The Sturmgeschütz IV (StuG IV) (Sd.Kfz. 167), was a German assault gun of the Second World War.
About this creation
The Sturmgeschütz IV resulted from Krupp's effort to supply an assault gun. As Krupp did not build Panzerkampfwagen IIIs, they used the Panzerkampfwagen IV chassis in combination with a slightly modified Sturmgeschütz III superstructure.
The first known proposal for a Sturmgeschütz on the Panzer IV chassis is in Krupp drawing number W1468 dated February 1943. This initial drawing unitized the outdated Sturmgeschütz Ausf. F superstructure on a Panzer IV chassis 9. This proposal had a sloped front superstructure with a combat weight of 28.26 tons. Krupp abandoned it in February 1943 because it was too heavy. Plans for the StuG IV were halted.
In November 1943, Alkett, a major StuG III manufacturer, was bombed. Alkett produced 255 StuG III in October 1943, but in December fell to just 24 vehicles. On December 6–7, 1943, at a conference with Hitler, he welcomed the suggestion of taking the StuG III superstructure and mounting it on a Panzer IV chassis. The StuG IV could be more quickly manufactured than the Jagdpanzer IV at the time. This re-started the Sturmgeschütz IV project
From December 1943 to May 1945, Krupp built 1,108 StuG IVs and converted an additional 31 from battle-damaged Panzer IV hulls. While the number is smaller than the 9000+ StuG III, the StuG IV supplemented and fought along with StuG III during 1944-45, when they were most needed.
The StuG IV had a crew of four, a commander, loader, gunner and driver.