The ZTZ96A is a rank VI Chinese medium tank with a battle rating of 9.7 (AB/RB/SB). It was introduced in Update 1.97 "Viking Fury".
A much-improved tank over ZTZ96 makes it more competitive especially at higher tier battles. The ZTZ-96A features a strong turret that is impenetrable to many APFSDS rounds, added ERA on upper glacis that can resist hits (both kinetic and chemical-based hits) and much needed thermal sights.
Survivability and armour
The design of the turret is a further drastic departure from previous Chinese and Soviet design of dome turret. ZTZ96A have an angular arrow shape design reminiscing of the German Leopard 2A5, however, the armour stops short at the coax gun port area providing a weak spot for the enemy to exploit. Shooting this area does not usually result in an instant kill as it will only disable the gun breech and take out the commander or gunner depending on which side is shot. On the sides of the turret, a noticeable addition is a row of FY-4 ERA on the bustle rack. In the game, this additional armour doesn't yield much use as most of the time the shots are not from the sides of the turret but rather on the side of the hull where the carousel style autoloader is a well known weak spot that will result in instant ammo explosion.
As for the hull, the added FY-4 ERA on the upper glacis elevated the survivability of the tank. Even a direct shot from most APFSDS can be resisted.
The ZTZ96A have a much-improved armour over predecessor due to strengthened armour in critical areas of the tank, therefore, improving the survivability but still suffers from the same weakness as predecessor and other soviet tanks.
|Game Mode||Max Speed (km/h)||Weight (tons)||Engine power (horsepower)||Power-to-weight ratio (hp/ton)|
The ZTZ96A makes up for its drawbacks in mobility with a superb gun. The 125 mm Type 88C smoothbore gun is capable of firing APFSDS, HE and HEAT-FS ammunition. For its battle rating, the 125-I shell performs very well, offering 466 mm of flat penetration at point-blank and dropping only to 434 mm at 2 kilometres. It's angled performance is exceptionally good at 269 mm at 60 degrees, outperforming even the best Soviet APFSDS round, 3BM42 whose angled penetration is only 248 mm. For reference, the 125-I performs comparably to Western long-rod sabot rounds such as DM33. The HEAT-FS round is nothing special with a standard 480 mm of penetration that is only really effective at destroying lightly armoured vehicles such as SPAA. The HE round is of the Soviet-style, packing a whopping 5.4 kg of TNT equivalent that can deal devastating damage against Western tanks' weak spots of the hull and turret roof and turret ring. It's recommended to entirely ditch the HEAT-FS for HE as it arguably performs better in the anti-tank role, ironically.
Although the ZTZ96A uses a similar autoloader system to the T-72, its reload time of 7.5 seconds is slightly longer than the T-72's 7.1 seconds.
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 about how to use them and how to fill the ammunition storage. If there is no additional weaponry remove this subsection.
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 instead 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
Summarise and briefly evaluate the vehicle in terms of its characteristics and combat effectiveness. Mark its pros and cons in a bulleted list. Try not to use more than 6 points for each of the characteristics. Avoid using categorical definitions such as "bad", "good" and the like - use substitutions with softer forms such as "inadequate" and "effective".
- Same powerful gun with access to high-penetrating APFSDS as ZTZ96
- Autoloader reloads the cannon even when putting out fires or replacing crew members
- HE shell is currently the most powerful available to any high-rank MBT, can cripple or outright destroy enemies with a good shot
- Low profile
- Very strong turret cheeks armour
- Strong upper glacis armour
- Combinations of strong armour and very fast and high penetrating APFSDS makes it a good sniper
- Roof-mounted heavy machine gun is useful against aircraft and light targets
- Relatively-faster turret rotation speed, compared to contemporary Soviet tanks
- Thermal Sights
- Improved mobility over predecessor ZTZ-96
- Mobility is below average at its rank
- Autoloader carousel is a giant ammo rack
- Poor reverse speed
- Below average gun depression (-6°)
- Only 3 crew members
- No ATGM capability, unlike the T-64B and T-72B
- Relatively slow reload compared to other MBT
Describe the history of the creation and combat usage of the vehicle in more detail than in the introduction. If the historical reference turns out to be too long, take it to a separate article, taking a link to the article about the vehicle and adding a block "/History" (example: https://wiki.warthunder.com/(Vehicle-name)/History) and add a link to it here using the
main template. Be sure to reference text and sources by using
<ref></ref>, as well as adding them at the end of the article with
<references />. This section may also include the vehicle's dev blog entry (if applicable) and the in-game encyclopedia description (under
=== In-game description ===, also if applicable).
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;
- links to approximate analogues of other nations and research trees.
|China medium tanks|
|Type 59 · ZTZ59D1 · Type 69 · T-69 II G · ZTZ96 · ZTZ96A · ZTZ99|
|American||␗M4A4 · M4A4 (1st PTG) · ␗M4A1 (75) W · ␗M48A1 · M60A3 TTS · CM11|
|Soviet||␗T-34 (1943) · ␗Т-34-85 (S-53) · Т-34-85 Gai · T-34-85 No.215 · Т-62 №545|
|Japanese||␗Chi-Ha · ␗Chi-Ha Kai|