Dragon DRA60121 Sd. Kfz. 181 PzKpfw VI Tiger I Ausf. E Heavy Tank - Wilhelm Knauth, '311', schwere Panzer Abteilung 505, Eastern Front, 1943 (1:72 Scale)
"The gun and armor of the Tiger were superb, making it in many ways the most formidable tank in service. Even so, it was poor in maneuver, it was slow, and its turret was a slow traverser in action. It was a tank which was, at its best, immobile in ambush, when its killing power was very frightening."
- Douglas Orgill, "German Armor"
The German Waffenamt issued an order to design the VK4501(H) (as the PzKpfw VI Ausf. E was then known) in May 1941, just one month prior to the commencement of Operation Barbarossa. Interestingly, Henschel und Sohn of Kassel was charged with building the heavily armored chassis while Krupp, by far the largest munitionwerks in Germany, was given the task of developing the turret. The PzKpfw VI Ausfuhrung E (type E) was one of the first German tanks to feature a torsion bar with eight interleaved wheels, which was designed to support the weight of the mammoth 57-ton tank. The Ausf. E mounted a huge 8.8cm KwK36 L/56 cannon and featured two MG34 machine guns for close support against enemy infantry. By war's end, 1,354 vehicles had been produced, some rolling off the Wegmann assembly line.
This particular 1:72 scale replica of a Tiger I Ausf. E heavy tank was commanded by Wilhelm Knauth, who was attached to sPzAbt. 505 then deployed to the Eastern Front during 1943. It is painted in a summer camouflage pattern and slathered with a layer of zimmerit anti-magnetic mine paste. Comes packed in an attractive display tin. Sold Out!
Length: 4-1/2 inches
Width: 2-1/4 inches
Release Date: December 2004
Original Issue Price: $49.99
Historical Account: Schwere Panzer Abteilung 505 was formed in January 1943. Thereafter, it was assigned to the 9.Armee which fought at Kursk that summer. After Kursk it was later attached to Heeresgruppe Mitte which was tasked with fighting a delaying action at Smolensk. In September, the unit was refitted with Tiger II (Koningstiger) tanks then tasked with defending East Prussia alongside the 24.Panzer and 25.Panzer Divisions. It was eventually destroyed by overwhelming odds in yet another Soviet assault.