The tank is tall, but adequately protected
The closest equivalent of the Ausf. A front armor is probably the IS-6. The protection level is good enough against same tier medium tanks. The sole exception is the Panther II, but would rather call that a fast heavy tank than a medium. The real classification of the latter is an open debate, but it’s safe to say, that guns with 160-180 mm average penetration pose less danger to our “matchbox”. The King Tiger has heavier armor on the hull, but it lacks the speed and agility of the Ausf. A.
The “matchbox” has 120 mm at 55 degrees from vertical upper hull armor which means 176 mm WoT-equivalent effective armor. At 30 and 45 degrees side angle the 50 percent protection raises to 188 and 215 mm.
Lucky for us, all-welded tanks are easy to test (the stock turret is cast). We have tested the armor of the VK 4502 Ausf. A with the usual thoroughness. Lot of things can be told again about this tank. It has nice straight armor plates, we can angle the Ausf. A without much problem. Moderate angle (less than 30 degrees) will protect us from guns with 160-180 average penetration range. Against 200 or more, we will need high (40-45 degrees) hull angling, but a position like that exposes the weak hull sides.
All we had said about the Tiger P and its weak sides and rear can be applied here. Our smallest test gun is the 75mm M3 with 90 avg pen, but it has penetrated every part of the side armor with little trouble.
We really have to use that good maneuverability of our tank to face our opponents in time and to avoid crossfire, because almost everything can hurt us from the flanks and rear. The engine and transmission module in the back is fairly big and vulnerable. They cover almost half of the tank, so better to watch out. You can check them out among many others in this excellent review here.
An excellent cover-fighter
Due to a unique feature, the “matchbox” is better at hiding the vulnerable side armor, and this is the turret position. It lies ahead on the hull, so we have to show less of the tank, when we play “peek and boo”. The sides are covered, the front is nicely angled. All we have to worry about the real squishy casual weak spots.