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Armor/AFV: Axis - WWII
Armor and ground forces of the Axis forces during World War II.
Hosted by Darren Baker
Panther Versions in the Western Front
nheather
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United Kingdom
Joined: November 12, 2007
KitMaker: 285 posts
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Posted: Sunday, February 23, 2020 - 07:41 AM UTC
Hi,

What versions of Panther tank would the allies have encountered in the Western Front (Northern Europe) from D-Day onwards.

I'm assuming Ausf A and Ausf G since the production of the A went onto May 1944 and the production of the G started in March 1944.

But wondering whether the Ausf A versions were mostly going to the Eastern Front.

I've tried googling and reading books that I have but not found anything conclusive.

Cheers,

Nigel
sinsling
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Singapore / 新加坡
Joined: January 16, 2007
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Posted: Sunday, February 23, 2020 - 08:03 AM UTC
Hi Nigel,

On the Italian front, 4th Panzer division employed predominantly the early A variant (quick I/d cast cupola, letter flap mg cover on glacis, 24 bolt roadwheels) with the typical (for most other AFVs but unusual for Panthers) horizontally ridged zimmerit.

In France, typically it was the mid/late A variant (quick I/d: ball mounted mg on glacis but retains all other external A features) that confronted the allies. These had a wide variety of zimm patterns (vertical ridge, plain square cut, vertical ridge with square cut etc ) and some zimmed early Gs. As attrition took its toll, and particularly after the Falaise debacle, where most of their armor was lost, the early/mid G (quick I/d: side plates at diff angle and shape-wise run straight front to back, no step at the ottom where the fuel tank is) version started to make its appearance in numbers. After the Alsace-Lorraine battles of Sep '44, Panther Gs without zimmerit started appearing. By the end of 1944, the late G features (chin mantlet, raised crew heater compartment and IR mounting points began showing up more frequently.

The above is a mere outline of approximate timelines and is in no way exhaustive. I would strongly recommend working from photographs wherever possible. If Panthers are your thing, I also strongly recommend investing in a few publications as well. Some are relatively inexpensive and can be a real treasure trove of info, even if photo reproduction quality might be less than perfect. Best of luck!

Regards,
Johannan
BootsDMS
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England - South West, United Kingdom
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Posted: Sunday, February 23, 2020 - 08:04 AM UTC
Nigel,

Both A and G versions were encountered on the Western Front; assuming you're asking for modelling purposes then you can either depict one or the other and be perfectly accurate in your selection. There's also a wide choice of both versions, in kit form, certainly in 1:35.

Brian

nheather
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United Kingdom
Joined: November 12, 2007
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Posted: Sunday, February 23, 2020 - 08:35 AM UTC
Thanks so much for the excellent advice and knowledge.

Whilst I do make 1:35 models, these are 15mm (1:100) wargaming models. The kit (5 models) allows D, A and G versions.

Wargaming models tend to be simplified and often not perfectly accurate.

The A and D in the kit share the same upper hull (without the hull mounted MG) which would make it an early Ausf A.

That has made my mind up, going to build them as Ausf G. It doesn’t matter that much, as I remarked, they are not perfectly accurate and if the scenario requires a particular version there is little harm calling it an Ausf A when the model is an Ausf G. Only really matters if you mix them and then, only if the stats are different between the two.

Cheers,

Nigel
nsjohn
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Scotland, United Kingdom
Joined: July 26, 2018
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Posted: Sunday, February 23, 2020 - 08:48 AM UTC
There were also some Ausf D prior to Falaise. Essentially any type of Panther could appear in Normandy. Dennis Olivers Tankcraft books have 2 volumes, namsly Panther Tanks Normandy campaign, and Panther Tanks Defence of the West 1945 are very good value and well illustrated, and readily available on Amazon
jrutman
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Pennsylvania, United States
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Posted: Monday, February 24, 2020 - 02:29 AM UTC
The only Panzer Regt I am fairly knowledgeable about is the 12SS Pz Regt with its' first Bn having 4 companies of Panthers. Pictures of this unit show it had A,D and early G models all at the same time when it was first deployed on DDay.
HTH
J
nheather
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United Kingdom
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Posted: Tuesday, February 25, 2020 - 09:01 AM UTC

Quoted Text

The only Panzer Regt I am fairly knowledgeable about is the 12SS Pz Regt with its' first Bn having 4 companies of Panthers. Pictures of this unit show it had A,D and early G models all at the same time when it was first deployed on DDay.
HTH
J



Thanks for the info. Tempted to make the five up as a mixture just for some variety. As wargaming models they all behave same so I can get away with that.

Cheers,

Nigel
Lada_Niva
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Drenthe, Netherlands
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Posted: Wednesday, February 26, 2020 - 03:10 AM UTC
Sinsling,

How do you get so knowledgeable about this topic?
Do you use the internet a lot?
Or do you read a lot off books?
I'm interested how you got so knowledgeable.
Hohenstaufen
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England - South East, United Kingdom
Joined: December 13, 2004
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Posted: Wednesday, February 26, 2020 - 06:13 AM UTC
+1 for Dennis Olivers books. You could also try Yves Buffetaut, he has several on the SS in Normandy, German armour in Normandy generally and one on Falaise. In the same series are books on Allied armour too.
Lada, the information is freely available. If you are really into Panthers, start with Michael and Glady's Green's "Panther", or Thomas Anderson's similar title and the Haynes "Panther" book based on the ones at Bovingdon.
sinsling
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Singapore / 新加坡
Joined: January 16, 2007
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Posted: Wednesday, February 26, 2020 - 08:08 AM UTC
Hi Lada,

Thank you for the kind words. However, I must sincerely admit that there are many others far more knowledgable than I am on this and related topics on WW2 German armour! P

The little understanding that I have is really the result of other more experienced modellers, historians and enthusiasts generously sharing their knowledge via forums like this, as well as by building a decent library of books on my favourite vehicles and units.

There are also a great number of historical and even archival videos on YouTube that you can watch. The Internet and search engines serve info now that we could only dream about just over a decade ago.

Wishing you all the best in this beautiful hobby!

Regards,
Johannan
GeraldOwens
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Florida, United States
Joined: March 30, 2006
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Posted: Wednesday, February 26, 2020 - 10:49 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Hi,

What versions of Panther tank would the allies have encountered in the Western Front (Northern Europe) from D-Day onwards.

I'm assuming Ausf A and Ausf G since the production of the A went onto May 1944 and the production of the G started in March 1944.

But wondering whether the Ausf A versions were mostly going to the Eastern Front.

I've tried googling and reading books that I have but not found anything conclusive.

Cheers,

Nigel


Panther G replaced the A in production at MAN in Nuremberg in March, 1944. Panther G replaced the A at Daimler Benz in Berlin in May, 1944, and Ausf G replaced the A at MNH in Hannover in July, 1944. The Demag plant continued to use early A hulls on Bergepanthers until October, 1944, when they, too, switched to the G hull.

Not sure why you'd think the A went preferentially to the East. Most Panthers photographed in Normandy were A models.