Tuesday 27 June 2017

French Tanks in German Service

"Use of French Armoured Vehicles by Germany

A series of low altitude photographs of large tank parks at Gien and La Brosse gave valuable information regarding the types of French armoured vehicles in use by Germany.

a) FT 17/18 tank

The fact that at least 1000 of these tanks were seen in other depots and on railroad platforms standing on reserve routes, ready for shipment, leaves no doubt that the Germans are ready to use them in large volumes.

The FT 17/18 tank is a French light tank used in the previous war. Its characteristics are as follows:
  • Mass: 6-7 tons
  • Armour: 6-22 mm
  • Armament: one machinegun or one 3.7 cm cannon
These tanks are equipped with modern engines and can be used for training, law enforcement within Germany or occupied countries, or for export to Germany's allies. It's possible that the Germans will use them as bunkers, dug into the ground or protected by sandbags.

b) Somua S 35 tanks

Photographs show the presence of Somua S 35 tanks, which as, as is already known, present in German tank units.

Specifications of this tank were given in attachment 1 of the weekly Bulletin of the Ministry of War #106, August 27th, 1941

c) Panhard 178 AM armoured car

Photographs revealed additional information regarding the use of the Panhard 178 AM in combat. This armoured car is a standard vehicle used by the French army, and is considered satisfactory. The characteristics of this armoured car are as follows:
  • Mass: 8 tons
  • Armour (maximum): 18 mm
  • Armament: one 2.5 cm cannon and one machinegun
The size of the Panhard 178 is about the same as that of German light four-wheeled armoured cars.

Approved by Engineer-Captain Kommissarov"

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