PT-658, one of only two currently fully operational PT series boats, comes to War Thunder as a new season Battle Pass vehicle!
PT-658, torpedo boat, USA, III rank
- Excellent armament
- Low survivability
In the midst of the war, the American Navy was in dire need of fast and agile torpedo boats. The Elco shipyards, the main supplier of the US mosquito fleet, very quickly ceased to cope with the growing volume of orders, so the company management was obliged to transfer the documentation for the production of boats to two more shipyards - the Huckins Yacht Corporation from Jacksonville, Florida, and Higgins Industries from New Orleans. The 78 ft. boats at the Higgins Industries shipyards were built entirely of wood, which somewhat reduced their top speed, but the seaworthiness and maneuverability of the series remained unchanged. Most of the boats entered units of the United States Navy in the Pacifics and were intensively used against Japan. A significant part of the boats were delivered under Lend-Lease: of the 221 built boats, 52 were transferred to the USSR and another 24 to Great Britain.
The PT-658 was also supposed to be Lend-Leased to the USSR, but by the time of construction on July 30th, 1945, the war in Europe had already ended and the delivery was canceled. The boat did not participate in hostilities and was used as an auxiliary and transport vessel. In 1958, the boat was bought into private ownership, and in 1993 it was donated to a non-profit organization of veterans and enthusiasts for restoration. By 2005, the PT-658 torpedo boat was completely rebuilt and is currently one of two fully operational PT-series patrol boats. The boat takes part in shows and is currently displayed as a living exhibit at the Vigor Industrial shipyard in Portland, Oregon.
The Higgins-built 78ft. boats of the 200 series are already familiar to War Thunder coastal fleet enthusiasts. These are fairly fast and well-armed boats with a wooden hull and a small crew. Boats are unable to provide any protection to the crew and internal modules even from machine gun fire, so they find their use in quickly capturing points and ambushes among islands and rocks.
The PT-658 boat in our game will be one of the prizes for the participants of the new Battle Pass season, which will soon start in War Thunder. The premium PT-658 fully inherits the advantages and disadvantages of the series. The boat is well-armed: a 40mm Bofors at the stern, a 37mm autocannon at the bow, a pair of 20mm Oerlikons and 4 large-caliber machine guns make it an unrivaled hunter of enemy boats and light aircraft. The PT-658 has a rich selection of additional weapons: you can combine 4x569mm torpedoes, depth charges and 16 unguided rockets. Unfortunately, the wooden structure is vulnerable to damage and the small crew do not allow the boat to survive for long under enemy fire. Even rifle calibers are deadly not only to the crew, but also to the internal modules.
The most profitable tactic of using the PT-658 is to quickly capture points under the cover of a smoke screen, engaging in short fire contacts with enemy scouts. As long as the boat is able to move, it must not stop, otherwise any serious enemy will easily cripple the wooden American with the first salvo. Capture one point - retreat and move to the next one. Premium bonuses PT-658 will bring a good income for each captured point and each enemy shot!