Rommel’s Afrika Korps desperately needed self-propelled artillery guns that could keep up with the tanks. Hitler ordered the immediate assembly of thirty 15 cm sFH 13/1 (Sf) auf GW Lorraine Schlepper(f) SPGs on the 25th of May 1942.
The contract was awarded to Alkett, which were based in Berlin-Borsigwalde. The order was completed in June 1942.
The interior of the vehicle could only hold eight high explosive shells and eight propellant cartridges. The unusual distinct rear overhanging design was necessary because of the location of the engine. This required a retractable hinged spade to be fitted at the rear of the vehicle. It was lowered into the ground when the gun was in action to help support the vehicle when the gun was fired, and stop it moving backwards.
The howitzer had a very limited traverse of only 5 degrees left and right with a 40 degree elevation.
An additional seventy two were built in France between July and August 1942 by Baukommando Becker, bringing the total made in WW2 to 102. Some sources, that at present cannot be verified, state that a further sixty four were built by Alkett in their factory near Berlin. That would bring the total built to 166.
1 resin 1/56 Model tank manufactured for us and fully covered by our no quibble satisfaction guarantee.
Supplied unpainted and may require some assembly.