Aircraft / Aviation Vehicles & Artillery Infantry Arms Warships & Submarines Military Pay Chart (2023) Military Ranks

Land Systems / Battlefield

Maultier (Mule)

Conversion Multirole Halftrack Vehicle [ 1942 ]

The Maultier was a hasty half-track conversion of either Opel or Daimler-Benz military trucks for second-line battlefield roles.

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 08/06/2018 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site.

Heading into 1942, the German Army understood, better than most, the value of the halftrack when wading through the snow and mud of the East Front. Halftracks maintained an advantage in such adverse conditions over their wheeled counterparts in that they could traverse soft terrains with little loss to momentum. However, the Army could little spare relocating front-line halftrack vehicles to handle other second-line tasks such as resupply so a new, cost-effective solution was sought.

This ultimately arrived in the form of the 'Maultier" (or 'Mule') in which a Daimler-Benz or Opel military truck was simply reworked with a tank-like track-and-wheel rear axle. The front axle remained wheeled and was the steerable component in the arrangement. The rear axle was made up of the running gear of the outgoing Panzer II light tank series which, in itself, proved a highly economical measure for the Panzer II was available in some number still. Couple this with the general availability of Opel and Daimler-Benz trucks and the formula was, theoretically, a winning - if hasty - one. Most of the Maultier fleet would be made up of trucks from the Opel concern.

In battlefield task, the trucks could retain their general multirole usefulness but their tactical value was now broadened as they could keep up with the mechanized fighting force across all manner of terrain presented.

In practice the modifications worked for the most part, particularly for the second-line roles the vehicles were intended for. They did have inherent limitations due to their truck pedigree and were not dedicated, purpose-built halftracks intended for heavy military service. Nevertheless, the line progressed and was eventually used in towing duties and resupply / rearm service while one other notable form to emerge was a modified Maultier to serve as a rocket-projecting vehicle for Nebelwerfer detachments. These versions added armoring (protection against small arms fire and shell splinters) at the cab and engine compartment while situating a 10-shot launcher the (15cm Panzerwerfer) over the hull roof on a trainable mounting. The rocket-projecting vehicles were an interim measure pending the arrival of more sWS (schwere Wehrmacht Schlepper - detailed elsewhere on this site) halftracks and arrived on East Front battlefields in 1943. Some 3,000 of these were contracted for.

Maultiers soldiered on to the end of the war in Europe in May of 1945. Production numbers of the sWS never met demand (only several hundred or so were completed) so this meant that many more Maultiers were produced than originally anticipated.©MilitaryFactory.com
Note: The above text is EXCLUSIVE to the site www.MilitaryFactory.com. It is the product of many hours of research and work made possible with the help of contributors, veterans, insiders, and topic specialists. If you happen upon this text anywhere else on the internet or in print, please let us know at MilitaryFactory AT gmail DOT com so that we may take appropriate action against the offender / offending site and continue to protect this original work.


Service Year

Nazi Germany national flag graphic
Nazi Germany


State Factories - Nazi Germany
(View other Vehicle-Related Manufacturers)
National flag of modern Germany National flag of Nazi Germany Nazi Germany
(OPERATORS list includes past, present, and future operators when applicable)
Fire Support / Assault / Breaching
Support allied forces through direct / in-direct fire, assault forward positions, and / or breach fortified areas of the battlefield.
Can conduct reconnaissance / scout missions to assess threat levels, enemy strength, et al - typically through lightweight design.
General utility-minded design to accomplish a variety of battlefield tasks, typically in a non-direct-combat fashion.
Special Purpose
Special purpose design developed to accomplish an equally-special battlefield role or roles.

19.7 ft
6 m
7.2 ft
2.2 m
8.2 ft
2.5 m
15,653 lb
7,100 kg
7.8 tons
(Showcased structural values pertain to the base Maultier (Mule) production variant. Length typically includes main gun in forward position if applicable to the design)
Powerplant: 1 x Opel OR Daimler-Benz 6-cylinder gasoline-fueled engine of various makes and models with variable output power.
23.6 mph
(38.0 kph)
(Showcased performance specifications pertain to the base Maultier (Mule) production variant. Compare this entry against any other in our database)
None typically. Personal weapons carried by the crew.

Supported Types

Graphical image of the M3 Grease Gun submachine gun

(Not all weapon types may be represented in the showcase above)
Not Applicable.

Maultier ("Mule") - Base Series Designation; using either Opel or Daimler-Benz military transport trucks (also Alfa-Romeo and Ford in some cases); rear axle replaced by Panzer II light tank track-and-wheel systems.
SdKfz 4 - Armored variant; armored at the cab and engine compartment.
SdKfz 4/1 - Based on the armored SdKfz 4 though with Nebelwerfer 42 launcher containing 10 rockets over the hull.

Military lapel ribbon for the American Civil War
Military lapel ribbon for pioneering aircraft
Military lapel ribbon for the Arab-Israeli War
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of the Bulge
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Kursk
Military lapel ribbon for the Cold War
Military lapel ribbon for the Falklands War
Military lapel ribbon for the Indo-Pak Wars
Military lapel ribbon for the Korean War
Military lapel ribbon for the 1991 Gulf War
Military lapel ribbon representing modern aircraft
Military lapel ribbon for the Soviet-Afghan War
Military lapel ribbon for the Spanish Civil War
Military lapel ribbon for the Ukranian-Russian War
Military lapel ribbon for the Vietnam War
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 1
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 2
Military lapel ribbon for the Yom Kippur War
Military lapel ribbon for experimental military vehicles

Ribbon graphics not necessarily indicative of actual historical campaign ribbons. Ribbons are clickable to their respective campaigns / operations.

Images Gallery

1 / 1
Image from the Public Domain.


Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Cookies

2023 Military Pay Chart Military Ranks DoD Dictionary Conversion Calculators Military Alphabet Code Military Map Symbols

The "Military Factory" name and MilitaryFactory.com logo are registered ® U.S. trademarks protected by all applicable domestic and international intellectual property laws. All written content, illustrations, and photography are unique to this website (unless where indicated) and not for reuse/reproduction in any form. Material presented throughout this website is for historical and entertainment value only and should not to be construed as usable for hardware restoration, maintenance, or general operation. We do not sell any of the items showcased on this site. Please direct all other inquiries to militaryfactory AT gmail.com.

Part of a network of sites that includes GlobalFirepower, a data-driven property used in ranking the top military powers of the world, WDMMA.org (World Directory of Modern Military Aircraft), WDMMW.org (World Directory of Modern Military Warships), SR71blackbird.org, detailing the history of the world's most iconic spyplane, and MilitaryRibbons.info, cataloguing all American military medals and ribbons.

www.MilitaryFactory.com • All Rights Reserved • Content ©2003-