27th Panzer Division (Wehrmacht)
|German 27th Panzer Division|
|Active||October 1942 – March 1943|
|Engagements||World War II|
The 27th Panzer Division began forming in the southern sector of the Eastern Front in late 1942, but was never completed due to the loss of its assets during the Soviet counteroffensives around Stalingrad, and no further attempts were made to reconstitute the division.
During summer-autumn 1942, part of the division was formed in France, including the division's artillery regiment. Meanwhile, in the Eastern Front, the Brigade Michalik (led by Colonel Helmut Michalik) was formed around the 140th Panzer Grenadier Regiment (which was previously part of 22nd Panzer Division).
In Autumn 1942 the two echelons joined in Voronezh, situated then in the rear area of the German 2nd Army, and the division was formally activated on 1 October 1942. With about 3,000 men its strength was well under that required for a Panzer Division; however the situation required that it had to be scattered in several groups to support different sectors of the Eastern Front: Don, south of Kharkov, Hungarian 2nd Army, Italian 8th Army. Twenty tanks were incorporated to the German 2nd Army Headquarters. The 127th Pz.Eng.Batt. never joined the rest of the Division, as it was one of the units encircled at Stalingrad, where it was destroyed.
This activity took a heavy toll on the division's strength: by 1 January 1943, it had only half of its panzergrenadiers and 11 tanks; and the estimated total strength by 8 February was less than 1,600 men. Once the Soviet winter offensive was stopped, the 27th Panzer was disbanded around 3 March 1943. The survivors of the 127th Panzer and 127th Panzer Signals Battalions were assigned to the 24th Panzer Division in France, while the remaining men and materiel were incorporated into the 7th Panzer Division in Russia.
Order of battle
- 127th Panzer Battalion
- 140th Panzer Grenadier Regiment
- 127th Tank Destroyer Battalion
- 127th Panzer Engineer Battalion
- 127th Panzer Signal Battalion
- 127th Divisional Supply Troops
- Oberst Helmut Michalik (Creation - 29 November 1942)
- Oberst Hans Tröger (30 November 1942 - 26 January 1943)
- Oberst Joachim von Kronhelm (26 January 1943 - Disbanded)
- Mitcham, Samuel W. (2007). German Order of Battle Vol.3, p.71
- Mitcham, Samuel W. (2007). German Order of Battle Vol.3, pp.71-72
- Mitcham, Samuel W. (2007). German Order of Battle Vol.3, p.72
- Mitcham, Samuel W. German Order of Battle Volume Three: Panzer, Panzer Grenadier, and Waffen SS Divisions in WWII, Stackpole Military History Series, 2007. ISBN 0811734382
- Mitcham, Samuel W. Panzer Legions: A Guide to the German Army Tank Divisions of World War II and Their Commanders, Stackpole Military History Series, 2006. ISBN 978-0811733533
- "Organizational History of the German Armored Forces 1939–1945" (PDF; 292 kB). Retrieved 2014-04-13.