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The Sturmgeschütz III Ausf F/8

The Sturmgeschütz III Ausf F/8 was the second version of the StuG III to carry the longer 7.5cm StuK40 L/48 gun, and differed from the Ausf F in the use of the hull from the Panzer III Ausf J (also known as the 8.Serie ZW). All earlier models of the StuG has used the same form of hull as the original Ausf A.

The new hull featured a redesigned rear-plate, with larger louvers to improve engine cooling. On the Panzer III the Ausf J was also the first version to feature built-in 50mm front armour, but that had always been standard on the StuG. Instead on the StuG III Ausf F/8 this model saw an additional 30mm of armour welded onto the front, and the rear hull armour increased to 50mm. The new hull also featured extended side plates, which jutted slightly forward of the front of the hull, and were drilled with holes for towing.

During the production run of the F/8 the extra armour went from being welded in place to being bolted on, in order to save production time. Late in the production run an experimental hinged machine gun shield was added in front of the loader’s hatch on the roof of the superstructure. In theory this was to protect the loader from small arms fire if he was acting as a machine gunner, but in practice it was only effective against attack from directly ahead.

Most StuG III Ausf F/8s were issued to existing Sturmgeschütz detachments to replace combat losses.

Names
7.5cm Sturmgeschütz 40 Ausf F/8
Sd Kfz 142/1
StuG Ausf F/8

Stats
Number produced: 334
Produced: September-December 1942
Length: 6.77m
Hull Width: 2.92m
Height: 2.15m
Crew: 4
Weight: 23.2 tons
Engine: 320hp Maybach HL120TRM
Max Speed: 40km/hr
Max Range: 140km/
Main Armament: One 7.5cm StuK40 L/48
Machine Guns: One 7.92mm MG34

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