This article is about the Soviet medium tank. A T-34-85 tank on display at Musée des Blindés in April 2007. The T-34 is a Soviet medium tank that had a profound and lasting effect on t25 5 day fast track pdf field of tank design. At its introduction, the T-34 possessed an unprecedented combination of firepower, mobility, protection and ruggedness.
When first encountered in 1941, the German tank general von Kleist called it “the finest tank in the world” and Heinz Guderian affirmed the T-34’s “vast superiority” over existing German armour of the period. Although its armour and armament were surpassed later in the war, it has often been credited as the most effective, efficient and influential tank design of the Second World War. The T-34 was the mainstay of Soviet armoured forces throughout the Second World War.
Its design allowed it to be continuously refined to meet the constantly evolving needs of the Eastern Front: as the war went on it became more capable, but also quicker and cheaper to produce. Soviet industry would eventually produce over 80,000 T-34s of all variants, allowing steadily greater numbers to be fielded as the war progressed despite the loss of thousands in combat against the German Wehrmacht. At 44 900 losses during the war however, it is also the most destroyed tank of all time.
Its development led directly to the T-54 and T-55 series of tanks, which in turn evolved into the later T-62, T-72, and T-90 that form the armoured mainstay of many modern armies. T-34 variants were widely exported after World War II, and, as of 2017, the tank remains in limited frontline service in many developing countries.
In 1939, the most numerous Soviet tank models were the T-26 infantry tank and the BT series of fast tanks. The T-26 was slow-moving, designed to keep pace with infantry on the ground. The BT tanks were cavalry tanks: fast-moving and light, designed for manoeuvre warfare.
T-26 was based on the British Vickers 6-Ton, and the BT tanks were based on a design from American engineer J. Model V-2-34 engine, using less-flammable diesel fuel in a V12 configuration designed by Konstantin Chelpan.
2, which allowed it to run on wheels without caterpillar tracks. 38, track design had improved and the designers considered it a waste of space, weight, and maintenance resources, despite the road speed advantage. Although the IJA Type 95 Ha-Go light tanks had diesel engines, the Red Army’s T-26 and BT tanks used petrol engines which, while common in tank designs of the time, often burst into flames when hit by IJA tank-killer teams using Molotov cocktails.