The Sd.Kfz 251/7 Ausf C half-tracked engineer's vehicle was more commonly known as the Pionierwagen. It was a very useful vehicle for the assault engineers of the German Army, seeing service on all fronts, from the vast open areas of the Russian Front to the rubble-choked streets of Berlin in 1945.
Based on the classic Sd.Kfz 251 Hanomag half-track, the Pionierwagen was heavily modified by the elite German assault engineers to carry both themselves and their specialist equipment into action.
Arguably the most striking features of the Pionierwagen were the two detachable assault bridge ramps carried along the top of the crew compartment. These could quickly be removed and placed to span ditches, broken bridges or other similar obstacles. Side lockers would carry inflatable boats for river crossings.
Early versions of the Pionierwagen could be seen to mount the 3.7mm PaK 36 anti-tank gun instead of the forward machine gun but, as the war progressed, these became less effective and would be replaced by the Panzerbüchse 41 squeeze-bore gun, giving it a realistic chance against Allied armour.
This Pionierwagen is a great way to get your assault engineers into action safely. First in! Last out!
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