This week we'll be talking about the Medium Tank M4, also known as the Sherman, which is perhaps the most iconic American WWII tank. Due to the sheer number of variants of this tank in War Thunder, this discussion will be restricted to only the Rank II Shermans.
The Battle of France in 1940 proved to America that their current tank arsenal would not be able to withstand a German assault. The only tanks in their inventory at that time was the M2 light tank and the M2 medium tank, both are inadequate against the German Panzer IIIs and the Panzer IVs. The US Army, in response, ordered for a tank armed with a 75 mm gun. While a 75 mm gun was available for use, a turret able to mount the gun was not. So while the turret and tank design underwent development, the 75 mm would be mounted on the stopgap M3 Lee tank in a sponson mount. This interim design put the 75 mm on a lower and limited traverse mount that restricted its firing angle, but it did give the Western Allies a tank with the gun, so it was issued by the thousands until a better design could be produced.
During the M3 medium's development, the designs of the 75 mm armed vehicle were being drawn up and submitted by the Ordnance Department. Specifications on the tank design were strict in order to maximize logistical support. Restrictions were made on the tank's height, width, and weight in order to make it able to be transported over bridges, roads, railroads, and on naval ships. These specifications would help the Army by making the tank be very flexible on strategic, logistical, and tactical grounds. On April 1941, the Armored Force Board chose the simplest of the designs, which was a redesigned M3 hull and chassis with a turret mounting the 75 mm gun designated the T6, completed in September 1941. This tank would then designated the Medium Tank M4 in American service. The tank would eventually become the most used Allied tank during World War II as it was lent out by the thousands in the Lend-Lease program to the Allied countries. The British designated the M4 the "Sherman", which coined into the tank's name M4 Sherman that it would be known as in history. The production for the Shermans began on October 1941 and would continue to be produced until the end of the war in 1945 with around 50,000 units produced, making it the second most-produced tank in World War II before the T-34 tank.
Several variants are available in-game, as listed below:
|M4||USA||Welded hull resulting in angular shapes|
|M4 748 (a)||Germany (Gift)||Captured M4A2|
|M4A1||USA||Cast hull resulting in a more curved shape|
|M4A1 (France)||France||French M4A1|
|M4A3 (105)||USA||Armed with 105 mm howitzer|
|M4A4 (China)||China||Chinese M4A4|
|M4A4 (1st PTG)||China (Gift)|
|M4A5 Ram II||USA (Premium)||Canadian design based on M3 chassis|
|Sherman II||Britain||British M4A1 analogue|
As always, feel free to use this thread to talk about the Sherman variants listed above. This can be either in the form of your experiences using these tanks, or fighting against them. With five nations having access to at least one of these variants at Rank II, this is certainly a tank you'll encounter quite often on the battlefield. Which of these is your favourite and why? Are there any specific changes that you'd like to see?
Here is the list of previous discussions.
Before we start!
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