A Proportionate view of German Armour

 

Produktion von Panzer III

The output of German armour in WWII was, in some ways, rather ramshackle, with designs running on past their sell-by date, frequent upgrades to keep obsolete designs in the war, and newer models pushed into service without proper testing. They shared this approach with the British.

In an attempt to make sense of the ratios of various models in service, I just reduced the numbers by 100, then rounded up or down to the nearest integer. The base figures have been lifted from various uncredited sources, so should be treated with enormous suspicion. These figures are for all fronts, and are vehicles produced, not in frontline service. They take no account of losses. Nonetheless, some interesting comparisons emerge:

  1. 57 Pz IIIs compared to 75 Stug IIIs.
  2. 83 Pz IVs compared to 61 Pz Vs and 13 Tiger Is.
  3. Half of the 38(t) hull production (30) was Hetzers (Jagdpanzer 38s), and these in the last two years of the war.
  4. Armour prodution peaked in 1943.
  5. The rough overall proportion of major hull types is: 4 Pz 38(t): 8 PzIII : 8PzIV: 4PzV: 1 PzVI.
  6. Taken year by year on  a 1: 600 ratio they are roughly:
  • 1942: 1 Pz 38(t): 5 PzIII : 2PzIV
  • 1943: 2 Pz 38(t): 5 PzIII : 10 PzIV: 3 PzV: 1 PzVI.
  • 1944: 4 Pz 38(t): 3 PzIII : 7 PzIV: 6 PzV: 1 PzVI.
  • 1945: 2 JagdPz 38(t): 2 StugIIIG

So this list, unchecked as it is, throws out a few surprises. It also surprised me to discover that the Panther at about 117k Reichsmarks (RM), was not that more expensive than a Pz IV at about 86k RM. As usual, wordpress has destroyed the formatting of the table.

 (2)
Model 1939 1940 1941 1942 1943 1944 1945 Total
Pz I 2 2 2 6
PzII 2 3 1 6
Marder II 5 2 7
Wespe 5 1 6
 All PzI/II Chassis 2 4 5 6 7 1 25
Pz 38(t) 1 4 7 2 14
Marder III 139   3 3
Marder III 138 1 8 3 12
Grille 2 3 5
Hetzer 17 13 30
 All 38(t) Chassis 1 4 7 6 10 23 13 64
Pz III A-F 1 4 5
Pz III G-J1 5 17 2 24
Pz III J2-M 20 20
Pz III N 4 3 7
Pz III (f) 1 1
Stug III A-E 2 5 1 8
Stug III F-G 7 30 8 10 55
StuH 42 2 9 1 12
 All PzIII Chassis 1 11 22 34 36 17 11 132
Pz IV A-F1 3 5 1 9
Pz IV F2-J 9 30 31 4 74
Stug IV 10 1 11
Jagd Pz IV 7 7
Jagd Pz IV 70 8 4 12
Sturm Pz IV 1 2 3
Hornisse 3 2 5
Hummel 4 3 7
Mobelwagen 2 2
Wirbelwind 1 1
 All PzIV Chassis
3 5 11 66 42 4 131
Pz V 18 38 2 58 (1)
Jagd Pz V 2 2 4
 All PzV Chassis



20 40 2 62
Tiger I 1 6 6 13
Sturm Tiger 2 2
Jagd Tiger 1 1
 All PzVI Chassis


1 6 9
16
Tiger II 4 1 5
Ferdinand 1 1




1 4 1 6
Total 4 22 39 58 126 96 29 374

The :

  1. Thomas L. Jentz and Hilary Louis Doyle (2011). Panzer Tracts No.23 – Panzer Production from 1933 to 1945. Panzer Tracts. pp. 60–65.
  2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_armored_fighting_vehicle_production_during_World_War_II
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2 Comments

Filed under 15mm Miniatures Wargames

2 responses to “A Proportionate view of German Armour

  1. renko1917

    Hi Chris. Very interesting. Can you clarify what the line under the Hetzer is? Logically I assume it is PzIII A-F but that makes no sense if production ramped up 44/45 unless the figures represent all chassis (ie StuG production) as well???

    • Hi Ken,

      It’s the subtotal for all the 38(t) chassis. I’ve done the same for the Pz II, IV, V and VIs too. My next job is to try to hone in on frontline strengths in the East, once my latest lot of homework is out of the way 🙂
      If I can get a .pdf onto the blog with the formatting intact, it is easier to read.

      Regards, Chris.

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