I know it’s a habit at Gaijin to make French tanks as less playable as possible, but with the ELC Bis they had fun.
He already uses the OCC 60-62 which is of rare reliability, but in addition, these advantages of light tanks have made him classified in T.D., which deprives him of his role as a scout, which could have make useful.
They put the M18 as a light tank, whereas, in fact, it is a T.D. but for the French vehicles, the excuse of “we must fill the line of T.D.s with everything we find” is not not one, they only make efforts to put useful vehicles in premium and leave the most useless models in play, even though the French have the worst normal tank/premium tank ratio.
Light combat vehicle ≠ Light tank either.
Since your source is Wikipedia (you copied part of the first paragraph word for word), let’s read the other stuff that Wikipedia says about the ELC project.
The idea behind the creation of the Engin Léger de Combat (French for «light combat vehicle») was to install powerful anti-tank weapons on a light but fully armored tankette and thus create a light tank destroyer that was mobile, inconspicuous, capable of hitting and destroying all types of enemy tanks at a distance of about 1 500 meters.
And wikipedia gets this statement, basically word from word, from this source.
(Translation of the first paragraph, using Google translate):
The idea behind the light combat machine was to mount a powerful anti-tank armament on a lightly, but completely armored track chassis and thus constitute a light, mobile, inconspicuous “tank destroyer”, capable of engaging and defeating all types of enemy tanks up to a distance of about 1000 meters, a distance that, since then, we are trying to increase to about 1500 meters.
If official French sources call it a tank destroyer then there shouldn’t be much of a discussion about the classification it should have.
However, that’s not to say the ELC Bis shouldn’t have scouting abilities. It most definitely should as being a tank destroyer and scouting are not mutually exclusive. The same should be applied to the M18. Both of these vehicles should be classified as tank destroyers, and get scouting related abilities.
Well that’s because it can’t fully rotate if the driver is meant to, well, actually be able to drive (source: Wikipedia on the ELC project).
A total of 4 turrets were developed for the AMX ELC. A distinctive feature of these turrets was the so-called casemate design. On the move the turret’s rotation was limited to about 36°, because with more turret rotation the driver (located on the floor of the vehicle) was unable to access the tank’s controls, and he might be injured by the breech of the gun. To fully rotate the turret and aim at the target, the tank had to stop.
WarThunder cannot currently model the turret having different possible traverse angles depending on if the tank is moving or not, and obviously having the turret fully traversable when the tank is moving is highly ahistorical, so we have limited turret traverse even when the tank is stopped.
In French, the notion of tank destroyer doesn’t really exist in the first place, that’s why it’s between quotes in the sentence. Also, while I don’t doubt your word, this book seems to be talking about the prototypes of light tanks armed with a 90mm gun and it also mentions an oscilating turret, this could pretty much be the AMX 13 90.
The problem with the ELC is that it was designed to be a light tank but, through the conception stage, it ended up having a 90mm gun and therefore standing between a TD and a light tank.
I know that, rn, it can’t rotate because of “technical limitations” but seriously though … we have tanks with adjustable suspensions, things like the Strv 104 or VT-1 that are waaaaaay more complex than just checking if the tank is stopped or not. It’s not in game because Gaijin doesn’t want/know/care.
Also, if there is indeed a technical limitation, then you are left with two choices, either it rotates or it doesn’t.
Why choose the limitating option ? Doens’t France already have too many bad tanks ?
Where? The image I provided says “tourelle-casemate” (casemate-turret"), not “tourelle oscillante” (oscillating turret). It’s called a casemate-turret because while it is a turreted vehicle, the turret cannot fully rotate while the vehicle is moving, hence it behaving like a casemate during movement.
It for a fact is talking about the ELC project as ELC stands for “engin léger de combat”, or light combat vehicle, and the first paragraph outrigth says “engin léger de combat”. The title of the image is also “Notice sur L’engin léger de Combat version A.M.X.”, or “Notice on the light combat vehicle version A.M.X.”, which is exactly what we have in-game, the AMX ELC Bis.
Edit: forgot this.
That does not matter. The tank is specifically called a “tank hunter”. Following this logic the French M36B2 would not be a tank destroyer simply because the French don’t have that notion (even though they very clearly do, as they specifically call the ELC a tank destroyer, or tank hunter if directly translated, even if it is in quotation marks. At best they just don’t have an official classification for such a vehicle, but they very clearly know the concept of a tank whose purpose is to take out other tanks).
Ah shit indeed i misread, and for the title it was impossible to read it with the edit on it but ok it’s clearly for the ELC.
Well the M36 isn’t really a French tank … as far as I know, they didn’t build anything resembling a hellcat or M36 because tank destroyers don’t exist in France. You could argue that the Foch could be one but if I recall correctly it was made to attack fortifications, so not tanks.
Of course they know the concept of tanks made to kill tanks, that the whole point of a tank … there is no such thing as a tank that can’t destroy another tank.
Are you French ? Because this would help as i’m going to try a grammatical approach. The fact that it’s between quotes proves that there is no official term, they just use it to illustrate the sentence and explaining it’s weird position between a TD and a light tank.
But anyway, we are getting a bit off topic. The point is that, since France (the country which built it) classifies it as a light tank because there is no TD in France, then it should also be a light tank in game.
But light tank or not, it sucks in game…
The very first tanks were made with the primary goal of engaging infantry in the trenches. They were not made with the intent of attacking other tanks as a main goal.
During WW2, the US approach to tank building was that tanks helped infantry, and tank destroyers specifically existed just to engage tanks. They did not want to make tanks with the purpose of engaging other tanks until they were forced to due to the existence of Panthers and Tigers. They were very reluctant to put a 76 mm cannon on the Shermans, and it is the main reason why tanks like the M26 were delayed multiple times, as the 90 mm cannon was basically meant to engage tanks like the Panther and Tiger for which the US saw was purely the job of a tank destroyer, and it was overkill for infantry support where the 75 mm could do the same job just as well, while carrying more ammunition.
You are entirely wrong when you say that the point of a tank is to destroy other tanks. In some tank building approaches (like that of the US during WW2), destroying an enemy tank with a tank of your own is a secondary goal if not lower.
The primary goal of the ELC Bis is to be a small, light combat vehicle that is capable of destroying and meant to destroy any other tank available at the time. That is its description. Even if France doesn’t have an official tank designation that is “tank destroyer”, Gaijin is entirely in their right to call it one given that is pretty much its job.
Again, I do think it should get scouting abilities, but it most definitely should be called a tank destroyer.
Ok, edit : I mean in today’s world as well as late cold-war. Today the tanks totally abandoned their infantry support role, and for the better. In fact, it’s now the infantry that protects the tank, rather than the opposite.
I’d be glad to read that book entirely because I can’t assume the role of a tank with just one page. For me, the ELC is like the AMX 10; a light tank with a big anti-tank gun (even though the AMX 10 isn’t classified as a tank).
Oh wait so all of this debate is based on a Wiki page ?
Anyway, there are other pictures of the book and it appears more like a report of someone comparing the different prototypes proposed in order to build the ELC.
While it’s very interesting I don’t think that’s an official report.