Self-propelled Assault Gun
The BT-42 was developed on the chassis of captured Soviet BT-7 obr 1937 tanks. The standard turret BT-7 was rebuilt to mount the British Q.F. 4.5inch Howitzer Mark II (114mm, Finnish designation 114 Psv.H/18) donated to the Finns during the Winter War. The howitzers additionally were fitted with a Finnish designed muzzle brake.
A total 18 tanks were converted. The BT-42s were issued in the autumn of 1943.
Armament: 114mm Howitzer
Weight: 15 tons
Engine power: 400 hp
Speed: 53-73 km/h
The BT-42 saw its first combat at the Syväri (Svir) River in 1943. They were used to bombard Soviet fortifications on the opposite side of the river. They used both direct and indirect fire, and though they destroyed several bunkers, the Finnish crews were not impressed with the new vehicle.
The BT-42 was prone to mechanical failures inherited from its BT-7 hull and further exacerbated by the added weight of the howitzer and larger turret.
The gun itself also proved only useful against soft targets and it had very little anti-tank capability.
In the summer 1944 the BT-42 saw its next action in and around Viipuri (Vyborg) against a Soviet offensive. They lost eight BT-42s during the fighting to defend the town.
During the fighting the inadequacy of the 114mm gun against armour was proved when one BT-42 hit a heavy Soviet tank 18 times without causing any noticeable effect on the tank. Soon after the BT-42s were withdrawn from the field to be scrapped.
In Flames Of War
The BT-42 armed Assault Gun Platoon is available to all types of Finnish companies as a Divisional Support choice.
It is Fully-tracked and lightly armoured (F1, S1, T1) and armed with the 114 Psv.H/18 howitzer
(Direct fire: Range 16”/40cm, ROF 1, AT 7 FP 2+; Firing Bombardments: Range 48”/120cm, AT 4, FP 4+).
It however suffers from Limited Vision.
15mm, metal/ resin
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