In the late '80s, GIAT Industries developed one of the best modern tanks—the AMX-56 Leclerc—and named it after a French General of the late XVIII century. One of several vehicle prototypes that they created while working on the AMX-56 was none other than Projet 4, or the Char Futur.
Much like its illustrious successor, the Char Futur has a lot in common with the French royal musketeers of the time, and could conceivably have served in the King's personal guard. But not everyone could become a musketeer; in order to be enlisted into the musketeers' regiment, nobles needed to prove their ancestry.
Fortunately for the rest of us, we merely have to prove our worth in battle through the Expedition, and bring 12 tokens as proof of valor to earn the IX Char Futur 4 .
Thanks to its compact oscillating turret, this newcomer resembles the Bat.Chat. 25t and the Lorraine 40 t.
The vehicle crew consists of three tankers: the Commander, who operates the radio and loads shells, the Gunner, who hasan additional qualification as a Loader, and the Driver.
The vehicle has a pretty good view range for Tier IX at 380 meters, and a signal range of 750 meters. Good numbers for a medium tank.
One of the vehicle's advantages is its low profile. The concealment value for the vehicle when stationary is 16.13. On the move, it's 12.08.
Armor and Mobility
The Char Futur 4 doesn't have much armor, so it's pretty agile. You can accelerate to a top speed of 60 km/h. Its specific power of 23 hp/t and engine with 620 horsepower won't win a drag race, but its maneuverability can't be argued with.
French musketeers didn't wear steel cuirasses. Instead, they were dressed in a vest and a short azure coat. The Char Futur can't boast about its hull armor either. Its front is covered with a 55 mm plate, while the sides have 40 mm and rear has 30 mm of armor. Avoid engaging in a fight against an enemy wielding an HE gun.
Musketeers wore hats decorated with ostrich feathers, inside which were metal cups fashioned as a piece of headwear that offered protection against a saber strike in some situations. The Char Futur's turret is covered with 140 mm of steel at the front, creating a chance for a ricochet.
The sides of the turret have 90 mm of armor, but the rear has only 30 mm. This relatively strong and heavy front affected the turret traverse speed, which is 30 deg/s, just like the German E 50.
Yet despite its unremarkable armor, this vehicle can survive enemy fire thanks to a massive pool of 1,750 hit points.
The main armament of the vehicle is a 105 mm gun with an autoloader that can upset any enemy on the battlefield. Here's where the musketeer metaphor becomes even more apparent. Back in the day, the musket was a proper nightmare for armored horsemen. Its heavy bullets could easily punch through the armor.
The gun of our French hero penetrates 264 mm of steel with a standard shell and 330 mm with a HEAT shell. Its 4-shell autoloader with 390 damage per shot delivers such firepower that even a German Maus would think twice before confronting it.
To send an enemy to the Garage, you don't have to get up close and personal like when you play the Bat. Chat. 25t. The 105 mm gun has a dispersion value of 0.34, allowing it to play as a sniper and shoot at the enemy's weak points from afar.
A musket bullet could penetrate a cuirass at a range of 200 m, and it could strike an individual target from 50 m, making infantry a formidable opponent for armored cavalry. At the time, that was an impressive distance! However, the musket had its own flaws, such as a long reload of 1.5—2 minutes.
The Char Futur 4 doesn't reload very quickly either. The time between shots is 4 seconds, while the full reload time is 40 seconds. These numbers dictate a "shoot—fall back—shoot" playstyle. The aiming time of the gun is 2.2 seconds, which is not so bad.
Who Are You, Chevalier Char Futur 4?
Thanks to its characteristics, the Char Futur 4 is a formidable vehicle that can play on the second and third line. It can quickly react to threats by switching flanks if needed, just like the musketeers used to do when operating as dragoons—a type of infantry unit that rode horses to reach the battle as swiftly as possible.
The Char Futur 4's gun allows it to take almost any enemy head-on, which means it can eliminate dangerous enemy vehicles leading the attack and not suffer return fire. Musketeer volleys could decide a battle by eliminating armored soldiers from 200 meters, but the Char Futur 4 can be effective at even longer ranges!
Just 12 Expedition tokens and you'll become a real problem for your enemies!