German medium tank Pz. Kpfw. 3-4 project of a new tank with rational angle of armor and elements of design Pz. Kpfw. IV and Pz. Kpfw. III was approved January 4, 1944. In March 1944, a contract was signed for the production of three prototypes, but on July 12, the program was curtailed. Serially produced only tank destroyer on a similar base.
The armored mission at its meeting on January 4, 1944 approved the specification for the tank, which was a combination of Pz.Kpfw. Ill and Pz.Kpfw. IV on the leichte Panzer Jaeger chassis (later renamed Panzer IV lang (Е)). The engine offered was the time-tested and war Maybach HL-120TRM, coupled with an SSG-77 transmission, reinforced output shafts and driving wheels from the Pz.Kpfw tank. Iii. The chassis included six support rollers with a diameter of 660 mm on board, interlocked in sheet springs in pairs. For the tracks, we chose new symmetrical tracks 540 mm wide with a central ridge. Sloth – from the tank Pz.Kpfw. IV, but enhanced and expanded. The power reserve was planned to be increased by placing an additional fuel tank with a capacity of 300 liters in the engine compartment.
The frontal part of the hull was redesigned – the upper armor sheet 60 mm thick received a slope of 60 degrees to the vertical, the lower one 60 mm thick – a slope of 45 degrees to the vertical. Tower – almost similar to the tower tank Pz.Kpfw. IV Ausf. J. Rotating electrical contacts at its base were excluded from the construction of the tower, and flexible electric cable was used instead, which limited the turn-over sector of the tower to 270 degrees to the right and left of the longitudinal axis. Ammunition capacity increased to one hundred rounds for the 75-mm cannon and up to 3150 cartridges for machine guns.
In March 1944, Wa Pruef 6 signed a contract for the manufacture of three pilot tanks Pz.Kpfw. IV auf Einheitsfahrgesyell. In June 1944, it was decided to start the machine into mass production at Krupp-Gruzonverk from February 1945, but already on July 12, 1944, the Krupp company was informed about the cancellation of the program of the Pz.Kpfw tank. IIl / Pz.Kpfw. Iv. Only tank fighter Panzerjaeger mit L / 70 was transferred to mass production.
Application in hostilities:
Pz.Kpfw. III / IV is designed for flank attacks and support due to good mobility. Due to not too thick armor and not enough powerful weapons, Pz.Kpfw. III / IV cannot attack in the forehead tanks of level V or more. The enemy will hit you with virtually every shell, and you are unlikely to. And this is not to mention the low rate of fire, because of which the damage per unit of time suffers. Another thing – the attack to the rear, entering the board, evading shots of a sluggish enemy. Here you will have an advantage, but you should soberly assess whether you can whirl the enemy in the existing conditions: whether he will kill you with the first hit, whether there is room for action. A good walkie talkie allows you to use Pz.Kpfw. III / IV as light (passive and active), while high speed and good maneuverability will help to get away from the fire of enemy tanks. Another of the main tasks of Pz.Kpfw. III \ IV – is the elimination of enemy ACS. Excellent mobility helps to quickly break through the abandoned flank, and the possibility of using high-explosive shells helps to eliminate artillery.
Being in the top of the list, you can use the tactics of quick breakthrough with other ST. Work well with a platoon of 2-3 Pz.Kpfw. III / IV. Thanks to a fairly quick-fire cannon, you can constantly keep opponents on downed tracks. Good dynamics will allow you to go to the flank or rear. In general, the car is very interesting precisely because of the large choice of roles on the battlefield, choose what you like and build your style of play. The benefit of this tank allows you to do this.