Wheeled Tractor for the Russian Front

Mud on the Eastern Front led Germany to commission a spectacular tug from Ferdinand Porsche, the designer of a successful World War One tractor

Wheels with less aggressive cleats were also tried on the early prototypes of the Type 175. Foot and hand-holds at the front helped mechanics access the engine
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The late autumn of 1941 threw up unpleasant surprises for the German troops massed in attack against the defending Russians. Intractable mud on the route to Moscow all but immobilised vehicles. The situation was partially recti fied by mobilising captured Russian caterpillar tractors, farm tractors and serviceable tanks, although this caused maintenance dif ficulties. By the spring of 1942, when the snow began to melt, it all happened again. It became clear to the Wehrmacht that it needed completely different tractors for offroad deployment than those in its inventory.

‘Those with good memories hit on a solution...Skoda would produce the huge eight-ton vehicles to Porsche’s designs’

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