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Tiger

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Tiger
Country Of origin Germany
Designation Heavy Battle Tank
Configuration Tracked
Crew: 5
Length 6.29 m
Width 2.94 m
Height 2.89 m
Weight 61.5 t
Speed 36.5 km/h
Range 100 km
Primary Armament 1x 88mm gun
Secondary Armament 1×7.92 mm MG
Power Plant 694 HP Petrol
NBC No
Night Capability None

Originally used as a name for a big snarly jungle cat, Panthera tigris, then used by the Germans in WW2 as the name of a big snarly tank, the TIGER.

More about the tank on this wiki page. Want even more? More info can be found here

A subsequent version, that didn't have that much in common was also developed called the KING TIGER or TIGER II, and there's enough to keep a spotter happy on this wiki page.

Other vehicles based on the TIGER chassis were the STURMTIGER, with a 38cm rocket launcher, and the JAGDTIGER SP 128mm tank destroyer on the TIGER II chassis.

Famous commanders of this beast include der Panzergraf (Graf meaning Count), Generalleutnant Hyazinth Graf Strachwitz von Gross-Zauche und Comminetz AND the (in)famous SS Obersturmfuhrer Michael Wittmann. (You have to be nails if your name's Hyacinth and you're a bloke. Imagine the slaggin' if he hadn't become a Nazi tank ace.) Read about them here.

Gucci Kit

In the 1943 manual which came with the Tiger, the following story must have done much to raise morale.

During a 6 hour combat, a Tiger was hit 227 times, 14 of those 52mm, 11 were 76.2mm. Not one hit penetrated. Its bearings and joints were shot up, 2 axles didn't work, several AT rounds had hit the tracks, it had driven over 3 mines and it STILL continued on for another 60km.

Gucci kit indeed!

The Tiger was considered to be equal to four Sherman tanks, but fortunately it was Gucci kit in more ways than one - expensive and difficult to mass-produce. No surprise, really, as it was designed by Porsche AG. Compare the Russian T-34/85; almost as nails, and a whole lot easier to make 10,000 of them. The Tiger threat caused the British Army to invent a new tank, the Sherman Firefly, which was a Sherman with the big 17-pounder anti-tank gun bolted on - about the only things in our inventory that would reliably kill one, short of calling in naval gunfire, B17 strike or Typhoon.

I agree. Tens of thousands of Shermans or T34's built V barely 5,000? Tigers/Panthers but if you happen to be in those first 4 shermans/10 T34's to tackle a beast .. you are DEAD! Given the choice between limited numbers of Gucci kit and extremely numerous but crappy kit - you'll find me in the kit with the named label!

Ps: the T34/85 has horrible optics and struggled to get hits at anything over 600yrds. The 85mm was also dodgy in penetration at range. 17pdr was damn good though, equal to the 75mm L70 (the Panther's gun)