War Master WMTK022 German Sd. Kfz. 166 Sturmpanzer IV Brummbar Assault Gun - Sturmpanzerabteilung 216, Rome, Italy, 1944 (1:72 Scale)
"Attacks against Italy are limited, to the extent humanly possible, to military objectives. We have not and will not make warfare on civilians or against nonmilitary objectives. In the event it should be found necessary for Allied planes to operate over Rome, our aviators are thoroughly informed as to the location of the Vatican and have been specifically instructed to prevent bombs from falling within Vatican City."
- President Franklin Roosevelt, in a letter to Pope Pius XII, June 16th, 1943
The Sturmpanzer (a.k.a. Brummbar or "Grizzly Bear") was developed by Alkett, who designed the superstructure, and Krupp, who modified their PzKpfw IV chassis to accommodate the design changes. After seeing Alkett's plans on October 20th, 1942, Hitler demanded that forty to sixty production models be built as quickly as possible. The first production run began in April 1943 and continued until the end of the war. The Brummbar had a box-like superstructure, which housed a huge 15cm StuH43 L/12 gun. The first series of Brummbars had a sliding shutter visor for the driver, similar to the one conceived for the Tiger I heavy tank. Newer production models featured a driver-side periscope, a ball-mounted machine gun mounted in the top left-hand corner of the front plate, and a cupola for the commander.
Pictured here is a 1:72 scale replica of a German Sd. Kfz. 166 Sturmpanzer IV Brummbar assault gun that was attached to Sturmpanzerabteilung 216, then deployed to Rome, Italy, during 1944.
Back Order! Ship Date: October 2014.
Length: 4-1/2 inches
Width: 2-1/4 inches
Release Date: January 2013
Historical Account: "Independent Artillery" - At the beginning of the war the German independent artillery units were organized into three batteries, each with 4 guns. The battery size for the heavier artillery became progressively smaller, e.g. 21cm Morser battalions had only three guns per battery and siege artillery like the 30.5cm Morser had two guns. Beginning in 1944 some battalions were reorganized into two batteries of six guns apiece, probably to minimize the leaders and staff required to command the units. The majority of the independent artillery units were composed of three main types. The most common at the beginning of the war was the mixed battalion with two batteries of 15cm schwere Feldhaubitzen (heavy field howitzers) and one battery of 10.5cm Kanone (long-range field guns). This was intended to allow the battalion to handle the gamut of possible fire support missions. As the war progressed this flexibility was found not to be as useful as anticipated and many units were converted to only one type of artillery piece to simplify their logistical requirements.
Shortages of the heavier types of weapons on the outbreak of war forced the Germans to mix weapon types and to field smaller battalions than desirable. Many 21cm Morser battalions fielded a battery of 15cm Kanone in lieu of their third battery of 21cm Morser. By the invasion of France most of the 15cm Kanone had been consolidated into their own battalions. As the numbers of the 21cm Mrser dwindled over the course of the war the Germans fielded a 17cm Kanone that used the same mounting as the bigger howitzer and that was often deployed in the same battalion.