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Osprey New Vanguard 9 : T-34/76 Medium Tank 1941-1945

The T-34 was the most influential tank design of World War 2. When first introduced into combat in the summer of 1941, it represented a revolutionary leap forward in tank design. Its firepower, armour protection and mobility were superior to that of any other medium tank of the period. This superiority did not last long. While the T-34 underwent a series of incremental improvements during 1943, it was being surpassed by new German tank designs, most notably the Panther. This book traces the life of the original T-34 through all its difficulties to eventual success. The tank is put in its proper historical context: the author shows how the tank was largely unsuccessful in 1941 in spite of its technical edge over the opposition, due both to limited numbers and, even more significantly, poor crew training. Steven Zaloga explains its success later in the war when it had become outmoded by the latest German equipment. The problems of production, as the Germans advanced further into Russia's industrial heart-lands, are discussed as is the German reaction to the T-34: not only did they copy aspects of it when designing their Panther tank, they also used some T-34s themselves operationally on the Eastern Front - the book contains several photographs of T-34s in German colours. Variants of the T-34 are also discussed including the OT-34 Flamethrower and SU-122 Assault Gun. Text by Steven Zaloga with illustrations by Peter Sarson.

    Contents
  • Design and Development
  • Operational History
  • The German Reaction - The Panther
  • The Battle of the Factories
  • Universal Tank
  • Inside the T-34
  • Variants

 

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