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Germany's Panzerjäger Tiger (P) Elefant, SdKfz 184

Photos

Dragon Armor
60023:
Dragon Armor 60023 Ferdinand

60023SP:
Dragon Armor 60023 Ferdinand

60024:
Dragon Armor 600024 Ferdinand

60024SP:
Dragon Armor 600024 Ferdinand
60053:
Dragon Armor 60053 Elefant

60053SP:
Dragon Armor 60053 Elefant

60054:
Dragon Armor 60054 Elefant

60054SP:
Dragon Armor 60054 Elefant
60093:
Dragon Armor 600093 Ferdinand

60094:
Dragon Armor 60094 Ferdinand

60123:
Dragon Armor 60123 Elefant Diecast Model

60124:


60124SP:


60180:
Dragon Armor 60180 German Ferdinand Diecast Model
Easy Models
36223:
Easy Models 36223, German Ferdinand
36228:
Easy Models, German Ferdinad 36228

Design

During the development of the Tiger, Henschel and Porsche each made a different chassis.3 Porsche had begun production on his chassis but the Henschel version was chosen for the Tiger.3 Porsche had 90 Tiger prototype chassis (Porsche VK4501 (P)) already finished.3,5,6,9,10,11 On September 22, 1942 it was decided to build a StuG with 200 mm armor and an 8.8 cm gun built on the Tiger(P) chassis.

It was originally named after it's designer, Dr. Ferdinand Porsche.4,6,8,12

The fighting compartment was accessed by a large circular round hatch in the rear.4

The driver's compartment (with radioman) was cut off from the fighting compartment because the engine room was located between them. Power went to the rear sprocket.

The hull was that of the Tiger(P) with 100 mm plates bolted on the front and an addition to the rear to support the superstructure and vent the air from the engines.

Armament

Initially the Elefant had no machine guns, but after experience at the Battle of Kursk a hull machine gun was installed.12

The 8.8 cm Pak 43/2 anti-tank gun was used for the main armament.3

Ammunition Type Weight Velocity Range ° Penetration
100 yards 1000 m
PzGr 39/43 22.8 kp   1,000 m/s       186 mm
PzGr 39/43 19.9 kp   1,130 m/s       233 mm
SprGr 43 18.6 kp   750 m/s 10 km      
AP 22.4 lb7 3,281'/s7   07 9.4"7  
HE     13,834 yd7      

It could knock out a T-34 at 3 miles.12

The gun overhung the front hull by 1.2 meters.4

Production

On February 6, 1943, Hitler ordered 90 Ferdinands to be made available as soon as possible to be ready for the summer campaign.3,11 This resulted in the Ferdinand to be completed at Nibelungenwerke. The conversions were done at the Steyr-Daimler factory at Nibelungenwerke and completed by May 8, 1943.

Alkett was to design and produce the Ferdinand with Nibelungenwerke supplying the completed chassis.

  • Elefant, Ferdinand: 902,10,12
    • Production: April 1943 - May 19432
    • Manufacturer: Nibelungenwerke2,3
      • Chassis: Porsche KG7
      • Superstructure: Alkett7
  • Bergepanzer Tiger (P): 3 converted

Variants

  • Elefant; Ferdinand; Panzerjäger Tiger (P) Ferdinand für 8.8cm Pak 43/2 oder StuK 43/1; 8.8cm Pak 43/2 L/71 auf PzJäg Tiger (P) Elefant früher Ferdinand; Jagdpanzer Tiger(P) Elefant mit 8.8cm Pak 43/2 L/71; Sturmgeschütz mit 8.8cm PaK43/2; SdKfz 184:
  • Bergepanzer Tiger (P): In September 1943, 3 chassis were converted by moving the engines to the center of the chassis and the superstructure was added to the rear. A 7.92 MG34 in a ball mount was it's only defense and was mounted in the superstructure. A derrick crane, rams, and timber beams were fitted for vehicle recovery.
  • "Ram Tigers": Hitler ordered that three vehicles on the Tiger (P) chassis be built for ramming enemy tanks or buildings.9

Usage

Kursk

First saw action at Kursk.4,5,12 They were part of the Jagdpanzer Regiment 656 (Panzerjägerabteilungen 653 and 654)4. It saw service with the XXXXXI Panzer Corps on the north side of the battle. 502 Russian tanks, 20 antitank guns, 100 other guns were destroyed by July 27, 1943. Within the first four days several dozen broke down.3,5 However, a big weakness was the lack of a machine gun which allowed around 20 Elefants to fall victim to Russian anti-tank teams.3,5,11,12

Eastern Front

They continued to fight until the end of 1943 at the Nikopol bridgehead and the Dniepr where they destroyed more than 200 Russian tanks.

Upgrades

During the winter of 1943-44 the remaining 50 (48 from another source) were recalled to Nibelungenwerke. At that time a MG34 bow machine gun was installed in the hull as well as a commander's cupola.12 Were issued to the 653rd Panzerjäger and the 614th Panzerjägerkompanie. Used mostly in Italy after the upgrades.3 Suffered from shortage of spare parts and were put out of action more by mechanical failures than battle damage.3,11

Long Range Kill

It is reported that an Elefant was able to destroy a T-34/76 at a range of 3 miles / 4.82 km.12

Specifications

  Ferdinand / Elefant
Crew Commander, driver, radio operator, gunner, loaders(2)
61,2,3,4,5,7,8,9,10,11,12
Radio FuG52
Physical Characteristics  
Weight 143,300 lb3,11
65,000 kg1,3,8,11,12
64 tons1,4,8,12, 65 tons2,4, 66.93 tons9, 68 tons5, 71.7 tons7,10
Length w/gun 26' 8"3,5,8,11,12, 26' 8.4"1, 26' 9"9
8.128 m3,11, 8.14 m1,2,5,8,12
Length w/o gun 22' 4"5,9, 23.3'7, 23' 4"
6.8 m5
Height 9.8'7, 9' 8.9"1 , 9' 9"5,8,9,12, 9' 10"3,11
2.97 m1,2,5,8,12, 2.997 m3,11
Width 11'7, 11' 1"1,3,8,11,12, 11' 3"5,9
3.38 m1,2,8,12, 3.378 m3,11, 3.43 m5
Width over tracks  
Ground clearance 1' 6", 19"7
0.48 m
Ground contact length 165"7
4.19 m
Ground pressure 17 psi7, 17.5 psi
1.24 kg2cm
Armament  
Main 1: 8.8cm StuK 43 L/7112
1: 88 mm PaK 43/2 L/712,4,5,7,8,9
1: 88 mm1
1: 88 mm PaK 43/23,11
1: 88 mm L/716
Secondary  
MG 1: 7.92 mm MG1,8
2: 7.92 mm MG342 (original production had only 1)
1: 7.92 mm / 0.312" MG12
MG - hull 1: 7.92 mm MG34
1: 7.9 mm MG347
Side arms  
Quantity  
Main 504,5,7, 55
50 Pzgr + Spgr2
Secondary  
MG 600 Patr SmK2
6007
Side arms  
Armor Thickness (mm) 50 - 20011, 2001,4,8,9,12
Front: 8"7
Side: 3.2"7
Hull Front, Upper 100+100@12°2, 200@90°5
Hull Front, Lower 100+100@35°2, 100+100@75°5
Hull Sides, Upper 80@0°2, 80@90°5
Hull Sides, Lower 60@0°2
Hull Rear 80@40°2 & 80@0°2, 80@90°5
Hull Top 30@90°2
Hull Bottom 20-50@90°2
Superstructure Front 200@25°2, 200@60°5
Mantlet: 25@0° + 100@round2
Superstructure Sides 80@30°2, 80@60°5
Superstructure Rear 80@20°2, 80@60°5
Superstructure Top 30@86°2, 40@5°5
Engine (Make / Model) 2: Maybach9
2: Maybach HL 120 TRM1,2,3,7,8,11,12
2: Maybach HL 120 TR5
Bore / stroke  
Cooling Water7
Cylinders 2: V-123,5,7,8,11,12
Net HP 2: 300@3,000 rpm7, 530 each3,11, 2: 3008,12, 2: 3205,9
Power to weight ratio  
Compression ratio 6.5:17
Transmission (Type) Porsche-Siemens Electric drive
Porsche/Siemens-Schuckert Gasoline-electric drive.3
3 forward, 3 reverse.
Electric drive.2
Gasoline-electric drive7
Steering Porsche KG-Siemens electric switch gear7
Steering ratio  
Starter  
Electrical system  
Ignition  
Fuel (Type) Gasoline3,7,8,11,12
Octane  
Quantity 142 gallons, 210 gallons5
950 liters5(used 833 liters per 100 km of road)
Road consumption  
Cross country consumption  
Performance  
Traverse 14° each way4,5,7, hand4
Speed - Road 12 mph7, 12.5 mph3,5,9,11, 18.6 mph1,8,12
20 kph4,5, 20.1 kph3,11, 30 kph1,2,8,12
Speed - Cross Country 9.5 mph5
15 kph5
Range - Road 93 miles5,7,9, 93.2 miles1,8,12, 95 miles3,11
150 km1,2,4,5,8,12, 153 km3,11
Range - Cross Country 56 miles5,7
90 km5
Turning radius 2.15 m
Elevation limits -6° to +14°7, -8° to +14°4
Fording depth 3' 3"7, 3' 4"11, 3' 3.4"3
1 m3,11, 1.22 m4
Trench crossing 8.7'7, 8' 8.3"3,11
2.65 m3,11, 3.2 m4
Vertical obstacle 2' 7"3,7, 2' 7.5"11
0.78 m4, 0.8 m3,11
Climbing ability 22° (40%) slope7
Suspension (Type) Torsion bar, 1 spring for 2 rollers
Each 2-wheel bogie units sprung on torsion bars7
Wheels each side 6 in pairs7
Return rollers each side 0
Tracks (Type) Dry pin7
Length 8' 9"
Width 2' 1"7
65 m
Diameter  
Number of links 1097
Pitch 5.5"7
Tire tread  
Track centers/tread 8.8'7

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. Encyclopedia of German Tanks of World War Two, Peter Chamberlain and Hilary Doyle, 1999
  3. The Encyclopedia of Weapons of World War II, Chris Bishop, 1998
  4. New Vanguard 88 mm PaK 43/36/37/41 and PaK 43 1936-45, John Norris, 2002
  5. German Tanks of World War II, Dr. S. Hart & Dr. R. Hart, 1998
  6. Tanks of World War II, Duncan Crow, 1979
  7. Tank Data, Aberdeen Proving Grounds Series, 1968?
  8. The Illustrated Guide to Tanks of the World, George Forty, 2006
  9. German Tanks and Armoured Vehicles 1914 - 1945, B. T. White, 1966
  10. Profile, AFV Weapons #55, German Self-Propelled Weapons, Peter Chamberlain, H.L. Doyle, 1973
  11. Armored Fighting Vehicles, 300 of the World's Greatest Military Vehicles, Philip Trewhitt, 1999
  12. World War I and II Tanks, George Forty, 2012
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site