The T-80U is a rank VII Soviet medium tank with a battle rating of 10.7 (AB/RB/SB). It was introduced in Update 1.87 "Locked On".
Survivability and armour
The armour protection of the T-80U is exceptional, especially if the incoming round hits one of the contact-5 ERA plates. The strongest parts of the tank are the turret front and a majority of the upper front plate. Weak areas include the lower front plate, driver view port, and cannon breach area. These weak spots can be very difficult to hit from medium and further distance ranges and even more so if the T-80U is hull down.
Fuel tanks on either side of the driver can soak up some shrapnel and add to the overall survivability. However, as with all Russian auto-loaded MBTs, there are only three crew members so a well-placed shot is capable of causing a crew knock-out. It's also worth noting that the placement of the ammo rack, below the turret in a carousel-style setup, leaves the T-80U particularly vulnerable to side shots causing ammunition detonation. The protection of the T-80U is very similar to the T-64B in terms of the size and placement of the weak areas.
The T-80U also benefits from the typical low silhouette Russian tankers will be accustomed to, with the vehicle being significantly smaller than its competitors. This allows the T-80U to be hidden behind small terrain deformities which other MBTs would otherwise be visible.
The mobility of the T-80U is actually superior to the T-80B despite weighing three tons more. This is due to the improved engine inside the T-80U which has a stock engine power of 1,106 hp and goes up to 1,250 hp once the appropriate modules have been researched. It has a maximum speed of 69 km/h (43 mph) forward and 9.7 km/h (6 mph) in reverse. The one downside is the traverse in neutral, taking around 19 seconds for a full 360° spin, but this can be greatly reduced if the tank is already in at least in 3rd gear.
The T-80U is armed with the same 125 mm cannon found in the T-80B, with the 3BM42 round proving competitive against other Rank VII offerings. As with previous vehicles of the family, the main gun is auto-loaded, so the loss of a crew member does not affect the loading times and the 6.5-second loading speed is competitive when compared to the 120 mm guns on the Leopard 2A5 and M1A1 Abrams.
|125 mm 2A46M-1|
|Turret rotation speed (°/s)|
|Mode||Stock||Upgraded||Prior + Full crew||Prior + Expert qualif.||Prior + Ace qualif.|
|Reloading rate (seconds)|
|Stock||Prior + Full crew||Prior + Expert qualif.||Prior + Ace qualif.|
|Penetration in mm @ 0° Angle of Attack|
Mass in kg
|Explosive Mass in g(TNT equivalent):||Normalization At 30° from horizontal:||Ricochet:|
Only First Stage:28-20
Optics and night vision
The T-80U has two night vision modifications. The first modification "NVD" is unlocked at tier 3 and grants access to an image intensifier for each crew member. The second modification "NVD Upgrade" is unlocked at tier 4 and replaces the gunner's image intensifier with a thermal imager.
|Type of optic||Magnification||Night Vision Devices|
|Gunner's Sight||X3.6 - X12||1600 x 1200||9.0||High||500 x 300||Thermal imager unlocked by "NVD Upgrade" mod (tier 4), replaces image intensifier.|
|Commander's View||X6||1600 x 1200||9.0||High||Not Fitted||Image intensifier unlocked by "NVD" mod (tier 3)|
|Driver's View||X1||1600 x 1200||5.0||High||Not Fitted||Image intensifier unlocked by "NVD" mod (tier 3)|
|T-80U IR Searchlight|
|Max Range||Beam Width||Location / Notes|
|1,400 m||8.2°||Searchlight mounted on turret front, just right of the gun. Light moves up and down with main gun.|
|12.7 mm NSVT|
|Capacity (Belt capacity)||Fire rate
|7.62 mm PKT|
|Capacity (Belt capacity)||Fire rate
Usage in battles
Learning to use terrain to hide the lower front plate and hull if possible is key to surviving. Like any other tank at the top rank, do not let enemies see your side armour. This is especially true for the T-64/T-80 line since their ammo is stored vertically and makes it very easy to hit. Since the Russian MBTs are relatively small, you can also use teammates as cover.
The T-80U is a fantastic sniper due to the great penetration and small turret, so that is also a viable option as long as you keep your eyes open on your flanks. The most dangerous enemy to the T-80U are helicopters, although the Kontakt-5 will usually protect against one missile. However, it is still ERA, and will be blown off after it is detonated. Since the interior of the tank is so compact, this makes it easy for good pilots to knock you out in 2-3 rapid missile shots. To avoid helicopters, stay close to buildings or hide next to trees/large bushes and wait for an anti-air vehicle or plane to take it out. Another option is to use the ATGM or range finder to shoot down the enemy yourself.
Pros and cons
- Effective armour
- High penetrating round
- Good acceleration and speed
- Low silhouette - if you can find a sufficiently flat area behind a hilltop or a wide enough ditch, a hull-down T-80U is very hard to hit
- Its autoloader, as the other tanks in the T-64, -72 and -80 lines, ensures that ammunition will be loaded even when replacing crew, repairing, or extinguishing a fire
- Accurate gun, and its muzzle velocity combined with the laser rangefinder permits easy long range shots with little lead required to hit moving targets
- Gun-launched anti-tank guided missiles can be used as multipurpose munitions for tanks and helicopters alike
- Easy to hit weak spots at close range
- Poor survivability from side shots
- Relatively low reverse speed
- The cramped interior means that the tank is easily disabled if a shot penetrates
- ...and the spare ammunition not carried in the autoloader is distributed around the hull and turret - meaning a penetrating shot might ignite a round carried as a spare, setting off the carousel
Work on improving the existing T-80 MBT begun as early as the mid-1970s with the design bureau in Leningrad. Here, developers were responsible for the production of the T-80 and started working on a joint project to further enhance the T-80’s capabilities.
In the early 1980s, the first prototypes were being built and after extensive testing and design tweaking, the new tank was considered ready for production. The resultant tank was accepted by the Soviet military under the designation T-80U.
The T-80U received turret and upper frontal enhancements as part of its new construction along with being equipped with a second generation ERA protection system known as Kontakt-5. In contrast to the previous generation of dynamic protection, Kontakt-5 increased the tank's protection against HEAT and armour-piercing shells. The modifications also affected the armament of the tank - the T-80U is equipped with a new 1A45 fire control system and Reflex ICBM, which used more advanced 9M119 guided missiles. Subsequently, the tank was equipped with a new, more powerful GTD-1250 gas turbine engine which helped compensate for the increased weight of the vehicle and improved its dynamics.
The T-80U had been factory produced in Leningrad in 1987, but in 1989, its production was moved to Omsk. Work on upgrading the T-80 was carried out in Kharkov, but there, they constructed their own vehicle equipped with a diesel engine, which was designated ‘T-80UD’. The latter would evolve into further developed Ukrainian derivatives of the T-80.
T-80Us served with the Soviet military until the collapse of the Soviet Union in the late 1980s and have since continued serving with the Union’s successor states to this day. The vehicle also saw service abroad with some other countries as well, primarily with South Korea and Cyprus. Overall, around 700 T-80Us have been produced since 1985, but this vehicle has yet to be put into any actual combat situations.
- From Devblog
Excellent additions to the article would be video guides, screenshots from the game, and photos.
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;
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|USSR medium tanks|
|T-28||T-28 · T-28E · T-28 (1938)|
|T-34-76||T-34 (Prototype) · T-34 (1940) · T-34 (1941) · T-34 (1st Gv.T.Br.) · T-34 (1942) · T-34E STZ · T-34E|
|T-34-57||T-34-57 · T-34-57 (1943)|
|T-34-85||T-34-85 (D-5T) · T-34-85 · T-34-85E|
|T-44||T-44 · T-44-100 · T-44-122|
|T-54||T-54 (1947) · T-54 (1949) · T-54 (1951)|
|T-55||T-55A · T-55AM-1|
|T-62||T-62 · T-62M-1|
|T-64||T-64A (1971) · T-64B|
|T-72||T-72A · T-72AV (TURMS-T) · T-72B · T-72B (1989) · T-72B3|
|T-80||T-80B · T-80U · T-80BVM|
|Trophies/Lend-Lease||▂T-III · ▂T-V · ▂M3 Medium · ▂M4A2 · ▂МК-IX "Valentine"|