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SdKfz 250 leichter Schutzenpanzerwagen


Halftrack Multi-Purpose Vehicle / Light Armored Personnel Carrier


Nazi Germany | 1939



"The SdKfz 250 halftrack proved to be a versatile platform, consistently undergoing modifications to the base system."



Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 06/02/2016 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.
The SdKfz 250 series was just one in the long line of German-produced halftrack systems in World War 2. The 250 system went on to see much use and success in a variety of base and altered platform states, showing off its versatility and adaptability in wartime. By 1945, some 7,500 examples of the 250 had been produced.

The SdKfz 250 system was a multi-purpose carrier mating a traditional truck-style front end with a tank-like tractor system at rear. Crew accommodation traditionally amounted to the driver plus passengers though this would change depending on the systems intended use and modification. The rearward section was served by a 6-wheeled track system and provided very good off road and muddy terrain performance with good on road performance as well. The driver and passenger sections were mounted at middle and rear, leaving the front room for the 100 horsepower Maybach engine.

The initial 250 was based on the chassis of the SdKfz 10 series. The basic design featured a completely armored hull for protection against small arms fire and an open top crew compartment for easy access and exit. The base model traditionally mounted a single 7.92mm machine gun in the MG34 or MG42 formats. Production began as early as 1939 to which the system was immediately placed into operational service against French defenders by 1940.

The SdKfz appeared in 14 "official" variants that consisted of dedicated systems including telephone line communications layers, observation posts, VIP armored carriers, armored scout cars, antitank gun platforms and mortar carriers. "Unofficial" variants, that is to say halftrack systems undergoing custom battlefield-type modifications, would push the number of subvariants well into the 200s.

As uneconomical as the SdKfz 250 series was to produce (despite attempts to curve raw materials waste in the production process), the systems were still coming off factory lines until the end of the war - such was the importance of the 250 series to the German war effort. Shortly after World War 2, design and usage of halftrack type vehicles waned and the classification type disappeared from operational service, along with systems such as the dedicated dive bomber. Nevertheless, the SdKfz 250 would go on to become an icon for the mobility and speed to which the German Army operated at, particularly in the opening salvos of the Second World War.

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Power & Performance
Those special qualities that separate one land system design from another. Performance specifications presented assume optimal operating conditions for the SdKfz 250/1 Halftrack Multi-Purpose Vehicle / Light Armored Personnel Carrier.
1 x Maybach HL 42 6-cylinder petrol engine delivering 100 horsepower.
Installed Power
37 mph
60 kph
Road Speed
186 miles
299 km
Range
Structure
The physical qualities of the SdKfz 250/1 Halftrack Multi-Purpose Vehicle / Light Armored Personnel Carrier.
2 + 6
(MANNED)
Crew
15.0 ft
4.56 meters
O/A Length
6.4 ft
1.94 meters
O/A Width
6.5 ft
1.98 meters
O/A Height
11,861 lb
5,380 kg | 5.9 tons
Weight
Armament & Ammunition
Available supported armament, ammunition, and special-mission equipment featured in the design of the SdKfz 250 leichter Schutzenpanzerwagen Halftrack Multi-Purpose Vehicle / Light Armored Personnel Carrier.
Typically 1 OR 2 x 7.92mm MG34/MG42 machine gun.

Specialized Variants:
1 x 75mm (7.5cm) anti-tank gun
1 x 50mm (5cm) anti-tank gun
1 x 28mm (2.8cm) "taper-bore" anti-tank rifle
1 x 80mm Mortar
AMMUNITION:
Variable - Armament Dependent:
70 x 75mm projectiles (250/6)
SPECIAL EQUIPMENT:
Nightvision - NONE
Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear Protection (CBRN) - NONE
Variants
Notable series variants as part of the SdKfz 250 leichter Schutzenpanzerwagen family line.
252 - Light Ammunition Carrier; early version of the SdKfz 250 system; fully-enclosed crew compartment; limited quantity production.
250/1 - Basic Model
250/2 - Telephone Line Layer; Observation Model
250/3 "Leichter Funkpanzerwagen" - Specialized Radio Vehicle; Commanders Vehicle; fitted with aerial antenna.
250/4 - Observation post Vehicle; Air Liaison Vehicle.
250/5 "Leichter Beobachtungspanzerwagen" - Observation Post Vehicle; fitted with specialized radio equipment.
250/6 - Assault Gun Ammunition Carrier
250/7 - Dedicated 80mm Mortar Mobile Platform; Panzer Grenadier Platoon Transport.
250/8 - 75mm Short Gun Platform
250/9 - Dedicated Armored Car; fitted with turret assembly from the SdKfz 222.
250/10 - Armed with 37mm PaK gun
250/11 - Armed with front-mounted 20mm Schwere Panzerbusche 41.
250/12 "Leichter Messtruppanzerwagen" - artillery spotter; fitted with specialized equipment in the way of range finders, signaling equipment and periscopes.
SdKfz 250 "Leichter Gepanzerter Beobachtungskraftwagen - Light Armored Observation Vehicle; operated in conjunction with assault gun groups.
Operators
Global customers who have evaluated and/or operated the SdKfz 250 leichter Schutzenpanzerwagen. Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national land systems listing.

Total Production: 6,628 Units

Contractor(s): Demag AG - Germany
National flag of modern Germany National flag of Nazi Germany National flag of Romania

[ Nazi Germany; Romania ]
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Image of the SdKfz 250 leichter Schutzenpanzerwagen

Design Qualities
Some designs are single-minded in their approach while others offer a more versatile solution to battlefield requirements.
RECONNAISSANCE
UTILITY
Recognition
Some designs stand the test of time while others are doomed to never advance beyond the drawing board; let history be their judge.
Going Further...
The SdKfz 250 leichter Schutzenpanzerwagen Halftrack Multi-Purpose Vehicle / Light Armored Personnel Carrier appears in the following collections:
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