Tank Guide: KV-5

The KV-5 is one of the older tier 8 premium heavy tanks in World of Tanks.  Its massive size, odd armor scheme, and atypical gun for a Russian tank makes it interesting to play.  This World of Tanks KV-5 guide goes over the tank’s strengths, weaknesses, and tactics to use to excel in the KV-5.  Personally the KV-5 was my first tier 8 premium tank and in the early days are looked at differently.  It started out as the “poor mans” tier 8 premium since it was inferior to the Löwe in almost every way.  Over the years it has received several buffs and is considered an excellent tier 8 premium in today’s game.

World of Tanks KV-5 Guide


The KV-5 equips the 107mm ZiS-6M gun on a tier 8 heavy tank.  This is strange for a Russian heavy since they often have hard hitting guns for their tier with decent penetration.  The KV-5 however has neither since this gun is found on much lower tier Russian heavy tanks.  Each AP/APCR shell does 300 damage while HE does a measly 360 damage.  Penetration can be brutal with only 167mm AP penetration and 219mm APCR penetration.  Fortunately the KV-5 only sees up to tier 9 tanks so you won’t be trying to fight against tier 10’s with 167mm standard penetration.

With a 100% crew and no equipment the accuracy is .42 and the aiming stats are decent for a Russian heavy.  The redeeming aspect of the KV-5’s gun is the excellent reload time.  With 7.3 rounds per minute you achieve 2,190 DPM without any equipment.  For a tier 8 heavy this is at the top of the class by a decent margin.  When you factor in not seeing tier 10 tanks the gun starts to look a little better given the poor penetration.  After all if you can’t penetrate a tank you won’t be doing any damage.

With all things considered the gun is best for fighting tanks without a lot of armor.  Tanks with easy to hit weak spots are also capable of being taken on confidently.  Some tanks to avoid are the E-75, KV-4, Object 252U, T32, Jagdtiger, etc.  Tanks like these will need to be flanked to cause reliable damage even with APCR in play.


The KV-5’s armor scheme is both good, bad, and unique all at the same time.  The KV-5 has very thick armor across all sides of the tank that gives it excellent protection for its tier.  Tier 9 tanks will be able to penetrate a lot areas if they have their top guns.  Tier 6-8 tanks will need to focus on specific weak spots to achieve sustained damage.  The armor layout begs a KV-5 driver to always keep moving and to slightly angle at all times.  This is due to two mini-turrets located on the front hull that are easy targets.  The infamous radio mans turret is in this area and if hit towards the center of it any tank the KV-5 faces can cause easy damage.

The turret is also a weak spot for tankers that know to shoot the flattest areas.  While the turret looks intimating it is neither thick or angled enough to protect it from tier 8-9 shots.  So while the KV-5’s armor is well above average across the front, sides, and rear.  It suffers from having multiple weak spots if you allow people to aim at them.  Keep moving and turning slightly and you’ll cause people to hold their shots trying to hit these specific areas.  On the other hand if you sit still or drive in a straight line you will be frustrated with its armor.



For a tank this massive the KV-5 as a surprising amount of mobility.  The top speed sits at 40 km/h which provides a huge ramming potential on any downhill descents.  The power to weight ratio before equip sits at 12.01 hp/t which is on the lower end.  On flat ground it is high enough to get close to your top speed but climbing hills is problematic.  Traverse speeds for your hull and turret are also somewhat slow which needs to be accounted for.

Keep in mind the poor mobility climbing hills and avoid driving through large open spaces.  The large size combined with sometimes poor mobility can prove fatal.  On the flip side setting yourself up to push around smaller tanks is both fun and effective in the KV-5.

Miscellaneous Attributes

The KV-5’s best miscellaneous attribute is its 1,780 health pool.  This is one of the larger amounts at tier 8 and helps with staying in the fight.  Even if you are facing an enemy that knows your weak spots your HP is high enough to mitigate some damage taken.  With a gun depression of 7 degrees you do struggle fighting over hill terrain.  This combined with the large size of the tank sees you avoiding being the aggressor over hills.  Your view range of 350m is also at the bottom for tier 8 tanks and is a huge drawback.  As a premium tank the shell cost of 270 credits for AP leaving a huge profit margin.  Don’t be afraid to sprinkle in APCR shells but make sure that you will land hits since they cost 4,400 credits.


Playing as a KV-5 is sometimes a selfless act of being a punching bag for your team.  With your armor, HP, and decent mobility you often are in the thick of things.  Your gun performs well in these scenarios since you have great DPM and closer up you can land your shots where you need to.  Do be careful engaging tier 9 heavies and tank destroyers since your armor loses some effectiveness.  You also struggle to penetrate them as reliably as you would like from the front.

I find the KV-5 is best played when top tier as a super aggressive first pusher tank.  Make sure you have support and take the fight to the enemy.  Please make sure to avoid open areas and places where you take fire from outside sources.  When you are pitted against tier 9’s play a little safer to start with and look for an opening.  Don’t be afraid to push out but be careful as to what you will get hit by.  Some tier 9 tank destroyers can take off 750 damage easily while some tier 9 heavies will have too much armor.

7 Comments on "Tank Guide: KV-5"

  1. Hey, this website is awesome and thanks for all the info. I was wondering however what you really think about this tank.I like to play russian tanks because of their large armor and HP values. I am a bit of a risktaker but I am also a sensoble player as I have gone down the tree all the way to the IS-4. I wonder if it is worth actually buying the tank if it comes out again during a special. I have been considering buying the tank but the mixed reviews have not allowed me to make up my mind. Thanks…….

    • I love the KV-5(most played tank behind Type 59). It’s a bit “meh” until you get a 100% crew and equipment on it as you need to maximize your DPM and accuracy for it to shine. I run vertical stabilzer(accuracy), and a rammer/vents for DPM.

      Once you learn how to minimize the frontal R2D2 turret(even angling backwards works) you’ll find yourself loving this tank.

      • thedavemister | September 10, 2012 at 10:29 pm |

        Thanks a lot. I think i might buy it the next time it goes out on sale. Good work with the website though- liking it so far. I was wondering the next time you are gonna do one of those promos again. I discovered your website literally 5 mins after the promo closed and so was a bit bummed, but please do it again soon. I really need some premium tanks to boost my credits. Don’t you think its a tad annoying how one needs a premium tank to maintain one’s tier 9 and 10’s? I have stopped playing my IS 3, IS 8 and IS 4 cos i can hardly break even in them and every little promo and giveaway helps. Anyways, thanks again for the website and sorry for the long post.

        P.S- in case you didn’t figure it out yet, I am the anonymous poster from above 🙂

  2. I was playing in platoon with some members from my clan who use KV-5. I have seen them successfully using trick where they intentionally turn their back to opponents, at some 20-30 deg angle, and bounce opponents shots. They off course turn their turrets backward and shoot.

  3. serenekaos | April 12, 2013 at 9:13 pm |

    KV-5 is a beast. Nothing more fun than trolling people into shooting at R2-D2 and then wiggling it every now and then to make them miss.

    There’s also the drive backwards trick, just angle it like a Maus and your good to go.

    To be honest, to really make this tank shine, make sure you bring some premium rounds with you for other T8’s cause they will be tough to pen with just APC.

    Last note: RAM RAM RAM and RAM some more. You can literally smoke other tanks if they aren’t paying attention.

  4. CoherentTopgun | April 13, 2013 at 11:43 pm |

    Can driving a KV-5 backwards benefit you?

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