German World War II armored fighting vehicles gallery


Wheeled armored fighting vehicles


Kfz 13 and 14

- light four wheel armored vehicle

- 44 photos

SdKfz 221

- light 4x4 armored vehicle

- 52 photos

SdKfz 222

- light 4x4 armored vehicle

- 77 photos

SdKfz 223

- coming soon

SdKfz 260 and 261

- coming soon

SdKfz 231 (6 Rad)

- medium 6x4 armored vehicle

- 44 photos

SdKfz 231 (8 Rad)

- coming soon

SdKfz 232 (6 Rad)

- coming soon

SdKfz 232 (8 Rad)

- heavy 8x8 armored radio vehicle

- 61 photos

SdKfz 233

- coming soon

SdKfz 234

- heavy 8x8 armored vehicle

- 56 photos

SdKfz 247

- coming soon

SdKfz 254

- coming soon

SdKfz 263 (6 Rad)

- coming soon

SdKfz 263 (8 Rad)

- coming soon



Armored car is the oldest category of armored fighting vehicle. It appeared more then 10 years before the tank. The very first attempts to get an armored car took place still in the 19th century. Common passenger cars were experimentaly fitted with machine guns and simple armored shields. These conversions however can not be considered real armored cars. The first actually recognized armored car was the british Simm`s motor war car which appeared in 1902.

The development of first German armored cars started only in 1915. Three industry companies delivered their prototypes out of which the Panzerkraftwagen Ehrhardt was accepted for a small batch production. Only 20 of them were produced so it is obvious, that they did not play any significant role on the battlefield.

After WWI, further development and production of armored cars was forbidden to Germany by the treaty of Versailles. Only German police was allowed to possess limited number of such machines. Nevertheless several new designs were created and used or at least tested. There was the SdKfz 3 which was officially designated as unarmed armored personal carrier or Panzerwagen Adler Standard 6 which was a dummy armored car with soft steel "armor" used just for training purposes. But there was also a secret project of real armored (and armed) vehicle called ARW/ZRW, which started in 1927 and the prototypes were tested in Soviet union... far away from the watching eyes of west European countries.

The real progress started in 1933, after Adolf Hitler became the chancellor and decided to simply ignore the Versailles regulations. The direction of armored cars development led from cheap and light four wheeled vehicles to heavier six wheeled and finally to pretty advanced 8x8 heavy armored cars capable of carrying large caliber guns. The main role of armored cars in World War II was the reconnaissance and communication (commander vehicles). However by the end of the war, there were desperate attempts to use armored cars even in the anti-tank role (for example SdKfz 234/4).