Friday, 27 February 2015
German Tank Reliability
I already looked at Soviet and Lend-Lease tanks, so let's take a look at what was happening on the other side of the front lines. ORO's "Survey of Allied Tank Casualties in World War II" attempts to shine some light on the issue.
Well that's not very helpful. Let's see what Guiderian has to say about this.
Yikes, that's twice as much as even the worst Soviet figures. Some more information, still fairly vague, can be extracted from the document.
50% losses from breakdowns is a pretty bad figure, but it's hard to expect anything else considering the Panther's short lived components. Robert Forczyk has some unkind words dedicated to the Panther's reliability in his book Panther vs. T-34 Ukraine 1943: "...5th Guards Tank Army was able to move its T-34s 300 km on their own tanks to the front between July 7-9 and still had about 90 percent of its tanks operational. No Panther unit could ever have moved this distance without losing most of its tanks to mechanical breakdown.
Although the Panther's AK 7-200 transmission was nominally superior to the clumsy transmission on the T-34, about 5 percent broke down within 100 km and 90 percent within 1,500 km in combat."