Italian Medium Tanks

Italian Medium Tanks

by Pier Battistelli, Richard Chasemore, Pier Paolo Battistelli
     
 

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Several factors delayed and greatly hampered the development of an Italian medium tank during World War II. The first was the strategic stance of the country, focussed on a war against neighbouring countries such as France and Yugoslavia, and ill-prepared for a war in the Western Desert. Since these European countries bordered with Italy in mountainous areas, light

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Overview

Several factors delayed and greatly hampered the development of an Italian medium tank during World War II. The first was the strategic stance of the country, focussed on a war against neighbouring countries such as France and Yugoslavia, and ill-prepared for a war in the Western Desert. Since these European countries bordered with Italy in mountainous areas, light tanks were preferred as these were deemed much more suitable for the narrow roads and bridges of the Alps. Furthermore, development was hampered by the limited number of Italian industries, whose production was also heavily fragmented. All these factors delayed the development of the first prototype of an Italian medium tank - the M 11 - which would only appear in 1937 and did not enter production until 1939.

Although technically inferior to their German and Allied counterparts in 1941-43, the Italian M tanks proved to be quite effective when used by experienced crews with adequate combat tactics. In fact, their major shortcoming actually proved to be their limited production figures. While production was limited, innovation was not and, between 1941 and 1943, several experiments were carried out on the Italian tanks that produced interesting prototypes such as the anti-aircraft semovente.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"...continues where the author's fascinating Italian Light Tanks: 1919–45 ended."
—David L. Veres, www.cybermodeler.com (January 2013)

"In line with other books in this series, the authors cover the development and construction of the various medium tanks and the semovente from which they were derived. We get to look at their strengths and weaknesses as well as how they did in battle, both with the Italian and German army. It is surprising how many actually survived the war long enough to be placed in various museums and other display venues. It all makes for a book on a subject about which few enthusiasts are conversant. It is a superb look at these vehicle and how they were used in combat."
—Scott Van Aken, www.modelingmadness.com (January 2013)

“…offers a fine survey that considers the evolution of Italian armored units during World War II, and is a pick for any specialty collection concerned about the armaments of the war. From how these Italian units experienced disaster on the battlefield to how they returned with innovations that led to victories, this provides a well-detailed survey recommended for any military collection.”
—The Midwest Book Review (March 2013)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781780961231
Publisher:
Osprey Publishing, Limited
Publication date:
12/18/2012
Series:
New Vanguard , #195
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
48
Sales rank:
1,279,078
File size:
14 MB
Note:
This product may take a few minutes to download.

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
"...continues where the author's fascinating Italian Light Tanks: 1919–45 ended."
—David L. Veres, www.cybermodeler.com (January 2013)

Meet the Author

Pier Paolo Battistelli earned his PhD in Military History at the University of Padua. A scholar of German and Italian politics and strategy throughout World War II, he is active in Italy and abroad writing titles and essays on military history subjects. A contributor to the Italian Army Historical Office, he is currently revising his PhD thesis for publication: The War of the Axis: German and Italian Military Partnership in World War Two, 1939-1943.

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