ZTZ99A

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A-10A Thunderbolt (Early)
This page is about the Chinese MBT ZTZ99A. For other versions, see ZTZ99 (Family).
ZTZ99A
cn_ztz_99a.png
GarageImage ZTZ99A.jpg
ZTZ99A
AB RB SB
11.7 11.7 11.7
Class:
Research:400 000 Specs-Card-Exp.png
Purchase:1 080 000 Specs-Card-Lion.png
Show in game

Description

The ZTZ99A (Chinese: ZTZ99A式主战坦克; industry code WZ1001; erroneously known as ZTZ99A2 before official ratification in the late 2010s) currently serves as the spearhead of the PLAGF armored corps and has been their most advanced tank since the 2010s. The plans for a true 3rd generation MBT emerged during the development of the WZ123 program, as the PLAGF recognized the need for a new tank capable of effectively countering NATO and Russian tanks in the future. This led to the initiation of the WZ1001 program, which aimed to equip the new tank with advanced features such as a new smoothbore gun, FCS, and powerplant by the early 2000s. Through a series of prototype iterations, one particular design from the WZ1001 program emerged as the chosen configuration for the new MBT. It was officially named ZTZ99A and made its first appearance during the VJ Day parade in September 2015. The ZTZ99A has become an iconic piece of equipment for the PLAGF, representing a departure from the low-profile design of previous tanks.

Introduced in Update "Danger Zone", it is the most advanced MBT and the second newest tank (after the ZTQ15) in service with the PLAGF. The ZTZ99A deviates from the Warsaw Pact-style low-profile design, featuring a larger turret and a new powerpack while maintaining similar protection levels to its predecessor, the ZTZ99-III. With its array of new features, players can harness the latest Chinese tank technologies, benefiting from the tank's impressive mobility to effectively engage and eliminate enemy forces.

General info

Survivability and armour

ERA
Effective action against the cumulative ammunition
Composite armour
Balanced protection against all types of ammunition
Smoke grenades
Creation of a smoke screen in front of the vehicle
ESS
Creation of a smoke screen in the direction of movement of the vehicle
LWS
Notifies about the vehicle's exposure to laser emissions
Self-entrenching equipment
Creation of ramparts and trenches in soft ground
Armourfront / side / back
Hull70 / 50 / 45
Turret85 / 60 / 35
Crew3 people
Visibility75 %

Though it shares the number 99 in its name, the ZTZ99A in fact has very little technological relationship to previous ZTZ99s. The ZTZ99A has a completely new design with a higher overall profile to previous tanks comparable to NATO tanks. It features an arrow-shaped composite armour block and new FY-5 ERA with up to 250 mm KE protection covering the turret. In case of top-down missiles, the new FY-1D1 ERA covering the top of turret can mitigate some of the damage. But as for the hull, since the design requirement was for equivalent protection to previous ZTZ99s, aside from the UFP armour itself, there's only FY-4 covering the UFP as well as the sides of the turret.

Another major difference is that the driver is moved to the right side of the hull (from the enemy's perspective), if opponents aren't able differentiate between the 99A and other 99s, it is very likely that shots hitting the UFP will prove fruitless. To say at least, aside from the headlights on the UFP, LFP and the mantlet, the ZTZ99A will have a better protection at its frontal arc than its predecessors.

Armour type:

  • Rolled homogeneous armour (hull, turret, engine vents, optics shield)
  • Cast homogeneous armour (gun mantlet, driver hatch)
  • Rubber-fabric screens (side skirts)
  • Structural steel (slat armour)
Armour Front (Slope angle) Sides Rear Roof
Hull 20 mm (70°) Upper glacis
60 + 20 mm (54°) Lower glacis
30 mm (12°) Driver hatch
80 mm Top
20 mm (28°) Bottom
45 mm (0°-47°)
10 mm (0°-65°) Engine vent
30 mm (88°)
20 mm Rear
Turret 20 mm (23°-68°) Turret cheeks
40-310 mm (26°-70°) Gun mantlet
50-60 + 10 mm
130 mm Turret ring
35 mm 30 mm
50 mm Rear
20 mm Optics shield
Cupola 30 mm (89°)
Composite armour Frontal effective protection
Hull Upper glacis (ERA counted):
600-900 mm Kinetic / 1,200-1,900 mm Chemical
Turret Turret cheeks (ERA counted):
750-1,000 mm Kinetic / 1,200-1,700 mm Chemical
Upper gun mantlet (ERA counted):
500-650 mm Kinetic / 600-1,200 mm Chemical
Lower Gun mantlet:
200-550 mm Kinetic / 300-600 mm Chemical
Explosive reactive armour Front (Slope angle) Sides Roof
Hull Upper glacis:
FY-4 (67°, 70°, 81°):
180 mm Kinetic / 550 mm Chemical
N/A N/A
Turret Upper turret cheeks, gun mantlet:
FY-5 (67°, 70°, 81°):
250 mm Kinetic / 600 mm Chemical
Lower turret cheeks:
FY-5 (22-26°):
250 mm Kinetic / 600 mm Chemical
Front:
FY-5 (3°):
250 mm Kinetic / 600 mm Chemical
Slat armour:
FY-4:
50 mm Kinetic / 350 mm Chemical
FY-1D1:
30 mm Kinetic / 300 mm Chemical

Notes:

  • Suspension wheels, tracks, and underbody are 20 mm thick.
  • Side skirts are 8 mm thick, and slat armour on the turret sides and rear is 10 mm thick.
  • There is a 5 mm thick internal RHA screen separating the crew compartment from the engine compartment.
  • A log placed at the rear of the hull is 100 mm thick.

Mobility

Speedforward / back
AB84 / 38 km/h
RB and SB76 / 35 km/h
Number of gears12 forward
6 back
Weight55.0 t
Engine power
AB2 862 hp
RB and SB1 500 hp
Power-to-weight ratio
AB52.0 hp/t
RB and SB27.3 hp/t

The efforts of Chinese armoured vehicle designers in the first decade of 21st century have finally ripened - ZTZ99A sports a new powerpack consists of the NORINCO Shaanxi 12V150HB-1 diesel engine and CH1000 transmission. With 1,500 hp power output when spaded and having a DCT transmission, it is the fastest MBT in the game at 75 km/h and has a -34 km/h reverse; unprecedented for any Warsaw Pact or Chinese tank. The new transmission also makes ZTZ99A a huge but nimble tank in terms of its turning radius, and vastly improves its reaction time to enemies or in case of a quick retreat.

Game Mode Max Speed (km/h) Weight (tons) Engine power (horsepower) Power-to-weight ratio (hp/ton)
Forward Reverse Stock Upgraded Stock Upgraded
Arcade 84 38 55 2,325 2,862 42.27 52.04
Realistic 76 35 1,327 1,500 24.13 27.27

Modifications and economy

Repair costBasic → Reference
AB4 235 → 6 932 Sl icon.png
RB4 112 → 6 731 Sl icon.png
SB5 208 → 8 525 Sl icon.png
Total cost of modifications282 700 Rp icon.png
471 000 Sl icon.png
Talisman cost3 100 Ge icon.png
Crew training310 000 Sl icon.png
Experts1 080 000 Sl icon.png
Aces2 200 Ge icon.png
Research Aces1 280 000 Rp icon.png
Reward for battleAB / RB / SB
150 / 190 / 210 % Sl icon.png
250 / 250 / 250 % Rp icon.png
Modifications
Mobility Protection Firepower
Mods new tank traks.png
Tracks
Research:
15 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
23 000 Sl icon.png
390 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank suspension.png
Suspension
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
22 000 Sl icon.png
360 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank break.png
Brake System
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
22 000 Sl icon.png
360 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank filter.png
Filters
Research:
15 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
23 000 Sl icon.png
390 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank transmission.png
Transmission
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
22 000 Sl icon.png
360 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank engine.png
Engine
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
22 000 Sl icon.png
360 Ge icon.png
Mods tank tool kit.png
Improved Parts
Research:
4 500 Rp icon.png
Cost:
23 000 Sl icon.png
390 Ge icon.png
Mods dozer blade.png
Dozer Blade
Research:
15 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
23 000 Sl icon.png
390 Ge icon.png
Mods extinguisher.png
Improved FPE
Research:
4 200 Rp icon.png
Cost:
22 000 Sl icon.png
360 Ge icon.png
Mods tank reinforcement cn.png
Crew Replenishment
Research:
15 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
23 000 Sl icon.png
390 Ge icon.png
Mods thermal sight.png
NVD
Research:
15 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
23 000 Sl icon.png
390 Ge icon.png
Mods engine smoke screen system.png
ESS
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
22 000 Sl icon.png
360 Ge icon.png
Mods smoke screen.png
Smoke grenade
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
22 000 Sl icon.png
360 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank horizontal aiming.png
Horizontal Drive
Research:
15 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
23 000 Sl icon.png
390 Ge icon.png
Mods tank cannon.png
Adjustment of Fire
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
22 000 Sl icon.png
360 Ge icon.png
Mods counterMeasures.png
LWS/LR
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
22 000 Sl icon.png
360 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank vertical aiming.png
Elevation Mechanism
Research:
15 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
23 000 Sl icon.png
390 Ge icon.png
Mods tank ammo.png
125mm_china_ATGM_ammo_pack
Research:
15 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
23 000 Sl icon.png
390 Ge icon.png
Mods art support.png
Artillery Support
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
22 000 Sl icon.png
360 Ge icon.png
Mods tank ammo.png
125mm_china_DTW_APDS_FS_ammo_pack
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
22 000 Sl icon.png
360 Ge icon.png
Mods tank ammo.png
125mm_china_HE_VT_ammo_pack
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
22 000 Sl icon.png
360 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.
Thermal imager
Allows to see thermal radiation in the infrared range day and night

Main armament

125 mm Type 99A cannon
Two-plane stabilizer
Reduces the swing of the gun in two planes while moving
Autoloader
Automatically feeds projectiles into the breech. The speed does not depend on the skills of the loader
Ammunition39 rounds
First-order22 rounds
Reload7.1 s
Vertical guidance-5° / 13°
Main article: Type 99A (125 mm)

The new ZPT99A gun on ZTZ99A is similar to previous ZPT98 gun, both gun share very similar characteristics with high muzzle velocity, straight ballistics, and feature an autoloader. Although the turret traverse speed hinders some of its combat capabilities, it is certainly an improvement to previous tanks.

125 mm Type 99A Turret rotation speed (°/s) Reloading rate (seconds)
Mode Capacity Vertical Horizontal Stabilizer Stock Upgraded Full Expert Aced Autoloader
Arcade 39 -5°/+13° ±180° Two-plane 36.2 50.1 60.8 67.2 71.5 7.10
Realistic 22.6 26.6 32.3 35.7 38.0

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
DTP-125 HEATFS 480 480 480 480 480 480
DTB-125 HE 45 45 45 45 45 45
125-I APFSDS 466 464 458 450 442 434
DTC10-125 APFSDS 577 575 566 555 544 533
GP125 ATGM (tandem) 850 850 850 850 850 850
DTB12-125 HE-VT* 43 43 43 43 43 43
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%
DTP-125 HEATFS 905 18 0.05 0.1 2.62 65° 72° 77°
DTB-125 HE 850 23 0.3 0.1 5.46 79° 80° 81°
125-I APFSDS 1,730 4.02 - - - 78° 80° 81°
DTC10-125 APFSDS 1,770 4.85 - - - 78° 80° 81°
Missile details
Ammunition Type of
warhead
Velocity
(m/s)
Range
(m)
Projectile
mass (kg)
Fuse delay
(m)
Fuse sensitivity
(mm)
Explosive mass
(TNT equivalent) (kg)
Ricochet
0% 50% 100%
GP125 ATGM (tandem) 445 5,000 17.2 0.4 0.01 5.72 80° 82° 90°
Proximity-fused shell details
Ammunition Type of
warhead
Velocity
(m/s)
Projectile
mass (kg)
Fuse delay
(m)
Fuse sensitivity
(mm)
Arming
distance (m)
Trigger
radius (m)
Explosive mass
(TNT equivalent) (kg)
Ricochet
0% 50% 100%
DTB12-125 HE-VT* 850 23.2 0.3 0.1 500 7 5.3 79° 80° 81°

DTP-125; HEATFS - The stock DTP-125 HEAT-FS round has the typical penetration of 480 mm shared by Western MBTs with 120 mm guns, but this is not enough to deal with tanks with composite armour, which are the norm at top tiers. The post-penetration damage is also disappointing. Only use it as an interim shell before APFSDS is unlocked. With 2.19 kg of explosive mass, it is sometimes capable of knocking out light targets like SPAAs and light tanks with overpressure damage, so keep an eye out for those.

DTB-125; HE - The stock DTB-125 HE shell is one of the strongest of any top-rank MBT. It can actually cause more damage to MBTs than the HEAT-FS round if fired at turret rings, hull roofs, and turret cupolas, due to overpressure damage. Well placed impacts have a good chance of transmitting the shockwave into the crew compartment and knocking the target out instantly, even against the toughest MBTs like the Strv 122A. It helps to keep a few HE rounds around even after APFSDS is unlocked as they excel at causing pressure damage to light targets.

125-I APFSDS - The stock 125-I APFSDS round is a shell with pen of 466mm . Though it first appeared on the ZTZ96, it is still used by the latest ZTZ99A and eases the stock grind considerably. It has very similar flat penetration and superior angled penetration to the 3BM42 "Mango" round used by Soviet tanks and can penetrate most contemporary opponents through at least the lower front plate and gun breech.

DTC10-125 APFSDS - Waiting as a tier 4 modification is the DTC10-125 APFSDS round, a high mass and high velocity shell with only slightly worse performance compared to 3BM60 on the T-80BVM. This will be the go-to round for the ZTZ99A and most targets at the rank are unlikely to withstand a penetrating shot from this shell.

GP125; ATGM (tandem) - The ZTZ99A also has access to the GP125 tandem ATGM, which performs identically to its Soviet counterpart. If players find their darts are not effective against well-armoured targets, the sufficient velocity and penetration can ruin the day of such vehicles, as well as helicopters if they don't evade the incoming missile.

DTB12-125; HE-VT* - DTB12-125 is also available as a tier 4 modification; this is one of the few HE-VT shells available for a top-tier MBT. This shell turns ZTZ99A into a 125 mm anti-aircraft gun thanks to its generous explosive filler, any aircraft that are within its 7 m trigger radius will not have a good day. Although it has lesser explosive content, the VT fuse is not triggered by ground vehicles so it can serve as an alternative for the stock HE-FS as well.

Ammo racks

Full
ammo
Ammo
type
1st
rack empty
2nd
rack empty
3rd
rack empty
4th
rack empty
5th
rack empty
6th
rack empty
7th
rack empty
Visual
discrepancy
39 Projectiles
Propellants
37 (+2)
39 (+0)
34 (+5)
38 (+1)
31 (+8)
37 (+2)
27 (+12)
28 (+11)
23 (+16)
26 (+13)
1 (+38)
23 (+16)
N/A
1 (+38)
No

Like its predecessors, to ensure the best survivability, only bring 23 shells at your disposal (22 in autoloader and 1 preloaded shell); any more shells will have to be moved into the autoloader before being able to fire and significantly increase the risk of ammunition cook-off in case of any penetrating shots.

Machine guns

Ammunition600 rounds
Belt capacity150 rounds
Reload5.0 s
Fire rate600 shots/min
Vertical guidance-6° / 85°
5.8 mm QJT machine gun (coaxial)
Ammunition2 600 rounds
Belt capacity200 rounds
Reload8.0 s
Fire rate801 shots/min
12.7 mm QJC88A
Mount Capacity (Belt) Fire rate Vertical Horizontal
Pintle 600 (150) 600 -6°/+85° ±180°
5.8 mm QJT
Mount Capacity (Belt) Fire rate Vertical Horizontal
Coaxial 2,600 (200) 801 - -

Usage in battles

As the spearhead of the current PLAGF armoured corps, thanks to the vastly improved mobility compared to its predecessors and new technologies integrated onto ZTZ99A, it has better handling than its predecessors and is comparable to NATO vehicles in terms of its power-to-weight ratio and top speed. The newly designed tank also has very similar protection to its predecessors while parts of its turrets are replaced by brand new FY-5 ERA blocks and the top is covered by FY-1DA ERA blocks, improving its survivability against top-down attacks. However, the mantlet is still lightly protected compared to other MBTs at its rank, a penetrating shot is now even more likely to cause a breech knockout or even lethal damage to the gun crews. In terms of the hull, although it was remarked to have the protection of a ZTZ99 and the driver has been moved to the left side, the age-old problem of a huge LPF and less protected area over the driver can certainly ruin a player's day at top tier. So it is better to keep the ZTZ99A away from heated battlefields or make sure to cover the LFP and mantlet as much as possible. In case of complicated terrains, either avoid them or quickly dig for cover with the dozer blade modification.

In the firepower department, ZTZ99A also comes with a wide variety of shells; the darts, although having somewhat below average penetration, are overall still sufficient enough to knock-out most western vehicles aside from Strv 122; when facing Russians though, in case players are not confident in the darts, the GP125 tandem ATGM is an alternative to melt through Russian MBTs. While both HE shells seemed similar, the stock DTB-125 is still among the most hard-hitting HE shell at top tier while the new DTB12-125 is a VT shell, meaning that any aircraft that comes close to its 7 m triggering range will have a very bad day thanks to its explosive content. So bringing a variety of shells is viable to make the ZTZ99A more versatile or sometimes have the capability to deliver a last-ditch strike back.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Great manoeuvrability
    • Very high top speed for an MBT
    • -34 km/h reverse speed, vastly improving its odds to retreat
    • Dual-flow transmission and shorter chassis enables a tighter turning radius
  • Powerful guns with variety of shells ranging from darts up to ATGM
  • Very similar sturdy protection to its predecessors
  • Faster horizontal and vertical traverse speed for the gun

Cons:

  • Still suffers from a huge LFP and insufficient mantlet protection
  • Has the infamous "NATO hump" that hinders firing arc at rear angles
  • Thin side armour, can be penetrated by IFVs and aircraft
  • Relatively large profile compared to previous PLAGF tanks
  • DTC10-125 has somewhat low penetration for a top tier shell
  • Low reload rate at top tier

History

As the previous WZ123/ZTZ99 program had been certified, the Central Military Commission only deemed ZTZ99s as the placeholder before their ultimate aim - a 3rd generation MBT - was achieved. Soon after the first batches of ZTZ99-III rolled off the production line, the new designer, Mao Ming (毛明) of Institute 201 took over from his mentor Zhu Yusheng (祝榆生) and started on his new design of MBT - WZ1001.

The earliest known prototypes consisted of 3 WZ1001s which had different designs: the first was based on a ZTZ99, installing a brand new turret and reworking the rear side of the chassis to fit a new power pack; the second one looked similar to what the certified WZ1001 would be; while the third installed an experimental 125 mm L/54 gun based on the former. These prototypes were first spotted in 2006 and their efforts for a new tank were then certified in 2010, thus named ZTZ10 then ZTZ99A due to unknown reasons.

The earliest batches of the pre-production run ZTZ99As were spotted in the early 2010s equipping an experimental millimeter-wave IFF radar, known simply as New MBT (新型主战坦克) or by the erroneous name ZTZ99A2 (or 99大改) to observers. The debate of the name settled down when it was first shown during the 70th V-J Day Parade in Beijing as the TJ1XX column during the parade; as later batches started to be manufactured in 2016, those in 90th PLA Day Parade at Zhurihe Base (朱日和基地; a Fort Owen-like exercise ground for PLA troops) and during the 70th National Day Parade had slightly different designs with the removal of the MMW radar.

Devblog

After the ZTZ99 entered service in the early 2000s, a number of technological advancements took place in tank design. As a result, Chinese engineers decided to substantially upgrade the ZTZ99 MBT. By 2011, a number of improvements were made to the ZTZ99 in order to bring its capabilities on par with modern MBTs of other nations. The upgrades included most notably a new arrow-shaped turret with substantially improved protection as well as a more powerful 1,500 hp diesel engine and a hydromechanical transmission to name a few.

After entering service, it’s estimated that around 600 ZTZ99As have been manufactured. Being the most advanced MBT in service with the PLA to date, the ZTZ99A represents the armored spearhead of the Chinese mechanized units.

Media

Skins
Videos

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


China North Industries Corporation (中国兵器工业集团有限公司)
Light Tanks/IFV  ZBD86
Type 62  ▂Type 62 · Type 62
Type 63  Type 63 · ZTS63
Main Battle Tanks 
WZ120  Type 59 · ZTZ59A · ZTZ59D1
WZ121  Type 69 · Type 69-IIa** · T-69 II G**
WZ122  ZTZ88B · ZTZ88A · ZTZ96 · ZTZ96A · ZTZ96A (P)
WZ123  ZTZ99-II · ZTZ99-III
WZ1001  WZ1001(E) LCT · ZTZ99A
Export MBT  MBT2000** · VT-4A1**
Tank Destroyers  AFT09 · PTL02 · WMA301** · PTZ89 · ZLT11
SPH  PLZ83
SPAA  ZSD63/PG87* · WZ305** · PGZ09 · PGZ04A
  *Field modifications
  **Export vehicles

China medium tanks
ZTZ59  Type 59 · ZTZ59A · ZTZ59D1
ZTZ69  Type 69 · Type 69-IIa · T-69 II G
ZTZ88/96  ZTZ88A · ZTZ88B
  ZTZ96 · ZTZ96A · ZTZ96A (P)
ZTZ99  ZTZ99-II · ZTZ99-III
ZTZ99A  ZTZ99A · WZ1001(E) LCT
Export series  MBT2000 · VT-4A1
ROC  CM11
Other  Т-34-85 Gai · Object 122MT "MC"
Japan  ␗Chi-Ha · ␗Chi-Ha Kai
USA  ␗M4A4 · ␗M4A4 (1st PTG) · ␗M4A1 (75) W · ␗M48A1 · ␗M60A3 TTS
USSR  ␗T-34 (1943) · ␗Т-34-85 (S-53) · T-34-85 No.215 · Т-62 №545