I or Panzerkampfwagen V or abbreviated to Pz.Kpfw. V the Panther tank, was a direct
response of the German army, encountering the Russian T-34 and KV-1 tanks the
T-34 outclassed the existing Panzer III
, due to the high losses of Panzer III
, on the insistence of general Heinz
an emergency commission was set up and dispatched to the eastern
front to study Russian T-34 and KV-1 three main points were decided upon 1, the
use of sloped armour which gave excellent shot deflection. 2, use of large road
wheels gave exceptionally good stability. 3, overhanging gun.
Ministry acted swiftly and on the 25th of November 1941, contacted Daimler-Benz
a new medium tank of 30 to 35 tons in weight to have a minimum of 60 mm frontal
armour and 40 mm side armour with a maximum speed of 55 km per hour to be known
under the designation of VK 3002.
In April 1942 the two prototype designs
to the army weapons department the Daimler-Benz
prototype was near identical copy of the T-34 diesel engine was fitted with transmission
to rear sprockets paired steel bogies without rubber tyres were suspended by leaf
springs. The VK 3002 DB was a very clean design with huge potential.
VK 3002 M.A.N
far more in keeping with German design and thinking. It was over sophisticated,
rather than simple, it was fitted with a Maybach petrol engine with drive to the
front sprockets torsion bar suspension was used with interlevered road wheels,
the internal layout followed conventional German tank layouts.
won the production contract, and the first Panther models, which came off the
construction line in November 1942 were designated Pz.Kpfw. V Ausf. A they had
60 mm thick frontal armour. From January 1943, with all the new design improvements
suggested from prototype trials frontal armour was increased to 80 mm there were
number of improvements during the course of the Panthers production run other
manufacturers, who produced a Panther were Demag
German Military Vehicles.
Armoured Fighting Vehicles of Germany World War II.
Encyclopedia of German Tanks of World Two.
For a complete list of sources