Wednesday 19 February 2014

A-20 in Combat

The A-20 prototype lost out to its fully tracked competitor in 1939, and was prepared for a calm retirement at the Kubinka proving grounds. However, the war caused a deficit in the Red Army's armoured forces, and everything with a gun on it was sent into battle. This included the A-20. The vehicle was handed over to the 22nd Tank Brigade, and was deployed on November 28th, 1941.

Location of units of the 22nd Tank Brigade, November 28th, 1941, 21:00 
An empty rhombus marks a T-30 tank. A rhombus with a diagonal line marks a T-34 tank. A rhombus with a vertical line marks the A-20 tank. A rhombus with a dot marks the T-50 tank. A car marks a command company vehicle.

"Operational update #42 as of 12:00 on November 29th, 1941, in Ivanovskoye, which is 2.5 kilometers south-west of Pavlovskaya Sloboda. Map 100,000
  1. Elements of the 22nd Tank Brigade, from 11:00 on November 28th to 21:00 on November 28th relocated towards the Pavlovskaya Sloboda region. No combat occurred at night.
  2. Two infantry companies, two tank destroyer companies (understrength), and an AT gun battery (5 guns) moved from the Pavlovskaya Sloboda region to the Zhevnevo region (9375) and took up defensive positions.
  3. The tank regiment has 4 T-34s, 2 T-30s, 1 T-50, and 1 A-20, and is located on the south outskirts of Pavlovskaya Sloboda. An inspection of the tanks was held the morning of November 29th. 
  4. AA units are deployed west of Pavlovskaya Sloboda, and are ready to open fire.
  5. The reconnaissance company has been contacting forward units during the night.
  6. The brigade HQ is located in Ivanovskoye.
  7. The command company and medical staff are located in Timoshino.
  8. Communication with other units is maintained through telephones and through couriers. Radio contact is maintained with motorized infantry. Telephone contact is maintained with the 5-A operative group. 
  9. The second echelon is established at Zhavoronki."
I don't have any data on the combat the A-20 took part in, but it is known that the T-50 was withdrawn from this unit and returned to Kubinka with a dent from a ricochet in its turret, so it is likely that the A-20 did see some combat.


  1. Did it survive combat? Or is its fate still unknown?

    1. There was a map floating around with the last likely location of its hull, but that area is now in private hands and full of cottages. It is likely that if the remains were sold for scrap sometime in the late 90s.

  2. Wait... the rhombi indicating tank classes is historical ?