Peiper's vehicle Kharkov III

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potnoodle1978
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Peiper's vehicle Kharkov III

Post by potnoodle1978 » 30 Jan 2020 15:09

What vehicle did Peiper use as his personal vehicle during 3rd battle of Kharkov? I've seen pictures of him inside an Sd.Kfz 251/9 and what looks like an Sd.Kfz 251/1, just wondered if anyone has further information.

Any info is appreciated.

J

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Алексей
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Re: Peiper's vehicle Kharkov III

Post by Алексей » 02 Feb 2020 17:08

Commander's Sd.Kfz.251/3 Peiper in the battle of Kharkov in March 1943 with the proper name "Emil":
12 марта 1943 г.,ул.Сумская, 42_sumsk42_1.jpg
425_362.jpg
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potnoodle1978
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Re: Peiper's vehicle Kharkov III

Post by potnoodle1978 » 10 Feb 2020 06:13

Great stuff! thank you very much

j

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stoveb
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Re: Peiper's vehicle Kharkov III

Post by stoveb » 11 Feb 2020 02:28

Hi, this vehicle was the command vehicle of the 1st SS Panzerjägerabteilumg, LSSAH and not part of the III/2nd SS Pz Gren Rgt. Cheers

potnoodle1978
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Re: Peiper's vehicle Kharkov III

Post by potnoodle1978 » 11 Feb 2020 05:28

these are pictures I could find... looks like a 251/9, 251/10, and 251/1 with a command radio of some sort. I appreciate that commanders sometimes hop into other vehicles for sitreps etc so it may be the case that none of these vehicles were his personal vehicle.
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Алексей
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Re: Peiper's vehicle Kharkov III

Post by Алексей » 12 Feb 2020 11:25

stoveb wrote:
11 Feb 2020 02:28
Hi, this vehicle was the command vehicle of the 1st SS Panzerjägerabteilumg, LSSAH and not part of the III/2nd SS Pz Gren Rgt. Cheers
Thank you,now i will know.

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Re: Peiper's vehicle Kharkov III

Post by bam » 13 Feb 2020 18:28

Hi, I think the Kharkov street photo of the 251/6 called Emil is Fritz Witt’s command spw. The cigar chomping Witt was C.O. of SS Pz.Gr.Rgt.1 . They fought their way into Kharkov with Meyer’s Aufk.Abt. and got cut off for awhile. Peipers gepanzerte SPW III.Abt. SS PGR 2 broke through to them, and those photos are from the successful linkup.
Peiper preferred being in the 251/9, so he could instantly direct its firepower. His SPW battalion quite often operated without heavier support, and the 251/9s were the main firepower of the unit. So he wanted to be nearest them, as directing their actions quickly could be crucial. He would have a full radio spw, 251/3 or /6, nearby to keep him aware of the wider radio net.

Typically the spw unit would be advancing, then they’d come under sudden fire. Someone had to instantly decide if either the incoming fire was too strong to overcome, in which case the unit would scatter covered by smoke and all guns blazing, or whether a quick charge could overcome the opposition, in which case the 251/9s would halt and plaster the opposition to cover the break in by the other spw. This required quick decision making. Peiper decided his best position was with the stummels.
His assaults were usually done fast, using the only advantage the fragile spw had: speed. They would rehearse pre set actions for any likely eventuality, so that the whole unit knew their individual roles in any situation. E.g. the order to scatter would result in a pre rehearsed manoeuvre, where everyone knew which way they were to turn and which arcs to fire, so as not to impede someone else. Hence their success.

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stoveb
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Re: Peiper's vehicle Kharkov III

Post by stoveb » 13 Feb 2020 21:06

Hi,
I have a photo in my collection which proves this is from the Panzerjägerabteilung.

Firstly, the numbering system also matches the PzjAbt and the III./SS-Pz Grn Rgt 2 did not use a numbering system on their halftracks.

Secondly Witt was not equipped with such a vehicle - his command vehicle was a standard m.gl. Einheits-Pkw at the time.

Thirdly the only SdKfz 251/6 in the Division was Dietrich's personal vehicle, who indeed needed to have contact with higher units, Korps, etc.

Lastly there are no SdKfz 251/3's on strength with the Division mentioned in the reports from March 1943 through to after Kursk. This vehicle was actually a bit of a hybrid and as such, it is a bit of a mystery.

Cheers
Steve

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Re: Peiper's vehicle Kharkov III

Post by Alanmccoubrey » 14 Feb 2020 08:13

Steve, why is it a hybrid ? Do you mean that the unit created a command vehicle by converting an SdKfz 251/1 ?
Alan

bam
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Re: Peiper's vehicle Kharkov III

Post by bam » 14 Feb 2020 18:53

The 251/6 number 30 certainly fits the Pz.Jg.Abt numbering system. It may not have been Witts official command vehicle, but he was certainly filmed using it in Kharkov, presumably as his command spw.
The spw sitting behind #30 spw in post #2 , has an aerial on the rear of its right upper side, in the usual position for a 251/3, but it hasn’t got the usual 251/3 armoured box surround, so that spw looks like a modified spw too.
Some of peipers spw were modified with added nose armour, so they were obviously happy to modify their vehicles to suit their needs.

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Re: Peiper's vehicle Kharkov III

Post by potnoodle1978 » 18 Feb 2020 11:53

Great stuff from Bam... the depth of knowledge from members of this forum never fails to amaze me

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