Panzer IV ausf C
History: Of the initial order for 300 ausf C, only 134 were
completed as Panzer IV. In August 1939, six chassis had been handed over to the
Inspectorate for Engineers, for use as the basic chassis for bridge laying tanks.
The remainder of the order, amounting to 160, were dropped in March 1938, before
production had started.
Specific features: The ausf C included a series of minor changes to design of the
ausf B, including an altered motor mount, improved turret race, redesigned gun-mantlet
housing, and an armour sleeve to protect the coaxial machine-gun. From chassis no
80341, the ausf C's were equipped with an engine, modified to improve carburation.
From late 1940, to prolong combat life, additional armour plates were bolted and welded to
the hull and superstructures sides of some ausf C.
Combat service: With increased production of the ausf V, the organization of the
light tank company (a) was altered early in 1939, so that the 2 Zug (2nd platoon) was to
have four to six Panzer IV. By the start of the Polish campaign, the medium company
had been introduced in the 1st Panzer Division and the 1st Light Division. The
former had fourteen Panzer IV in each medium company, the latter had eight. On 1
September 1939, the remainder of the Panzer divisions still had the light tank company (a)
with four to six Panzer IV, during the Polish Campaign. The ausf C remained in
active service until 1943, but its numbers had been gradually reduced by attrition.