Strv 81

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VTOL | Rank 5 USA
AV-8A Harrier Pack
This page is about the Swedish medium tank Strv 81. For other versions, see Centurion (Family).
Strv 81
sw_strv_81.png
GarageImage Strv 81.jpg
Strv 81
AB RB SB
7.7 7.7 7.7
Class:
Research:95 000 Specs-Card-Exp.png
Purchase:270 000 Specs-Card-Lion.png
Show in game

Description

The Stridsvagn 81 was the Swedish designation for the Centurion Mk 3. Sweden acquired a batch of 80 Centurion Mk 3 in 1953, and another batch of 160 in 1955 with a few modifications from the later Mk 5 version like a new barrel with bore evacuator. The Strv 81 would serve in the Swedish army from 1953 until the 2000s as the backbone of the Swedish armoured forces alongside the Strv 103. They had an extensive service and would be modernized a few times throughout their service to meet standards as time progressed, becoming the Strv 102 and 104, but would eventually be replaced by the more modern Strv 121.

Introduced in Update 1.97 "Viking Fury", the Strv 81 represents a Swedish-camouflaged Centurion Mk 3. Its gameplay is very similar to that of modern main battle tanks. Players never have to worry about opponents appearing around corners and stopping to take aim with the two-plane fully automatic stabilization system. Even with aggressive manoeuvring, the gun sights are fully stabilized, ensuring that the player always fires first upon spotting an enemy. The introduction of the 84 mm QF 20-pounder tank gun, which can penetrate up to 384 mm of armour at point-blank range with armour-piercing discarding sabot (APDS) ammunition, significantly improves firepower. This basically allows the player to engage the opponent's heavy tanks on their own terms, serving as a true ancestor to the main battle tank doctrine.

General info

Survivability and armour

Smoke grenades
Creation of a smoke screen in front of the vehicle
Armourfront / side / back
Hull76 / 51 / 38
Turret152 / 89 / 89
Crew4 people
Visibility119 %

Armour type:

  • Rolled homogeneous armour (Hull, Turret roof)
  • Cast homogeneous armour (Turret)
Armour Front Sides Rear Roof
Hull 76.2 mm (58°) Front glacis
76.2 mm (47-48°) Lower glacis
50.8 (12°) + 6 mm 38 mm (8-12°) 29 mm
8-14 mm Engine deck
Turret 152 mm (6-27°) Turret front
152 mm Gun mantlet
89 mm (5-12°) 89 mm 50.8 mm Border of turret
29 mm Centre of turret
Cupola 152 mm 90 mm 90 mm 29 mm

Notes:

  • Suspension wheels, tracks, and torsion bars are 20 mm thick.

Mobility

Speedforward / back
AB39 / 14 km/h
RB and SB35 / 12 km/h
Number of gears5 forward
2 back
Weight50.8 t
Engine power
AB1 240 hp
RB and SB650 hp
Power-to-weight ratio
AB24.4 hp/t
RB and SB12.8 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 39 14 50.8 1,007 1,240 19.82 24.41
Realistic 35 12 575 650 11.32 12.8

Modifications and economy

Repair costBasic → Reference
AB4 041 → 5 467 Sl icon.png
RB4 566 → 6 177 Sl icon.png
SB6 435 → 8 706 Sl icon.png
Total cost of modifications76 700 Rp icon.png
127 200 Sl icon.png
Talisman cost2 000 Ge icon.png
Crew training78 000 Sl icon.png
Experts270 000 Sl icon.png
Aces1 100 Ge icon.png
Research Aces670 000 Rp icon.png
Reward for battleAB / RB / SB
130 / 200 / 220 % Sl icon.png
190 / 190 / 190 % Rp icon.png
Modifications
Mobility Protection Firepower
Mods new tank traks.png
Tracks
Research:
5 300 Rp icon.png
Cost:
8 600 Sl icon.png
230 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank suspension.png
Suspension
Research:
3 600 Rp icon.png
Cost:
5 800 Sl icon.png
155 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank break.png
Brake System
Research:
3 600 Rp icon.png
Cost:
5 800 Sl icon.png
155 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank filter.png
Filters
Research:
5 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
8 100 Sl icon.png
220 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank transmission.png
Transmission
Research:
6 500 Rp icon.png
Cost:
10 000 Sl icon.png
280 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank engine.png
Engine
Research:
6 500 Rp icon.png
Cost:
10 000 Sl icon.png
280 Ge icon.png
Mods tank tool kit.png
Improved Parts
Research:
3 400 Rp icon.png
Cost:
8 600 Sl icon.png
230 Ge icon.png
Mods extinguisher.png
Improved FPE
Research:
2 300 Rp icon.png
Cost:
5 800 Sl icon.png
155 Ge icon.png
Mods tank reinforcement sw.png
Crew Replenishment
Research:
5 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
8 100 Sl icon.png
220 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank horizontal aiming.png
Horizontal Drive
Research:
5 300 Rp icon.png
Cost:
8 600 Sl icon.png
230 Ge icon.png
Mods tank cannon.png
Adjustment of Fire
Research:
3 600 Rp icon.png
Cost:
5 800 Sl icon.png
155 Ge icon.png
Mods tank ammo.png
84mm_britain_20pdr_APDS_ammo_pack
Research:
3 600 Rp icon.png
Cost:
5 800 Sl icon.png
155 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank vertical aiming.png
Elevation Mechanism
Research:
5 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
8 100 Sl icon.png
220 Ge icon.png
Mods smoke screen.png
Smoke grenade
Research:
5 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
8 100 Sl icon.png
220 Ge icon.png
Mods art support.png
Artillery Support
Research:
6 500 Rp icon.png
Cost:
10 000 Sl icon.png
280 Ge icon.png
Mods tank ammo.png
84mm_britain_Smoke_ammo_pack
Research:
6 500 Rp icon.png
Cost:
10 000 Sl icon.png
280 Ge icon.png

Armaments

Main armament

Two-plane stabilizer
Reduces the swing of the gun in two planes while moving
Ammunition65 rounds
First-order8 rounds
Reloadbasic crew → aces
8.1 → 6.3 s
Vertical guidance-10° / 20°
Main article: kan Strv 81 (84 mm)
84 mm kan Strv 81 Turret rotation speed (°/s) Reloading rate (seconds)
Mode Capacity Vertical Horizontal Stabilizer Stock Upgraded Full Expert Aced Stock Full Expert Aced
Arcade 65 -10°/+20° ±180° Two-plane 19.0 26.4 32.0 35.4 37.7 8.19 7.25 6.68 6.30
Realistic 11.9 14.0 17.0 18.8 20.0

Ammunition

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
slpprj APCBC 232 229 216 201 187 173
slpprj m/54 APDS 384 380 363 343 324 306
slsgr m/53 HE 20 20 20 20 20 20
Shell details
Ammunition Type of
warhead
Velocity
(m/s)
Projectile
mass (kg)
Fuse delay
(m)
Fuse sensitivity
(mm)
Explosive mass
(TNT equivalent) (kg)
Ricochet
0% 50% 100%
slpprj APCBC 1,000 9.1 - - - 48° 63° 71°
slpprj m/54 APDS 1,430 3.22 - - - 75° 78° 80°
slsgr m/53 HE 600 7.88 0.2 0.1 1.59 79° 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)
rökgr m/53 250 9.3 9 5 20 50

Ammo racks

Full
ammo
1st
rack empty
2nd
rack empty
3rd
rack empty
4th
rack empty
5th
rack empty
6th
rack empty
7th
rack empty
8th
rack empty
9th
rack empty
Visual
discrepancy
65 63 (+2) 61 (+4) 53 (+12) 45 (+20) 37 (+28) 29 (+36) (+56) (+60) (+64) No
Ammo racks of the Centurion Mk 3 (identical)

Notes:

  • Shells are modeled individually and disappear after having been shot or loaded.
  • Racks 8 and 9 are first stage ammo racks. They total 8 shells and get filled first when loading up the tank.
  • These racks are also emptied early: the rack depletion order at full capacity is: 8 - 9 - 1 - 2 - etc. until 7.
  • If you pack 29 (+36) shells, it will keep most of the hull empty of ammo.
  • Simply not firing when the gun is loaded will move ammo from racks 1-7 into racks 9 then 8. Firing will interrupt the restocking of the ready racks.

Machine guns

Ammunition3 750 rounds
Belt capacity250 rounds
Reloadbasic crew → aces
10.4 → 8.0 s
Fire rate649 shots/min
Main article: ksp m/39B (8 mm)
8 mm ksp m/39B
Mount Capacity (Belt) Fire rate Vertical Horizontal
Coaxial 3,750 (250) 649 N/A N/A

Usage in battles

The Strv 81 is an effective medium tank if played to its strengths. If one wants to keep it simple, just use the powerful gun to snipe from distance. More advanced tankers can utilize the not too impressive max speed (35 km/h (22mph)) to move with this medium tank into the flanks of enemy tanks (close to the border of a map) and search for positions like hills and ridges where one can make use of the amazing -10° gun depression to hide the vulnerable lower plate of this tank. Once in such a position, one should use the binoculars to scout for enemies without exposing the turret. If an enemy tank is spotted that could be a potential threat (dangerous tank / faced towards you) pop out a little bit and start to take out the enemies gunner/cannon barrel/cannon breech to prevent him from returning fire. Now utilize the quick reload to take out one crew member after the other to finish your opponent. If an enemy is spotted who is exposing their side or even the rear while not aiming towards you, shoot the engine first to immobilize and possibly even ignite the enemy tank, preventing him to take cover. The next shots should again disable the gun of the enemy, now finish your prey by shooting all crew members or if you feel lucky shoot an ammo rack.

The best choice to pierce enemy tanks is obviously the slpprj m/54 (APDS) although it is quite expensive in terms of Silver Lions. The slpprj (APCBC) works in most situation as well but lacks penetration compared to the slpprj m/54 APDS shot. The amazing penetration characteristics of this APDS shot enables this gun to pierce front plates of all Panther models (apart from the Panther II) to ranges up to 2,000 m. T-44s and Panther IIs front plates can be penetrated to ranges up to almost 1,000 m. Keep in mind though that the front plate of the T-44 is angled at 60°, so it bounces even this powerful APDS shot quite often. Even the front plate of the mighty Tiger II is not able to stop this APDS shot if not angled and the range is shorter than 100 m.

In a head to head situation with an enemy tank approaching try to angle the centurion not more than 5° degrees to either side since the side armour is quite weak (50.8 mm), try to hide your lower front plate which is a massive weak spot, while reloading turn the turret 10° to the right to maximize chances of bouncing shots (right side of the turret front has some extra armour) and keeping the gunner alive.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Powerful and high penetrating gun, the stock round is adequate and APDS can punch through anything it will face
  • Has a base reload time of 8.1 seconds, which can be lowered further into around 7.4 seconds (which is on average two seconds faster than its competitors)
  • Excellent gun depression and elevation
  • Extremely strong gun mantlet
  • Somewhat bouncy armour
  • Gunner is on the right side of the tank
  • Neutral steering can turn on the spot without having to switch into 1st gear
  • Good manoeuvrability
  • Good reverse speed
  • Gun stabilizer

Cons:

  • Low top speed
  • Ammo rack in the front, penetration through the lower glacis will likely end up destroying or detonating the ammo rack
  • Top armour covering the engine compartments is 8 mm
  • APDS shot causes only punctual damage (aim carefully)
  • No explosive filler on any AP shells
  • Weak side armour, do not angle the hull too much

History

The Strv 81 was the designation given to 240 British Centurion Mk 3s equipped with Swedish communication equipment. As the first Centurion type used by the Swedish army, the vehicles were fielded extensively during the Cold War as a counter to the numerous T-54/T-55 MBTs fielded by the Soviet Army. The Strv 81s would later be complemented by the Strv 101, a variant of the Centurion Mk 10, and later followed by the Strv 102 and Strv 104. These "Swedish Centurions" would continue service until the introduction of more advanced MBTs such as the Leopard 2 in Swedish service.

After the end of the Second World War, Sweden was in a tight spot in terms of armoured vehicles, as the Soviet forces near its borders possessed significant numbers of IS-series and T-44 tanks, along with the wartime-era T-34 tank variants. Most of these tanks far outclassed the Strv m/41 and m/42 tanks that equipped the Swedish army at the time. As a result, Swedish tank designers were immediately tasked with the development of a new medium tank. However, most of these designs failed to produce strong results, and thus, the Swedish army began the search for a new foreign-built medium tank.

The Swedish army considered two main tank designs: the M46 Patton and the Centurion Mk 3. The Swedish army decided to buy the Centurion, but Britain was unwilling to sell the tanks immediately due to the Korean War. As a result, the Swedish army began considering French-built tanks, notably the AMX-13. However, in late 1952, the British army agreed to sell Sweden 80 Centurion Mk 3 tanks with the order fulfilled 1953-1954. After testing with Swedish specialists, the first 80 Centurion Mk 3s were delivered to Sweden as the Strv 81 - these tanks were virtually identical to the British version.

In 1955, Sweden ordered an additional 160 Centurion Mk 3s, this time with modifications to the gun barrel to reduce fumes reentering the turret after firing. This made for a total of 240 Strv 81s in Swedish service, replacing the highly obsolete Strv m/41 and m/42 tanks of the wartime era. The Strv 81s were later complemented by the Strv 101s, which were British-built Centurion Mk 10s. Together, the Swedish Centurions served for a long time in Swedish service, later variants serving until 2001 when they were replaced by the variants of the German Leopard 2.

Media

Skins
Images

See also

Main article: Centurion (Family)
Vehicles equipped with the same chassis
Related development
Similar role vehicles

External links

Bibliography


Department of Tank Design
Medium Tanks 
Sherman Firefly  Sherman Firefly · Sherman IC "Trzyniec"
MBTs 
Centurion  Centurion Mk 1 · Centurion Mk.2 · Centurion Mk 3 · Centurion Action X · Centurion Mk.5 AVRE · Centurion Mk 10
Challenger*  Challenger Mk.2 · Challenger Mk.3 · Challenger DS
Tank Destroyers 
Achilles  Achilles · Achilles (65 Rg.)
Centurion-based  Conway · FV4005
Export 
Sherman Firefly  Sherman Ic · ▄Sherman Vc
Centurion  Centurion Mk.5/1 · Strv 81 · Strv 81 (RB 52) · ▄Strv 81 (RB 52) · Strv 101 · Strv 104** · Strv 105** · Sho't
See also  US Ordnance Department · Israeli Ordnance Corps · Vickers-Armstrongs Limited
  *By successor, the Military Vehicles and Engineering Establishment
  **Swedish modernizations incorporating innovations from the Israeli Sho't Kals.

Sweden medium tanks
Strv m/42  Lago I · Strv m/42 EH · Ikv 73 · Strv m/42 DT · Pvkv IV
Centurion derivatives  Strv 81 · Strv 81 (RB 52) · Strv 101 · Strv 104 · Strv 105
Strv 103  Strv 103-0 · Strv 103A · Strv 103С
Strv 121/122  Strv 121 · Christian II · Strv 122A · Strv 122B PLSS · Strv 122B+
Other  Sherman III/IV · T 80 U
Finland 
WWII  ▄T-28 · ▄T-34 · ▄Pz.IV · ▄T-34-85
Post War  ▄Comet I · ▄Charioteer Mk VII · ▄T-54 · ▄T-55M · ▄T-72M1 · ▄Leopard 2A4 · ▄Leopard 2A6
Norway  Leopard 1A5NO2