I don’t understand the changed options here; for one the “bonus while heating” seems to be primarily the province of T3 ships (obvious examples being the improved efficacy while heating that T3 cruisers get to their tank mods, either reps or hardeners, depending on particular subsystem, and also the general heat damage reduction literally every T3 ship gets).
For two, ABs already have no effect on signature, so reduction while under AB makes no sense- particularly since 'ceptors already have dinky little sig radius in the first place. Now, if you wanted to emphasize this then a slight improvement to AB speed might have merit, but it would have to be very modest- on the order of 2-5% per level- so as to not infringe on the Sansha/Succubus as a premiere AB platform.
I can understand this in part given that the Crusader and Claw are both ships which possess only 2 mids, but the Taranis and Raptor already have fairly ample mids (alright if the goal is hard-on for dual prop fits then the Raptor not as much but the Taranis is more than equipped for dual prop action in the mids).
Moreover this brings up the obvious question of “where are these slots coming from?” On the Claw I can see maybe canning the utility high- the same for the 'Ranis though for the Taranis I’d like to see that useless utility high get slapped into the lows personally- but for the Crusader I’m not sure where this is going to come from.
Conceptually not awful, however.
So IOW it’s just a probably-worse shield Ranis. I mean as it stands the Raptor is admittedly pretty terrible, but I don’t think the bonuses are the reason why (or at least not the range bonus). Of the combat 'ceptors the Raptor is the only one to get a tank bonus, which is interesting, and a range bonus, which is potentially quite good.
If it were made into a super-duper dual prop bote then I could see some scramkite railgun fits having potential, but these would ideally want a range bonus rather than tracking, since there’s not a lot of things that can pull range on an AB ceptor if both parties are scrammed (and most of these would be “Sansha ships” and “10mn fits”, which are not necessarily wise choices of target for a combat ceptor to begin with).
If you wanted to throw tracking at it then the tank bonus would be the thing to axe, not the range.
The Crusader is already on the high end of DPS potential for the combat ceptors. Primarily this is because- currently- it is the only one to boast 4 guns; in fact I’m not sure it’s practical to fit any other combat 'ceptor to have DPS that can rival or exceed the Crusader.
Assuming the largest size gun and faction damage ammo (so as to not have tracking problems), then a Crusader can get 216 DPS cold, the Raptor a paltry 171, the Taranis 239, and the Claw 207. For the Raptor admittedly this is because the fit I’m referencing isn’t able to fit more than one damage mod- and a compact one at that- while the 'sader and Claw are getting a T2 damage mod+T2 RoF rig, and the Taranis is using dual compact damage mods (for the 'Ranis the only way I got the damage to exceed the Crusader was to go all-in on a hull bait tank fit with DC+bulkheads; CPU limits precluded T2 magstabs unfortunately).
Unless this fourth turret is getting the axe so that the Crusader can have 3 mids (and thus have dual prop+scram), then I see no reason to pump the DPS further, when it’s already arguably the best-in-class at that particular statistic.
As far as improved tracking in general I don’t see a problem there, it seems fairly reasonable if the goal is for them to be able to orbit superfast while on an AB.
I kind of like the idea, since the combat 'ceptors do kind of need some kind of adjustment given that they’ve become almost entirely irrelevant.