Germany have made some beasts of tanks from 1939 to now;
Leopard II AV
(All the rest are modifications to the AV)
The decision to put the Leopard 2 tank in production for the German army was made after a study was undertaken, which showed that adopting the Leopard 2 mod would result in a greater combat potential of the German army than producing more Leopard 1A4 tanks or developing an improved version of the Leopard 1A4 with 105/120 mm smoothbore gun, improved armour protection, a new fire control system and a 1,200 horsepower (890 kW) or 1,500 horsepower (1,100 kW) engine. A number of changes was applied to the Leopard 2 design before the series production started. Engine, transmission and suspension were slightly modified and improved. The ballistic protection of turret and hull was improved and weak spots were eliminated. The turret bustle containing the ready ammunition racks and the hydraulic systems was separated from the crew compartment and fitted with blow-out panels. The development of several new components introduced to the Leopard 2 during the Leopard 2AV development and after the US testing was completed. For the series version the Hughes-designed laser rangefinder made with US Common Modules was chosen over the passive EMES-13 rangefinder. The EMES-13 system was considered to be the superior solution, but the Hughes system was cheaper and fully developed.
Most tanks now made from Germany are big fast and have a great cannon but what happens if we go back in time to when Germany ruled by Hitler made them bigger and bigger!
Not to be confused with the later Ausf. A (the sole difference being the capitalization of the letter A), the Ausf. a was the first version of the Panzer II to be built (albeit in limited numbers), and was subdivided into three sub-variants. The Ausf. a/1 was initially built with a cast idler wheel with rubber tire, but this was replaced after ten production examples with a welded part. The Ausf. a/2 improved engine access problems. The Ausf. a/3 included improved suspension and engine cooling. In general, the specifications for the Ausf. a models was similar, and a total of 75 were produced from May 1936 to February 1937 by Daimler-Benz and MAN. The Ausf. a was considered the 1 Serie under the LaS 100 name.
Crew 3 Engine Maybach HL57TR with 6 gear transmission plus reverse Weight 7.6 tonnes Dimensions 4.38 m(l) x 2.14 m(w) x 1.95 m(h) Speed 40 km/h Range 200 km Communications FuG5 radio Primary armament 2cm Kwk 30 L/55 gun with TZF4 gun sight, turret mounted Secondary armament MG34 7.92 mm machine gun, coaxially mounted Ammunition 180 20 mm and 2,250 7.92 mm carried Turret 360° hand traverse with elevation of +20° and depression to -9.5° Armour 13 mm front, side, and rear; 8 mm top; 5 mm bottom
The Panzer III was intended as the primary battle tank of the German forces. However, when it initially met the KV-1 and T-34 tanks it proved to be inferior in both armour and gun power. To meet the growing need to counter these tanks, the Panzer III was up-gunned with a longer, more powerful 50-millimetre (1.97 in) gun and received more armour but still was at disadvantage compared with the Soviet tank designs. As a result, production of self-propelled guns, as well as the up-gunning of the Panzer IV was initiated.
In 1942, the final version of the Panzer III, the Ausf. N, was created with a 75-millimetre (2.95 in) KwK 37 L/24 cannon, the same short-barreled howitzer-like gun used for the initial models, of the Panzer IV, a low-velocity gun designed for anti-infantry and close-support work. For defensive purposes, the Ausf. N was equipped with rounds of HEAT ammunition that could penetrate 70 to 100 millimetres (2.76 to 3.94 in) of armour depending on the round's variant, but these were strictly used for self-defence.
The Pz.Kpfw. IV's creation, like its predecessor the Pz.Kpfw. III, was devised by Heinz Guderian. He envisioned a support tank to be used to handle anti-tank guns and fortifications. The Panzer IV was to work alongside the more numerable Panzer III in Panzer Divisions (three company of IIIs and one of IVs) to engage the enemy, giving the role of fighting enemy armored forces to the Panzer IIIs. As a support tank, the tank was to have the short 75 mm howitzer as its main armament and have a weight limit of 24 tons. MAN, Krupp, and Rheinmetall-Borsig worked on the development of the tanks, but the Krupp's model was selected for further testing.
The chosen model from Krupp, once finished, used a leaf-spring double-bogie system for its suspension, doing away the proposed interleaved or torsion bar suspension system earlier devised for the sake of faster production. The vehicle held five crew members: the commander, gunner, loader, radio operator (and hull machine gunner), and driver. Though it looked symmetrical, the Panzer IV turret was actually offset to the left of the chassis center line a bit while the engine was also offset to the right. This was to allow the torque shaft to turn the turret. The offset also meant that most of the ammo is held on the right side of the tank in storage areas. The Panzer IV was then accepted into service and production began in 1936.
Pz. Kpfw V (Panther)
Panzer. VI (Tiger I and Tiger II)
The Tiger I heavy tank was arguably the most infamous tank of World War II. The design for this tank began as early as January 1937 when Henschel & Sohn worked on a large "breakthrough" called theDurchbruchwagen that weighed about 30 tons on request by the German military. The request was modified over time for more armor and better gun that increased the weight to 36 tons, but this project was dropped in 1938 in favor of the better prototypes VK 30.01(H) and VK 36.01(H). These new prototypes were the start of the usage of the Schachtellaufwerk wheel arrangements, but these also never passed prototype stages and were both cancelled in 1942.
During the development of the prototypes above, the German invasion of France showed that the Allied tanks such as the Somua, Char B1, and Matilda II were impervious to their current anti-tank weaponry and a need for better armored and armed tanks were emphasized. So on May 26, 1941, Henschel and Porsche were asked to submit designs for a 45 ton heavy tank that was to be ready for demonstration by June 1942. During their development, in June 1941, Germany initiated Operation Barbarossa against the Soviet Union and were shocked by appearance of the t-34 and KV-1 tanks that were invulnerable to all but the most potent anti-tank weapon in German inventory, one of which was the 88 mm FlaK cannon. The potency of the 88 mm cannon against the heavily armored tanks that the Germans faced had Hitler ordered that the heavy tank design undertaken by Henschel and Porsche to utilize the 88 mm as its main armament instead of a 75 mm cannon.
The designs of the tank was finalized and ready for demonstration on April 20, 1942, Hitler's birthday, and showed the VK 45.01(H) and the VK 45.01(P). The demonstration and subsequent evaluations on the two designs determined that the Henschel variant was superior to the Porsche variant, proving more reliable, more mobile, and more easily produced than the Porsche. This caused the Henschel variant to be adopted as the Panzerkampfwagen VI Tiger and production started in August 1942. The Porsche variant had many chassis produced as Ferdinand Porsche thought the design would win, so the chassis were instead used in the Ferdinand tank destroyer.
10,5 cm (H)
(This was never made but blue prints where found of it)
Just before the Tiger I entered service in 1942, work has already begun for its successor. In 1937, Henschel was ordered to develop a heavy tank design, with Porsche following suit in 1939. Porsche developed their new heavy tank off of the failed VK 45.01(P), churning out two models designated VK 4502 (P) named Type 180 and 181. The Type 180 had its turret mounted centrally while 181 had the turret mounted on the rear with the engine in the center (akin to the Ferdinand tank destroyer layout). Both designs used the same components of the VK 4501 (P) and both designs were visually similar except for the turret locations and some mechanical parts, but these two designs never passed wooden prototypes.
Henschel, on the other hand, used a more conventional design in their tank layout, but the end result look no way similar to their previous heavy tank design Tiger I. The VK 4503 (H) as designated by them resembled a Panther tank layout, with the transmission in the front along with the driving compartment, the turret in the center, and the engine in the rear. The design used many components from the Panther and the Panther II in order to standardize production. The suspension system was also different from anything produced at the time, though still using a torsion-bar suspension, the wheels were arranged only in the overlapping method, not interleaving. This new Schachtellaufwerk design simplified maintenance and increased production by using less wheels than interleaved (only 9 each side) and with full-steel wheels that the later Tiger I models used to save rubber. The first wooden mock-up of the design was presented on October 20, 1943 to Hitler, to which it was approved for further development as the Panzerkampfwagen Tiger Ausf. B, or just Tiger II and Tiger B for short. The Henschel variant was more advantageous than the Porsche variant for being developed faster and has a faster production rate, thus it was destined to be approved for service. The Henschel design began production in the Henschel plant at Kassal and the first 3 working prototypes were churned out in December 1943. Full-scale production began on January 1944 and continued all the way until March 1945. Due to the late introduction and the amount of resources needed to construct the heavy tanks, only about 482 production models were produced in this time period, considerably less than its predecessor, Tiger I.
More tanks coming soon, like the Tiger's and Germany's super tank ideas! (This time the mouse gets even bigger than the cat!)
Edited by magic ender11, 23 August 2016 - 11:08 AM.