What was the best all-purpose tank of WWII?

  • What was the best all-purpose tank of WWII?

  • Tiger 1, EOD!

  • IMHO the Germans would have to throw this one in the mix. Panzer IV.

    Slow production of the Panzer IV had been continuing, by the end of 1940 386 Ausf. Ds were in service and in 1941 a further 480 were produced, this was despite an order from the army for 2,200. The short 75 mm gun was the main advantage of the Panzer IV, weight and armour were close to that of the Panzer III. The Panzer IV became the most numerous tank of the Panzer divisions, although already outclassed in 1942 it was easy to maintain and simpler to produce than other German tanks. The Ausf. E was the major production variant, although the Ausf. F2 (later renamed in Ausf. G) with a long high velocity gun was the most impressive performer. First introduced in 1940 the 22 ton machine was progressively improved, with the addition of the L/43 gun the most significant change - it could penetrate 80 mm of armour at 1800 m. Later variants further improved the gun to a 75 mm L/48 but were mainly characterised by increasing the main armor and adding spacer and skirt armor to protect against anti-tank weapons. Zimmerit paste, to prevent magnetic charges attaching was also introduced on the Panzer IV. About 12,000 Panzer IV tanks (derived chassis included) were produced during the war, more than twice as many as the next tank.

  • T-34, without a doubt.

  • @Brain:

    all-purpose tank of WWII?

    What is an all-purpose tank?

  • 2020 '19 '18 '17 '16

    I would go w. Panzer IV as well and extend what Kruppstahl allready mentioned!
    Besides the diffrent series of Panzer IV the germans produced ,P IV were also used as
    -Command Tanks
    -AA gun Tanks such as Wirbelwind,Ostwind…
    -Tank destroyers such as Jagdpanzer and Nashorn
    -Artillerytanks and Sturmgeschuetz such as Hummel or Brummbaer…Sturmgeschuetz IV

    Panzer IV were modified for Operation sealion to dive/swim to the coast from a certain drop off point.

    Panzer IV’s saw action in Russia, Italy,France,Africa and Syria and were long time in duty for the Turks and other Nations.

  • @Emperor_Taiki:


    all-purpose tank of WWII?

    What is an all-purpose tank?

    I guess I should re-phrase that as best all around tank, I didn’t want to know which had the best gun, fastest speed, most durable. I wanted an opinion on which tank had the best combination of factors that make a great tank.

  • In a Discovery Channel episode on WW2, they asked some tank crew veterans from WW2, and none of them would want to be in an allied tank even if they knew that Germany lost the war. All of them choose the Tiger tank.

    Tiger 1 was only produced for about 1300 units, but it was hands down the best tank in the WW2. Some elite Tiger divisions/platoons managed a 13-1 kill ratio! Generally it was 7-1 for the Tiger. Even the jet fighter ME 262 managed “only” 5-1 ratio. There was no allied ground material that could compete against the Tiger tank if both sides had numbers at parity.

    Try setup an Indian Bengal Tiger against a dog……  😄 🙂 8-) :lol: 😛 :evil:  :roll:

  • 2020 '19 '18 '17 '16




    all-purpose tank of WWII?

    What is an all-purpose tank?

    I guess I should re-phrase that as best all around tank, I didn’t want to know which had the best gun, fastest speed, most durable. I wanted an opinion on which tank had the best combination of factors that make a great tank.

    If it comes down to that I still go w. a solid Panzer IV but include a Panther G as well…and on top of it the Panther G comes w. nightvision goggles… 😄 😮 8-)

  • T-34/85,

    it could be mass produced and it could compete with anything in battle.

    for the Soveits it was like having their cake and eating it too.

  • T-34/85 would get my vote, followed by the Panzer IV.

    The T-34 was the best all-purpose tank. It’s wide tracks allow for great offroad abilities. The 76.2 mm gun was one of the best guns of the war. The tank was well armored. The typical Soviet enginniering allowed for easy replacment of parts. Great tank.

  • My thoughts exactly, the T-34 was used throughout the world well into the late 80’s!

  • The T-34 and the German Panther.  But the King Tiger tank deserves mention too.

  • In a 1vs1 fight, would any of you choose the T34 against the Tiger?

  • During WW2,

    Tiger 1, numbers built 1347,
    T-34, numbers built 57000……!

    Anyone who is stupid enough to think that 57000 Tiger tanks would not win the war for Germany???

    How about 40000 Tiger tanks against the Russians and 17000 Tiger tanks against the allies after they landed in Normandy?

    Or maybe 50000 Tigers in Moscow, 7000 Tigers in France to slow down allies, and then the 50000 Tigers heading for France…would you rather be somewhere else, perhaps?

    That wouldn’t even be funny, and I would not be able to type this message in English, (as I’m Norwegian).

    Ach, scheisse  :mrgreen:

    57000 Tiger tanks…just think about it for a few seconds…  :mrgreen:

    Anecdote: After the WW2, the Germans were prohibited to some extent in designing and producing tanks, b/c they were too good. Almost like a $50 axis (unit) bid in Revised/AA42/AA50 🙂

  • I see what your point is and it is valid, the Tiger had a longer range and a more destructive cannon with an 88 as a gun turret making it more powerful head to head.  But the question on the thread was best all purpose tank.  In my own interpretation that means durability effectiveness, repairability, and longevity.  In those terms I believe the T-34 out classes the Tiger.  The Germans had multiple problems with the Tiger due to its sheer size and mechanics, it would break down quite often.  The Tiger was not as reliable as its predecessor Panzers like the Mark IV.

  • When I asked the question I thought it would be unanimous for the Tiger. But I have heard some convincing arguments for the T-34.

  • I interpreted the question that it was about the all-purpose best tank in WW2, and not the best tank design philosophy. Tiger was better in defense than offense, so probably the Panther is a good candidate also, but US+Russia had great numbers, much more than Germany.

    The T-34 was one of the most cost-effective tanks in WW2, and so it was a great tank-design-philosophy. But the best tank overall, was the Tiger 1, with Panther in a second place.

  • Tiger 1.
    For Germany’s enemies T34.

  • All purpose tank status must take into consideration production. It’s the most important consideration in  total war.

  • I think you’re partially right. All purpose also means the tank can effectively fight tanks, infantry and bunkers. Also needs to be able to cross all sorts of difficult terrain.

    The Sherman was very cost effective, but in every other aspect was outclassed by nearly every German tank.

    It also depends of the situation of the country producing the tanks. Does the nation have enough metal? Labourers? Factories? The US had enough all of those so should have been able to develop a better tank and don’t allow your tank crews to be burned alive with every hit taken. While Germany had hardly enough of labour, (undamaged) factories and metals, they still developed the best tanks from that era.

  • I agree with you guys…the German Tiger tank i agree was the best all around tank in the war…

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