Thursday, 21 August 2014

Char Somua S35

Built between '35 and '40, the Char S35 was supplied to the French cavalry and was had armour thick enough to ignore fire from potential enemy armour of the time and a gun strong enough to easily tear through the same. Unfortunately the craftsmanship and engineering that went into it to make it a better tank also made it more expensive (both in time and money) to produce and maintain. Despite being proved an effective design, it was poorly used in the defence of France. Besides cost, it did have a few flaws; mainly mechanical reliability and no top hatch on the turret, so the commander couldn't see all that much.

After the fall of France production was basically halted as the manufacturing infrastructure was in te hands of the German army. Captured Somuas ended up being used by Wehrmacht forces throughout the war. As part of the 1940 armistice in France, a number ended up being shipped to Africa to defend the Vichy regime's territory... unfortunately for the Germans they ended up right back in allied hands when the french forces decided to side with the allies.

There's something striking about the slightly mental, bright colours of the early war camo scheme that I love, especially when compared to the blank slate of the stereotypical Sherman later. The black lining around each colour, just to make sure you notice the transition just tops it off.


3 comments:

  1. That's a lovely little tank, isn't it?

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    Replies
    1. Only beaten by the Renault FT and the Grant :)

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  2. Those colours make it look like a kids toy.

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