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20th Century's Most Influential Tank


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What was the 20th Century's most influential tank? Was the legendary Tiger 1? The T34? I do think that the Centurion must be up there somewhere, as it was the world's first tank with a stabilised gun, so that it could fire on the move. Others may argue the Panther, or purely for numbers and ease of manufacture, the Sherman. Any takers?

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just for the mythology it has to be the Tiger. Even in Normandy the allies believed that every artillery strike was from a Tiger and I believe there was only about a dozen there?

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For 'Mythology' it simply has to be the Tiger. Having just seen the worlds only working Tiger at 'Tankfest' the other week, i can vouch that it has people fascinated. They clapped it as it went past! Sounded sick as a dog though. Still, not bad for a sixty year old.......

Most influential tank? Hard to say. For sheer greatness of design it has to be Centurian. Probably the most upgradable and versatile tank ever. Taking my anorak off now........

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Sounds like the Merkava , mk 4. As the IDF have the most modern tank combat experience, they have constantly updated their Armour. This beast apparently has 360 degree cctv coverage and massive armour protection. Little is known about this Mk. They have always used the principles of survivorability and firing first above all else.

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The Mk4 is a real improvement over the Mk3 BAZ. It has a better engine which produces 25% more power (built in the States then modified in Israel for their auto transmissions).

The Mk4 has an improved 120mm smooth-bore gun with thermal sleeve. I think it carries about 46 rounds, with some sort of revolving loading mechanism for semi-automatic operation. It has much improved under-hull armour as protection against mines, which is the only real threat against it in the environment it operates in.

I'm with the Vice-Chairman though, the best tank in the world today is Challenger II, no contest.

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  • 9 months later...

Easy to see you guys aren't biased!! biggrin.gif

I'm just glad those Abrams and Challengers are working together.

Abrams?

Challenger?

Abrams?

Challenger?

Hmmmmm........... Lets just have a pint. :food-smiley-004:

Edited by Panzerman
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  • 1 month later...
Guest Matt Lukes

I'd be inclined to take the term 'influential' a tad more literally and consider which tank actually made the most impact on world history thus far- and that would have to be either the T34 or the M4 Sherman. Neither is what one could really describe as outstanding, but they were quite good in most respects and they did, by sheer weight of numbers for the most part, play the most significant role in shaping world history of any tank ever produced. While I'd say that the Tiger and Panther are at the top of my 'like' list, neither they nor any of the other outstanding vehicles Germany produced were able to have the effect they might've had were things different. Afterall, when there's no fuel, the most impressive tank in the world is little more than a giant paperweight (once it's out of ammunition wink.gif )

Then again, it occurs that if one were to look at it a different way, a case could be made for the Tiger and Panther; if Germany had not produced the Tiger and Panther which, along with all the other superb AFVs in the Wehrmacht and Waffen-SS, held the Soviets off as long as they did once the tide turned, a whole lot more of Europe might have had its workers 'liberated' laugh.gif

Matt

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Carrying on from what Matt has said about the T34, someone I knew a while back had a neighbour who had served on the Eastern Front.

The neighbour said they (Germans) had problems with spares as these were precision made parts from factories back in Germany. He went on to say that you could hear the Russians at night dragging their damaged or broken down tanks back to their lines for repair. Their tanks weren't "precision" made and could easily be repaired in the field, a great advantage I think.

I can't say if the story is absolutely true but I can believe it.

Here's a picture of a few Germans utilising some damaged Russian hardware.

Tony

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I was watching a programme the other week about WW2 tanks and a few old WW2 British tank crewman were talking about the Tiger.They were asked which tank was better,the Tiger or the Sherman.One of the old vets said "If a Tiger saw you first,then you were dead!......BUT if you saw a Tiger first......then you were still dead!!!"

All of the Brit crewman agreed they would have rather fought in a Tiger!

Dave

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...
Guest nelson

i agree with those who talk about the mythology surronding the tiger, and with no doubt it was an awesome machine, but its high precision engineering was a major problem, the T34 is sometimes overlooked as being just mass produced and swarming over the panzers, it is true that soviet ability to literally move factories to beyond the urals and produce thousands was phenomenal, it is often overlooked that the sloping armour and good gun was an absolute revelation, i heard an interview recently by a german chap who saw the first 6 T34's appear outside moscow, and couldnt believe that their shells were bouncing of it.

so as a "history" maker for me its the T34 for its combination of innovation, survivability and the great commitment of the workers who made it.

also, how about the josef stalin, which is often overlooked but was used greatly in street to street fighting?

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  • 5 weeks later...
Guest paracollector

Since every tank in the world uses its suspension (or a variation of it), my vote is for the M1928 Christie.

The Christie was another weapon that was first offered to the US Army, but was passed on (like the Lewis Gun), that made its way overseas, in this case the USSR. The Soviet T-34 took much from the Christie design.

Of course arguments could be made for "Little Willie" and its catapillar track (yes I know it wasn't a "real" tank, but it was the first to use the track that all other tanks since use), the FT-17 with its traversing turret (Oh my!), or even the MB-70, which pretty much every modern western tank traces its lineage back to (ever wonder why the Abrams, Leopard, Challenger, and LeClerc all look pretty much alike?).

As far as pure "coolness" though, you can't beat a Panther or a Tiger.

John

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If we are talking influence on an entire conflict , then I must agree that the T-34 was the most influential. If not for it and the AK-47 , the USSR would have been doomed.

Best

kurt

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Guest sniper1shot

Um, AK-47?? tongue.gif

Anyways, Not sure but as the term Influential I was going to go with the WWI Monsters of the British and the battle of Cambrai (?)...which begins the whole tank issue. I believe it was mentioned already.

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Each had its own advantage IMO. The T-34 was quick, manuervable,pretty hard hitting gun, excellent for the steps of Russia(Frozen,melted, or dry). The Panther was good to combat the T-34 and good for offensive manuevers that could work directly in tandem w/ Tigers and Tigers were good Defensive tanks. Send the Panthers out in the fields to chase the Shermans around and such, if the numbers became too great and the shermans outnumbered the Panthers, the Panthers hot foot it back towards their lines and let the Tigers who just sit there pick off the Shermans. ROCK ON Jon violent.gif

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