War Thunder is becoming 9 years old! And that is celebrated with a traditional sale across the board!

Introduction words

Here I'll go over the premium tech tree of each nation and give my personal opinions on a majority of premium tanks in each tech tree; I will not go over every tank! It will be a very straightforward guide with almost no extra bits or anything like that - that simple. So my idea is that I wanted to give a small hand to players wanting to use the War Thunder 9th Annerversary Sale to its fullest possible potential, and that are wondering what premium tanks that could be worth their money. So first, a few conditions:

  • I start at rank III (3) in each nation. This to avoid many of the less relevant and or mostly troll premiums of each tree - and maybe to avoid adding to the seal clubbing problem.
  • These are personal opinions, and everything that comes with that.
  • The guide and overview of each vehicle will be rather short and concise. A long, thorough guide and walkthrough for each premium tank is a bit too much.
    • There are many pros and cons of each vehicle in this list, as well as for the vehicles that have not been added to this list. Most of these pros and cons will not be brought up, by the way, since that would make this a very long list.
  • I will not go over all of the premiums! Only a few of more interesting ones to me; the ones I feel are worth it. The ones not brought up here, are, according to me, not quite the best for the sole purpose of grinding the tree, and are maybe not that versatile as other premiums.
    • Many tanks are great, and fun, and work great at their BR, but their performance might not correspond my view of effective grinding.
    • Just because a tank might not have ended up on this list, does not mean that it is a bad tank straight up.
  • Remember that premium tanks efficiently grind one rank above their own and all ranks below! Researching a tank that is more than one rank higher than the premium tank will result in a decrease in experience earned toward the vehicle being researched.
  • The sale in the War Thunder Shop starts first on the 8th of November.
    • There will most likely be packs/bundles of vehicles. These could - and usually do- consist of tanks, planes, and/or helicopters together.
  • The packs in game (the higher tiers of premium tanks) are usually 30% off - and not 50%(!). This comes with the Store sale on 8th of November.
  • There will most likely be so called returning premium tanks available for purchase in the Shop and/or in game. These are a bit more difficult to predict, though we have been given a few tanks that will be added, and some that will be removed, that are now available for purchase.
  • Event tanks and Squadron tanks are not included in the sale and thus not in this guide.

I'll start over on the leftmost of nations in the hangar view and move over to the rightmost nation. Meaning that USA will be first.

USA

T14

This is definitely a proper premium tank. It has the role of a heavy tank, a roll which the T14 fills very well. At 4.7 is properly well armoured at its hull; the turret leaves a bit more to wish for, though, as it shows some rather large areas for enemies to fire at, all while being a bit too under armoured for my liking. It' not all that bad though, and for what it is, this tank is a dream. Yet again, at 4.7 the common 75mm cannon does a good job; anything higher than 4.7 and it starts to struggle. Nothing to buy at full price, but with 50% off it's definitely a good buy.

Cobra King

Well, definitely one of the more solid premiums that the US premium tree has to offer. Nigh identical to its tech-tree counterpart, the M4A3E2 "Jumbo", it works really, really well in the right hands, and is definitely worth a 50% off buy if you need a premium tank and enjoy very well armoured tanks.

T20

This medium tank is OK. It has been a lot better - it was 5.0 or 5.3 or similar back in the day. With a BR of 6.0 today, I actually do not find it worth the investment, I just left it in the garage at that BR. Just a note I felt was needed here.

T28

Definitely, a great pick if you enjoy those sorts of games and fights. Statistically, it is not as good as the T95, since the T95 has the added side armour. Other than that, they are pretty much the same tank (and was the same tank in real life, by the way). It's fat, slow, and fun to play. Comes down to personal preference. I personally do not own this tank, and for sole grinding purposes, you might have better options to go for.

T29

Yes! Every day yes! Get it when it's on sale. One of my personal favourites - in all of War Thunder!

M26E1

I mean... meh. I guess, it is still an M26 with the upgraded 90mm gun. So a reliable chassis (armour wise) with a great gun. Other than that, it feels more like a heavy tank, mobility wise; the M26 is very underpowered and at 6.7 the decently armoured chassis loses a lot of its reliability. A decent buy, it is fun to play, it definitely does not suck, but there are better if you don't personally want it.

M46 >Tiger<

A decent tank. Definitely worth it at 50% off, but not at full price. It sits very comfortably at 7.0 and does its job very well and performs as expected. You know what you get for your money, in other words.

T114

Hmm, this add was done after the first publishing actually. I decided not to add it at first mostly for the sole purpose of it basically only being able to flank - unless it wants to get annihilated immediately. It was a close call, though, since it's a very fun vehicle, and the T114 is not bad at all, it just did not correspond to my view of an effective grinder. I'm not against buying, that's for sure. I know a lot of people really like this thing, I don't own it, for the reason stated above. But at the same time, it's not a bad vehicle, and worth the pick up if you have been longing for it.

T54E1

A very unusual - and rather rare - tank on the battlefield. It's quite expensive, but at 50% it is definitely worth it. It takes a special playstyle, given, but it does the job very well. With a fast autoloader and trolley armour, it comfortably makes it away toward its unexpecting enemies.

Magach 3

Well, yes why not? This will almost certainly move over to the soon to be implemented Israel tech tree. Overall, it's decent at its BR: nothing over the top, but nothing to underestimate either. A very well defined ace of spades so to speak - it can do most things good.

XM-1 (GM)

It's a pack, but get it if you want to have it. Not a bad buy at all. It's definitely worth the money. High survivability and mobility, packs a punch and is a real pain to deal with. There is a reason almost every War Thunder veteran has it standing in their garage.

Germany

Pz. Kpfw. Churchill

Puuuh, this is a great one! I've had tons of fun it and would definitely recommend it. It's a shame that it got moved up to 4.3. I did not quite agree with this change when it came, but not much I can do. It's still a solid choice though - just remember to angle.

Brummbär

This takes a bit of learning and has a bit of a skill cap around it, but once you got this tank right, oh boy you'll never have a bad day! I say go for this thing even at full price. At 50%, this is a no brainer for me!

KV I C756 (r)

Oh here we go! This thing is stupidly effective in the right hands. The well-protected KV-1 chassis with the improved German turret slapped on top along with the legendary German 75mm KwK fitted inside of it. You can't really go wrong in this tank. It did get an increase to 5.0 from 4.7, but still, it handles its ground very well.

Pz.Bef.Wg.VI P

Yeah, sure. It's not a bad tank, not at all. The same chassis as the Ferdinand at 6.3 (which many fail to notice and hence keep shooting it wondering why they can't go through...), but with a relatively weak turret front and a rather horrible turret ring weak spot, actually. Although, with a bit of experience and a few bushes, this modified Tiger tank is one hundred percent worth it!

Bfw. Jagdpanther

Yes! Yes, every day of the week! Another Jagdpanther, today at 6.0, not even a question.

Tiger II (H) Sla. 16

Sure, go ahead. A very well-proven, versatile, and effective premium. We all probably know how effective the Tiger II is overall, and one with premium status? Even better! By the way, the Sla.16 just stands to indicate a slight improvement in engine power. Nothing super important, though.

Ru 251

Uhm, well, I mean, it's another one of those tanks that almost every veteran owns. It's incredibly effective and has absolutely nothing that speaks against it. It has everything you'd wish for a light tank! very, very, very, solid buy.

mKPz M47 G

Ehhhhm, no, not really. The reason I brought it up, is because it is the sole premium at rank V for Germany. It's way too overpriced for what you get. With trolley armour, great gun, decent mobility, and a decent BR it definitely is no bad tank, but for the price, even at half price, is a bit too much for my liking. Nevertheless, not a bad tank at all does its job very well and you get what you expect.

TAM 2IP + Leopard A1A1 (L/44)

If you want a high tier premium for Germany, it's one of these two you have to go with Essentially, at this BR and tier, they are very similar. The difference is maybe the play style, as the TAM is a light tank, and the Leo (L/44) is a medium tank. TAM packs a bit more punch than the Leopard, but still, Leopard (L/44) is yet another one of those tanks that you'll find in almost every veterans line up - it's just that popular and a very reliable choice (and has been around for ages and ages). TAM 2IP is a lot newer and does not have the same reputation, but the TAM chassis and the firepower as an enemy is not at all to underestimate, or you'll find yourself staring at your hangar screen.

USSR

T-34-57 Mod. 1943

Very reliable chassis and turret - very reliable. And the cannon does wonders as well as the reload rate. A solid pick for any role really. This T-34 modification gets the job done, and it does it well.

KV-122

The legendary KV-85 chassis, but packed with the ominous 122mm cannon - what could go wrong? A solid pick, everyday day of the week. Not much to say here, but there are better picks coming up though.

T-44-122

A somewhat downgraded T-44 chassis and layout, but with a 122mm yet again. The original, nigh impenetrable T-44 chassis has here been given a very obvious weak spot in form of a drivers hatch. On the other side of the coin, you get the 122 mm cannon at 6.3. Pros and cons for this one.

T-34-100

Oh, boy... here we go! This one is rather legendary, actually. Legendary for being rather overpowered, sort of. The same good old T-34-85 chassis but this time with an amazing 100 mm cannon able to wreck all its enemies into pieces. If you like the T-34-85 but find that it needs an upgrade in terms of firepower - this is the pick for you. Very solid. Won't let you down.

IS-2 >Revenge<

Since there is a better version of this in the normal tech tree, I'd recommend simply buying another, more unique premium tank and grind the IS-2 (1944) in the tech tree instead.

IS-6

*giggles* Not much to say, here... as the heavy tank loving player that I am, this is a no brainer. Every day of the week, yes!

Object 120

Definitely get this if you're a fan of long-range wrecking of enemies. Absolutely stunning performance from the immensely long 120mm cannon. Eats everything that it comes in contact with. For a comparison between this and the IS-6 (which you often do when searching for a USSR premium tank), they are very different obviously. Although what I can say, is that the Obj 120 is one rank above the IS-6, meaning that the Obj 120 is the better of the two in regards to pure tech tree grinding power.

T-55AM-1 versus T-72AV (Turms)

Okay, so let's settle this once and for all. They are good at their own BRs and it all simply boils down to your preferences as a player. For me, the gameplay at 8.3 is a lot more enjoyable than the one at 9.7. Performance-wise, I'd say they are quite similar. A bit trolley armour - as the Russian high tier tanks often have - and punchy guns. No change in rank here either. For me, I'd go with the T-55AM-1 due to the feeling of the BRs.

Great Britain

A.C.IV

A definite pick over the Sherman in the premium tree, I'd say. You even have pretty much the same Sherman Firefly in the normal tech tree as well. The A.C.IV "Thunderbolt" has stunning performance and does its job, immensely well. A very great pick that won't let you down.

Centurion Action X

A Centurion with a modified turret. You can expect a similar performance to that of the FV4202, I think since the Action X is some sort of mix between the chassis of a Cent. and the turret of the FV4202 - ish. I do not have the Action X myself, but I can still recommend it as a decent lineup addition. It's not the best, but it does really well.

Centurion Mk.5 AVRE

Holy smokes, I love this thing. It's not for everyone though, not at all. The huge 30.6 kg heavy shells has one of the worst muzzle velocities in the game and aiming this thing correctly takes a whole education. It performs really well in-game and is a lot of fun to play. I ground out most of the British tree with this, but that is also because I love these sort of derps and can stand the odd playstyle. Take a thinker before you get this one.

Sho't Kal Dalet

A Centurion with ERA packaging, a better engine (thank god!) and APFSDS shells. It performs as expected: somewhere in the middle. Survivability is decent versus inexperienced enemies and it's a cool vehicle. Like most tanks at this tier and BR, it is very difficult to give a precise recommendation, since they are so versatile. But still, not a bad buy at all and I don't think it is something you will go wrong with. The only thing it has against it is the (still) slow and sluggish mobility of the Centurion.

Rooikat 105

A very welcome upgrade from the Mk.1D version in the normal tech tree. It has an upgraded 105 mm cannon that does more damage to enemy vehicles than the 76mm found on the tech tree version. The Rooikat is fast, no armour is the best armour, and now the upgraded cannon. These fast-paced and aggressive playstyles are not for everyone, but the Rooikat is not a bad pick.

Japan

Chi-Nu II

The Japanese go into fighting with some real firepower at these ranks, and the Chi-Nu II is no exception. If you want a mid to low tier premium tank for Japan, this is the one you've got at your disposal. No tears, though, since it's not bad at all. Very good performance and I can really recommend it.

Ho-Ri Prototyp

While not as good as the tech tree version, the Ho-Ri Production, this fellow has insane performance at its BR. Both this and the Production version are immensely fun to play and will not at all let you down. 100% recommend!

Type 75 MLRS

A quite unusual vehicle for its BR, but it has gotten more effective since the Overpressure update. I'd say it's more of a fun-vehicle than a grinding vehicle - so avoid this one fi you're just looking to grind the tree.

Type 74 (G)

A solid recommendation here. Does everything you want a medium tank at 9.0 to do - and it does it well. Absolutely, get it if you want it - it's definitely worth it!

China

T-34-85 + IS-2

Well, not that much to say about these two gentlemen. They have nothing special going for them, and unless you really want another one of those variants in your lineup, I'd recommend one of the other premiums higher up in the tree.

ZTZ59A

Nothing special, a modified T-54 in Chinese service. It's got APDS and HEAT-FS - a solid choice, in other words. It's not in this years sale since it just got added, but still. You get what you can expect from it. If you don't want to spend all that much money on the 8.7 pack, this is your option. And it's not bad, you can definitely get around comfortably in this thing.

WMA301

For me, it's a bit lacklustre. It's very similar to other high tier wheeled vehicles in other nations' tech trees and its own. Good speed, decent firepower, and no real armour. Yeah, it's decent, at most.

T-69 II G

One of the more popular premium in the tree, and rightfully so. It works good and does its job, but it's nothing you should expect wonder of. It's nothing that fits my playstyle, really; I find it way too unreliable - but still, not a bad buy. I'd hope, though, that China gets another premium here instead of that better lives up to the expectations.

Italy

M26 "D.C.Ariete"

A decent pick. More than decent, actually, when I think about it. It's a Pershing! Not much else to say, a reliable pick that I've had tons of fun in, and that have helped me throughout the tree. Recommended for grinding and for a fun pick too.

M60A1 "D.C.Ariete"

I recommend it. The M60 is a reliable chassis and does most tasks given to it very well. Enemies often underestimate it. Yeah, definitely, go for it if you'd been thinking about it!

OF-40 (MTCA)

A solid and reliable pick for any player. Your only choice for a high tier Italian premium tank, and it won't let you down. Objectively better than its Leopard counterparts (mostly in terms of speed), I enjoy the OF-40s more than the Leopards. A great recommendation, I think.

France

Panther >Dauphine<

A very reliable pick - it's a panther! Definitely go for it, if you're looking for a mid to low tier premium. You'll love it.

AMX-13 (SS.11)

It's an AMX-13 with rockets. Reliable chassis with some addon rockets can't go wrong. It sits at a bit higher BR than the >Dauphine<. Nothing for me personally, though. Although with the flanking playstyle of the AMX-13s - added with some rockets - makes for a lot of fun.

Somua SM

Wow. Here we have something for your money. Better than both the Panther and the AMX-13, I love this thing. It's big, chunky, has armour, packs a real hard punch, and has got the speed. He has it all! Get it! Get it! It's great at everything!

AMX-30

Although lacking the 20mm autocannon found on the 1972 tech tree version, this AMX-30 is the one tank that I used to grind the entire French tree - and I had a lot of fun doing so with it! I love the AMX-30 and can't do anything else than recommend it to everyone looking for a middle to top tier premium. 7.7 is a dreamy BR as well.

AMX-30 Super

Better than the Leopards, but not better than the OF-40s in more than survivability, this is a great recommendation. It's the French high tier premium and rightfully so. You get what you want for your money. It's not a bad buy at all.

Sweden

Strv 81 (RB 52)

Get it. It's either this or the Strv 103-0, and the Strv 81 Centurion tank is a lot more versatile. It does not matter how much I love the 103 "S-tanks", the Strv 81 Cent. is the better pick in War Thunder for grinding the Swedish tree. You also get two 103 "S-tanks" in the normal Swedish tech tree but you won't find any rocket fitted Centurion in there - this you only get with the Strv 81 in the premium tree.

CV 90105 TML

The Swedish high tier pack is available for purchase. The CV 90105 has the ability to blow itself up after getting hit just once by an enemy shell, but this does not stop me from recommending it for purchase here. This tank also has crazy performance, and it is immensely fun to play. Equipped with everything you could wish for a high tier medium tank (except maybe armour), you won't go wrong with this. Definitely buy this pack if you are in the need of a higher tier Swedish grinder.

We hope this premium tank buying guide helps you choose your next battle-hardened vehicle especially during the 9th anniversary of War Thunder! Grab those 50% sales whilst you can otherwise you'll kick yourself in the teeth for it all year until the next one!

Contributor

  • Just a guy who may have an unhealthy affinity for all things tank. A tank enthusiast, in other words! Oh, and a writer and contributor for EverythingWarThunder.

lolman
Published November 4, 2021

3 comments on “Premium Tank Buying Guide”

    1. Heyo!
      It has already been edited and put up for revision. Thank you for your spying eye, and for keeping us in check! o7

  1. Highly recommend also checking out the market - while it does not go on sale, you can get some good deals on Premiums! (Remember to check if a vehicle comes with premium status!)
    The T-10A is a steal, a classic Russian heavy at 7.7 at Tier 5 for only 16 GJN. While not an S-tier tank, I only went 1.8:1 in it, it definitely gets the job done grinding the Russian tech tree at a low price point, from tier 1 to tier 6. just like the Object 120.

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