Tank Museum TMSM80S German Flakpanzer IV Wirbelwind Anti-Aircraft Vehicle - Summer Camouflage (1:50 Scale)
"If the tank succeeds, then victory follows."
- Major-General Heinz Guderian, "Achtung Panzer!"
The Flakpanzer IV Wirbelwind ("Whirlwind") was a self-propelled anti-aircraft gun based on the Panzer IV tank. It was developed in 1944 as a successor to the earlier self-propelled anti-aircraft gun Mobelwagen.
In the first years of the war, the Wehrmacht was not very interested in developing an effective self-propelled anti-aircraft gun, as the Luftwaffe had total air superiority. But, as the allies developed and began to use more powerful aircraft, the Germans realised that they must not only have stationary anti-aircraft guns, but also self-propelled anti-aircraft guns to protect vehicle convoys and so forth.
The Panzer IV's turret was removed and replaced with an open-top, nine-sided turret which housed a quadruple 2 cm Flakvierling 38 L/112.5. A closed-top design would have been preferable, but this was not possible due to the heavy smoke generation of the four anti-aircraft guns. Production of the tank was carried out by Ostbau Werke in Sagan, Silesia.
As the 2 cm shells used proved less effective against aircraft than the 3.7 cm shells the Wirbelwind was eventually replaced by the Ostwind which was equipped with a single 3.7 cm FlaK 43. The armor and rapid fire from the four guns of the Wirbelwind was also very effective against infantry. One Wirbelwind could take out large numbers of enemy infantry.
It is believed that either 87 or 105 Wirbelwinds were produced during the war, but due to discrepancies between the recorded production numbers at Ostbau Werke and Wehrmacht service records, the exact number will probably never be known. In any case, there were too few of them to have any major influence on the war.
This particular 1:50 scale Wirbelwind was used during the battle for Normandy in the summer of 1944. Sold Out!
Length: 4 inches
Width: 2 inches
Release Date: May 2008