A prototype of the ARL 40. The vehicle was intended as an assault SPG. Mass production was to be launched in 1940 but never started due to the occupation of France.
The ARL V39 requires quite a bit of patience to operate with efficient competence; as while the ARL V39 doesn't have the armor to withstand frontal shots, it does gain improved mobility compared to its predecessors. The gun arc will be quite a downgrade at first coming from the magnificent S-35CA, instead it gains better gun handling and reload to compensate.
A good strategy for this tank is to see where the main force is heading and either assist them from a reasonable distance or by selecting a defensive position and wait for a prey. Realize that the ARL V39 doesn't have puncturing accuracy with its guns until it is able to mount the well proven and powerful 105 mm Canon from the S-35CA or the 90 mm DCA 45 AC (with the best gun penetration values for its tier and adequate accuracy). You will find though that as you transition through the French td tech tree's from this point on that the top tier gun IS NOT the best choice (due to accuracy/rpm/aim time deficiencies on a "first generation" top tier gun).
The ARL V39 leads to the AMX AC Mle. 1946.
Pros and Cons
- Good selection of guns.
- Decent rate of fire.
- Good mobility (forward speed).
- 90mm Gun can hurt even tier 9 tanks.
- Weak armor, poor traverse and poor reverse speed.
- Large Commander cupola coupled with mediocre gun elevation arc.
- Gunner/driver nearly always killed or injured on first front hit.
- Camo rating will be worse (stationary/in-motion/firing) then the S-35CA.
Although this tank may seem nice from the statistics, it unfortunately isn't until it has been fully researched. You should have the 105 and the short 90 (DCA 30) from the S-35 CA, along with the two 75mm guns from the Somua. If you don't have the 105 or the short 90, you may want to get them for the S-35 CA. Understand up front you will not be able to equip either of the S-35 CA guns until you have researched the suspension (for a bit over 5000 EXP), resulting in you having to make do with the 75mm guns.
It's sometimes called the "Nerf Football" due to its football shaped hull and long upgraded gun.
Many players prefer the 105mm Cannon over the DCA-45 (and it is highly advisable to go with the 105) for the following reasons:
- The accuracy of the 105 (in essence as the 2nd generation version) will be very comparable with the DCA-45. The DCA-45 (we'll say its the first generation version) is very finicky on accuracy and penetration.
- The rpm rate of the 105 is also very comparable to the DCA-45.
- The aim time of the 105 is significantly lower then the DCA-45. The 105mm can deliver high alpha damage, while the DCA-45 alpha can seem insufficient and rather picky at critical times.
- The ER 53 radio carries over from the S-35 CA and can be installed immediately. The Canon de 105 mle1930 Schneider AC and 90 mm canon DCA 30 AC guns also carry over, but require additional weight capacity.
- Research the upgraded suspension first, as you can't mount anything without it.
- Next research the Renault T14 engine.
- Go from there.
In the middle of 1935, France started the development of a new assault self propelled gun, and two companies responded with their suggestions. Somua (Société d'Outillage Usinage Mécanique et d'd 'Artillerie) started a project that was to become the Somua SAU S40, and ARL (Atelier de Construction de Rueil) developed the ARL 39V prototype.
The ARL V39 heavily relied on the parts developed for, and used by the Char B1 tank. Its frontal armor had a maximum armor thickness of 50 mm. Its main armament was a 75 mm APX gun; a modification of the model 1292 de Casemate gun originally developed for destroying fortifications. The gun had a semi-automatic breech, automatic charging machine and a very odd feature; its main gun could be retracted inside the hull to decrease the vehicle length. The ARL V39's secondary equipment consisted of a 7.5 mm machinegun placed in the small turret on the roof, which was similar to the competing Somua SAU-40 vehicle. The development was officially finished in 1938, and army field trials were conducted between 23 and 25 March, 1939. The French army was satisfied with the performance of the new vehicle, and approved the start of its serial production.The numbers vary from source to source, but apparently between 72 and 80 vehicles were ordered in the first series, together with 24 command vehicles. The fall of France stopped all production plans, and only two prototype vehicles were built. Both prototypes were evacuated to Morocco, but their fates remain a mystery.