What is the most undervalued armored vehicle of World War II?

I am not happy to have mentioned the answer to the two undervalued armoured vehicles that I want to present here.

1/The versatile German semi-chain vehicles

A remarkable feature of World War II, especially on the Eastern and Western Fronts, was that it was a war of movement.It was a war in which mobility, firepower, and air power played a decisive role.In particular, tanks, organized in tank divisions and regiments, formed the offensive force that was so crucial to penetrate through enemy defenses, which was a pre-creation for victory.

However, it is known that the tank could not operate effectively without support.Tanks used a lot of fuel and ammunition and needed extensive logistical support to keep them fully fueled and armed for long-lasting battlefield operations. The threat of anti-tank weapons and infantry armed with the same required their destruction by artillery AND infantry.

The need for rapid action/response and the fact that tanks can move faster than infantry created the need for a special vehicle that could not only transport infantry to keep up with the fast tanks, but that they transport on the battlefield where they were needed to respond to unexpected developments on the battlefield.

For the German Wehrmacht, this vehicle was the versatile special vehicle, abbreviated to Sd.Kfz.

Sd.Kfz was the general term which referred to a very versatile class of German vehicles.They served many different purposes, e.g.: supply and troop transport, mobile Flak/Pak platforms, command and communication platforms, wounded evacuation, artillery tugs, combat trailers, rocket launch platform.

For example, the Sd. automobile variant 2, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11 were built for towing artillery.

An Sd. car 7 tows a 15cm howitzer through a field.

A column of Sd. Automobile.

7 semi-chain vehicles tow 15cm howitzers.

An Sd. car 6 tows ponton bridge parts and combat enctions.

An Sd. car 7 tows an 88mm flak.

She was manned by Luftwaffe troops.

A variant called Mule served as an armored thrower.

An tank launcher prepares for a barrage of its ten 15cm rockets.

The Sd. car 6/7/10 could be modified so that it could be used as an anti-aircraft platform, armed with a 20mm or 37mm anti-aircraft gun.

An Sd. car 7, armed with a 4-barrel 20mm cannon, hidden in a field on the eastern front.

This weapon was very effective as an anti-aircraft gun and also as a ground combat weapon.

An Sd. car 6, manned with Air Force personnel, drives through a village in northern France, May 1940.

An unarmored 37mm cannon was mounted on top. Less than 200 of these Flak on Sd. vehicles served in the Air Force. She was quite successful in the fight against air and ground targets.

The Sd. car variant, which was very versatile, was the Sd.Automobile 251.The usual Sd. car was designed to transport up to 10 fully equipped tank grenadier. Through modifications, the Sd. Automobile 251 could serve as a wounded transporter, pioneer, infantry support, rocket launch platform, and mobile flamethrower.


Automotive 251 Pioneer Vehicle

Mortar half-chain vehicle – This Sd. car was modified to transport an 80mm mortar.

An Sd. car 251 as command vehicle.

An Sd. car 251 as a rocket launcher.

A flame tank attack car – an Sd. car 251 armed with 2 flamethrowers.

An Sd. car 251 armed with a 37mm anti-tank gun.

An Sd. car 251 armed with a short 75mm cannon, which was initially developed for the Panzer IV when it was still used as an infantry support tank.

When the Panzer IV was upgraded, the short 75mm cannons were replaced with long 75mm cannons. The short ones were then mounted on the Sd. automobiles.

An Sd. car 251 as a mobile hospital.

The Sd. Automobile 251 was highly appreciated for its ability to quickly transport tank grenadier to critical sectors of the battlefield.

A column of Sd. Automobile 251 while transporting SS Panzergrenadiere on the Eastern Front.

An Sd. automobile 251 transports a full load of armored grenadier.

Panzergrenadiere get out of an Sd. car 251.

Hopefully you can now appreciate the full versatility of the special vehicles.

Its fast off-road speed and mobility, reliability and versatility, made it an indispensable part of the German Wehrmacht. In particular, the Panzergrenadier divisions that were critical of carrying out the German tactical doctrines. The extensive use of the Sd. automobiles was a tactical innovation that allowed for a rapid tactical deployment that dramatically changed the way the warfare was conducted.

2/ The Landing Tracked Vehicle 4 Alligator

Another armoured vehicle, renowned for its versatility, is the LTV 4. It was widely used by the famous United States Marine Corps (USMC) during the Pacific War.

It was an amphibious (floating) vehicle that could be used on land as well as on water, making it the ideal vehicle for amphibious warfare, a specialty of the USMC.

His ability to withstand the firing of handguns and machine guns, and his back door, provided the U.S. Marines with considerable security that could get out safely and securely after the vehicle landed. The LTV4 was armed with two machine guns: a 50 calibre and the second as 30 caliber. This allowed it to direct a protective barrage for the Marines on the beach.

US Marines in an LTV4 swim to the beach of an island occupied by the Japanese.

The LTV4 could also transport light jeeps or an M116 howitzer to the coast to provide the US Marines with more firepower.

The LTV was also used in western Europe as a river crossing vehicle.

LTV4 manned by British soldiers

All in all, the LTV4 experienced an extensive service under the USMC in the Pacific.

Their amphibious abilities and versatility contributed significantly to the victory of the Marines on the coasts, from which the Marines were able to attack the inner country to conquer other Japanese islands.

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