Merkava Mk.1 (USA)

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This page is about the American medium tank Merkava Mk.1 (USA). For other uses, see Merkava (Family).
Merkava Mk.1
us_merkava_mk_1.png
GarageImage Merkava Mk.1 (USA).jpg
Merkava Mk.1
AB RB SB
9.0 8.7 8.7
Class:
Show in game
MARKET

Description

The Merkava Mk.1 is a gift rank VI American medium tank with a battle rating of 9.0 (AB) and 8.7 (RB/SB). It was introduced in Update 1.87 "Locked On" as a reward for the "Battlefield Engineer" event.

At a glance, one may mistake the vehicle's profile for the Centauro, which is already infamous on its own, because they share similar traits - an extremely long vehicle with a turret on its back, that sports a very long cannon. However, this vehicle has an even lower profile and drives on tracks instead of wheels. Due to this, it's significantly slower. The amount of damage it can cause, though, is similar.

General info

Survivability and armour

Smoke grenades
Creation of a smoke screen in front of the vehicle
Armourfront / side / back
Hull50 / 50 / 30
Turret20 / 65 / 65
Crew4 people
Visibility152 %

This tank has an extremely low profile, sloped frontal armour that is extremely sloped everywhere and cannot be hull-broken.

One of Merkava Mk.1's secondary shields (There may be multiple of them layered over each other depending on angle of attack)

Even if anything penetrates the front of the hull, the shell will then have to go through an assortment of modules and protection beyond the initial hull. The first in the way is a fuel tank, which shields the engine. Even if that is penetrated, there is still a list of rolled homogenous armour behind it. Even if that is penetrated, the engine will take the entirety of shrapnel with seemingly no failure. This will often result in the tank catching fire with a destroyed transmission and/or engine but with no other damage the tank. If one tries to fire straight at the driver, the shell will most likely just ricochet, bounce off the turret and away unless it was APDS or APFSDS. Even then, any shell that hit directly from the front will likely only take down the driver.

The hull is also quite proof against ATGM, as module placement absorbs as much damage as IPM1 and M1A1 Abrams NERA, so missiles should be fired at the turret instead unless one tries to just burn down the vehicle. In arcade mode, if ATGM tank operator wants to destroy the tank fast, they should consider hitting the upper part of the hull next to the turret, for if only the engine is hit by projectile, then HEAT can overpenetrate it and spall into mid-section of the tank, sometimes just barely reaching the ready ammo rack and detonating it. In Realistic battle mode, simply hitting turret with ATGM might actually destroy the vehicle in one hit due to the crew loss.

The turret is well-protected, with its well-angled armour structure and layers of homogenous armour. As such, anything short of APDS from specifically sniper tanks like Chieftain Mk 3 or APFSDS have a high chance of doing no damage. The only place with no protection is the turret ring, which is vulnerable to well-aimed APHE shots.

The side hull armour of the tank is considerably weaker though and can be penetrated by APDS-equipped SPAA and light tanks. Tracks still block some shots, but it's possible to destroy the entirety of turret compartment with a high enough rate-of-fire before tank turns around. AP-I belt would probably fail to penetrate it, though.

The sides of the base of the turret seem to be a viable target for HESH, unlike the rest of the tank. Though, even there vehicle has a little fuel tank, which has a tendency to derail spalling away from last turret crew member.

As such, Merkava should avoid exposing its sides, to protect its turret crew and ammunition.

In addition to the assortment of armour, the vehicle has smoke launchers and smoke shells to cover itself.

Ammunition is stored in the very back of the vehicle, at the very bottom and is covered with even more armour lists. Most of the attacks from front of the vehicle or from above will inevitably hit side skirts, turret, or other modules in way of the shell and achieve nothing. In case enemy tank attacks from behind, even tank's back is protected with layers of spaced armour, rolled homogenous armour and fuel tanks, completely neutralizing weak chemical shells (such as HESH), or derailing HEAT-FS spall away from critical components. Only firing HEAT-FS diagonally through the shield in the middle of Merkava's rear seems to consistently achieve hitting ammunition or crew. Using AP based ammunition instead is highly advised.

Mobility

Speedforward / back
AB52 / 9 km/h
RB and SB46 / 8 km/h
Number of gears4 forward
1 back
Weight60.0 t
Engine power
AB1 717 hp
RB and SB900 hp
Power-to-weight ratio
AB28.6 hp/t
RB and SB15.0 hp/t
Game Mode Max Speed (km/h) Weight (tons) Engine power (horsepower) Power-to-weight ratio (hp/ton)
Forward Reverse Stock Upgraded Stock Upgraded
Arcade 52 9 60 1395 1717 23.25 28.62
Realistic 46 8 796 900 13.27 15

In Arcade battles, the Merkava Mk.1 (USA) has a top speed of about 51 km/h forward. However, either due to extreme recklessness of its drivers, or better than average acceleration, it often gets to position faster than expected. Its reverse speed is quite low though, being about -10 km/h at best.

In Realistic mode, its top speed is supposed to be about 46 km/h forward and about -8 km/h in reverse.

Modifications and economy

Repair costBasic → Reference
AB5 950 → 8 853 Sl icon.png
RB5 840 → 8 689 Sl icon.png
SB9 140 → 13 600 Sl icon.png
Total cost of modifications148 600 Rp icon.png
238 000 Sl icon.png
Talisman cost2 400 Ge icon.png
Crew training140 000 Sl icon.png
Experts490 000 Sl icon.png
Aces2 000 Ge icon.png
Research Aces890 000 Rp icon.png
Reward for battleAB / RB / SB
120 / 150 / 180 % Sl icon.png
214 / 214 / 214 % Rp icon.png
Modifications
Mobility Protection Firepower
Mods new tank traks.png
Tracks
Research:
8 100 Rp icon.png
Cost:
12 000 Sl icon.png
350 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank suspension.png
Suspension
Research:
7 300 Rp icon.png
Cost:
11 000 Sl icon.png
320 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank break.png
Brake System
Research:
7 300 Rp icon.png
Cost:
11 000 Sl icon.png
320 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank filter.png
Filters
Research:
8 100 Rp icon.png
Cost:
12 000 Sl icon.png
350 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank transmission.png
Transmission
Research:
10 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
15 000 Sl icon.png
440 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank engine.png
Engine
Research:
10 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
15 000 Sl icon.png
440 Ge icon.png
Mods tank tool kit.png
Parts
Research:
2 400 Rp icon.png
Cost:
12 000 Sl icon.png
350 Ge icon.png
Mods extinguisher.png
FPE
Research:
2 200 Rp icon.png
Cost:
11 000 Sl icon.png
320 Ge icon.png
Mods tank reinforcement us.png
Crew Replenishment
Research:
8 100 Rp icon.png
Cost:
12 000 Sl icon.png
350 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank horizontal aiming.png
Horizontal Drive
Research:
8 100 Rp icon.png
Cost:
12 000 Sl icon.png
350 Ge icon.png
Mods tank ammo.png
105mm_usa_HESH_ammo_pack
Research:
8 100 Rp icon.png
Cost:
12 000 Sl icon.png
350 Ge icon.png
Mods tank cannon.png
Adjustment of Fire
Research:
7 300 Rp icon.png
Cost:
11 000 Sl icon.png
320 Ge icon.png
Mods night vision device.png
NVD
Research:
7 300 Rp icon.png
Cost:
11 000 Sl icon.png
320 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank vertical aiming.png
Elevation Mechanism
Research:
8 100 Rp icon.png
Cost:
12 000 Sl icon.png
350 Ge icon.png
Mods tank ammo.png
105mm_us_M416_Smoke_ammo_pack
Research:
8 100 Rp icon.png
Cost:
12 000 Sl icon.png
350 Ge icon.png
Mods smoke screen.png
Smoke grenade
Research:
8 100 Rp icon.png
Cost:
12 000 Sl icon.png
350 Ge icon.png
Mods art support.png
Artillery Support
Research:
10 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
15 000 Sl icon.png
440 Ge icon.png
Mods tank ammo.png
105mm_usa_M735_APDS_FS_ammo_pack
Research:
10 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
15 000 Sl icon.png
440 Ge icon.png
Mods tank laser rangefinder.png
Laser rangefinder
Research:
10 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
15 000 Sl icon.png
440 Ge icon.png

Armaments

Laser rangefinder
Reduces the error and increases the maximum measurable distance of the rangefinder
Night vision device
Improves visibility by enhancing natural light or active illumination.

Main armament

105 mm Sharir cannon
Two-plane stabilizer
Reduces the swing of the gun in two planes while moving
Ammunition62 rounds
First-order14 rounds
Reloadbasic crew → aces
8.7 → 6.7 s
Vertical guidance-8° / 20°
Main article: Sharir (105 mm)

Merkava uses a 105 mm Sharir cannon with a two-plane stabilizer. The default reload rate is 8.7 seconds and with crew training it will go down to 6.7 seconds. First-stage ammo stowage on the turret floor has 14 shells and the 48 remaining shells are in the back.

105 mm Sharir Turret rotation speed (°/s) Reloading rate (seconds)
Mode Capacity Vertical Horizontal Stabilizer Stock Upgraded Full Expert Aced Stock Full Expert Aced
Arcade 62 -8°/+20° ±180° Two-plane 38.1 45.0 64.0 70.8 75.3 8.7 7.7 7.1 6.7
Realistic 23.8 28.1 34.0 37.6 40.0

Ammunition

The gun can be loaded with:

  • M152: HEATFS; a shaped charge that can penetrate any vehicle's armour frontally. Like the APFSDS shot, increased armour thickness results in reduced amount of spalling (shrapnel) after penetration. You are able to take out enemies on any distance, since the HEAT round does not lose penetration with distance traveled - very handy on large maps like Kursk. Unlike APFSDS it has one downside: given that it is a chemical round, its fuse is highly sensitive in regards to its practical application in battle. As a result, virtually anything, such as trees or even a fence, will set it off prematurely, so you cannot fire through obstructions with this kind of round. Knowledge of potential opponents vehicle layouts will be very handy to use. It is the stock shell.
  • M156: HESH; high-explosive squash head projectiles work very differently from other shell types. It ignores any angle, except for ricochet, and deals damage by metal-flakes which are blown off inside the armour by the exterior explosion. To create this deadly shrapnel inside the tank, make sure to only hit armour plates which are a direct part of the interior crew compartment of the tank. Hitting exterior parts of a tank like spaced armour, the suspension, tracks etc. will not harm crew members/modules at all. Currently, only true armour thickness (as opposed to the line of sight thickness) will provide sufficient means of protection, benefiting the USSR turret designs and in general German tanks. Like all high-explosive shells, the fuse is very sensitive and can be set-off by most objects e.g. fences, trees, pillars. The slow muzzle velocity of this shell can make it quite hard to hit targets at longer distances, but at the same time it can be handy because its arc trajectory, allows it to land hits on enemies hiding behind shallow hills.
  • M111: APFSDS; a kinetic rod with high penetration power but without explosive. It is capable of easily penetrating the majority of the foes it meets, but these rounds do require finesse as to their placing. Because the projectile lacks an explosive filler, the best bet is to try and either knock out the majority of the enemy tank's crew or to destroy the enemy by ammo or fuel detonation through hitting their respective storage capacities. This, of course, requires knowledge about the vehicles the Merkava Mk.1 (USA) may face - so be sure to use the game's X-Ray view in the hangar and analyse the potential foes for their weak spots! Also, keep in mind that with increased armour thickness the amount of shrapnel shrinks.
  • M416: Smoke; useful to blind enemy vehicles that are too remote for you to disable so that you can progress towards objectives.
Penetration statistics
Ammunition Type of
warhead
Penetration @ 0° Angle of Attack (mm)
10 m 100 m 500 m 1,000 m 1,500 m 2,000 m
M152 HEATFS 400 400 400 400 400 400
M156 HESH 127 127 127 127 127 127
M111 APFSDS 337 335 330 322 314 306
Shell details
Ammunition Type of
warhead
Velocity
(m/s)
Projectile
Mass (kg)
Fuse delay
(m)
Fuse sensitivity
(mm)
Explosive Mass
(TNT equivalent) (g)
Ricochet
0% 50% 100%
M152 HEATFS 1,173 10.5 0.05 1 1,270 65° 72° 77°
M156 HESH 732 14.85 0.4 0.1 4,310 73° 77° 80°
M111 APFSDS 1,455 3.79 N/A N/A N/A 78° 80° 81°
Smoke shell characteristics
Ammunition Velocity
(m/s)
Projectile
Mass (kg)
Screen radius
(m)
Screen deploy time
(s)
Screen hold time
(s)
Explosive Mass
(TNT equivalent) (g)
M416 730 11.4 20 5 25 50

Ammo racks

Ammo racks of the Merkava Mk.1 (USA)
Full
ammo
1st
rack empty
2nd
rack empty
3rd
rack empty
4th
rack empty
Visual
discrepancy
62 39 (+23) 15 (+47) (+55) (+61) No

Racks 3 and 4 are ready racks on the Merkava, taking up 16 rounds before rear hull racks #1 and #2 are filled with ammunition. Due to the unique layout of the Merkava and the ammo racks being away from the front, it would not harm the tank's survivability by a large margin to carry more ammunition.


Machine guns

12.7 mm M2HB machine gun (coaxial)
Ammunition900 rounds
Belt capacity200 rounds
Reloadbasic crew → aces
10.4 → 8.0 s
Fire rate577 shots/min
Ammunition3 500 rounds
Belt capacity200 rounds
Reloadbasic crew → aces
10.4 → 8.0 s
Fire rate600 shots/min
Ammunition5 950 rounds
Belt capacity200 rounds
Reloadbasic crew → aces
10.4 → 8.0 s
Fire rate600 shots/min

As for machine gun armament, Merkava Mk.1 has one 12.7 mm M2HB and three 7.62 mm FN MAG 60-40 machine guns.

Their penetration statistics seem to be standard for their calibre.

12.7 mm M2HB
Mount Capacity
(Belt capacity)
Rate of fire
(shots/minute)
Vertical
guidance
Horizontal
guidance
Coaxial 900 (200) 576 N/A N/A
7.62 mm FN MAG 60-40
Mount Capacity
(Belt capacity)
Rate of fire
(shots/minute)
Vertical
guidance
Horizontal
guidance
Coaxial 5,950 (200) 600 N/A N/A
Pintle (Commander) 1,750 (200) 600 -10°/+50° ±120°
Pintle (Loader) 1,750 (200) 600 -10°/+50° ±120°

Usage in battles

Merkava Mk.1 have BR 9.0 in AB and 8.7 in BR and SB. In this BR range, Merkava will face some strong enemies. Although Merkava is designed for maximum crew survivability, but don't trust completely on that. Between the armor plates sits your engine, transmission and fuel tank, these modules can absorb some damage, but in return you will lose mobility completely or catch on fire sometimes.

The gun carried by the Merkava is familiar to all top rank tank commanders: 105 mm Sharir cannon which is a modified version of the British L7 gun. The shells it fire is also quite promising. When stock it can fire M152 HEATFS shell instead of the normal APDS shell. After research tankers can fire the powerful M111 APFSDS shell. This shell can penetrate most same tier enemies Merkava might face. When facing up-tier enemies, it is recommend to play more as a support role since you can only shoot weak spots of your enemies' front.

The mobility of the Merkava Mk.1 is not so good by MBT standard. Teammates and enemies will arrive places you normally go faster than you. Be careful when you approaching the front line, there might be enemies nearby! Due to the mobility, it is recommend again to play as a support role. It will be easier to protect the side of your team from enemies' flank.

In terms of threats:

  • Be careful for most MBTs firing kinetic rounds.
  • Leopards /Type 74 /OF-40: They carry the same gun as Merkava, have almost the same rounds, but much faster. Their mobility makes them a big threat to the whole team when flanking. They are easy to kill due to weak armor.
  • AMX-30B2 Brenus: It has better mobility than Merkava, it also have ERA which can cause trouble for players which have not yet research the M111 round. Stay back, tell your teammates, and let them finish it. It will be much easier to deal if you have the M111 round.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Armour is surprisingly effective, due to it being multi-layered
  • Sometimes capable of just driving into the capture point, as if it doesn't care
  • Has weapons and ammunition similar to SPG Centauro, which is enough for most encounters
  • Different ammunition types are cheap to use
  • ATGMs may have problems destroying this vehicle, as well as small rockets and HESH

Cons:

  • APFSDS does not care about module-based protection and will go straight through the entire vehicle
  • Second layer of defence has a lot of openings, which can be exploited with side shots so the vehicle cannot be angled a lot
  • Turret ring and middle rear weak spots compromise vehicle's defences and make it vulnerable to APHE at close ranges
  • Side hull armour is weak, can be destroyed by light tanks with +30 mm cannons, obversely, default ammo usually fails to penetrate
  • In up-tier, it's going to be slower than most of the adversaries
  • Can be simply burned, if it cannot be destroyed normally
  • Repair cost is higher, so need to be caution when you use it.
  • Thermal signature is in the front of the tank, that make you easy to be seen by thermal sight.

History

During the mid-1960s, Israel began researching the possibility of developing and manufacturing a domestically designed tank. The need for such a vehicle became even more emphasized after failed negotiations with Great Britain around the same time led to Israel not being permitted to licence produce the Chieftain MBT. Thus, during the late 1960s official development on a domestic Israeli tank began.

The Israeli tank was primarily designed around combat experiences gained during the Yom Kippur War, resulting in heavy emphasis being put on crew survivability. By 1974, first prototypes of the new “Merkava” tank were constructed and put through initial testing. After nearly a decade of development, the Merkava Mk.1 was adopted for service by the IDF in December 1979 and modernized versions continue to serve with Israeli forces today.

- From Devblog

Media

Skins
Videos

See also

External links


USA medium tanks
Early projects  M2
M3  M3 Lee · Grant I
M4  M4 · Calliope · M4A1 · M4A1 (76) W · M4A2 · M4A2 (76) W · M4A3 (76) W · M4A3 (105) · M4A5
M26  T20 · T25 · M26 · M26 T99 · M26E1
Post-war  M46 · M46 "Tiger" · M47 · M48A1 · T54E1 · T95E1
MBT  M60 · M60A1 (AOS) · M60A1 RISE (P) · M60A2 · M60A3 TTS · MBT-70 · XM-803
  XM-1 (Chrysler) · XM-1 (GM) · M1 Abrams · IPM1 · M1A1 Abrams · M1A2 Abrams
Israeli  Magach 3 · Merkava Mk.1 · Merkava Mk.2B · Merkava Mk.3D
Turkey  M60 AMBT