Semovente da 75/46
| Semovente da 75/46|
Sturmgeschütz M 43 mit 75/46 (852) (i)
The prototype of the 75/46
|Place of origin||Italy|
|Used by||Nazi Germany|
|Wars||World War II|
|Length||7.28 m (23 ft 11 in) overall|
|Width||2.88 m (9 ft 5 in)|
|Height||1.74 m (5 ft 9 in)|
|Crew||3 (commander/gunner, driver, loader/radio operator)|
|Armour||max 75 mm (3.0 in)|
|75 mm (3.0 in) L46 gun with 43 rounds|
|8 mm Breda 38 machine gun with 500 rounds|
|Engine||SPA 15TB M-15 diesel V8 water cooled|
130 kW (170 bhp)
|Suspension||vertical volute spring|
After the armistice of Cassibile signed in September 1943, Northern and Central Italy fell under German control. In 1944 the progress of the war led them to order a new Italian armoured vehicle for a tank-fighting role, based on the Semovente da 105/25 self-propelled gun. The result was the Semovente da 75/46, which was renamed Sturmgeschütz M 43 mit 75/46 (852) (i) by the Germans, following their naming convention.
The 75/46 shared the same "M 43" hull of the 105/25. However, the 105 mm L25 howitzer was replaced by a longer 75 mm L46 cannon – originally conceived as a FlaK cannon but also used as an anti-tank gun – which ensured a higher muzzle velocity (750 m/s instead of 510) and a far greater effective range, being able to fire a 6.5 kg (14 lb 5 oz) shell up to 13,000 m (43,000 ft) away. This gun could be loaded with HE or AP rounds; when loaded with the latter, it could pierce up to 90 mm (3.5 in) of armour from 500 m.
The other main difference with its precursor was in the overall increased armour: sloped plates were applied to the casemate and others were added on the sides, above the tracks. Due to these features and despite its origins, the 75/46 is considered a tank destroyer in every respect.
Between 1944 and the end of World War II in Italy, Ansaldo managed to assemble only 11 or 13 specimens, all deployed exclusively by the Wehrmacht. Their standard camouflage, applied just after their assembly, consisted in a Saharian Khaki background with reddish-brown and gray-green patches.
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- Pignato, Nicola (1974), in Bellona Military Vehicle Prints, series 36. Model & Allied Publications LTD., p. 13, 18-20
- Values for the original Semovente da 105/25, as cited in Pignato (1974). The author does not provide the 75/46 equivalents in the comparison of the two models, so it is possible that the values were the same, or otherwise simply unknown.
- Pignato, Nicola (2004). Italian Armored Vehicles of World War Two. Squadron/Signal publications. ISBN 0-89747-475-9., p. 51
- Cappellano, F.; Battistelli, P.P (2012). Italian medium tanks: 1939-45. Oxford: Osprey Publ. p. 36. ISBN 9781849087759.
- Guglielmi, Daniele (2013). Semoventi M 41 & M 42. Model Centrum PROGRES. ISBN 978-83-60672-03-7., p. 64