dampening effects, so expect a smooth drive. 


Main armament

The legendary 120mm Rheinmetall L44 canon do not fall short of its name. You get access to only 2 types of shells, APFSDS and HEAT-FS. Although the APFSDS sounds like a decent option, it actually isn’t. Apart from the fact that it cost SL to use, it also isn’t very good at killing your greatest threats: BMPs. Most times, the APFSDS will fly right through lightly armored vehicles with its 390mm penetration. The HEAT-FS on the other hand, which is my personal preference, will result in hull-breaks on lightly armored targets. It is also FREE!!!! But for real, that 120 HEAT with its 650mm penetration will hull-break Object 120s and 906s, and anything that’s not a MBT. For example, you can hit the tracks of an AA gun, and it will hull-break. So, I advise you to stick with HEAT. Also, it has a fast velocity of 1100m/s, so it is quite easy to aim.

Note that the “Stabilized” gun is only stable when travelling under 30km/h. 

Additional armament

Some tanks are armed with several guns in one or more turrets. Evaluate the additional weaponry and give advice on its use. Describe the ammunition available for additional weaponry. Give advice on how to use them and how to fill the ammunition storage. If there is no additional weaponry remove this subsection.

Machine guns

Offensive and anti-aircraft machine guns not only allow you to fight some aircraft, but also are effective against lightly armoured vehicles. Evaluate machine guns and give recommendations on its use.

Usage in battles

Describe the tactics of playing in the vehicle, the features of using vehicles in the team and advice on tactics. Refrain from creating a "guide" - do not impose a single point of view but give the reader food for thought. Describe the most dangerous enemies and give recommendations on fighting them. If necessary, note the specifics of the game in different modes (AB, RB, SB).

Pros and cons


  • Good mobility
  • Effective gun with well-performing HEATFS
  • Good reverse speed


  • Inadequate armor
  • Engine prone to fire
  • Ammunition exposed


Development of a Leopard 1 fitted with the 120mm L44 cannon began as a private venture of the Rheinmetall company, hoping that such a Leopard 1 variant would be of interest, not just to the German army due to logistical commonalities with the Leopard 2 and higher performance of the gun, but also to international customers seeking third generation MBT features on older machines.

In the early 1980s, a Leopard 1A1A1 was modified with a thicker cast steel mantlet, suitable for mounting the Rheinmetall 120mm cannon, and additional interior changes to hold the respective ammunition. Further changes were applied in early 1985, with the installation of the EMES 18 fire control system from the Leopard 1A5.

Although there were several different prototypes based on Leopard 1 outfitted with the 120mm Rheinmetall cannon, none of them managed to justify a costly large scale upgrade effort of existing Leopard 1s. The upgrade was largely considered redundant due to the already more advanced Leopard 2 being in service.

- From Devblog


An excellent addition to the article will be video guides, as well as screenshots from the game and photos.

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

Germany medium tanks
Pz.III  Pz.III B · Pz.III E · Pz.III F · Pz.III J · Pz.III J1 · Pz.III J1 TD · Pz.III L · Pz.III M · Pz.III N
Pz.IV  Pz.IV C · Pz.IV E · Pz.IV F1 · Pz.IV F2 · Pz.IV G · Pz.IV H · Pz.IV J · Pz.Bef.Wg.IV J
Pz.V  Panther A · Panther D · Panther F · Panther G · Ersatz M10 · Panther II
Trophies  ▀M4 748 (a) · ▀T 34 747 (r)
Post-war  KPz-70 · mKPz M47 G · M48A2 C · M48A2 G A2 · M48 Super
Leopard 1  Leopard I · Leopard A1A1 · Leopard A1A1 (L/44) · Leopard 1A5 · C2A1
Leopard 2  Leopard 2K · Leopard 2A4 · Leopard 2A5 · Leopard 2A6

Germany premium ground vehicles
Light tanks  Pz.II C (DAK) · Pz.Sfl.Ic · Sd.Kfz. 140/1 · Sd.Kfz.234/1 · Ru 251
Medium tanks  Nb.Fz. · Pz.III N · Pz.Bef.Wg.IV J · ▀M4 748 (a) · ▀T 34 747 (r) · Ersatz M10 · mKPz M47 G · Leopard A1A1 (L/44)
Heavy tanks  ▀Pz.Kpfw. Churchill · ▀KV-IB · ▀KV I C 756 (r) · ▀KV II 754 (r)
  VK 45.01 (P) · ␠Tiger · Pz.Bef.Wg.VI P · Tiger II (H) Sla.16
Tank destroyers  Sd.Kfz.234/3 · Sd.Kfz.234/4 · Sd.Kfz.251/10 · 15 cm Pz.W.42 · Brummbär · Panzer IV/70(A) · Bfw. Jagdpanther · VFW