250/8 Alte version May 43?

Discussions on the vehicles used by the Axis forces. Hosted by Christian Ankerstjerne
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250/8 Alte version May 43?

Post by bam » 17 Apr 2020 14:21

The Sd.Kfz. 250/8 is the lovely little brother of the 251/9 stummel. The 250/8 is the fire support Sd.Kfz 250 mounting the kurz 75mm howitzer found in early StuG and Pz. IVs. There were only about 10-20 ever built, and all photos appear to be of Neu type bodies, which came in in the 2nd half of 1943.
As I was re reading Fröhlich's Kampfpanzer Maus book, I saw a detail in the background that I'd missed before.
The full size wooden mock up of the Maus was shown to Hitler at an armaments exhibition at Rastenberg on 14th May 1943, along with other new weapons like the StuPa "Brummbar" and the new pak43 88mm AT gun. A photo shows these new weapons, but tucked behind the pak 43 is a partly obscured vehicle. It mounts the 75mm gun, and has a halftrack style rear mg34 arm mount, as highlighted by the yellow arrows below.
Its not a great image, sorry I can't get a better image. But it appears to show, from the background forwards, the Maus mockup (red arrow) then a light colored Brummbar, then an Sd.Kfz 251 with open rear door and possibly with a 20mm flak gun above it, then my suspected 250/8, then the pak 43.

The 75mm gun seems to have a dark side shield to the left, and I can see what looks like the recoil guard to the left of the shield. The recoil guard is the black strip above the very top of the infuriatingly in-the-way pak 43 shield. The recoil guard is definitely not in the 251, its in front, ergo the 75mm is not part of the 251. I don't think that 251 is a 251/9 early type with low gun, its just not quite in the right place. And why would they show a 251/9 at an exhibition of new weapons, as it was over a year old by then.

The 75mm IMHO belongs to the vehicle in front of the 251. Of this vehicle, all we can see is the rear mg arm, a piece of flat armor plate below that, and the 75mm with shield. The distance of the mg arm is too close to the 75mm to be a 251/9. It COULD POSSIBLY be a 250/8, and would have to be an Alte version in May 43. It could be just a mocked up version, hence the unusual side shield shape?

So please, does anyone else have other images of the 14th May 1943 Rastenberg Arms exhibition, that might show these vehicles from another angle?
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