The Tiger with a 380 mm Rocket Launcher

The Sturmtiger was Germany's answer to the problem of fighting troops in urban environments - deny the enemy usage of a building or fortification by simply turning it to rubble.

The Sturmtiger, officially designated the Sturmmörserwagen 606/4 mit 38 cm RW 61, was an assault gun built on the chassis of the already-powerful Tiger I. It was specially designed to survive the brutal conditions of urban warfare while demolishing city structures.

As such, few vehicles from the Second World War match the power, armor protection and sheer scale of the Sturmtiger.

Only 18 of these mighty beasts were built, with just two still around today. This is the story of the Sturmtiger.

Sturmtiger Development

Fortunately for the German army, the Kriegsmarine had been developing a weapon that they soon saw fit to be the answer to their problems. Known as the Raketenwerfer 61 L/54, it was originally designed as a coastal depth charge launcher to for use against submarines.

However, the first Sturmtigers were not completed until February 1944, and an order was not placed until April.

The Sturmtiger

Naturally for a weapon of this size and power, a turret was not used and the armament was instead placed in a fixed casemate.

Early concepts of the Sturmtiger featured a rear mounted casemate, but as this would have required moving the engine to the front of the Tiger hull the idea was discarded.

The casemate enabled the Sturmtiger to carry large quantities of armor – after all, to survive in urban environments it would have to be amongst the most heavily armored vehicles the German military had ever produced.

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Isabella White

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