The Panther 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
and Panzer IV
, 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.
The armaments Ministry acted swiftly and on the 25th of November
1941, contacted Daimler-Benz
to design 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 by Daimler-Benz
were submitted 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.
By comparison VK 3002 M.A.N
was 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