StuG IV

Sturmgeschütz IV (7.5cm StuK40 L/48) (SdKfz 167) was an armored vehicle (assault gun, AFV or armoured fighting vehicle) in combat use during the Second World War (World War II or WWII) in the European theater. The Sturmgeschütz IV was a fully tracked all-terrain vehicle designed for military operations. Sturmgeschütz IV, abbreviated as the StuG. IV, 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 Sturmgeschütz IV tank for purposes of identification and reference. For more detailed information about this armored fighting vehicle, refer to StuG IV.

StuG IV
Class Vehicle
Type Armoured Fighting Vehicle
Manufacturer Grusonwerk
Production Period 1943 - 1945
Origin Germany
Country Name Origin Year
Germany 1943
Country Name Operational Year Retirement Year
Germany 1943 1945 View
ManufacturerName Production From Production To Quantity
Krupp View
Grusonwerk 1943 1945 1139 View

The Sturmgeschütz IV resulted from Krupp's effort to supply an assault gun. As Krupp did not build Panzerkampfwagen IIIs, they used the Panzerkampfwagen IV chassis in combination with a slightly modified Sturmgeschütz III superstructure.

The first known proposal for a Sturmgeschütz on the Panzer IV chassis is in Krupp drawing number W1468 dated February 1943. This initial drawing unitized the outdated Sturmgeschütz Ausf. F superstructure on a Panzer IV chassis 9. This proposal had a sloped front superstructure with a combat weight of 28.26 tons. Krupp abandoned it in February 1943 because it was too heavy. Plans for the StuG IV were halted.

During the Führer Conference of August 19–22, 1943, after the battle of Kursk, Hitler had seen reports of the StuG III outperforming the Panzer IV when used in an infantry support role and tactical defence. Convinced that a tank-hunter version would be superior to the tank version, Hitler planned to switch Panzer IV production to "Panzerjäger IV" production as soon as possible. It was to mount the same 7.5 cm L/70 used for the Panther. Another manufacturer, Vomag built a prototype Panzerjäger IV with 7.5 cm L/48 gun and demonstrated it on October 20, 1943. It was later re-designated as Jagdpanzer IV Ausf. F. As the Jagdpanzer IV was already being produced by Vomag, the StuG IV may not have materialized, had it not been for the major disruption of StuG III production, and the scarce supply of the 7.5 cm L/70 gun designated for the Jagdpanzer IV.

In November 1943, Alkett, the manufacturer of the StuG III, suffered damage in a bombing raid. Alkett produced 255 StuG III in October 1943, but in December production fell to just 24 vehicles. A conference held December 6–7, 1943, addressed possible solutions to this problem. Hitler welcomed the suggestion of taking the StuG III superstructure and mounting it on a Panzer IV chassis. The StuG IV could be more quickly manufactured than the Jagdpanzer IV at the time. This restarted the Sturmgeschütz IV project. This time, the superstructure of the StuG III Ausf. G was mounted on a Panzer IV chassis 7, with a box compartment for the driver added. Combat weight was 23000 kg, lighter than the 23900 kg for the StuG III Ausf. G. On Dec. 16-17, 1943, Hitler was shown the StuG IV and approved it. To make up for the large deficit in StuG III production StuG IV production was now given full support.

From December 1943 to May 1945, Krupp built 1,108 StuG IVs and converted an additional 31 from battle-damaged Panzer IV hulls. While the number is smaller than the 10,000+ StuG III, the StuG IV supplemented and fought along with StuG III during 1944-45, when they were most needed.

GENERAL DATA
Formal DesignationSturmgeschütz IV (7.5cm StuK40 L/48) (SdKfz 167)
Manufacturer(s)Krupp-Gruson
Production Quantity1108 + 31 converted from PzKpfw IVProduction PeriodDec. 1943 - Mar. 1945
TypeAssault GunCrew4
Length /hull (m)6.70Barrel Overhang (m)n.a.
Width (m) /with skirts2.95Height (m)2.20
Combat Weight (kg)23000Radio EquipmentFuG15 or FuG16
FIREPOWER
Primary Armament75mm StuK40 L/48Ammunition Carried63
Traverse (degrees)Manual (10° L, 10° R)Elevation (degrees)-6° to +20°
Traverse speed (360°)-SightSflZf1a
Secondary Armament1 x 7.92mm MG34 (loose)Ammunition Carried600


MOBILITY CHARACTERISTICS
Engine Make & ModelMaybach HL120TRMTrack Links99/track
Type & DisplacementV12, 11.9 litresTrack Width40 cm
Horsepower (max.)300hp@3000rpmTrack Ground Contact352 cm
Power/Weight Ratio13.0 hp/tonneGround Pressure11.4 psi
Gearbox6 forward, 1 reverseGround Clearance (m)0.40
FuelGasoline (Petrol)Turning Radius (m)5.92
Range on/off road (km)210/130Gradient (degrees)30°
Mileage (litres/100km)205 on/330 off roadVertical Obstacle (m)0.6
Fuel Capacity (litres)430Fording (m)1.2
Speed on/off road38 km/hTrench Crossing (m)2.2
ARMOR PROTECTION
Armor DetailFrontSideRearTop/Bottom
Hull80mm@76°30mm@90°20mm@80°10mm@0°
Superstructure80mm@80°30mm@79°30mm@90°11mm@0-15°
Mantlet80mm@Saukopf---

End notes