Panhard 178B, the up-gunned AMD 35

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caid’s suggestion #85

I would like to make a suggestion, the Panhard 178B

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The Panhard 178 was the WW2 vehicle produced in the mid-30s and in services in France under the name of AMD 35 (currently in-game). the AMD 35 was a very appreciated armored car; it was fast, reliable, and packed some decent anti-tank capacity. following WW2, France was eager to rebuild their military industry and was in dire need of new vehicles to affirm their military presence in the waste colonial empire. needing something specifically for the soft ground and difficult terrain of Indochina, France had decided to put back the Panhard 178 into production as soon as 1944. this armored car featured good mobility which was still capable in Indochina, but lacked proper firepower. the 25mm SA35 that was usually mounted in the AMD 35 was great against tanks, but in Indochina, there were no tanks to fight. the French army needed something with fire support, packing a powerful HE round. the Panhard 178 was then refitted with a newly designed FL-1 turret that was intended to use a 75mm howitzer, but his howitzer was never put into service. alternatively, the 47mm SA35 was mounted instead of the 75mm. the SA35 wasn’t a so great gun for fire support but was still capable of using decent HE rounds and at the same time, still had the AP rounds just in case it might be needed to fight harder targets.

this new Panhard 178 received the designation of Panhard 178B and the older AMD 35 who was still in service, was renamed Panhard 178A. A total of 414 Panhard 178B was built between 1945 and 1950. they were used in Madagascar, Tahiti, Syria, Vietnam, Algeria, Morocco, New Caledonia, and Djibouti. the last to be in service was in 1964 in Syria

Firepower
while being obsolete in 1945, the main armament was still a 47mm SA35. this famous tank gun was commonly found in the larger tank fielded by France during the battle of France in 1939-1940. this gun provides a decent fire rate and anti-tank capacity for low-rank vehicles. the fire rate reaches 15 rounds in minutes. sadly the gun elevation is unknown for now. but with the 75mm the elevation was going to reach -10/¬30, the 47mm is likely to have the same elevation.

a coaxial 7.5mm LMG is also placed next to the gun.

Mobility
the Panhard 178B weight is unknown, it may stay around the same weight as the AMD 35. Until the real weight is found, I propose to use 8.5 tonnes as a placeholder. the engine provides 115 hp which gives the vehicle a power/weight of 14.02 hp/ton. the armored car reaches 80 km/h on the road and 40 km/h offroad which makes it a pretty mobile vehicle. it features a 4-speed gearbox with a Reverse converter which allows it to go as fast backward than forward making it particularly nimble.

Protection
the protection of this vehicle will not be that great but it is not that bad either. it offer protection just strong enough against most HMG at medium distances. the turret is a bit more protected but not to an instance where you can rely on it. the vehicle remains vulnerable to main gun fire.

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2 Likes

+1. It’s a must, as France lacks mobility at lower tiers.