L40 Semovente Tipo G.

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L40 Semovente Tipo G.

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History.

The 47/32 Semovente tank on an L40 hull, more generically called the L40 self-propelled gun, is one of the most famous if not the most famous Italian self-propelled artillery gun in history, even if it wasn’t really wanted. This tank was designed to replace the towed 47/32 Mod. 1935 cannon in the Bersaglieri regiments since the Bersaglieri had to carry out fast infantry tasks. Designed by Ansaldo and built together with Fiat, the vehicle saw the light of day with great delays to the schedule in 1941 and was accepted into service shortly thereafter. The vehicle was used by the rapid divisions, the Bersaglieri units, the cavalry units and also by the armored units, and was used from the North African front to the Eastern front at the CSIR, proving many times obsolete and unsuitable for fighting against tanks opponents. After the armistice of 8 September 1943, the German forces occupying the north through the puppet state of the RSI decided to resume production for socio-political reasons, despite not being very enthusiastic about the vehicle itself. Noticing that the vehicle was flawed in close combat against infantry, but using it in an anti-partisan role, in 1944 the Generalinspekteur der Panzertruppen requested modifications to the vehicle. This model was equipped with an RF1CA-TR7 radio mounted on the left with its antenna, a shielded machine gun was added on the right and the rear part of the vehicle was widened and raised, making the vehicle appear more cubic than the classic self-propelled vehicles. The tank was renamed L40 Semovente tipo G. It is not known exactly how many of these vehicles were produced, but various examples were used by the Slovensko Domobranstvo (the Slovenian Territorial Guard) of the occupied Slovenia against the partisan forces. Over time all the vehicles were lost during battles and ambushes, and little is known about their actual effectiveness in the field.

Armament and propulsion.

The tank was armed with a 47/32 Mod. 1935 cannon mounted in the casemate of the vehicle and a Breda Model 1938 machine gun placed in the barbette. For the 47 mm cannon, 49 rounds were stored (the upper 70-round rack was replaced with a 16-round rack to make room for the radio) while for the machine gun there were 4 ammunition boxes. The machine gun was equipped with a 10 mm thick shield and could defend the right side and limitedly the left side of the tank.
Like all normal L40 self-propelled tanks, this one was equipped with a 4053 cm³ 68 hp SPA 18D 4-cylinder petrol engine, which allowed the vehicle to reach 40 km/h despite the increased weight of the vehicle.

Specifications.

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Dimensions (L-W-H): 3.82 x 1.92 x 1.63 m
Maximum weight: 6.75 t
Crew: 3
Engine: FIAT-SPA, 6 cyl. gasoline, 68 hp
Maximum speed: 40 km/h
Range: 200 km
Armament: 1x Cannone da 47/32 Mod. 35 gun and Breda Mod.38
Maximum armour: 30 mm

Pictures and drawnings.

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Sources.

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https://tanks-encyclopedia.com/ww2/italy/semovente_da_47-32.php
GLI AUTOVEICOLI DA COMBATTIMENTO DELL'ESERCITO ITALIANO VOL II TOMO I by Biblioteca Militare - Issuu
https://tanks-encyclopedia.com/semovente-l40-da-47-32-in-slovene-and-croat-service/
L40 - Wikipedia
Semovente L40 da 47/32 Self-Propelled Gun - Comando Supremo
Tank Archives: Semovente L40 da 47/32: Italy's Smallest SPG
Regio Esercito - Lista materiale bellico - Semovente da 47/32 su scafo L40
Reparti corazzati jugoslavi 1940-1945
Semovente da 47/32 page 4
Semovente da 47/32 page 1

3 Likes

+1 for Yugo tree

3 Likes

+1 for Yugoslavia or Italy. Would be fun either way.

2 Likes

Sadly, from what I know, Italy only tested it. It was used by Germans troops and Slovenian only.

Great post! Here are some additional photos and two websites that mention this vehicle

Photos

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1944, Spring, Slovenia.
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Close-up on the machine-gun position
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1945, June, Ljubljana. The machine guns are missing but I think these have a modified hull
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Websites

StuG L6 mit 47/32 630(i)
Semovente da 47/32 page 1
Semovente da 47/32 page 2
Semovente da 47/32 page 3
Semovente da 47/32 page 4

Beute Sturmgeschütz L6 mit 47/32 770(i)
https://tanks-encyclopedia.com/sturmgeschutz-l6-mit-47-32-770i/

2 Likes

Thanks for the pics. Btw the 3rd is about this tank used by german SS, and the last one is about the normal L40.
Still thanks for the pics, I’m gonna add them when I can.

Still more than meets the criteria for Italy, especially since this is an Italian tank.

2 Likes

About this, I think I’m gonna suggest the L40 G for the german tt because they used both the normal and the modified L40.

+1, foldered with the standard L40

1 Like