The Panzer 58 Mutz
When this tank was announced a while ago, my first thought was "Great another gimped Tier 8 premium that WG is going to use to make a cash grab."
I was wrong.
Overall this tank has a very solid set of hidden stats, the DPM is respectable, the penetration (212 AP/ 259 APCR) is comfortable, the ammo cost at 300 means that you will be making a tidy profit with this tank, the bloom is manageable, and the terrain resistance is on par with the 62a. The gun depression of -10 and the elevation of +25 give you plenty of options. The view range is a bit lack luster even with vision skills and optics. the HP is also low and limits your options in terms of trading.
Using V. stabs to bring your bloom down, rammer to boost your DPM, and optics to give you some utility in being able to spot your own targets.
The AP pen is more than enough for most situations, with your APCR round being only needed versus T10s frontally, my ammo setup reflects this.
In terms of consumables, the standard small rep/small med/AFE applies. In terms of module damage, I have seen the turret, the ammo rack, and the radio being the most frequently hit modules. In terms of crew death, there hasn't been many. I have however been lit on fire 3~ times in my 27 games in the Mutz, so if you wished to run food, I would suggest training JoaT on your CO and dropping the med kit for food.
As I didn't really have a German crew, this is rather thrown together and retrained. The focus on repairs is needed to get you out of trouble if you are tracked. gunnery/driving/and camo would be good skills to train up on this tank, anything you can do to lower the bloom values and the terrain values will go a long way. The camo also helps when you need to sit further back and take potshots into the enemy.
Now this is where it gets odd. The mutz doesn't have the typical medium armor layout or hull shape. The entire upper hull is shaped like an egg with gradually thinner armor plates and steeper angles the further you move away from the middle of the hull. The mantlet and the turret itself are angled and sloped in such a way that it is a roll of the dice as to whether you pen or not.
This armor model shows, based of the camera's position, the possibility of you penetrating the tank, with green being a penetration and the purple being a bounce via armor thickness or angle. As you can see, at just a slight angle, around 45% of your tank becomes an auto bounce zone.
This effect becomes compounded when you hide your hull behind a small rise or dip and bring your -10 depression to bear. In a position such as this at either close range or mid range, rocking your hull back and forth, your opponents will have a hard time penetrating you.
The Mutz has a top speed of 50 KPH that it reaches with ease. Because of the relatively low power of your engine (400 HP) and your amazing terrain resistance values, your acceleration is gradual, but once the top speed is reached, it stays there. In comparison to the M46 KR, which has a much more powerful engine (800 HP) and a much higher set of terrain resistance values, instead of fighting through what feels like molasses to reach your top speed, you can get there with no trouble at all.
With 212 AP pen, 1,000 m/s, and decent DPM, the Mutz's gun is certainly a highlight. The typical German low aim time and dispersion compensate for the bloom values. Due to the speed of this tank though, the bloom is amplified and is nowhere near what the M46 KR is. In the KR once you reach a firing position you simply poke and fire with no aiming. In the Mutz, you must wait a moment for your gun to aim in before you are able to take a shot. In a sense, this longer exposure time is compensated by the more armored turret that the KR does not have.
An oddity in regards to the gun depression is that there are spots on both sides of the tank that have only -7 degrees of depression, as opposed to the -10 of the rest of the tank. this little quirk is noticeable and frustrating at first, but once you grow accustomed to it, you barely notice it.
Because of its higher mobility and slightly tougher turret than the M46 KR, you have more options to flex and move. The principle of being a second line support tank suits this machine very well with its low dispersion and quick aim time. Being able to work ridges at short to medium distances also gives it that extra flexibility that something like the T-54 proto doesn't have. You want to race forward, get off a couple of early shots of damage, fall back and pick and snipe while looking for holes to exploit in the enemies defenses. unlike the KR which takes time to respond to these holes, the Mutz can rush there and get its DPM on target.
The Mutz doesn't seem to have quite the same profitability that the KR has, but still makes fairly good money. These few games I played saw me averaging 56.7k a match.
If you aren't quite sure if you want to get this tank, NA has a free rental going on right now, (flooding the matchmaker with Mutz's I might add) this will allow you to get a feel for the tank and its playstyle and capabilities. Also because of this flood of rentals, the MOE requirements are insanely low right now, an easy third mark if you wanted as well.
+Fast and nimble, the power to flex is much appreciated
+Good gun handling, in everything but bloom values
+Trollish armor layout
+Decent credit-making ability
+Has a bear on it
-Only 1,300 HP
-Ammo rack can be rather weak
-Bloom is noticeably worse than the KR, longer exposure time
Overall I would give it a 9/10 and highly recommend you pick it up.
For those of you wishing to join Bulba but getting frustrated with how long the process is going, I implore you to remain patient. Our head recruitment officer is absent doing other, more important things, but he will be back soon.