Marder II

7.5cm PaK40/2 auf Fahrgestell Panzerkampfwagen II (Sf) (SdKfz 131), or Marder II, was an armored vehicle (self-propelled anti-tank gun on a tank chassis, AFV or armoured fighting vehicle) in combat use during the Second World War (World War II or WWII) in the European theater. The Marder II was a fully tracked all-terrain vehicle designed for military operations. Marder II, was produced and deployed by the German Army (Heers) of Nazi Germany (the Third Reich). The technical drawing (plan, layout or profile) shows the general appearance characteristics of the specified model (version) of the Marder series tank destroyers for purposes of identification and reference. For more detailed information about this armored fighting vehicle, refer to Marder II.

The Marder II was a German tank destroyer of World War II based on the Panzer II chassis. There were two versions, the first mounted modified Soviet 7.62 cm guns firing German ammunition, while the other mounted the German 7.5 cm Pak 40 gun. As a fighting vehicle it suffered from a high profile and thin open-topped armor that provided minimal protection to the crew. Nevertheless, the Marder II (and similar Marder III) provided a great increase in firepower over contemporary German tanks through the 1942/43 time frame. Only four Marder II's exist today.

Marder II
Class Vehicle
Type Armoured Fighting Vehicle
Manufacturer FAMO
Production Period 1943 - 1944
Origin Germany
Country Name Origin Year
Germany 1943
Country Name Operational Year Retirement Year
Germany View
ManufacturerName Production From Production To Quantity
FAMO 1943 1944 576 View
Daimler-Benz 1943 1944 576 View

During the very first days of Operation Barbarossa, the invasion of the Soviet Union, the Germans were shocked to encounter Soviet T-34 medium tanks and KV heavy tanks. Although the Wehrmacht succeeded in most operations due to superior tactics, morale, and supply, it had few anti-tank weapons capable of successfully engaging these vehicles at normal ranges. An urgent need arose for a more mobile and powerful anti-tank weapon than the existing towed anti-tank guns or tank destroyers like the Panzerjäger I.

Among a series of solutions, it was decided to use light tanks, like the Panzer II, and captured vehicles, like the Lorraine Schlepper, as the basis for makeshift tank destroyers. The result was the Marder series, which were armed with either the new 7.5 cm Pak 40 anti-tank guns or captured Soviet 7.62 cm F-22 Model 1936 field guns, large numbers of which had been acquired early in the war.

The various Marder IIs fought on all fronts of the war, but especially on the Eastern Front.

The Marder IIs were used by the Panzerjäger Abteilungen of the Panzer divisions of both the Wehrmacht and the Waffen SS, as well as several Luftwaffe units.

The Marder's weaknesses were mainly related to survivability. The combination of a high silhouette and open-top fighting compartment made them vulnerable to indirect artillery fire, aircraft strafing, and grenades. The armor was also quite thin, making them vulnerable to enemy tanks or infantry.

The Marders were not assault vehicles or tank substitutes; the open top meant that operations in urban areas or other close-combat situations were very risky. They were best employed in defensive or overwatch roles. Despite their weaknesses, they were much more effective than the towed antitank guns that they replaced.

Formal Designation7.5cm PaK40/2 auf Fahrgestell Panzerkampfwagen II (Sf) (SdKfz 131)
Manufacturer(s)FAMO, MAN, Daimler-Benz
Production Quantity576+75 converted from PzKpfw IIProduction PeriodJuly 1943-Mar. 1944
TypeTank DestroyerCrew3
Length (m)6.36Barrel Overhang (m)n.a.
Width (m)2.28Height (m)2.20
Combat Weight (kg)10800RadioFuG Spr d
Primary Armament75mm PaK40/2 L/48Ammunition Carried37
Traverse (degrees)Manual (32° L, 25° R)Elevation (degrees)-8° to +10°
Traverse speed (360°)-Sightn.a.
Secondary Armament1 x 7.92 MG34 (loose)Ammunition Carried600

Engine Make & ModelMaybach HL62TRMNo. of Links/Track106
Type & DisplacementL6, 6.2 litersTrack Width30cm
Horsepower (Gross)140hp@2600rpmTrack Ground Contact240cm
Power/Weight Ratio12.9 hp/tGround Pressure10.6 psi
Gearbox6 forward, 1 reverseGround Clearance (m)0.34
FuelGasoline (Petrol)Turning Radius (m)n.a.
Range on/off road (km)190/126Gradient (degrees)30°
Mileage (liters/100km)109 on/188 off roadVertical Obstacle (m)0.42
Fuel Capacity (liters)205Fording (m)0.91
Speed on/off road40/19 km/hTrench Crossing (m)n.a.
Armor DetailFrontSideRearTop/Bottom
Superstructure30mm@80°10mm@82°10mm@90°10mm@0° & open

End notes