Sd.Kfz. 11 a 3 ton Borgward Prime Mover – Light German Halftrack


The Sondernkraftfahrzeug 11, Eng. “Special motorized vehicle” was a light German halftrack developed between 1934 and 1938 by Borgward. The halftrack was specially designed as artillery tractor, or prime mover to tow 3 ton guns and their crews. The goal was to motorize the Artillery force and Infantry, as Heinz Gudarian the early pioneer of the Blitzkrieg tactics foretold. During the years after WW1 when tank development took of rapidly, Heinz Gudarian studied options and weaknesses of a tank force with or without support. Infantry and Artillery had to keep up and support and strengthen the attack of a fast moving army. New vehicles were developed for cross country movement and were used together with the tank battalions.

Sd.Kfz. 11 a 3 ton Borgward Artillerie Tractor – light German Halftrack – photo 2019

From 1936 the Hanomag company took over parts of the development of the halftrack. And in 1938 the Sd.Kfz. 11 was produced. To speed up production is was fabricated by different manufacturers. Firms like Skoda, Auto-Union, Borgward and Hanomag made the Halftrack until the end of the war. In total about 9000 units were built.

Sd.Kfz. 11 a 3 ton Borgward Artillerie Tractor – light German Halftrack – photo 2019
Sd.Kfz. 11 a 3 ton Borgward Artillerie Tractor – light German Halftrack – photo 2019

The Sd.Kfz. 11 had a top speed of just over 52 kilometers an hour and it had a operational range of 240 kilometers on roads and 140 kilometers off road. It towed medium heavy guns like the 3,7 cm Flak 37 or the 10,5 centimeter LeFH 18 Howitzer. It came in three versions but the H. kl 6. Was the standard production model. Next to it original towing purpose there were five specialized variants.

Sd.Kfz. 11 a 3 ton Borgward Artillerie Tractor – light German Halftrack – photo 2019

The Sd.Kfz. 11/1 was a ammunition vehicle for the 10 cm Nebelwerfer, the Sd.Kfz. 11/2 was a chemical decontamination vehicle which sprayed decontamination fluid from it 8 barrels on the flatbed. The Sd.Kfz. 11/3 sprayed poisonous gas, 125 units were built in 1937, no information is at hand if they were ever used. The Sd.Kfz. 11/4 and the Sd.Kfz. 11/5 were ammunition vehicles for different types of multi rockets Nebelwerfers.

Sd.Kfz. 11 a 3 ton Borgward Artillerie Tractor – light German Halftrack – photo 2019

The Sd.Kfz. 11 on the photos is made in 1942 by the Borgward firm.


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