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Panzerbefehlswagen Panther Command Tank

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The Panzerbefehlswagen command vehicle variant of the Panther was developed in 1943. It was based on the Ausf A, but use was also made of rebuilt Ausf Ds. The main differences to the standard tank, with its short wave Fu5 radio and 2m rod aerial on the left of the engine deck, were the additional radio sets and aerials provided. Space was freed up by reducing the number of main armament rounds from 79 to 64, although the stowage of MG rounds was increased from 4200 to 4800. The SdKfz numbers 267 and 268 were allotted to this vehicle, depending on the extra radio equipment carried. The SdKfz 267 carried a medium wave Fu8 radio with a mast star aerial in the centre rear of the engine deck. The SdKfz 268 carried an ultra short wave Fu7 with a second 2m rod aerial on the right rear of the turret roof; this was largely used for ground to air co-ordination. Most command vehicles appeared to have had both additional aerials and this may have been to simplify conversion to either type in the field.
Conversion of Panthers to PzBefWg took place alongside production of the standard tank and some 329 were produced between May 1943 and February 1945. PzBefWg Panthers served in Panther units on all fronts until the end of the war. A further 41 vehicles were converted to Panzerbeobachtungswagen Panther artillery observation vehicles. This was a more extensive conversion with the 7.5cm gun replaced with a shorter dummy barrel and a machine gun fitted in the front of the turret as the main armament.

Model Id:255
Manufacture:Maschinenfabrik Augsburg-Nürnberg (MAN) AG, Nürnberg, Bavaria, Middle Franconia, Germany (Primary Panther manufacturer)

1) Panzermuseum, Munster, Germany

Number of Photos: 1
Sample Photo from Album Number 57

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Unique ID: 57
Serial Number:
Other Identification:

This Panther command tank was built in February 1944 by MAN at Nürnberg and it retains the characteristic extra star and rod aerials. It is based on an Ausf A and has the chassis number 210767. Nothing is known of its initial deployment or parent unit. In 1946 it was sold by France to Sweden. It was presented as a gift by the Royal Swedish Defence Ministry to Panzer Lehr Battalion 93 on 17 October 1961. It has been at Kampftruppenschule 2 since 1975.
It has mountings for two headlamps. These may be of Swedish origin, as there are weld scars around the mounts, and at one point there were guards fitted around the headlamps (source: L. Archer).
It was restored to running order in the KTS 2 workshops at Munster between 15 January 1980 and 15 September 1981. This was done with the assistance of the companies Motoren und Turbinen-Union (MTU), Zahnradfabrik Friedrichshafen and Rheinmetall, and the Armour Museum at Saumur, France. It is now in running order and has taken part in public displays. It carries the turret number “II01”, indicative of a 2nd Battalion headquarters tank.