The Leichter Panzerfunkwagen Sd.Kfz 261 was a long range radio car based on the same basic design as the Panzerspahwagen (FU) Sd.Kfz 223, but without a turret.
The Sd.Kfz 223 was the first radio car in a series of light armoured cars, which were based on the Horch 801 chassis. This was the lightest of three chassis that had been designed to be the basis of a family of four wheel drive vehicles, and had four wheel drive, individual suspension and all wheel steering. The Sd.Kfz 223 was armed with a 7.92mm machine gun carried in a manually powered turret.
The Sd.Kfz 261 had the same superstructure as the Sd.Kfz 223 with sloped armour all round. Frontal armour was 30mm thick, and elsewhere it was 5-8mm thick. Unlike the Sd.Kfz 223 the Sd.Kfz 261 had no turret, but instead had a raised area on the superstructure.
The Sd.Kfz 261 used a later version of the chassis, the Horch Type 801/v, which was powered by a 90hp Horch engine.
The Sd.Kfz 261 was used with the FuG 12 radio, a medium wave radio used by command tanks. At first this was used with a frame aerial carried above the vehicle, but this was a rather cumbersome arrangement and also made the radio car a rather too obvious a target, so later in the war this was replaced with a rod aerial.
The Sd.Kfz 261 also carried a FuSpr.A short range radio, which was used for communication between vehicles in the same unit.
The Sd.Kfz 260 and Sd.Kfz 261 entered service in 1941. They were used by the signals troops of the HQ units of regiments, brigades and divisions in the Panzer Truppen and to armoured companies in signal corps battalions (Nachrichten battalions). Both remained in use to the end of the war.
Hull Length: 4830mm
Hull Width: 1990mm
Engine: 90hp Horch/ Auto Union 8-cylinder V-petrol engine
Max Speed: 90km/ hr
Max Range: 300km (road), 200km (terrain)