Panzer I B
The Panzer I light tank (also known as the MG Panzer for its armament), was only intended as a training tank. Despite this, they made up nearly a third of the entire German tank force for the invasion of Poland. The number of Panzer I tanks in front-line service actually increased for the Battle of France, although the proportion dropped slightly as the light divisions were expanded to full Panzer divisions.
The Panzer I B is available in two platoons in Bitzkrieg:
- Leichte Panzer Platoon, which fields a mix of Panzer I B and Panzer II C tanks.
- Verlastete Panzer I Platoon, which fields all Panzer I B.
Tanks were still new technology in the Second World War. Their engines, transmissions, tracks and suspension tended to break down with monotonous regularity. This made long, road marches difficult as tanks would not arrive in good shape. As part of the Light Divisions that invaded Poland, the Verlastete Panzerkompanie got around this problem by having trucks and trailers to carry its entire complement of tanks. When the reconnaissance elements were held up by the enemy, the tanks dismounted and went into action. Panzer I B as well as Panzer II C tanks were deployed in this way.
Manufacturer: Henschel, MAN, Krupp, Daimler
Number built: 833
Weight: 5.4 tonnes
Length: 4.02 m
Width: 2.06 m
Height: 1.72 m
Crew: 2, Commander and Driver
Armour: Between 7 and 13 mm
Primary armament: Two 7.92 mm MG13 machine guns
Engine: Krupp M 305 four cylinder air cooled gasoline engine (59 hp, 44 kW)
Range: 200 km on-road; 175 km off-road.
Speed: 50km on-road; 37km off-road.