15cm Panzerwerfer 42 auf Selbstfahrlafette Sd Kfz 4/1
The Panzerwerfer 42 is the name for the German half-tracked multiple rocket launcher. The 15cm Panzerwerfer 42 auf Selbstfahrlafette Sd Kfz 4/1 (based on the Opel Maultier, or "mule", half-track) first went into production in April of 1943, and was produced until March of 1945. It was mainly produced by Opel. During its production 300 Panzerwerfers and 289 Munitionkraftswagen were made. The Munitionkraftswagen, or Sd Kfz 4, was the exact same vehicle without the rocket launcher and was used for ammunition re-supply.
The Panzerwerfer was armed with a 15cm 10-barrel rocket launcher, which traversed 270 degrees, could be elevated up to 80 degrees, and was guided with the RA35 optical sight. It had a crew of three, a commander/driver, a radio operator, and a gunner. It was also armed with loose machine-gun for self-defence.
Ammunition: 7.92 mm 2000 rounds
Armament: 15cm Nebelwerfer 42 & 7.92 mm MG34/42
Crew: 4 men
Engine: Opel 3.6 litre/
The Panzerwerfer 42 saw action on both fronts, seeing it's first combat in Russia in late 1943. The rocket launcher was used for larger scale rocket barrages against positions of Soviet resistance where a spread bombardment of a large area would be more effective than more accurate artillery fire. The Panzerwerfer 42's rocket barrages covered much larger areas and had the added psychological effect on those under the tremendous noise, smoke, shrapnel, and flying debris of the barrage.
The weapon was also deployed on the western front. The British and Canadians were the first of the western Allies to see the German Panzerwerfer 42 rocket launchers in action against troop concentrations and Allied positions.
The "Horstmann" Carden-Lloyd suspension, wheels, and tracks of the Panzerwerfer 42 were simple and didn't require much maintenance.
Due to the weight of the vehicle (8.5-tons) its climbing and fording ability was low. It's ground clearance was only about a foot, which made traversing rough terrain more of a challenge than if it was a fully tracked vehicle. However, this was little disadvantage operating on the naturally flat terrain of the Russian steppes.
The effective range for a Panzerwerfer 42's rockets was about 4,000-6,500 meters, and the maximum range was less than 7,000.
The metal rocket casings were thin, which created a large amount of shrapnel on impact.
Combat tactics usually called for a group of three to six vehicles to bombard a specified position. On some occasions crews operated from different locations, but within the same firing range to reach a predetermined target.
In Flames Of War -
The Panzerwerfer 42 was the German Army's solution to the high vulnerability of Nebelwerfers, smoke trails easily pin-pointed their location for immediate counter-bombardment.
In Flames of War if your artillery gets pinned by counter-battery fire, it cannot fire a bombardment. Of course this is a problem for all artillery, but rocket launchers with their smoke trail can be targeted without line of sight, making them far more vulnerable.
However, self-propelled artillery is not only more survivable under a bombardment, but can move off to a new location if pinned.
Fire and Manoeuvre -
Panzerwerfer crews fire a bombardment and then quickly redeploy their vehicles to avoid counter-battery fire from enemy artillery.
When an Armoured Rocket Artillery Battery successfully rolls a Stormtrooper move, it also removes any smoke trails associated with the battery, even if the battery does not move.
They can also fire a fearsome bombardment when you field them at full strength with additional crews.
You can model Panzerwerfer 42 (Maultier) rocket launchers with 5 or more crew and count each rocket launcher as two weapons when firing a bombardment. This comes into play with the Devastating Bombardment:
Devastating Bombardment -
An Artillery Bombardment fired by nine or more weapons uses a double-width Artillery Template to determine which teams can be hit and rerolls failed To Hit rolls.
An Artillery Bombardment fired by fourteen or more weapons, uses a template 12"/30cm square to determine which teams are hit and rerolls failed To Hit rolls.
Pack comes with Panzerwerfer 42 and five crew.