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This page is about the Soviet light tank T-26E. For other variants, see T-26 (Family).


GarageImage T-26E.jpg

The T-26E is a premium gift rank I Soviet light tank with a battle rating of 1.3 (AB/RB/SB). It was introduced during the Closed Beta Test for Ground Forces before Update 1.41. An up-armoured version of the T-26, it stands a better chance deflecting enemy shells off its front armour when angled correctly.

General info

Survivability and armour

Armour type:

  • Rolled homogeneous armour
Armour Front Sides Rear Roof
Hull 30 + 15 mm (22°) Front plate
7 mm (64-80°) Front glacis
15 mm (6-52°) Lower glacis
30 + 15 mm (24-25°) Top
15 mm (0°) Bottom
30 + 15 mm (1°) Top
30 + 15 mm (12°) Bottom
6 mm
Turret 30 + 15 mm (12-33°) Turret front
30 + 15 mm (5-44°) Gun mantlet
30 + 15 mm (17-19°) 30 + 15 mm (17°) 10 mm


  • Suspension wheel are 10 mm thick while tracks are 15 mm thick.
  • The 30 mm applique armour does not cover the entire area on the hull, so there are exposed areas vulnerable to enemy fire.


Game Mode Max Speed (km/h) Weight (tons) Engine power (horsepower) Power-to-weight ratio (hp/ton)
Forward Reverse Stock Upgraded Stock Upgraded
Arcade 34 4 12 141 174 11.75 14.5
Realistic 31 4 80 91 6.67 7.58


Main armament

Main article: 20-K (45 mm)
45 mm 20-K Turret rotation speed (°/s) Reloading rate (seconds)
Mode Capacity Vertical Horizontal Stabilizer Stock Upgraded Full Expert Aced Stock Full Expert Aced
Arcade 205 -6°/+22° ±180° N/A 15.23 21.08 25.60 28.31 30.12 3.77 3.34 3.07 2.90
Realistic 9.52 11.20 13.60 15.04 16.00


Penetration statistics
Ammunition Type of
Penetration @ 0° Angle of Attack (mm)
10 m 100 m 500 m 1,000 m 1,500 m 2,000 m
BR-240 APHEBC 70 68 59 50 42 35
BR-240SP AP 73 71 62 52 44 37
Shell details
Ammunition Type of
Mass (kg)
Fuse delay
Fuse sensitivity
Explosive Mass
(TNT equivalent) (g)
0% 50% 100%
BR-240 APHEBC 760 1.43 1.2 9 29.26 48° 63° 71°
BR-240SP AP 757 1.43 N/A N/A N/A 47° 60° 65°

Ammo racks

rack empty
rack empty
rack empty
rack empty
rack empty
rack empty
rack empty
rack empty
rack empty
rack empty
rack empty
rack empty
rack empty
205 202 (+3) 197 (+8) 187 (+18) 177 (+28) 167 (+38) 157 (+48) 139 (+66) 121 (+84) 103 (+102) 79 (+126) 61 (+144) 29 (+176) (+204) No
Ammo racks of the T-26E

Turret empty: 157 (+48)

Machine guns

Main article: DT (7.62 mm)
7.62 mm DT
Mount Capacity (Belt) Fire rate Vertical Horizontal
Coaxial 1,890 (63) 600 N/A N/A

Usage in battles

The main purpose of the tank is a diversion. In battle, when a close friendly player is attacked by an enemy, go behind a rock that has the size of the tank's hull, then shoot the target.

  • When it's a tank destroyer, shoot its tracks to make it immobile
  • When it's a medium tank (like the T-28 ), shoot its horizontal turret drive (The ring below its turret), then shoot the tracks, to make it defenceless.

In summary, it is a good tank, it is friendly to new players, but it is not recommended to players above Rank II.


Tier Mobility Protection Firepower
I Tracks Parts Horizontal Drive BR-240SP
II Suspension Brake System FPE Adjustment of Fire
III Filters Crew Replenishment Elevation Mechanism
IV Transmission Engine Artillery Support
This is a premium vehicle: all modifications are unlocked on purchase

Pros and cons


  • High rate of fire
  • High turret armour
  • Good for gathering SL in low ranks
  • Its penetration is effective against almost all enemies in rank 1 and II, there are exceptions like StuG III A
  • Bonuses of a premium vehicle


  • Low hull armour
  • A weak spot in the hull box, the driver's hatch - keep this away from enemy fire
  • Slow for a scout, but agile
  • Somewhat usable at Rank II but useless in Rank III or higher
  • Easily distinguishable Standard camouflage & shape



The T-26 light tank in Soviet service, while making up a major part of the Soviet armoured forces, proved quite under-armoured when against newer anti-tank weapons as it was an old 1931 design. The Spanish Civil War showed some of these defects in the T-26, but it wasn't until the Winter War against Finland that proved that the majority of light anti-tank weapons could destroy the T-26.

In order to remedy this, Factory No. 174 in Leningrad designed a new variant for the T-26 utilizing applique armour on the hull and turret. This variant was dubbed the T-26E (E for ekranirovanny or "screened"), which added 30-40 mm of armour to the original armour plates via bolting and welding. All of the single-turreted T-26 models made during the Winter War period was given this modification and testings proved that the additional armour made the T-26 much more resilient against light anti-tank weapons. A total of 89 T-26Es were made during and after the Winter War, with 27 single-turret models made from the factory, 27 more as flamethrower-models, and 15 single-turret models were made in workshops near the front-line. After the war, 20 more single-turret variants were made and delivered for tank units. Many more modified T-26s were made during the course of World War II.

Combat usage

These T-26Es were used in the Winter War against Finland and the extra armour over the normal T-26 variants made it impenetrable to Finnish light anti-tank weapons. However, the extra armour added to the T-26 raised the weight from 9.6 tons to 12 tons, thus a larger strain on the chassis, engine, and suspension so the driver was advised to drive the tank in low gear and must take extra care to not overload these systems.

During World War II, applique armour of varying thickness from 15–40 mm was added onto many different T-26s in large quantities ranging to hundreds in the front-lines to fight back the German invasion. Such areas where these modifications took place in Leningrad, Odessa, Moscow, and Sevastopol in the period of 1941–1942 during battles and sieges taking place in or near these cities. However, compared to the modifications made during the Winter War, the World War II T-26Es were more crude and rough that the gun mask on the tank was unable to move, and the applique armour was only added on the front.

No known combat records exist for these modified T-26s in World War II and may have been simply been added as performances done by regular T-26s, but due to the obsolesce of the T-26 models compared to the German Panzer III and Panzer IV, many can be presumed to be lost in combat if not due to mechanical failures.

In-game description

The Spanish Civil War showed that the T-26 tank's armour no longer protected it from new low-calibre anti-tank weapons. So in 1937-1938, strengthening the tank's armour became an immediate concern. Designers at factory No. 174 decided to simply introduce a conical-shaped turret and to slope the armour plates on the underturret box. The armour's thickness remained unchanged, as the undercarriage structure, already pushed to its limits as it was, prevented the tank's mass from being increased. The issue of increasing the light tank's armour became a prominent concern again by the Winter War beginning on 30 November 1939.

The first battles showed that Finland's anti-tank weapons easily destroyed the tanks. On the 20th of December, work began on up-armouring T-26 tanks with 30-40 mm thick armour plates at factory No. 174. On 30 December 1939, firing tests were carried out on the first up-armoured T-26 at the factory's ballistic range, with positive results. The vehicle withstood fire from a 45 mm anti-tank cannon at a distance of 400-500 m.

Having successfully passed testing, the up-armoured design was accepted as a success and the Leningrad Kirovsk factory equipped around 70 tanks with the additional armour. The additional armour was attached to the turret, underturret box, side and front of the tank with screw rivets and electric arc welds. The gun mantlet was also up-armoured. The tank's mass increased to 12 tonnes, which meant the engine and suspension were overloaded. The tank could now only move in low gear and had an increased risk of breaking down.

T-26Es were used at the beginning of the Great Patriotic War. Several vehicles remained in service on the Leningrad front until 1943. Captured light tanks of this type were used by the Wehrmacht and Waffen SS in 1941-1942.


Excellent additions to the article would be video guides, 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

Paste links to sources and external resources, such as:

  • topic on the official game forum;
  • encyclopedia page on the tank;
  • other literature.

USSR light tanks
T-26  T-26 · T-26 (1st Gv.T.Br.) · T-26E · T-26-4
BT  BT-5 · RBT-5 · BT-7 · BT-7 TD · BT-7 (F-32) · BT-7M
BMP  BMP-1 · BMP-2 · BMP-2M · BMP-3
Other  T-50 · T-60 · T-70 · T-80 · T-126
  BA-11 · PT-76B · Object 685 · Object 906
China  ▂Type 62

USSR premium ground vehicles
Light tanks  BA-11 · RBT-5 · BT-7 (F-32) · T-26 (1st Gv.T.Br.) · T-26E · T-126
Medium tanks  T-34 (Prototype) · T-34 (1st Gv.T.Br.) · T-34E · T-34-57 (1943) · T-34-85E · T-34-100 · T-44-122 · T-55AM-1 · T-72AV (TURMS-T)
  ▂M3 Medium · ▂M4A2 · ▂T-III · ▂T-V · ▂МК-IX "Valentine"
Heavy tanks  SMK · T-35 · ▂MK-II "Matilda" · KV-1E · KV-2 (1940) · KV-2 (ZiS-6) · KV-122 · KV-220 · IS-2 "Revenge" · IS-6 · T-10A
Tank destroyers  BM-13N · BM-8-24 · SU-57 · SU-76D · SU-76M (5th Gv.Kav.Corps) · SU-85A · SU-100Y · SU-122P · Object 120
SPAA  ▂Phòng không T-34 · ZUT-37