Panzerkampfwagen IV Ausf B

The Panzerkampfwagen IV Ausf B was the second production model of the Panzer IV medium support tank, and saw an increase in frontal armour and in engine power.

The 250hp engine of the Ausf A was replaced by a 320hp Maybach HL 120TRM engine, which increased the top speed of the tank by around six miles per hour. This engine, with some minor variations, would be used in every later model of the Panzer IV. The five-speed transmission of the Ausf A was replaced with a new six-speed model.

The Ausf B had its frontal armour increased from 15mm to 30mm (possibly not on the turret), and the layout of the front of the superstructure changed. On the Ausf A the driver’s position had been stepped ahead of the radio operator’s position, and a 7.92mm machine gun had been mounted in the right front of the superstructure. On the Ausf B the front of the superstructure was straight, with the driver and radio operator level with each other, while the hull machine gun was replaced by a visor and pistol port.

Other changes included the use of a new cupola with visors to protect the vision slots, the addition of a conical hood over the right hand signal port in the turret roof to shield any signal lights from hostile view, and the use of single piece hatches over the driver and radio operator’s position.

The Panzer IV Ausf B saw combat in Poland, France, the Balkans and in Russia. Experience in Poland and France demonstrated that the armour was too thin, and so a number of the surviving Ausf Bs had extra armour bolted to the hull and superstructure sides. Despite their small numbers the last of the Ausf Bs survived late in 1943 before being eliminated.

Names
Panzerkampfwagen IV Ausf B
Sd Kfz 161
2 Serie BW

Stats
Number produced:  42
Produced:  April-September 1938
Hull Length: 5.92m
Hull Width: 2.83m
Height: 2.68m
Crew: 5
Weight: 18.8 tons   
Engine: 320hp Maybach HL120TR
Max Speed: 40km/hr/ 25mph
Max Range:  200km
Armament: One 7.5cm KwK37 L/24 and one 7.92mm MG13s

Armour

Armour

Front

Side

Rear

Top/ Bottom

Turret

 30mm/ 1.2in

 15mm/ 0.6in

 15mm/ 0.6in

 10mm/ 0.4in

Superstructure

 30mm/ 1.2in

 15mm/ 0.6in

 15mm/ 0.6in

 12mm/ 0.5in

Hull

 30mm/ 1.2in

 15mm/ 0.6in

 15mm/ 0.6in

 5mm/ 0.2in

Gun mantlet

 30mm/ 1.2in

 

 

 

WWII Home Page | WWII Subject Index | WWII Books | WWII Links | Day by Day

Bookmark this page: Bookmark with Delicious  Delicious  Bookmark with Facebook  Facebook   Bookmark with StumbleUpon  StumbleUpon

How to cite this article: Rickard, J (23 July 2008), Panzerkampfwagen IV Ausf B , http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/weapons_panzer_IV_ausf_B.html

Help - F.A.Q. - Contact Us - Search - Recent - About Us -  Subscribe in a reader - Join our Google Group - Cookies