Karl Wilhelm Krause Field Modified Flakpanzer IV

In the early years of the Second World War, the Germans did not use a dedicated anti-aircraft vehicle based on a tank chassis. As the German Air Force was more than capable of providing cover for the panzers, this was not deemed a priority at that point. In the later stages of the war, things changed drastically, and the need for well-protected vehicles based on tank chassis became apparent. While attempts were made to design such vehicles in late 1943, they led to the creation of a 3.7 cm armed Flakpanzer IV which had folding sides. This design proved to be unsuccessful for many reasons, forcing the Germans to find another solution. In late 1943 or early 1944, the 12th SS Panzer Division’s Anti-Aircraft Detachment decided to take matters into their own hands and modified three Panzer IVs by adding the 2 cm Flakvierling 38 on top of the superstructure.

Type 5 Ho-To

During the Second World War, the Japanese tank industry was mainly focused on developing light tank designs. These were cheap, robust, and had a very simple construction. On the other hand, their armor and armament were rather weak. These could do very little even against Allied light tanks. In order to somewhat resolve this issue, the Japanese would introduce, albeit in small numbers, a series of modified vehicles equipped with weapons of various calibers. While some of these would actually even see combat, others remained only at the prototype stage.

Type 5 Ho-Ru

The Japanese much improved 47 mm anti-tank gun was used to arm an obscure project from early 1945, the Type 5 Ho-Ru anti-tank vehicle.

Carro Armato L6/40 in Yugoslav Partisan Service

Thanks to Italy’s capitulation, the Partisans would manage to acquire a number of varied vehicles, including Italian L6/40 light tanks.

Vihor M-91

The Yugoslav Military High Command wanted an even better-performing tank than the M-84, which would lead to the Vihor project.

Gepanzerten Selbstfahrlafette für Sturmgeschütz 75 mm Kanone Ausführung B (Sturmgeschütz III Ausf.B)

The concept of using mobile, well-armed, and well-protected infantry support vehicles was theorized in German military circles during the 1930s. Production limitations caused by the underdeveloped German military industry prevented the realization of this project for many years, and the production of tanks was seen as a higher priority. By May 1940, the first 30 vehicles, the StuG III Ausf.A, were ready for service and some even saw action against the Western Allies in France and the Low Countries. They quickly showed that this concept had merit and the Germans began a slow but steady increase in production. This led to the introduction of the StuG III Ausf.B version.

T-34-85 in Yugoslav Service 

After the Second World War, the Jugoslovenska Armija (JA, English: Yugoslav Army), was created. Initially, it was equipped with armored vehicles of various origins. Most had been captured by the enemy during the war. Besides them, the JNA operated a number of vehicles given to them by the Western Allies and the Soviet Union. This included the T-34-85 tanks that formed the Second Tank Brigade. While, later, more advanced tank designs would be acquired, the T-34-85 would remain in use up to 2000.

AB41 in Yugoslav Partisan Service

When Italian forces retreated from Yugoslavia in September 1943 after the Italian Armistice, they left plenty of weapons and armored vehicles for the Partisans to take. Armored vehicles were especially valued by the Partisans, which previously did not have any in significant numbers. Among these were a number of AB41s which would be used extensively during the war. The Partisan AB41s that did survive the war would remain in use up to the early 1950s before finally being replaced by modern equipment.

Maeda Ku-6

While tanks can provide excellent offensive firepower, they can not always be easily transported to where they are needed. In the case of Japan during WW2, this was possible to achieve by using ships to transport them to where they were needed. During the war, the concept of a flying tank was becoming an interesting concept for the Japanese military hierarchy. Transporting tanks via air could potentially offer benefits to the airborne troops, who were often left without proper firepower support. This would lead to the creation of the Maeda Ku-6 tank glider.

T-34-76 and T-34-85 In Yugoslav Partisan Service

Obsolete, rare and modern tanks were operated on the Yugoslav front in WW2. Among these were partisans operated T-34.