Characteristics of the "Ferdinand," a German self-propelled gun which
first appeared in July, on the Russian front, are:
|Weight|| ||70-72 tons|
|Length||22 feet, 11 3/4 in|
|Height||9 feet, 10 in|
|Width||11 feet, 5 3/4 in|
|Track width||2 feet, 5 1/2 in|
|Clearance||1 foot, 7 1/2 in|
| Front|| ||7.87 in|
| Sides (vertical)||6.29 in|
| Rear||4.33 in|
| Belly||1.57 in|
|(2) Fighting Compartment|
| Front (vertical)||7.87 in|
| Sides (sloping)||3.74 in|
| Rear (sloping)||3.34 in|
| Roof||1.57 in|
| Mantlet plate||4.33 in|
(1) One 88-mm super-long gun fitted with muzzle brake.
(2) One MG 42.
d. Ammunition carried
70-90 rounds for gun, 2,000 rounds for MG.
Six independently sprung bogies, diameter 2 feet, 7 1/2 inches;
evenly spaced and not overlapping.
|Maximum speed|| ||12 1/2 mph|
|Cruising speed|| ||6-9 mph|
|Maximum gradient|| ||30°|
Two Maybach motors, HL-120 TRM 300 hp each.
Total, six: commanding officer of ordnance--lieutenant (tank
or artillery), gunner, mechanic-driver, radio operator, two loaders.
The "Ferdinand" is guided by observation through periscopes (one each
for the commanding officer, the driver, and the gunner). There are no observation
slots. Radio transmitter and receiver are provided for external communication;
there is a radio-microphone for internal communication. The motor is situated
practically in the center of the hull. Gasoline capacity is 242 gallons.
Russian experience shows that the most effective methods of fighting the
(a) Concentrated artillery fire, with the use of armor-piercing incendiary
projectiles of all calibers on the armored installation of the gun and on the
gasoline storage tanks in the center of the hull.
(b) Artillery fire of all calibers on the cannon, observation equipment
and on the mobile parts of the gun (caterpillar, driving and steering wheels,
(c) Grenade and Molotov cocktail attacks on the motor section, the turret
lid, the rear slot of the turret through which empty shell cases are discharged.
The "Ferdinand" self-propelled guns are organically included in German
heavy demolition antitank battalions. Such battalions contain three artillery
companies, a headquarters company, a repair company and transport. Each
artillery company has a total of 14 "Ferdinands," four to each of three platoons
and two to immediate company control. The headquarters company has two of these
new self-propelled guns also. Thus the battalion has a total of 44 "Ferdinands."