Tamiya TAM26517 German Early Version Sd. Kfz. 171 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf. G Medium Tank - 1.Panzer Division, "Battle of Kustrin", March 1945 (1:48 Scale)
"If the tank succeeds, then victory follows."
- Major-General Heinz Guderian, "Achtung Panzer!"
In many respects, the Panther tank was viewed as the finest armored fighting vehicle of the Second World War. Based in large part upon the Soviet's highly successful T-34 medium tank, the PzKpfw V Ausfuhrung G was built by several manufacturers including MAN, Daimler-Benz and MNH. Mounting a fearsome 7.5cm KwK42 L/70 cannon and two 7.92mm MG34 machineguns, the Panther Ausf. G represented the third and certainly the most impressive installment in the Panther series.
The weight of the production model was increased to 43 tons from the original plans for a 35 ton tank. Hitler had personally reviewed the final designs and insisted on an increase in the thickness of the frontal armor - the front glacis plate was increased from 60mm to 80mm and the turret front plate was increased from 80mm to 100mm.
Once the problems caused by the vulnerability of the engine and the transmission were solved, it proved to be a very effective fighting vehicle. The crew was made up of five members: driver, radio operator (who also fired the bow machine gun), gunner, loader, and commander.
Pictured here is a German early production Panther Ausf. G medium tank from the 1.Panzer Division and bearing turret No. 221. Sold Out!
Length: 6 inches
Width: 2 inches
Release Date: October 2006
Historical Account: "Festung Kustrin" - German strongholds during World War II (German: Festung “fortresses”) were the selected towns and cities so designated by Adolf Hitler to resist the Allied offensives where the defenders were ordered to defend them at all costs. The doctrine of these strongholds evolved towards the end of World War II, when the German leadership had not yet accepted defeat, but had begun to realize that drastic measures were required to forestall offensives on the Reich which were inevitable. The first such stronghold became the battle for Stalingrad.
Later on, along the Eastern Front, other cities became strongholds including Warsaw, Budapest, Kolberg, Königsberg, Küstrin, Danzig and Breslau. On the Western Front, stronghold locations included the British island of Alderney.
The fate of the strongholds varied. Stalingrad, the first of the "fortresses" to fall is seen as a crucial turning point in the war, and one of the key battles which lead to German defeat. In several cases (Breslau and Alderney, for example) the fortresses were bypassed by the attackers and did not actually fall until long after they had been neutralised (though fighting in Breslau was sustained).