Alternative WWII German Tank Design...

Discussion in 'The War Room' started by Big Orange, May 23, 2007.

  1. Big Orange

    Big Orange I Hate Mr. Blonde!

    Would the Germans get their tank design almost dead right by 1939 if they adapted the infamous Christie suspension and grafted it onto the Panzer IV chassis? And instead of building separate tanks for separate roles, instead merely build a Christie Panzer IV that can be fitted with either a 50 mm L/60 or 75 mm L/24 cannon. The Christie Panzer IV would have up to 45 mm of frontal sloped armour like the Panther (although unlike the Panther it would be as mechanically solid and as easy to produce as the original Panzer IV).

    The Panzer Is would be melted down to make better AFVs. The Panzer IIs would mostly be converted into a mobile assault guns. Most Panzer IIIs would be converted into StuG IIIs, although the Panzer III in it's original form would make an excellent mobile observation and command vehicle.

    Do my Panzer ideas sound rum?
  2. Some PzII variants used the Christie suspension, but the Germans may have considered leaf-spring designs more favorably still.

    Ideally, the Germans should have standardized on one Panzer III design equipped with torsion bar suspension that could fulfill the roles of the OTL PzIII/PzIV setup. There was a Panzer design of a PzIV turret mounted on a Panther like chassis, but that design never got produced.
  3. Archdevil

    Archdevil High Admiral

    Wasn't that just a cobbled up model during Panther prototype testing?
  4. Douglas Nicol

    Douglas Nicol Jadefalcon Supermoderator SuperModerator

    I've got Chamberlain and Doyles very detailed book on German tanks and their variants, I'll look it up. If you're interested in the subject it's a must have book, as it even covers the captured Allied vehicles pressed into service and god knows how many concepts and prototypes.
  5. Archdevil

    Archdevil High Admiral

    I'm not that interested in those kind of thing, but thanks for the effort. :p

    It's just that I remember seeing a picture with what aldw described and the caption or description claimed it was a Panther fitted with a Pz. IV like turret during testing.

    edit: considering it also happened at the end of the war with Panthers fitted with Panther II's 'schmallturm' turrets, it could have happened before.
  6. Inquisiter Groo

    Inquisiter Groo Got Georgia on my mind...

  7. Entropy

    Entropy Solidarity

    So...a German T-34.

    Edit: Well actually, more like a cross between a T-34 and a Sherman, especially the latter's better "soft" features, which isn't a bad thing given Shermans are greaty underrated by most.
  9. Big Orange

    Big Orange I Hate Mr. Blonde!

    The Panzer IV seemed necessary, clearly better than the Panzer III and was in some ways better than the T-34 - why didn't they ignore the Panther and carried on with the Panzer IV, a tank that could clearly engage most enemy armour after 1941?
  10. Mad Luddite

    Mad Luddite Was that an attempt at humor?

    The Panther could engage T-34s of any distinction and destroy them in large numbers. It was probably the best tank of the war. If anything, the Germans needed to stop making every tank Tiger and up, even if the Tiger was also a successful and powerful design. T-34/76s could fight Pzkpfw IVs on even terms; they had to go right up to Panthers and Tigers and hit them in the sides. T-34/85s still had to get very close.
  11. Big Orange

    Big Orange I Hate Mr. Blonde!

    The StuG III actually racked out the most kill counts against the slightly overrated T-34, although that must be attributed to the StuG III being the first German AFV being upgunned with the more competitive longer caliber high velocity 75mm cannon and being one of the more common Panzer units from late 1941 onwards (but the 50mm cannon could penetrate T-34 armour, but it was not always guaranteed).
  12. And the cute fact that some 50,000 stugs were made.
  13. Entropy

    Entropy Solidarity

    More like greatly overrated T-34 :p
  14. Nope less than 10,000

    Apx 9,400 StuG IIIs where made, in addtion 1,150 StuG IVs and 1,200 StuH IIIs where made.

    and thy are credited with over 20,000 tanks (and that was by 1944).

    Edit: ooh 1,000th post :)
  15. Mad Luddite

    Mad Luddite Was that an attempt at humor?

    Nice one. ;)

    Anyway, about 9,000 Pzkpfw IVs were made, and much of these weren't upgunned to the point of usefulness. Turrets were still very much useful.
  16. The Germans would've benefited a lot more from earlier mobilization than they would have from the 'perfect' tank design. If they had put their economy in a 'total war' state when the war began (1939), they might have overwhelmed the Soviets in the first year of the Russian war.
  17. Big Orange

    Big Orange I Hate Mr. Blonde!

    I can see the T-34/76 in 1941 as an overrated tank due to poor optics, few radios, green tank crews and lack unit coherency which was why the well drilled and more coherent Panzer units were more successful in spite of not necessarily being the better tanks (although most Soviet armour brigades consisted of the T-26 and BT-5/7 tanks which the German 50 mm and even 37 mm cannons could destroy).