Hobby Master HG3419 US M10 Tank Destroyer - "Wolverine," 803rd Tank Destroyer Battalion, England, 1944 (1:72 Scale)
"Seek, strike and destroy."
- Motto of the Tank Destroyer Command during World War II
The M10 were, numerically, the most important US tank destroyer of World War II. In its combat debut in the North African campaign, the M10 was successful as its M7 3-inch gun could penetrate most German tanks then in service at long range. The heavy chassis did not conform to the tank destroyer doctrine of employing very light, high-speed vehicles, thus it began to be supplemented by the 76 mm Gun Motor Carriage M18 early in 1944. Later in the Battle of Normandy the M10's gun proved to be ineffective against the frontal armor of the numerous German Panther tanks encountered and by the fall of 1944 the improved 90 mm Gun Motor Carriage M36 was beginning to replace it, though it remained in service until the end of the war. In the Pacific, US Army M10s were used for traditional infantry-support missions and were unpopular due to their open topped turrets. The Japanese tactic of very close-in infantry attacks against US AFVs made the M10 much more vulnerable than a fully-enclosed tank.
Approximately 54 M10s were supplied to the USSR though their usage in Red Army service is largely unrecorded. The M10 also equipped units of the Free French Army; one M10 named "Sirocco", crewed by a regiment composed of French sailors, famously knocked out a German Panther tank on the Place de la Concorde in Paris. British M10s were designated 3 in SP, Wolverine and saw action in Italy and France, including some re-armed with the much more effective 17-pounder guns which gained the designation 17 pdr SP. Achilles.
The M10 had an open-topped turret that left it vulnerable to artillery and mortar fire and infantry assault especially in urban combat and forest areas, where a simple hand grenade could be tossed inside. By the end of the war its armor was too thin to provide protection from the new German tanks and anti-tank guns. The other main disadvantage of the M10 was its very slow turret traverse, the M10 did not have powered traverse and so the crew had to hand-crank the turret to traverse it, taking approximately two minutes to traverse 360 degrees. US tank destroyers fired much more HE than anti-tank ammunition, indicating that they were employed much like the tanks they were supposed to support.
Pictured here is a 1:72 scale replica of a US M10 Tank Destroyer that was attached to the 803rd Tank Destroyer Battalion, then deployed to England during 1944.
Now in stock!
Length: 4 inches
Width: 1.5 inches
Release Date: November 2014
Historical Account: "Run 'n Gun" - The 803rd Tank Destroyer Battalion was initially activated as the 103d Antitank Battalion on September 30th, 1940, from Washington National Guard troops, federalized on February 10th, 1941, and redesignated 803d Tank Destroyer Battalion on 12 December, 1941. Departed for England on 24 June, 1943. Landed at Omaha Beach on 13 June, 1944, equipped with M10's. Helped capture St. Lo in July. Raced across northern France in August and passed through Belgium and Holland before reaching the Siegfried Line in September. Supported operations north of Aachen in October, then transferred to the Hurtgen Forest. Shifted to the Ardennes just before German offensive began in December. Committed against Siegfried Line again in early 1945. Converted to the M36 in February. Participated in capture of Trier, crossed Rhine River on 23 March at Oppenheim. Joined elimination of Ruhr Pocket in April, then pivoted and marched southeast through Austria and into Czechoslovakia.