|M26AE4 Super Pershing|
Tigers wouldn't stand a chance!
|“|| Sir, I should remind you that these Super Pershings are on loan. The High Command is going to want them back. All of them.|
- Andrew Campbell, Colditz Castle
The M26AE1 Super Pershing is the only super-heavy tank to come out of the American armor base. The Super Pershings are prototype advanced versions of its predecessor; the mediocre, original M26 Pershings. The M26 Super Pershings are only available in the first mission of the campaign and can only be used buying the Super Pershing from Uplay for 20 points.
The Super Pershing appears and performs just as a standard Pershing, except with a few upgrades:
- Travels at 36km per hour, as opposed to 34
- Slightly improved main gun
- Fairly cheap for its abilities
- Has faster turret rotation speed
- Can defeat a Tiger, but struggles in duels with King Tigers
The Super Pershing is not exactly a more advanced tank than the Pershing. Its benefits are almost negligible, as it has the same large caliber gun as the original Pershing, along with the same range.
With this upgrade, however, players playing as Americans can find themselves to be at an equal footing against German or Soviet players, even though German tanks are better off and Soviet tanks have better armor, since the Super Pershing has equal firepower to that of the King Tiger and better than that of the IS-2, faster speed than any of the heavier tanks, they can regroup faster and can re-engage enemies faster. Combined with the rather quick production time and the unchanged price, the Super Pershing can equal or overwhelm enemies, if sufficient and right ways of reconnaisance is used.
The 90mm M3 gun of the Pershing was similar to the German 88mm KwK 36 used on the Tiger I. In an effort to match the firepower of the Tiger II's more powerful 88mm KwK43, the T15E1 90 mm gun was developed and mounted in a T26E1 in January 1945. This tank was designated T26E1-1. The T15E1 gun was 73 calibers in length and had a much longer high capacity chamber. This gave it a muzzle velocity of 3,750 ft/s (1,140 m/s) with the T30E16 APCR shot and could penetrate the Panther's frontal armor at up to 2,600 yd (2,400 m). This model used a single piece 50 in (1,300 mm) long ammunition and was the only Super Pershing sent to Europe.
A second pilot tank was converted from a T26E3 and used a modified T15E2 gun that used a two piece ammunition. A total of 25 of these tanks were built and designated as the T26E4. An improved mounting removed the need for stabilizer springs.
Post-war, two M26 tanks had the T54 gun installed, which had the same long gun barrel, but the ammunition cartridge was designed to be shorter and fatter, while still retaining the propellant force of the original round. They also had the muzzle brake and bore evacuator from the M3A1 gun of the M26A1 and M46. The tanks were designated as the M26E1 tank, but lack of funds cut off further production.
A single Super Pershing was shipped to Europe and given additional armor to the gun mantlet and front hull by the maintenance unit before being assigned to one of the tank crews of the Third Armored Division. An account of the combat actions of this tank appeared in the war memoir Another River, Another Town, by John P. Irwin, who was the tank gunner. Zaloga described three actions in his book. On 4 April, the Super Pershing engaged and destroyed a German tank, or something resembling a tank, at a range of 1,500 yd (1,400 m). On 12 April, the Super Pershing claimed a German tank of unknown type.
On 21 April, the Super Pershing was involved in a short range tank duel with a German tank identified as a Tiger. The German tank bounced a shot off the Super Pershing's extra armor and then was knocked out by the Super Pershing with a shot to the belly. Irwin described the tank as a Tiger but Zaloga expressed skepticism that it was a Tiger. After the war, the single Super Pershing in Europe was last photographed in a vehicle dump in Kassel, Germany, and was most likely scrapped.
Huge cal. HE shell
Large cal. AP shell
.30 cal. Machine-gun
- A Super Pershing shot can destroy a 30 millimiter armor with a single shot.
- T95 - Another American super-heavy tank
- Maus - German super-heavy tank
- IS-3 - Soviet super-heavy tank
- FCM F1 - French super-heavy tank
- O-I - Japanese super-heavy tank