- Panther tank
name= Panther Ausf. A
caption= Panther Ausf. A painted in one of many
type= Medium tank
service= 1943 - 1945 (Nazi Germany)
Nazi Germany France
World War II
production_date= 1942 - 1945
number= Close to 6000
weight= 44.8 tonnes
length= 6.87 m, 8.66 m with gun forward
width= 3.42 m
height= 2.99 m
crew= 5 (Driver, radio-operator, commander, gunner, loader)
armour= 15-120 mm
primary_armament= 1x 7.5 cm KwK 42 L/70
secondary_armament= 2× 7.92 mm Maschinengewehr 34
petrol MaybachHL230 P30
engine_power= 700 PS (690 hp, 515 kW)
torsion bar, interleaved road wheels
vehicle_range= 250 km
speed= 55 km/h (first models), 46 km/h (later models)
The Panther (Audio|De-Panther-pronunciation.ogg|listen) was a
tankfielded by Germanyin World War IIthat served from mid-1943 to the end of the European war in 1945. It was intended as a counter to the T-34, and to replace the Panzer IVand III, though it served along with them and the heavy tanks until the end of the war. The Panther's excellent combination of firepower, mobility, and protection served as a benchmark for other nations' late war and immediate post-war tank designs and it is frequently regarded (along with the Soviet T-34 Tank) as the best tank design of World War II. [Hart 2003, p 43.]
Until 1944 it was designated as the Panzerkampfwagen V "Panther" and had the Ordnance inventory designation of Sd.Kfz. 171. On
27 February 1944, Hitlerordered that the Roman numeral V be deleted from the tank's designation.
Development and production
The Panther was a direct response to the Soviet T-34. First encountered on
23 June 1941, the T-34 decisively outclassed the existing Panzer IVand Panzer III. At the insistence of General Heinz Guderiana team was dispatched to the Eastern Front to assess the T-34. Among the features of the Soviet tankconsidered most significant were the sloping armor, which gave much improved shot deflection and also increased the effective armor thickness against penetration, the wide track and large road wheels which improved mobility over soft ground, and the 76.2 mm gun, which had good armour penetration and fired an effective high-explosive round. Daimler-Benz(DB) and Maschinenfabrik Augsburg-Nürnberg AG (MAN) were tasked with designing a new thirty to thirty-five-ton tank, designated VK3002, by April 1942 (apparently in time to be shown to Hitlerfor his birthday).
The two proposals were delivered in April 1942. The Daimler-Benz (DB) design was a direct homage to the T-34, side-stepping the German propensity for over-engineering and, hence, complexity, to produce a clean, simple design resembling the T-34 in hull and turret form,
diesel engine, drive system, leaf spring suspension, track layout, and other features. In the DB design, like the T-34 design, the internal crew layout provided for just two men in the turret: the commander would also have to serve as the gunner. This provided the advantage of a smaller, inexpensive turret design, as well as manpower savings, and a smaller target for enemy gunners to hit during a battle at the expense of great workload for the commander, often jeopardising his ability to effectively direct the crew and other vehicles at the same time.
The MAN design was more conventional German thinking: it was higher and wider with a substantial turret placed centrally on the hull, a
petrolengine, torsion-bar suspension, and a characteristically German internal crew layout for three men: commander, gunner, and loader. The MAN design was accepted in May, 1942 in spite of Hitler's preference for the DB design. One of the principal reasons for this was that the MAN design used an existing turret designed by Rheinmetall-Borsig while the DB design would have required a brand new turret to be designed and produced, substantially delaying the commencement of production.
A mild steel
prototypewas produced by September 1942 and, after testing at Kummersdorf, was officially accepted. It was put into immediate production with the very highest priority. The start of production was delayed, however, mainly because there were too few specialized machine tools needed for the machining of the hull. Finished tanks were produced in December and suffered from reliability problems as a result of this haste. The demand for this tank was so high that the manufacturing was soon expanded out of MAN to include Daimler-Benz and in 1943 the firms of Maschinenfabrik Niedersachsen-Hannover (MNH) and Henschel & Sohnin Kassel.
The initial production target was 250 tanks per month at MAN. This was increased to 600 per month in January 1943. Despite determined efforts this figure was never reached due to disruption by Allied bombing, manufacturing bottlenecks, and other difficulties. Production in 1943 averaged 148 per month. In 1944, it averaged 315 a month (3,777 having been built that year), peaking with 380 in July and ending around the end of March 1945, with at least 6,000 built in total. Strength peaked on
September 1, 1944at 2,304 tanks, but that same month a record number of 692 tanks were reported lost (source: T.L. Jentz (1999) "Die deutsche Panzertruppe Band 2").
If the over-hanging gun and sloping armor are ignored, the Panther was a conventional German design. The weight of the production model had increased to 43
tonnes from the planned 35.
The Panther was the first Axis tank design where modern features were more prominent than early WWII-era ones. Once the problems caused by the vulnerability of the engine and the transmission were solved, it proved to be a very effective fighting vehicle.
The Panther was powered by a 700 PS (690 hp, 515 kW)/3000 rpm, 23.1 litre
MaybachHL 230 P30 V-12 petrol engine that drove two front drive sprockets via the gearbox and steering unit. The engine was generally considered reliable, and had a fatigue life of up to 2000 kilometers. In order to minimize engine failures, the Panther engines were fitted with a governor in late 1943 that limited the engine revolutions to 2500 rpm and power to 600 PS (592 hp, 441 kW). The installation of the governor also dropped the tank's top speed from 55 km/h to 46 km/h.
The suspension consisted of front drive sprockets, rear idlers and eight double-interleaved rubberized steel bogie wheels on each side, suspended on a dual torsion bar suspension that had two torsion bars per each swing arm. The Panther's suspension was costly and time-consuming to manufacture and the interleaved system made replacing inner bogies time consuming and the whole set up was prone to freezing solid overnight in severe Russian winters. However, it provided excellent flotation and stability and contributed significantly to the Panther's generally excellent tactical mobility and performance as a gun platform. Shortage of rubber brought in the use of all-steel flat disc wheels with resilient steel tyre, late Tiger-fashion.
Tank control was accomplished through a seven-speed AK 7-200 synchromesh gearbox, designed by ZF, and a MAN single radius steering system, operated by steering levers. The steering system allowed a single, fixed radius of turn at each gear. The higher the gear, the bigger was the turning radius. If the radius was bigger than desired, the steering brakes could be used to tighten the turn.
The weakest parts in the tank were, throughout its career, the final drive units. The main reason was that the units could not be manufactured using hollow spur gears, due to the shortage of suitable gear-cutting machinery in Germany during the war. The final drives were in fact so weak that their fatigue life was sometimes as low as 150 km. The
M4 Shermantank of the Allies, by contrast, had a double helical gear arrangement on its final drive which placed no limits on maximum speed.
The crew was made up of five members: driver, radio operator (who also fired the bow machine gun), gunner, loader, and commander.
The armor consisted of a thick homogeneous steel glacis (i.e. frontal hull) plate sloped back at 55 degrees from the vertical, welded but also interlocked for strength. The combination of thick 80 mm armor with a high degree of slope made the Panther's glacis armor extremely effective: very few Allied or Soviet weapons could penetrate it. The front of the turret was covered by a 100 mm thick cast mantlet, made in the shape of a transverse half-cylinder. The transverse-cylindrical shape of the mantlet meant that it was more likely to deflect shells, but it was discovered that the lower section of the transverse-cylindrical mantlet created a shot-tr
The main weakness of the Panther tank was its much thinner (40–50 mm thick) side armor. The thinner side armor was necessary to keep the tank's overall weight within reasonable bounds, but it made the Panther vulnerable to attacks from the side by most Allied and Soviet tank and anti-tank guns. German tactical doctrine for the use of the Panther thus emphasised the importance of flank protection. Five millimeter skirt armor, "Schürzen", intended to provide protection for the lower side hull from Soviet anti-tank rifle fire was fitted on the hull side. "
Zimmerit" ceramic coating against magnetic mines also became standard with the Ausf. A, and retrofitted to older versions until deleted from new Panthers from about September 1944.
The main gun was a semi-automatic 7.5 cm Rheinmetall-Borsig KwK 42 (L/70) with 79 rounds (82 on Ausf. G). The main gun used three different types of ammunition,
APCBC-HE (Pzgr. 39/42), HE (Sprgr. 42) and APCR(Pzgr. 40/42), the last of which was usually in short supply. While the gun was of only average caliber for its time, the Panther's gun was one of the most powerful tank guns of WWII, due to the large propellant charge and the long barrel, which gave it a very high muzzle velocityand excellent armor-piercing qualities. The flat trajectoryalso made hitting targets much easier, since accuracy was less sensitive to range. The 75 mm gun actually had more penetrating power than the main gun of the Tiger I heavy tank, the 8.8 cm KwK 36 L/56.
The tank had normally two
MG 34machine guns of a specific version designed for use in armored combat vehicles featuring an armored barrel sleeve. An MG 34machine gun was located co-axially with the main gun on the gun mantlet; an identical MG 34 was located on the glacis plate and fired by the radio operator. Initial Ausf. D and early Ausf. A models used a "letterbox" flap opening, through which the machine gun was fired. Later Ausf A and all Ausf G models use a more conventional ball mount in the glacis for this machine gun. The Ausf A introduced a new cast commander's cupola. It featured a steel hoop to which a third MG 34 or either the coaxial or the bow machine gun could be mounted for use in the anti-aircraft role, though it was rare for this to be used in actual combat situations.
The Panther was intended to supplement the
Panzer IVand replace the Panzer IIImedium tanks. Each German "Panzer" (armored) Division had two tank battalions; the intent was to equip one battalion in each division with Panthers, retaining the lighter, older, but still useful Panzer IV in the other battalion. Beginning in mid-1943, battalions were gradually converted to Panthers.
The Panther first saw action at Kursk on
July 5, 1943. Early tanks were plagued with mechanical problems: the track and suspension often broke, and the engine was dangerously prone to overheating and bursting into flames. At Kursk, more Panthers were disabled by their own failings than by enemy action. For example, the XLVIII Panzer Corps reported on July 10, 1943, that they had 38 Panthers operational and 131 awaiting repair, out of about 200 they had started with on July 5. Heinz Guderian, who had not wanted Hitler to order them into combat so soon, later remarked about the early Panther's performance in the battle: "they burnt too easily, the fuel and oil systems were insufficiently protected, and the crews were lost due to lack of training." Guderian also stated, however, that the firepower and frontal armor were good. While many of the Panthers used at Kursk were damaged or suffered from mechanical difficulties, only a small number was lost for good and the tanks also achieved success, with 263 Soviet tanks claimed to have been destroyed by them. Fact|date=September 2008 Although its frontal armour was thinner than the Tiger's, it was also much more sloped and proved harder for Soviet shells to penetrate.
After Kursk, the tanks suffering from damage or mechanical breakdowns were repaired and the inherent design problems of the early Ausf. D models were fixed, making the Panther a truly formidable tank. Later in 1943 and, especially, into 1944 Panthers appeared in increasing numbers on the Soviet-German front. By June 1944, Panthers were about one-half of the German tank strength both in the east and the west. The Panther was increasingly commonly encountered by Allied forces and by the end of the war it was the third most produced German armored fighting vehicle.
Perhaps the best known German Panther commander was SS-Oberscharführer
Ernst Barkmannof the 2nd SS-Panzer Division "Das Reich".
Panther turrets, from battle damaged and retired vehicles along with specially manufactured ones, were also mounted in fixed fortifications. Turrets (mechanically traverseable) were mounted on concrete emplacements (Pantherturm III - Betonsockel - concrete base) or welded steel boxes (Pantherturm I - Stahluntersatz - steel sub-base), which housed the ammunition storage and fighting compartment along with crew quarters. Such emplacements were located in the fortifications of the Atlantic Wall, West Wall, Gothic Line, Hitler Line (one of those was located at Piedimonte in Monte Cassino area) and in the east (about 12 in Berlin). A total of 268-280 turrets were installed as of March 26 1945 Fact|date=August 2008.
Panther battalion organization
Composition of a panzer battalion equipped with Panther tanks, 1943. Two panzer battalions would comprise the panzer regiment of a
*Battalion Command (composed of Communication and Reconnaissance platoons)
*Communication Platoon - 3 × Befehlswagen Panther SdKfz.267/268
*Reconnaissance Platoon - 5 × Panther
* 1st Company - 22 × Panther
** Company Command - 2 × Panther
***1st Platoon - 5 × Panther
***2nd Platoon - 5 × Panther
***3rd Platoon - 5 × Panther
***4th Platoon - 5 × Panther
* 2nd Company - 22 × Panther (composed as 1st Company)
* 3rd Company - 22 × Panther (composed as 1st Company)
* 4th Company - 22 × Panther (composed as 1st Company)
* Service Platoon - 2 × Bergepanther
From 1943 to 1945, many modifications were made to unit organization by reducing both number of companies and platoons due to the war situation.
The Allied response
The Soviet response to the large numbers of Panthers on their front was swift. In 1943 the Red Army was still equipped with
T-34tanks armed with the same 76.2 mm gun as in 1941. This gun was ineffective against the Panther's frontal armor, meaning the Soviet tanks had to try to flank the Panther to be able to successfully destroy it, while the Panther's main gun could penetrate the T-34 at long range from any angle. Plans were made to improve the T-34 with an 85 mm gun and new and more spacious three-man turret, producing the T-34-85. Although this tank was not quite the equal of the Panther, it was much better than the 76.2 mm-armed versions and made up for its quality shortcomings by being produced in greater quantities than the Panther. New self-propelled anti-tank vehicles based on the T-34 hull, such as the SU-85and SU-100, were also developed. By mid-1944, the Red Armywas deploying far more T-34-85s than the Germans had Panthers.
A German comparison of German tanks with the new Soviet T-34-85 and
IS-2heavy tank (with a 122 mm gun), from March 23, 1944, stated that "the Panther is far superior to the T-34/85 for frontal fire (Panther Ausf G could penetrate frontal armor of T-34-85 at 2,000 m, while T-34-85 could penetrate frontal armor of Panther Ausf G at 500 m ), approximately equal for side and rear fire, superior to the IS-2 for frontal fire and inferior for side and rear fire." In 1943 and 1944, a Panther was able to destroy any Allied enemy tank in existence at ranges of 2,000 m, while in general veteran Panther crews reported a 90 percent hit rate at ranges up to 1,000 m.
The Panther weighed about as much as the new Soviet IS-2 heavy tank, and indeed this vehicle is a closer match than the much lighter T-34. Later in the war (1944 and on) Soviets found the quality of German armour dropped, lack of alloying metals made the plates too brittle. In November 1943 at Kubinka, during trials of guns proposed to be mounted on the
IS-2heavy tank, a 122-mm round fired from the A-19 gun passed clear through a captured Panther, penetrating both the front and rear armour. [Zaloga 1984, p 172.]
The Western Allies' response was inconsistent. The Panther was not employed against the western Allies until early 1944 at
Anzio, where Panthers were employed in small numbers. The Panther was thought to be another heavy tank that would not be built in large numbers. Thus the US Army entered the Battle of Normandyexpecting to face a handful of German heavy tanks alongside large numbers of Panzer IVs. In fact almost half the German tanks in Normandy were Panthers and the 75 mm guns of the US Sherman tanks could not penetrate their frontal armor.
US forces eventually responded with large numbers of 76 mm-armed Shermans, 90 mm-armed tank destroyers, and eventually the Pershing heavy tank. Even with these better weapons it was still difficult to penetrate the frontal armor of the Panther.
British forces responded to the heavier German tanks with the 17-pounder gun mounted in the Sherman (the
Sherman Firefly), as well as towed 17-pounders. By the conclusion of the Normandy campaign, British forces were fielding roughly a 1:4 ratio of Fireflys to 75 mm Shermans in their tank units. Eventually they deployed the Comet tankin 1945.
The Panther remained a major German tank until the end of the war. Later versions of the
Panzer IVwith long 75 mm KwK 40 L/48 guns were slightly cheaper to produce and more reliable, and so they remained in production alongside the Panther. However, the main reason for the prolonged Panzer IV production was that the reorganization of the German tank industry to manufacture Panthers rather than Panzer IVs would have resulted in such a temporary decrease in overall tank production that it would have been unbearable for Germany when the tide of war had already turned.
Around the time of the
Battle of the Bulge, as part of Otto Skorzeny's Operation Greifcommando mission, a number of Panther tanks asigned to Skorzeny's Panzerbrigade 150 were disguised to look roughly like an M10 Wolverineby welding on additional plates, applying US-style camouflage paint and markings. This was carried out as part of a larger operation that involved soldiers disguised as Americans and other activities. The disguised Panthers were detected and destroyed.
heavy tank in order to ease manufacturing. The Panther II had a hull similar to the Tiger II, and also shared identical road wheels (eight versus the Tiger II's nine), "contact shoe" and "connector link" track, suspension and brakes. One of the parts to be changed was the gun-mantlet, which had to become smaller. This was referred to in German as "Turm mit schmaler Blende" (narrow-mantlet turret).
The Panther II project never got further than one single chassis, that now can be seen in the Patton Museum.
The only other significant differences between the Panther and the Panther II were running gear, and increased armor protection. The turret was exactly the same on both types. The Panther II was only designed with the 7.5 cm KwK L/70 in mind, and the 8.8 cm KwK L/71 idea didn't enter into consideration after the Panther II project had been dropped.
Later in the war, in March 1944, work started again on a Panther turret with a smaller forward aspect. This led to the development of the "Schmalturm" (narrow turret). In August a "Versuchsturm" (trials turret) was completed. This was mounted on the chassis of a regular Panther Ausf. G. The Schmalturm featured thicker armour, a built-in stereoscopic rangefinder, the capability to carry the 88 mm KwK L/71 and eliminated the shot-trap under the mantle, but weighed less than the original turret. A partially destroyed example of a production "Schmalturm" still exists, and is on display at the
Bovington Tank Museum.
In that same period, development of the Panther led to the Ausf. F, slated for production in April 1945. The key points for this mark of Panther were the new "Schmalturm" with its improved armor protection, and an extended front hull roof which was also slightly thicker. A number of Ausf. F hulls were built at Daimler-Benz and Ruhrstahl-Hattingen steelworks; however there is no evidence that any completed Ausf F saw service before the end of the war. Indeed, since some key components for the "Schmalturm" were never completed, the operation of any Panther Ausf. F built would have been seriously impaired. The Panther Ausf. F is not to be confused with the Panther II, which was an entirely new design with a heavier chassis.
Designs based on chassis
Jagdpanther- heavy tank destroyer with the 88 mm L/71
* Befehlspanzer Panther - command tank with additional radio equipment
* Beobachtungspanzer Panther - observation tank for artillery spotters; dummy gun; armed with only two
* Bergepanther - armored recovery vehicle
* Prototypes: 2 produced in 11/42 (designated V1 and V2)
* Ausf. D: 842 produced (1/43 to 9/43)
* Ausf. A: 2,192 produced (8/43 to 6/44, sometimes called Ausf. A2)
* Ausf. G: 2,953 (3/44 to 4/45)
* "Befehlspanzer Panther": 329 Converted (5/1943 to 2/1945)
* "Beobachtungspanzer Panther": 41 Converted (1944/1945)
* "Bergepanther": 347 (1943 to 1945)
Production by maker for the Mark V Panther 1944. [Richard Ruggles, R. and H. Brodie (1947) An Empirical Approach to Economic Intelligence in World War II, Journal of the American Statistical Association, 42(237):72-91, March 1947.]
Maker 1944 Production Maschinenfabrik Augsburg-Nurnberg A.G. 35% Daimler-Benz A.G. 31% Maschinenfabrik Niedersachsen-Hanover A.G. 31% Other 3%
Postwar and foreign use
The Panther saw some use outside the German military before and after 1945. Its design had very little influence on postwar tank development, however.Fact|date=September 2008
During the war, the
Red Armyemployed a number of captured Panthers. These were repainted with prominent Soviet emblems and tactical markings to avoid friendly fire incidents. The Red Army still used a few Panthers as late as spring 1945.Fact|date=September 2008
At least one captured vehicle (nicknamed "Cuckoo") also apparently saw service with British forces for some time.Fact|date=September 2008
There are also reports of three captured Panthers being used by the Poles during the
Warsaw uprising, and even some claims that the French Resistancebriefly operated a small number of these tanks in the Rouenarea in 1944. Fact|date=July 2008
Japan reportedly bought a single Panther Ausf. D for
reverse engineeringpurposes in 1943. However the tank apparently never actually made it to Japan. [Zaloga, Steven J. Japanese Tanks 1939-45 ISBN 9781846030918]
After the war,
Francewas able to recover enough operable vehicles and components to equip the French 503e Régiment de Chars de Combat stationed in Mourmelon le Grandwith fifty Panthers. These remained in service until about 1950, by which time they had been replaced by French-built ARL 44 heavy tanks.
The French postwar
AMX 50tank prototype was noticeably influenced by the Panther's design, but never entered series production. The French also modified the Panther's 75mm KwK 42 L/70 gun, and produced it as the 75mm DEFA and CN75-50 gun. This gun equipped the AMX 13light tank and EBR armored car. The Israelis also used the same weapon to upgrade their M50 Super Sherman.
In 1946 Swedish delegates where sent to France to investigate German AFV. They eventually found some surviving panthers and shipped one to Sweden for testing and evaluation, this lasted till 1961. It is now in Panzermuseum Munster in Germany [ [http://www.canada.com/ottawacitizen/news/story.html?id=89799321-38df-4cba-86ab-6923e1621137&k=3238 German invasion] , Ottawa Citizen]
Twenty-eight Panthers survive in conditions ranging from wrecks to fully restored. Four - held by the
Kubinka Tank Museumin Russia, the Musée des Blindésin France and the Deutsches Panzermuseumin Munster and the Wehrtechnische Studiensammlung in Koblenz, Germany - are in running condition.
Two more Panthers are being restored to running condition by private collectors in England (Kevin Wheatcroft) and the United States (Jacques Littlefield). Kevin Wheatcroft will also restore the two other Panther tanks that he owns to running condition. Fact|date=May 2008
A unique Panther Ausf. D (the only known complete survivor) is displayed in the Wilhelmina park in
Breda, The Netherlands. This tank was donated by the Polish 1st Armored Division after liberating Breda. It was restored in 2004-2005 for static display by Kevin Wheatcroft in exchange for automotive components.
The Panther on display at Panzermuseum Thun, Switzerland is advertised as an Ausf. D/G hybrid, with a D hull and G turret. There are many questions surrounding this vehicle. The turret has a replacement sheet metal mantlet, vaguely resembling a late Ausf. G mantlet, with no ports for gunners sight or coaxial MG. The pistol port on the turret rear indicates an Ausf. A or early Ausf G. The hull with the "letterbox" MG slot indicates an Ausf. D or early Ausf. A. The turret and hull numbers could help identify the correct model designation for the hybrid but neither of the numbers have been made public.
In January 2008 a partially restored Panther Ausf. A was put on display in the Lebreton gallery at the
Canadian War Museum. The Panther had been donated to the museum from CFB Borden, which acquired it following V-E celebrations in May 1945. It had spent two years in restoration prior to being put on public display. [ [http://www.canada.com/ottawacitizen/news/story.html?id=89799321-38df-4cba-86ab-6923e1621137&k=3238 German invasion] , Ottawa Citizen]
* Crew: 5
* Combat weight: Ausf. A 45.5 tonnes; Ausf. D 43.0 t; Ausf. G 44.8 t (46.58 t with steel bogies)
** Length (including gun): 8.66 m
** Length (excluding gun): 6.87 m
** Width: 3.27 m, 3.42 m with skirt plates
** Height: 2.99 m
* Road speed: 55 km/h at 3,000 rpm (46 km/h at 2,500 rpm)
* Road range: 200 km
* Tracks: Kgs 64/660/150
** Type: dual center guide
** Width: 660 mm
** Ground contact length: 3.92 m
** Track links: 86
** Ground pressure: 0.88
* Suspension: dual
* Shock absorbers: on 2nd and 7th swing arms on either side
* Vertical obstacle: 0.9 m
* Trench: 1.9 m
* Fording: 1.7 m
* Engine: Maybach HL 230 P30
** Type: V-12, four-stroke
** Power: 700 PS at 3,000 rpm, 600 PS at 2,500 rpm
** Displacement: 23.095 litres
** Compression ratio: 6.8:1
gasoline, 74 octane
** Fuel consumption (road): 3.5 l/km
** Fuel capacity: 720 litres
* Transmission: ZF AK 7-200
** Type: synchromesh manual
** Gears: 7 forward, 1 reverse
* Steering: MAN single-radius clutch-brake
* Main clutch: Fichtel & Sachs LAG 3/70H
* Steering ratio: 1:1.5
** Main gun: 7.5 cm Kwk 42 L/70
** Maximum muzzle velocity: 1,120 m/s
** Breech: semiautomatic
** Traverse: 360°, 24°/second
** Elevation: +18°/-8°
** Rounds carried: 79, Ausf. G: 82
* Primary gun sight: Ausf. A and G: TZF 12a; Ausf. D: Leitz TZF 12
** Magnification: 2.5×/5×
** Field of view: 28°/14°
* Radio equipment
** Fu 5 transmitter/receiver
** Fu 2 receiver
** Hull front, lower: 60 mm at 35° from horizontal; upper: 80 mm at 35°
** Hull side, lower: 40 mm at 90°; upper: 40 mm at 50° (Ausf. G: 50 mm at 60°)
** Hull rear: 40 mm at 60°
** Turret front: Ausf. D: 80 mm at 78°; Ausf. A: 110 mm at 78°; Ausf: G: 100 mm at 80°
** Turret side: 45 mm at 65°
** Turret rear: 45 mm at 65°
** Turret, top: 15 mm at 5°; Ausf. G: 30 mm at 5°
** Gun mantlet: 120 mm rounded
*Achtung Panzer! The "Swedish" PzKpfw. VI Ausf. B Königstiger!
*cite web|url=http://www.wwiivehicles.com/germany/tanks-medium/pzkpfw-v.asp|title=Germany's Panzerkampfwagen V, Panther, SdKfz 171|work=World War II Vehicles|accessdaymonth=24 June |accessyear=2005
*Hart, Stephen A. (2003). "Panther Medium Tank 1942-45," Osprey New Vanguard. ISBN 1-84176-543-0.
* Zaloga, Steven J., James Grandsen (1984). "Soviet Tanks and Combat Vehicles of World War Two," London: Arms and Armour Press. ISBN 0-85368-606-8.
*Zaloga, Steven J., Jim Kinnear, Andrey Aksenov & Aleksandr Koshchavtsev (1997). "Soviet Tanks in Combat 1941–45: The T-28, T-34, T-34-85, and T-44 Medium Tanks," p 6. Hong Kong: Concord Publication. ISBN 962-361-615-5.
* [http://www.stugiii.com/littlefieldpanther.html Littlefield Panther]
* [http://afvdb.50megs.com/germany/pz5.html AFV Database]
* [http://www.achtungpanzer.com/pz4.htm#panther Panther] , and [http://www.achtungpanzer.com/panth2.htm Panther II] at Achtung Panzer!
* [http://the.shadock.free.fr/Surviving_Panthers.pdf Panthers survivors] - A PDF file presenting the Panther tanks
* [http://www.lonesentry.com/articles/ttt_panther/index.html 1943 US Intelligence Report on Panther Tank]
* [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B37jYqFWlnk A photo-slide show of the Panther tank]
* [http://www.geocities.com/desertfox1891/pantherfibel.htm pantherfiebel: a manual for the panther tank]
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