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France's Hotchkiss H-35, Char de Cavalerie 35H light tank

Photos

H-35 light tank:
France's H-35 light tank

H-35 light tank:
France's H-35 light tank
H-35 light tank:
France's H-35 light tank

H-35 light tank:
France's H-35 light tank
H-35 light tank, captured by the Germans in 1940:
France's H-35 light tank

H-35 light tank:
France's H-35 light tank
H-35 light tank in Norway, 1940:
France's H-35 light tank

H-35 light tank:
France's H-35 light tank

Design

In 1934 the DML (Division Légère Mécanique) was formed and the army wanted a light tank to be used with the Somua S-35. In 1933 the infantry ordered a light tank to be produced and Hotchkiss developed prototype in 1934.7 This was initially rejected by the infantry who went with the Renault 35. The calvary did accept the design for its DCs (Divisions Cuirassées).

Became standard char leger (calvary tank) in October 1936.3 The Calvary received 300 and the infantry 100.7

There was no turret floor in the H-35 and the commander sat on a saddle which was suspended and moved with the APXR.I turret.

Construction

Hull and turret were cast armor.5,7

Suspension

The suspension had 3 scissors with horizontal coil springs. It was steered by using a Cleveland differential with front drive sprockets.

Production

  • H-35: 4003,5,7
    • Production: 1936 - ?3,5

Usage

The H-35 was intended for use with Cavalry formations, but later adopted for infantry support.3

Middle East

There were H-35s located in the Middle East with French forces after the surrender of France.3

German Use

The Germans name the H-35 the PzKpfw 35-H 734(f).3 Many had their turrets removed and placed in fixed defenses and the chassis were used to move artillery and ammunition.7

Specifications

  H-35 light tank6
Crew Commander, driver
21,2,3,5,6,7
Physical Characteristics  
Weight 10,600 kg1,5,7, 11,400 kg
10.6 tons2, 10.43 tons1,5,6,7, 11.4 tons
Length 13.83'2, 13' 10"1,5,6,7, 14' 1"
4.21 m, 4.22 m1,5,6,7, 4.3 m
Height 7'2, 7' 0.6"1, 8' 7"5,6,7
2.15 m1, 2.62 m5,6,7
Width 6', 6.08'2, 6' 4.75"1, 6' 5"5,6,7
1.8 m, 1.95 m1, 1.96 m5,6,7, 2.13 m
Width over tracks  
Ground clearance 1' 2"
Ground contact length  
Ground pressure 12.8 psi
Turret ring diameter  
Armament  
Main 1: 37 mm1,2,3,5,7
1: 37 mm SA-186
Secondary  
MG 1: 7.5 mm MG1,5,7
MG - coaxial 1: 7.5 mm MG2,3,6
Side arms  
Quantity  
Main 58, 100
Secondary  
MG 2,400
Side arms  
Armor Thickness (mm) 12 - 343, 401,2,5,7
Hull Front, Upper 22-34@7° & round
Hull Front, Lower 29-34@30°
Hull Sides, Upper 34@20°
Hull Sides, Lower 34@0°
Hull Rear 34@25° and 22@30°
Hull Top 22@88° & 90°
Hull Bottom 12@90°
Turret Front 45@0° & 25°
mantlet: 25@round
Turret Sides 40@30°
Turret Rear 40@30°
Turret Top 30, 12@90°
Engine (Make / Model) Hotchkiss 19351,5,6,7, Hotchkiss2
Bore / stroke  
Cooling Water2
Cylinders 62,5,6,7
Capacity  
Net HP 752,3,5,6,7, 75 @ 2,700 rpm
Power to weight ratio  
Compression ratio  
Transmission (Type) 4 forward, 1 reverse,
5 forward, 1 reverse
Steering  
Steering ratio  
Starter  
Electrical system  
Ignition  
Fuel (Type) Gasoline2,6
Octane  
Quantity 55 gallons
3.48 liters
Road consumption  
Cross country consumption  
Performance  
Traverse 360°, hand
Speed - Road 17 mph1,2,5,6,7, 17.4 mph
27 kph5, 27.3 kph1, 27.4 kph6,7, 28.2 kph
Speed - Cross Country 150 km
7.5 mph
Range - Road 93 miles6, 93.2 miles1,5,7
100 km, 150 km1,5,6,7
Range - Cross Country  
Turning radius 27'
Elevation limits  
Fording depth 2' 10"
Trench crossing 5' 11"
Vertical obstacle 1' 8"
Climbing ability  
Suspension (Type) bell cranks
Wheels each side 6 wheels mounted in pairs on bogies
Return rollers each side 2
Tracks (Type)  
Length 6
Width 11"
Diameter  
Number of links  
Pitch  
Tire tread  
Track centers/tread  

Sources:

  1. The Encyclopedia of Tanks and Armored Fighting Vehicles - The Comprehensive Guide to Over 900 Armored Fighting Vehicles From 1915 to the Present Day, General Editor: Christopher F. Foss, 2002
  2. Tanks of the World, 1915-1945, Peter Chamberlain, Chris Ellis, 1972
  3. The Encyclopedia of Weapons of World War II, Chris Bishop, 1998
  4. Tanks of World War II, Duncan Crow, 1979
  5. The Illustrated Guide to Tanks of the World, George Forty, 2006
  6. Western Allied Tanks 1939-45, David Porter, 2009
  7. World War I and II Tanks, George Forty, 2012
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site

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