Panzer 68

1. Would you like to see this vehicle added to the game?
  • Yes
  • No

0 voters

2. Would you like to see one or more variants of the mainline Panzer 68’s?
  • All
  • Panzer 68
  • Panzer 68/75
  • Panzer 68/88
  • I voted no for the first question

0 voters

Panzer 68:
1495026418_pz-68-5.jpg.3c96e179ca3070028008e3b22d427de5

Brief Summary:

The Panzer 68 and it’s few variations across the 1970’s until the early 1990’s showcases the last of the MBT’s of Switzerland. This tank from the very start was outdated tank compared to many of the tanks coming out in neighbouring nations and would eventually be replaced by the Leopard 2 also known as Panzer 87’s. Although outdated these tanks tried to improve upon the groundwork set by the Panzer 58’s and Panzer 61’s however offered very little in improvements.

History:

The Panzer 61’s during the late 1960’s where beginning to become obsolete with the first upgrades the Panzer 61 AA9 removing the 20mm autocannon from the turret which would be used until the 1980’s however this wasn’t enough. By 1968 the pilot vehicle for the Panzer 68 series would be produced and would eventually enter full production from 1971 till 1983 with a total of 390 being built over the time period. The tanks kept the same 105mm L7 from the previous tanks but now stabilised and the 4 crew members, however the engine barely improved over the 630hp of the Panzer 61’s with the now equipped 660hp MTU MB-837 8 cylinder engine which didn’t increase the power to weight ratio as the tank now weighed 40.8 tons compared to the 39 tons of the Panzer 61 but the new transmission alongside the tank gave it 6 reverse gears compared to the 2 reverse gears found on the Panzer 61. The armour of the vehicle remained the same maximum of 120mm RHA of the Panzer 61’s. For night battle purposes the Panzer 68 used two Bofors Lyran mortars which would be situated behind the anti aircraft gun on the turret and used to illuminate targets (like on the Swedish IKV 91).

pz68-image01.jpg.1a4cbe9eea545ce7a5e9813d96b48554
(Example of a Panzer 68 with the mortar raised)

Some of the mid 1970’s production variants of the Panzer 68 also known as the Panzer 68/75 sometimes known as the 68/75 GT (Grosser Turm) started to introduce an enlarged turret which would become the key feature of later Panzer 68 models, this feature aimed to try and alleviate some of the issues the tanks earlier counterparts had in dealing with the heating issues the earlier turrets had which could cause premature firing.
The Commander and Gunner sat on the right side of the tank whilst the loader sat on the left who also controlled the anti aircraft gun.

50ba4c274822a49c3ebc911194cdb961.jpg.caecc3699965813b83c553a7f0859ccb
swiss-army-panzer-68-tank.jpg.26a5a5ef74b276ded1d2dcf6cc01f0c5
Example of a Panzer 68/75

Although these tanks would of been used very defensively they would of struggled in many ways to defend against both the Western and Eastern bloc designs being produced in much larger numbers and armed with 120mm’s and 125mm’s such as Chieftains, T-64’s and T-72’s, Switzerland knew this and would seek to replace the Panzer 68’s eventually however the tanks would remain in service until the early 2000’s. In the 1990’s some last ditch attempts to modernise the tank included the Panzer 68/88 between 1988-1992 saw the addition of a laser rangefinder to the tank which had been licensed after seeing them in use on the Leopard 2 tanks that Switzerland had purchased in the 1980’s. These tanks also took many other modern fire control features from the purchased Leopard 2’s.


Example of Panzer 68/88

Many Panzer 68’s still exist today in museums including the prototypes experimenting a 140mm, 120mm smoothbore, a replacement SPG to the m109 and a SPAA system.

Specification:

Dimensions (L-W-H): 9.49 (6.88 without gun) x3.14 x 2.75m (31’1’’ (22’6’‘) x 10’3’’ x 9’ ft)

Total Weight: 40.8 tons

Crew: 4 (Driver, Loader, Gunner, Commander/Radio Operator)

Propulsion: 8 cylinder MTU Mercedes Benz 837, 660hp engine (2200rpm)

Transmission: 6 forward 6 reverse

Power to Weight Ratio: 16.18hp/ton

Suspension: Plate Springs and hydraulic dampers

Top Speed: 55km/h (34 mph)

Main Armament: 105mm Royal Ordinance L7 (56 Rounds) (105 Panzerkanone)

Vertical Guidance: -10° 21° of depression

Secondary Armament: 6x 80mm smoke grenades (2 rounds per tube)
1x coaxial 7.5mm Mg 51/71 (100 rounds ready to fire)
1x roof mounted 7.5mm Mg 51/71 (100 rounds ready to fire) 3200 rounds

Night Vision: Lyran Mortars for night vision use

Stabiliser: 2 plane

Laser Rangefinder: Panzer 68: no Panzer 68/88: yes

Armour: 120mm of RHA front hull
120mm of RHA turret front

Production: 390 (195 converted to the Panzer 68/88)

Additional Images:
Panzer_61-Thun-Army-Museum.jpg.727423ad77fc15aeec47ff54b13183f1
Panzer_68_slash_88.jpg.9a0035ac5de3a9b68ba217f407d3eecc
panzer-68-swiss-army.jpg.8d065c731035540d9b0feabc05824983

Sources:
Panzer 68 - Wikipedia
Panzer 68 MBT (1968)
Panzer 68 (Pz 68)
Army Guide
PZ 68 Main Battle Tank
https://old.weaponsystems.net/weaponsystem/CC05 - Pz 61.html (source for some features of what the Panzer 61 had in comparison)

1 Like

I want the panzer 58 aswell.