Panzerkampfwagen I Ausf.A "Breda"

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Panzerkampfwagen I Ausf.A “Breda”

History.

The Panzer I is a famous German light tank from the first half of the 1930s. It participated in a good number of conflicts, including the Spanish Civil War, and was used by the German Condor Legion. It was upgraded to increase its lethality as its armament (consisting of machine guns only) made it useless in the anti-tank role against the Soviet BT-5s. . On August 8, 1937, Major General García Pallasar received a note from Generalísimo Francisco Franco expressing the need for a Panzer I (or negrillo, as the Spanish crews called them) with a 20 mm cannon. In the end, the Breda Model 1935 was chosen due to the simplicity of its design compared to competitors such as the German Flak 30. Furthermore, the 20 mm Breda was capable of piercing the frontal armor of the T-26, and was simpler in terms of It’s about maintenance. Although 40 Italian CV.35 light tanks were originally ordered with the Breda replacing their original armament, this order was later canceled as it was thought that adapting the same gun to the Panzer I would give better results. The prototypes were ready in September 1937 and following the positive results an order was placed. The assembly of the Breda in the Panzer I required that the original turret be opened at the top and then extended with a vertical supplement. Four of these tanks were finished at the Seville Armaments Factory, but further production was canceled as it was decided that a sufficient number of Republican T-26 tanks had been captured to satisfy the Nationalist leadership’s demand for more tanks lethal. The Breda modification did not particularly please the German crews, as the unprotected gap in the turret, designed to allow the tank commander to aim, turned out to be a dangerous weak point. Despite this, 4 Panzers were readapted, but the project did not go beyond these units, which were retrained but over time they were all lost due to various accidents or during clashes against the Republican troops.

Armament and propulsion.

The tank was armed with a 20 mm Breda 20/65 Model 1935 gun in a turret without additional coaxial or anti-aircraft armament. The quantity of ammunition carried is unknown, however the cannon was equipped with a gas shield, a shield for the gun itself and the turret was modified to allow the cannon to be fitted. Unfortunately, however, the weapon itself lacked a real sight (the gunner had to aim from a hole in the weapon’s shield).
The tank was powered by a 60 hp Krupp M305 4-cylinder air-cooled engine, which could push the tank up to a maximum speed of 35 km/h.

Specifications.

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Crew: 2
Length: 4.02 m
Width: 2.06 m
Height: 1.72 m
Weight: 5.5 t
Engine: Krupp M305 4-cylinder, 60 hp petrol powered
Maximum speed: 35 km/h
Armament: 1x Breda 20/65 Mod.35
Armor: 13-0 mm

Pictures and drawnings.

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Sources.

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Panzer I - Wikipedia
https://tanks-encyclopedia.com/ww2/spain/panzer-i-Breda
LEADWARRIOR.COM. State-of-the-Art Historical Miniature.
https://free3d.com/it/3d-model/panzer-i-ausf-a-breda-7808.html
Panzer I.B Breda 20mm gallery | Weapons Parade | Panzer I.B 20mm gun.
Panzer I - Wikipedia
Panzer I Auf.B "Breda" durante la Guerra Civile Spagnola - Flying Lions
https://tanks-encyclopedia.com/ww2/germany/panzer_i.php

5 Likes

Cince when? Even the lighter Flakpanzer I Ausf.A only goes 37 km/h like the normal Pz I Ausf.A.
Even the More powerfull Ausf.B with 100 Ps only reaches 43 km/h.

1 Like

I wasn’t sure about the speed so I put the first one I could find. I’m gonna correct it.

+1
I think Spain has great potential for a subtree for Germany, between the WWII alliance and foreign aid and the modern alliance and employment of Leopard 2s and Typhoons.

More than Switzerland which has little relation.

3 Likes

Both this and the CV.35 Breda would be great additions to the game. +1

@WalletWorrier I’d say Italy is more likely, as there are already Spanish vehicles there.

1 Like

I hope we get to see a Spanish tech tree, lots of unique vehicles from there.

2 Likes

Only the VRCC though, which is a Centauro.

+1 for Iberian TT

1 Like

True. Spain has used tanks from Germany (Panzer I, Panzer IV, StuG III, Leopard 2A4, Leopard 2E), Russia (T-26, BT-5), Italy (CV.35, Centauro), France (AMX-30E/AMX-30EM1/AMX-30EM2), and the USA (M47/M47E/M47E1, M48/M48A3E/M48A5E1/M48A5E2/M48A5E3, M60) over the years, with at least one domestic design (the Verdeja - itself having two tank versions and an SPG version). This makes it difficult to place, given the wide array of vehicles.

2 Likes

Also Italy used BT-5 and T-26.

1 Like

+1 for Italy Premium (or Spain TT).

While it’s a modification of a German vehicle, it uses an Italian main armament, was modified by Spain, and in service with Spain. A somewhat complex history and there certainly is an argument for giving it to Germany, but for me it comes down to which tree would see the most benefit.

1 Like