Military History |
World War II
What Weapons When During WW2
Posted 7 Jul 2003
I wanted to know when various weapons were introduced during WW2 so I could have scenarios that were vaguely historical in terms of equipment. I don't promise that the below is totally correct, but it is the best I could come up with using the web.
I used this data for my Crossfire: Random Tanks page.
The StuG III was the most common German armoured vehicle of the war, and in particular the StuG III Ausf G was produced in more numbers than all the other StuGs combined. The StuG III was initially an anti-personnel assault gun but the long barreled versions increasingly took on a Tank Destroyer role. The long barreled versions were sometimes called StuG 40s, after their guns.
The PzKpfw IV was the most common German tank.
The L rating of the German guns is the length relative to the bore of the gun tube.
Zimmerit was coating to fend off hand-placed magnetic mines.
Schürzen ("aprons") were side skirts to protect against infantry anti-tank weapons (originally Russian anti-tank rifles).
The German table is based on the production figures published by Marcus Wendel. I have ignored production figures of less than 100 units in a year, except for certain Close Support Vehicles.
These numbers are a bit misleading as vehicles remained in use long after they were produced (I'd say roughly a year after they were produced). For example in 1943 the only Pz III produced was the Pz III Ausf N, but the Pz III was probably the most common tank at Kursk and earlier versions predominated (see Panzer IIIs at Kursk and Panzer IVs at Kursk on the Battlefront site).
|PzKpfw III Ausf H, J||5cm KwK 38 L/42||1,649|
|PzKpfw 38 (t)||37mm KwK 38(t) L/48 (L/47.8)||698|
|StuG III Ausf C, D, E||7.5cm StuK 37 L/24||540|
|PzKpfw IV Ausf D, E, F1||7.5cm KwK 37 L/24||480|
|PzKpfw III Ausf J, L, M||5cm KwK 39 L/60||1,907|
|PzKpfw IV Ausf F2||7.5cm KwK 40 L/43||877|
|PzKpfw III Ausf N||7.5cm KwK L/24||449|
|StuG III Ausf F8, G||7.5cm StuK 40 L/48||365|
|PzKpfw 38 (t)||76.2mm (Russian)||344|
|StuG III Ausf F||7.5cm StuK 40 L/43||330|
|PzKpfw II Marder II||7.5cm PaK 40/2 L/46||327|
|PzKpfw III Ausf H, J||5cm KwK 38 L/42||251|
|PzKpfw 38 (t)||37mm KwK 38(t) L/48 (L/47.8)||195|
|PzKpfw II||76.2mm Pak||184|
|PzKpfw IV Ausf F1||7.5cm KwK 37 L/24||117|
|PzKpfw 38 Marder III||7.5cm PaK 40/3 L/46||110|
|Sturminfanteriegeschütz 33 Ausf E||150mm sIG33 L/11||24|
|PzKpfw IV Ausf G, H||7.5cm KwK 40 L/48||5,425|
|StuG III Ausf F8, G||7.5cm StuK 40 L/48||3,011|
|PzKpfw V Panther||7.5cm KwK 42 L/70||1,848|
|PzKpfw 38 Marder III||7.5cm PaK 40/3 L/46||779|
|PzKpfw VI Tiger I||649|
|PzKpfw IV Ausf F2||7.5cm KwK 40 L/43||598|
|PzKpfw II Wespe||10.5cm leFH 18||518|
|PanzerJäger Hornisse/Nashorn||8.8cm PaK 43/1 L/71||345|
|PzKpfw 38 Grille||224|
|PzKpfw III Ausf N / Sturmpanzer III||7.5cm KwK L/24||213|
|StuH 42 Ausf F||10.5cm L/28||204|
|PzKpfw II Marder II||7.5cm Pak||204|
Tiger-Sturmgeschütz Ferdinand / Elephant
|8.8cm PaK 43/2 L/71||90|
|Sturmpanzer IV Brummbär||15cm Haubitze||70|
|StuG III Ausf G||7.5cm StuK 40 L/48||3,849|
|PzKpfw V Panther||7.5cm KwK 42 L/70||3,777|
|PzKpfw IV Ausf H, J||7.5cm KwK 40 L/48||3,225|
|StuG IV||7.5cm StuG L/48||1,006|
|StuH 42 Ausf F||10.5cm L/28||903|
|Jagdpanzer IV||7.5cm PaK L/48||769|
|PzKpfw VI Tiger I||623|
|Jagdpanzer IV/70 (V)||7.5cm Pak 42 L/70||560|
|PzKpfw VI Tiger II||376|
|PzKpfw 38 Marder III||308|
|Hummel||15cm sFH 18 L/30||289|
|Sturmpanzer IV Brummbär||15cm Haubitze||215|
|Jagdpanzer IV/70 (A)||7.5cm Pak 42 L/70||206|
|PzKpfw II Wespe||10.5cm leFH 18||144|
|PzKpfw 38 Grille||138|
|PanzerJäger Hornisse/Nashorn||8.8cm PaK 43/1 L/71||133|
|StuG III Ausf G||7.5cm StuK 40 L/48||1,038|
|PzKpfw V Panther||7.5cm KwK 42 L/70||507|
|PzKpfw IV Ausf J||7.5cm KwK 40 L/48||438|
|Jagdpanzer IV/70 (V)||7.5cm Pak 42 L/70||384|
|StuG IV||7.5cm StuG L/48||127|
|Jagdpanzer IV/70 (A)||7.5cm Pak 42 L/70||121|
|PzKpfw VI Tiger I||??|
|PzKpfw VI Tiger II||112|
PzKpfw III Ausf A - E. 3.7cm KwK L/46.5 cannon
PzKpfw IV Ausf A (Oct 1937), Ausf B (Apr 1938), Ausf C (Oct 1938). 7.5cm KwK 37 L/24 gun
3.7 cm PAK 36 The standard AT gun of the Wehrmacht at the outbreak of War, and one of the best until 1941.
1935 to 1944 production of four wheeled Sd Kfz 221, 222, 223.
SdKfz. 221. In production 1935 to 1944. 4 wheeler with an open topped turret and a single 7.92 mm MG34. Armour protection was originally 8 mm thick, but increased to 14.5 mm later in production. Issued to reconnaissance battalions (Aufklärungs-Abteilung) of the Panzer divisions.
SdKfz 221 mit 2.8cm. A variant with the 2.8 cm schwere Panzerbüchse 41 (sPzB 41) or "Panzerbuchse 41" in a modified turret.
SdKfz. 222. In production 1935 to 1944. 4 wheeler with a 2 cm KwK 30 L/55 autocannon and a 7.92 mm MG34.
SdKfz. 223. In production 1935 to 1944. 4 wheeler radio car with a large "bed-frame" antenna over the vehicle and 7.92 mm MG34.
1932 - 1937 Production of six wheeled Sd.Kfz.231/232 and Sd.Kfz.263. Despite ceasing production pre-war they were in active service throughout the Polish and French Campaigns.
Sd Kfz 231 (6 rad) 6 wheeler with 2 cm KwK 30 L/55 autocannon, and a MG13. issued to reconnaissance battalions (Aufklärungs-Abteilung) of the Panzer divisions.
Sd Kfz 232 (6 rad) Basically a Sd Kfz 231 with the distinctive bed-stead radio antenna overhead.
Sd Kfz 263 6 wheeler with extra long-range radio equipment, no turret, raised superstructure, and only a single ball-mounted machinegun. issued to Nachrichten (Signal) units.
1937 - 1944 Production swapped from the 6 wheeled to the 8 wheeled armoured cars
Sd Kfz 231 (8-Rad) produced from 1937 to ??.
Sd.Kfz.232 (8-Rad) produced from 1938 to Sep 1942 but not withdrawn from service. During 1942 models replaced the bedstead radio antenna with a simple pole aerial.
Sd Kfz 233 ("Stumpy") . Produced December 1942 and October 1943 but remained in service throughout the war. Had a 232 (8-Rad) chassis with an open fixed superstructure featuring the short barrelled 7.5 cm KwK 37 L/24 gun. issued as a platoon of six vehicles in support of reconnaissance battalions.
Sd.Kfz. 234/1 In production to end of war. 8 wheeler with a 2 cm KwK 38 L/55 gun and coaxial MG 34 or MG 42 in a rotating six-sided open turret. The open turret was protected from grenades by a mesh-covered frame.
Sd Kfz. 234/2 Puma. Production started in 1943 but was stopped in the second half of 1944. 8 wheeler with 5 cm KwK 39/1 L/60 in closed turret.
Sd.Kfz. 234/3 In production until end of war. 8 wheeler with short 7.5 cm KwK 37 L/24 gun in a raised open superstructure.
Sd.Kfz. 234/4 In production until end of war. 8 wheeler with a 7.5 cm PaK 40 L/46 anti-tank gun in an open compartment.
Sd.Kfz. 263. 8 wheeler dedicated radio vehicle with the bedstead frame antenna, and a single 7.92 mm MG34 in a fixed superstructure. .Issued to to Nachrichten (signals) detachments in motorized and Panzer divisions. Sometimes were issued to Korps and Army headquarters.
PzKpfw III Ausf F. First 335 had 3.7cm KwK L/46.5 cannon, but last 100 were armed with the 5cm KwK 38 L/42 cannon.
PzKpfw IV Ausf D 7.5cm KwK 37 L/24 gun. The first 'true' production model, although earlier models saw front line service in France and Poland.
StuG III Ausf A short-barreled 7.5cm StuK 37 L/24
Panzerjager I (Sd.Kfz.101)(4.7cm PaK(t) (Sf) auf Panzerkampfwagen I Ausf B). Czech 47mm Pak(t) 36 L/43.4 (Skoda 47mm A-5 P.U.V vz.36 gun) on a PzKpfw I Ausf B’s chassis. 202 were converted Mar 1940 to Feb 1941. Two versions can be distinguished by the number of sides of the . Those produced by Skoda had a gun shield with seven sides; those from Alkett had five sides. A small number were armed with 37mm Pak 35/36 L/45 (with original gun shield) guns mounted directly on the hull in place of a removed turret. Generally inefective because of their inadequate fire power, although some remained in service as late as 1943.
PzKpfw III Ausf G. Some 50 Ausf G tanks were armed with 37mm KwK 35/36 L/46.5 gun; the rest got the 5cm KwK 38 L/42 cannon. Saw service in North Africa. Small number of Ausf G tanks remained in service as late as September of 1944.
5.0 cm PAK 38 Developed from 1937, and issued to the troops in April 1940, also used in many self-propelled carriages
SdKfz 7/1 Produced Apr 1940 to end of war. Heavy half track with a 2 cm Flakvierling 38 L/112.5. 319 were in service on 1 Mar 1945. Issued to Flak units of the Luftwaffe and Panzer units.
StuG III Ausf B short-barreled 7.5cm StuK 37 L/24
From Aug 1940 until 1942
All 37mm PzKpfw III Ausf E, F, and G were rearmed with 5cm KwK 38 L/42 gun. 40 rearmed Ausf F saw action in France.
PzKpfw IV Ausf E 7.5cm KwK 37 L/24 gun
PzKpfw III Ausf H. 5cm KwK 38 L/42
StuG III C and D short-barreled 7.5cm StuK 37 L/24. Three D series saw service in North Africa.
PzKpfw III Ausf J (Early) / Sd.Kfz.141. 5cm KwK 38 L/42. Called "Mark III Special" by British in North Africa.
PzKpfw IV Ausf F1 (F) 7.5cm KwK 37 L/24 gun.
Sometime after Apr 1941 and before Mar 1943
PzKpfw IV Ausf F2. 7.5cm KwK 40 L/43. Known to British as 'Mark IV Special' in North Africa.
StuG III Ausf E short-barreled 7.5cm StuK 37 L/24. Some StuG III Ausf E were used in battles up to the end of war.
7.5 cm PAK 40 Development started in 1939, entered service in late 1941, basically a scaled up PAK 38, remained as standard AT gun until the end of war.
PzKpfw III Ausf J (Late) / Sd.Kfz.141/1. 5cm KwK 39 L/60
1942 - 43
A number of PzKpfw III Ausf F and H tanks was rearmed with 5cm KwK 39 L/60 gun. Rearmed and up-armored Ausf F tanks remained in service as late as June of 1944 (e.g. 116th Panzer Division in Normandy).
StuG III Ausf F long-barreled 7.5cm StuK 40 L/43. The first StuG that was also intended as a Tank Destroyer. The last 31 vehicles had the long-barrelled 7.5cm Stuk40 L/48.
Marder II / Sd.Kfz.132 or LaS 762 or Panzer Selbstfahrlafette 1 für 7.62cm PaK36(r) auf Fahrgestell PzKpfw II Ausf D1 und D2 with a chassis from a Panzerkampfwagen II light tank Ausf D/E or Flammpanzer II and armed with a captured Soviet 76.2mm F-22 Model 1936 divisional field gun rechambered to accept German 75mm Pak 40 ammunition. 201 were produced from Apr 1942 to Jun 1943. They were issued to Panzerjäger Abteilungen and served mainly on the Eastern Front from Apr 1942 to early 1944, when they were taken out of service.
Marder III / Panzerjager 38(t) / Sd.Kfz.139 or Panzerjäger 38(t) für 7.62cm PaK36(r) with the chassis of a Panzerkampfwagen 38(t) light tank and armed with a captured Soviet 76.2mm PaK 36(r) L/51 anti-tank gun rechambered to accept German 75mm PaK 40 ammunition. 344 were produced from Apr to Nov 1942 and another 19 were converted in 1943. Marder IIIs were issued to Panzerjäger Abteilungen and served mainly on the Eastern Front, although 66 were also delivered to North Africa from Jul to Nov 1942.
PzKpfw III Ausf L. 5cm KwK 39 L/60 cannon
PzKpfw III Ausf N. 7.5cm KwK L/24 cannon. Intended for close infantry support. Many built on chassis of earlier versions - Ausf J (3), L (447) and M (213).
Marder II / Sd.Kfz.131 or 7.5cm PaK40/2 auf Fahrgestell PzKpfw II (Sf) was a self-propelled anti-tank gun (Panzerjäger) with the chassis of a Panzerkampfwagen II Ausf A/B/C or F light tank and armed with the 75mm PaK 40/2 L/46 anti-tank gun. 576 were produced from Jun 1942 to Jun 1943; another 75 were converted from Jul 1943 to Mar 1944. All Marder IIs were issued to Panzerjäger Abteilungen and served on all fronts from Jul 1942 to the end of the war.
Mid to Late 1942
StuG III Ausf F/8 long-barrelled 7.5cm Stuk40 L/48 on PzKpfw III Ausf. J and L chassis.
PzKpwf VI Tiger I. 88mm KwK 36 L/56 + 2-3 MG34/42. 1,355 Produced from Jul 1942 until Aug 1944, although first when into action on 29 Aug 1942.
Marder I or Panzerjäger 7.5cm PaK40/1 auf Geschutzwagen Lorraine Schlepper(f), SdKfz.135 was a self-propelled anti-tank gun (Panzerjäger) with a chassis made from a converted French Tracteur Blinde 37L (Lorraine) personnel carriers/artillery tractors and armed with the 75mm PaK 40/1 L/46 anti-tank gun. 170 were produced from Jul to Aug 1942. 131 were still in service in early 1944 and six were still in use mid-Mar 1945.
Marder I or Panzerjäger 7.5cm PaK40(Sf) auf Geschutzwagen 39H(f) was a self-propelled anti-tank gun (Panzerjäger) with a chassis made from a French Hotchkiss H-39 (including at least one H-35) light tank and armed with the 75mm PaK 40 L/46 anti-tank gun. 24 or 60 were produced in 1942.
PzKpfw III Ausf M. 5cm KwK 39 L/60 gun.
Sturmhaubitze (Assault Howitzer; StuH) 42 Ausf. F, based upon the StuG III Ausf. F. 10.5cm (4.13-in) StuH 42 L/28. Took on anti-personnel role as StuG III became a Tank Destroyer.
Marder III / Sd.Kfz.138 or 7.5cm PaK40/3 auf PzKpfw 38(t) Ausf H or Panzerjäger 38(t) mit 7.5cm PaK40/3 Ausf M with a chassis of a Panzerkampfwagen 38(t) Ausf H or Ausf M light tank and armed with the 75mm PaK 40/3 L/46 anti-tank gun. 243 Ausf H models were produced from Nov 1942 to Apr 1943 with another 175 vehicles converted in 1943. 975 Ausf M models were produced from April 1943 to May 1944. Ausf M was modified during production, and early and late models can be identified by their unique features. The Ausf H was first issued to Panzerjäger Abteilungen in late 1942 and Ausf M was first issued in May 1943. The Marder III fought on all fronts, and there were still 350 in service as of 1 Feb 1945.
PzKpwf V Panther Ausf D(D1 + D2). 75mm KwK 42 L/70 & 2 x MG34. 850 produced from Dec 1942 to Sep 1943, although first used in action in July 1943 during Operation Cidadel. Most used on Easter Front. Although not on the initial models, schurzen were standard from Ausf D2.
From 1943 all PzKpfw III Ausf M were fitted with Schürzen.
Marder I or Panzerjäger 7.5cm PaK40(Sf) auf Geschutzwagen FCM(f) was self-propelled anti-tank gun (Panzerjäger) with the chassis of a FCM36 medium tank and armed with a 75mm PaK 40 L/46 anti-tank gun. 10 were produced in 1943.
StuG III Ausf G 7.5cm Stuk40 L/48.
From Mar 1943 PzKpfw III Ausf N had Zimmerit and Schürzen fitted to hull and turret.
PzKpfw IV Ausf G. 7.5cm KwK 40 L/48. With Schrzen. (I'm not sure if the Ausf G was produced earlier than Mar 1943, but with the 7.5cm KwK 40 L/43 ??)
PzKpfw IV Ausf H. 7.5cm KwK 40 L/48. Schürzennow standard.
Panzerschreck RPzB.43. First of the Raketen-Panzerbüchse ("Rocket Tank Rifle") / Panzerschreck ("Tank Terror") / Ofenrohr ("stove pipe"). Few produced.
Ceased production of PzKpfw III. Up-armed versions stayed in service until at least 1944.
Faustpatrone klein 30 m ("Fist-Cartridge small") / Faustpatrone 1 / Panzerfaust 30 klein ("Tank-Fist Small"). Stayed in production until 1945.
Panzerfaust 30 m / Faustpatrone gross / Faustpatrone 2. Started production in Aug 1943, however, first major delivery was Sep 1943. Stayed in production until Aug 1944.
From Sep 1943 Tigers were very commonly coated with Zimmerit anti-magnetic paste.
Panzerschreck RPzB.54. Produced until Jul 1944.
PzKpwf V Pather Ausf G. 75mm KwK 42 L/70 & 3 x MG34. 2950 produced from Mar 1944 to Apr 1945.
PzKpfw IV Ausf J. 7.5cm KwK 40 L/48. Schürzen
Panzerfaust 60 m. In production until end of war.
Panzerfaust 100 m
Panzerschreck RPzB.54/1. Produced until end of war.
Panzerfaust 150. Only a few were produced before end of war.
Designations for T-34/76
The T-34/76 was the most common Russian tank of the war. The Battle Front site mentioned new research revealing the scheme used by the Red Army to described T-34 tanks as follows:
|Distinguishing Feature||Correct Designation||Incorrect Designation previously used by Battle Front||German Designations|
|Short L-11 76.2mm tank gun, cast or welded two-man turret.||obr 1940||T-34/76A|
|Long F-34 76.2 mm gun, plus heavier armour, cast or welded two-man turret.||obr 1941||T-34/76B|
|Revised hull||obr 1941 (late)||obr 1942||T-34/76C|
|Hexagonal Turret with twin, round hatches||obr 1942||obr 1943||T-34/76D. nicknamed "Mickey Mouse" by the Germans because of the twin turret hatches.|
|Fitted with cupola||obr 1942 (late)||obr 1943 (late)||T-34/76E|
|Cast turret with no cupola||??||T-34/76F|
The Stalingrad Tractor Factory produced a variant on the T-34/76 obr 1941 right until it ceased production in Oct 1942.
Timeline of Soviet Weapon Production
KV-1 model 1940 F-32 76.2-mm gun;
T-34 Produced mid 1940 - mid 1941
50% of tanks in infantry support. 75% were BTs and T-26s.
KV-1 Model 1941. Produced 1941-1942
KV-2 Model 1940 [also KV-II, KV-IIB, KV-2B] 152-mm howitzer M-10. Produced 1940-1941
T-34 long barrelled gun. Produced early 1941 - 1942
KV-1E Model 1940 [E stands for "s ekranami" -- with appliqué armor]
T-60 Produced from 17 Sep 1941 to Feb 1943.
KV-1S (S for Speed)
I'm guessing here but I presume the T-34/76 obr 1941 (late) (also called T-34C or incorrectly obr 1942) started production in early 1942. It had a revised hull.
A tiny number of captured StuG IIIs were in use, some with Russian 76.2 mm guns.
The Stalingrad Tractor Factory produced a variant on the obr 1941 right until it ceased production in Oct 1942. The variant had all steel road wheels to compensate for inadequate rubber supplies.
T-34 ?? revised cast or pressed-steel 'Mickey Mouse' turret and square fuel tanks. Produced mid 1942 - mid 1943
KV-1s Model 1942. Produced Aug 1942-Apr 1943
SU-122 Model 1943 Produced Dec 1942 - early 1944
SU-76. 350 produced from 1 Jan 1942 - 21 Mar 1943, but withdrawn from service to correct transmission problems.
SU-76M (SU-76 Modernised) Produced Jun 1943 -1945. 14,292 SU-76s were produced in through to Jun 1945 = 60% of the assault guns produced.
SU-76i (SU-76 "Foreign", based on Pz III chassis). 181 were produced plus 20 commander versions. Stopped production in Nov 1943, and withdrawn from combat service at the start of 1944.
T-34/76 obr 1942 (late) - fitted with cupola and drum fuel tanks. Produced mid 1943 - early 1944
SU-85 Produced Aug 1943 - Jul 1944
KV-85. Produced Sept.-Nov. 1943
IS-1 Produced Late 1943 - Early 1944
ISU-122 Produced Late 1943 - 1944
ISU-152 Produced 1943-1945
ISU-122S Produced 1944-1945
T-34 ?? Produced Jan 1944 - Mar. 1944
After Jan 1944
T-34/85 Produced 1944 - May 1945. Front line troops began receiving them in small numbers in FebMar1944.
IS-2 Model 1944 (also IS-2M) Produced Apr 1944-Jun 1945
SU-100 Produced Nov 1944 - Jun1945
IS-3 Model 1945