A heavy fighter should be able to tank as well as any other heavy fighter class in most situations, special situations being the exception not the rule (say, a paladin DOES tank better against undead). At the same time, your classes abilities will both feel and work differently so you will need to choose different tactics when tanking, even though you are technically doing the same job. This is so different classes with the same job don't feel or play the same.
Source: Aradune Mithara
All 4 of the protective fighters do their primary role equally well, however it's HOW they perform this role that makes the flavors different. Secondary roles also provide a great deal of flexibility in playstyle for players as do your other non-primary role abilities.
I've said this before.. you guys need to get the EQ model out of your head to a large extent, as we're taking new approaches to the old standards. I think you'll be pleased.
All heavy fighters, given equal gear, buffs, attribute allocation, and race will take a hit equally. The differences are in the way they go about doing their secondary roles, and what they do best.
Ideally.. we want a given heavy fighter type to be situationally preferred, but not preferred in ALL situations.
Source: Elidroth (02/16/06)