History and Performance
The Panzerkampfwagen III was one of the workhorses of the German army during World War II. The development order was issued in 1935 for a full-tracked vehicle in the 15 ton class. The Ausf. A model was manufactured in 1937 and was armed with a 3.7 cm main gun. Ten of these vehicles were produced but were withdrawn from service in 1940 due to insufficient armor and poor suspension. Several other variants were manufactured in subsequent years with armament increased to include 5.0 cm and ultimately 7.5 cm main guns. There was also a model equipped with a flame thrower. The Panzerkampfwagen III saw service on all fronts during the war, but the improvements in armament and armor never quite matching its opponents.