Tank Guide: M26 Pershing

The M26 Pershing is a very versatile tier 8 medium tank.  This World of Tanks M26 Pershing guide goes over the tank’s strengths, weaknesses, and tactics to best play it.  While it doesn’t excel in any specific area it makes up for it by being proficient in several different categories.  Like most American tanks the M26 has excellent gun depression combined with a strong turret front.  It also is fairly large for a medium tank and slower than most tier 8 medium tanks.

World of Tanks M26 Pershing Guide

Firepower

The M26 Pershing equips a well rounded 90mm gun as its top gun.  It does 240 damage per shot with AP/APCR and 320 damage with HE.  With 190mm penetration on its AP round and a stellar 268mm penetration with APCR the Pershing can tackle any tanks it comes across.  Accuracy sits at .35 with a 100% crew and no equipment and the other aiming stats are very good.  On the move accuracy with a vertical stabilizer is also above average.  One slight knock against the Pershing is a below average damage per minute value.  While it isn’t significantly lower than other tier 8 mediums it does sit 100-200 DPM lower than several.

With the top 90mm the M26 Pershing’s strength is not having many flaws with the gun.  While the DPM is a smidgen lower than some other tier 8 mediums it still gets the job done.  The weakest area the gun performs at is in direct brawling fights since the damage per shot and DPM won’t get you an advantage.  It performs best in situations where you can land reliable shots on the enemy without always taking damage right away.

Armor

For a medium tank the M26 Pershing has excellent armor where it needs it most in the turret front.  It has a very strong mantlet area that covers most of the turret front.  The armor around it is solid and will bounce a fair amount of tier 6-8 shots.  Tier 9-10 tanks can penetrate the cupola and flat areas but they are difficult shots to land regularly.  The hull of the M26 Pershing isn’t very well protected against anything above tier 6.  One bonus is the majority of the side armor being covered by the tracks.  This can help protect against HEAT, HE, and low penetrating shots.

While the entire M26 Pershing won’t provide you great armor protection; the turret front concentrates all the armor you need to play effectively.  Do your best to hide your hull with your good gun depression.  If you can master only showing your turret you will be able to output damage without receiving much in return.

Mobility

The M26 Pershing has a decent 48 km/h top speed and a 20 km/h reverse speed.  The power to weight ratio does make it somewhat sluggish compared to other tier 8 mediums.  Mobility is one factor of this tank you do need to account for compared to other mediums.  You aren’t much faster than some heavy tanks at tier 8 and getting to certain spots other mediums can be difficult.  You also need to factor in the large size of the M26 Pershing since you are a large target like the Centurion medium tanks.

Miscellaneous Attributes

Luckily for the M26 Pershing its miscellaneous attributes are excellent.  The tank is very comfortable to play and doesn’t have small demons plaguing it.  The gun depression is 10 degrees which allows you to hide your entire hull behind most hilly terrain.  With the turret located towards the front of the hull it also adds to the effectiveness of the gun depression.  1,440 HP is about average for a tier 8 medium and with the turret armor feels much higher than other tier 8 mediums.  With 400m view range you also aren’t blind when it comes to fighting in any tier match you’ll be thrown into.

Tactics

The beauty of the M26 Pershing comes with the all around goodness of the tank.  There isn’t any specific area where it lacks enough to be a huge detracting factor to its performance.  If there was one negative it is playing it out of its comfort zone.  With excellent gun depression and a strong turret front you should abuse this as much as possible.  Find small rubble piles, destroyed tanks, and hills to hide your hull behind.  This will allow you to function almost like a heavy tank against tier 9 and under tanks.  It also covers up your slightly poor DPM by not rushing into a brawling fight.

With the tracks covering a huge portion of the side armor you can try to bait shots around corners.  By wiggling a little or poking them out first often times people will shoot there.  Never over angle since your side hull armor is extremely weak.  You would be surprised the amount of shots you can bait people into by your thick tracks if they don’t hit hull armor behind it.  In the end this tactic is purely situational.  Do remember to carry enough APCR to deal with at least one higher tier tank since you’ll be fighting at mid range most of the time.  With 268mm penetration you turn yourself into a pocket tier 10 medium tank by using APCR over AP.

Old M26 Pershing Matches (2013)

6 Comments on "Tank Guide: M26 Pershing"

  1. wizardcalledtim | July 10, 2012 at 3:53 pm |

    Hi Guru !
    Just found your blog, great job ! I like the fact that it’s unpretentious, and it is very helpful.
    I picked up the M26 last weekend, and of all the guides I have read yours is the best. Kudos for the replays. ( all of them, for all tanks )
    The WOT forum is so full of vitriol these days, it’s refreshing to find a player who wants to help, not just criticise.
    Keep up the great work, I will be visiting often !

    Happy Tanking !

    wizardcalledtim

  2. Very interesting description. I hate my Pershing. 40% win rate and on average I lose about 2,500 every game. 260 battles and not a patch on the T20 I had before. The T20 statistics look bad but for most of those 1,000 battles that got me a 48% win rate I had a ping rate of 500 – 600. It was only when I had so many problems with the Pershing that I discovered how poor my Ping rate was.

    Having read the article I will go back to the drawing board. Maybe next time I may be able to get the tank to win.

    Thank you

    • The Pershing is a great tank but like you said it can be a bit difficult to learn how to play. Just need to abuse the troll frontal turret armor+gun depression and switch between being a heavy medium/flanker depending on the situation.

  3. hi guru

    thanks for the info. per enjay’s 2/25/13 post i too have had trouble getting a positive credit return on the pershing. my win rate is only 38% after 300 to 400 games. however, i have used a prime account to give myself a better chance at plus credits. my real progress has been in understanding the strengths and weaknesses of the tank. i now always look for hills or depressions to hide in. with the better than average gun depression i can hit opponent’s turrets, fall back and not get hit. i am the flanking pest that allows my team’s heavies to blast away at the enemy.

    a tank like this a valuable learning tool. the idea is to deal with what you have. all tanks have pluses and minuses. it’s not a matter of love/hate but of using your skills to maximize the effectiveness of the equipment you have.

  4. Thx guru.

    I quite like the pershing, but its a bit hard to play in a few maps.
    Even more if you were a big fan of the T20 as i am.
    Every time i loose silver on the M26 I Just get the T20 lol

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