Springer (vehicle)

  (Redirected from Springer (tank))

The Mittlerer Ladungsträger Springer (Sd.Kfz. 304) was a demolition vehicle of the German Wehrmacht in World War II.

Springer
(Mittlerer Ladungsträger Springer, Sd.Kfz. 304)
NSU Springer SdKfz 304.jpg
Springer at The Tank Museum, Bovington
TypeDemolition vehicle
Place of originNazi Germany
Service history
In service1944-1945
Production history
ManufacturerNSU
No. built50
Specifications
Mass2.4 ton
Length3.17 m (10 ft 5 in)
Width1.43 m (4 ft 8 in)
Height1.45 m (4 ft 9 in)

Armor10mm maximum
Main
armament
330 kg (730 lb) explosive
Engine1.5L Opel Olympia
Suspensiontorsion bar
Guidance
system
wireless, up to 2 km

DescriptionEdit

Based on the NSU Sd.Kfz. 2 Kettenkrad light tracked vehicle, NSU Werke at Neckarsulm developed and built around 50 Springer demolition vehicles in the final year of World War II.

To make the vehicle capable of carrying a bigger payload without the motorcycle-style front fork of the original, two pairs of overlapping and interleaved road wheels were added to the aft end of the running gear on each side; giving three outer and three inner running wheels. It was powered by the same Opel Olympia engine of the Kettenkrad.

The Springer was a demolition vehicle. Its task was to carry a charge of 330 kg (728 lbs) high explosives under armor protection into a target and detonate it there.

A driver, sitting in the back of the Springer, drove the vehicle close to the target before dismounting. The final approach and the detonation of the charge was controlled by a wired or wireless remote control device.

Springers were operated by "Radio Control Armoured Companies", a company being made up of three Sturmgeschütz 40 armoured control vehicles, each controlling three Springers and a Sturmgeschütz command vehicle.[1]

The Springer showed the same problems as other remote-controlled demolition vehicles: They were expensive and not very reliable. As the explosive charge was an integral part of the vehicle, it could be used only once.

SurvivorsEdit

 
Side view

An NSU Springer is displayed at The Tank Museum, UK. Another example is preserved at the MM PARK near Strasbourg, in France.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Tank Museum