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United States' M2 medium tank

Photos

M2 medium tank:
United States' M2 medium tank
Mark Holloway
M2 medium tank with an E2 flamethrower:
United States' M2 medium tank with an E2 flamethrower
Fort Knox (Mark Holloway)
M2 medium tank with an E2 flamethrower:
United States' M2 medium tank with an E2 flamethrower
Fort Knox (Mark Holloway)
M2A1 medium tank:
United States' M2A1 medium tank
Aberdeen Tank Museum
M2A1 medium tank on a prewar training exercise:
United States' M2A1 medium tank on a prewar training exercise
     

Design

In 1938 work began on a medium tank.4 The T5 Medium was successfully tested at the Aberdeen Proving Grounds, and it was then designated the M2 Medium.

The M2 was basically a larger M2 Light Tank.4 Roadwheels increased to three.4

Had an octagonal turret with a 37 mm gun and there were six maching guns around the tank.1 It's role was to support infantry.4

Production

Standardized in June 1939.4

1,000 M2A1s were ordered into production in June 1940.1

  • M2: 154, 941
    • Production: August 1939 -4
  • M2A1: 941,4
    • Manufacturer: Detroit Tank Arsenal4, Rock Island Arsenal5

Variants

  • M2 Medium Tank:
  • M2A1 Medium Tank: Armor was thicker.4 Turret was larger.4 The 37 mm gun fired a 1.9 lb. AP shell at a muzzle velocity of 2,600'/sec.5 Had more armor and the turret from the M3 light tank.1
  • M2 with E-2 Flame Projector: Experimental mount with flame thrower.3
  • T5E2: Had a 75 mm howitzer in the hull.4

Usage

Used only in a training role.1

Specifications

  M2 M2A1
Crew Commander, driver, gunners (4).2
62,3
Commander, driver, gunners (4).2
51, 62,3,4,5
Physical Characteristics    
Weight 38,000 lb2
19 tons3
47,040 lb2,4
19 tons5, 21 tons1, 23 tons3
21,336 kg1, 21,377 kg4
Length w/gun 17' 6"2, 17' 8"3

17' 6"1,2,4, 17.7'5
5.33 m1, 5.334 m4

Length w/o gun    
Height 9' 3"2, 9' 4.5"3 9' 3"1,4, 9.4'5, 9' 4.5"2
2.819 m4, 2.82 m1
Width 8' 6"2, 8' 7"3 8' 6"1,2, 8.6'4,5
2.59 m1, 2.591 m4
Width over tracks    
Ground clearance   17"5
Ground contact length   142"5
Ground pressure   9.6 psi5
Turret ring diameter    
Armament    
Main 37 mm M62
37 mm3
37 mm1,3,4
37 mm M62
37 mm M6, L/535
Secondary    
MG 8: .30 cal Browning MG2
8: MG3
6: 7.62 mm (.30 cal) MGs1
8: .30 cal Browning MG2
8: MG3
8: .30 cal M1919A4 MG5
MG - hull 2: MG4 2: MG4
MG - sponsons 4: MGs4 4: MGs4
MG - turret side 2: MGs4 2: MGs4
Side arms    
Quantity    
Main 2002 2002,4,5
Secondary    
MG 12,2502 12,2502,4,5
Side arms    
Armor Thickness (mm) 9.52, 321,2, 1"3 9.52, 252, 1.25"3
Front: 1"5, 1.26"4
Front: 324
Side: 1"5
Hull Front, Upper    
Hull Front, Lower    
Hull Sides, Upper    
Hull Sides, Lower    
Hull Rear    
Hull Top    
Hull Bottom    
Turret Front   1"5
Mantlet: 2"5
Turret Sides    
Turret Rear    
Turret Top    
Engine (Make / Model) Wright2
Wright Radial3
Wright R-9751
Wright2,5
Wright Radial3
Bore / stroke    
Cooling Air3 Air3,5
Cylinders 92,3 92,3, R-95
Capacity    
Net HP 3503,4, 4002 3502, 350@2,400 rpm5, 4003,4
Power to weight ratio    
Compression ratio   6.3:15
Transmission (Type)   Constant mesh5
5 forward, 1 reverse5
Steering   Controlled differential5
Steering ratio    
Starter    
Electrical system    
Ignition    
Fuel (Type)   Gasoline5
Octane    
Quantity   136 gallons5
Road consumption   0.97 mpg5
Cross country consumption    
Performance    
Traverse 360°2 360°2
Hand5
Speed - Road 26 mph2,3 26 mph1,2,4, 30 mph3,5
42 kph1,4
Speed - Cross Country 17.2 mph2 17 mph5, 17.2 mph2,4
27.6 kph4
Range - Road 130 miles2 130 miles1,2,4,5
209 km1,4
Range - Cross Country    
Turning radius    
Elevation limits    
Fording depth    
Trench crossing 7' 6"2 7' 6"2
Vertical obstacle 2'2 2'2
Climbing ability    
Suspension (Type) Vertical volute.2 Vertical volute.2 Vertical volute spring.5
Wheels each side   3 bogies of 2 wheels each5
Return rollers each side   35
Tracks (Type)   Dry pin, double pin per shoe, rubber cleat5
Length    
Width 1' 2"2 1' 1"2, 1 2"4,5
0.357 m4
Diameter    
Number of links   835
Pitch   5.5"5
Tire tread    
Track centers/tread 6' 9"2 6' 9"2,4, 7'5
2.057 m4

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. British and American Tanks of World War Two, The Complete Illustrated History of British, American, and Commonwealth Tanks 1933-1945, Peter Chamberlain and Chris Ellis, 1969
  3. Tanks of the World, 1915-1945, Peter Chamberlain, Chris Ellis, 1972
  4. Airfix Magazine Guide #26 American Tanks of World War 2, Terry Gander and Peter Chamberlain, 1977
  5. Tank Data, Aberdeen Proving Grounds Series, 1968?
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site

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