German economic collapse in 1944-45

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Michael Kenny
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Re: German economic collapse in 1944-45

Post by Michael Kenny » 27 Apr 2017 16:17

From 'Nuremberg's Panzer Factory. A Photographic Study'

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Nurnbergs-Panz ... 1908032065


page 182


The Allied air raid on the M·A·N facility in Nurnberg was on the night of
28th/29th August 1942 when the RAF carried out its first raid, dropping
255 tons of ordnance on the factory and the surrounding area. The Iack of
success from this first air raid belied the ferocity and frequency of future
raids on the plant. There were no further raids in 1942 and the two raids
conducted by the RAF on 8th/9th March and 27th/28th August 1943 saw a
further 802 and 1824 tons of ordnance dropped on the facility. These raids
were carried out at night and despite the tonnage of ordnance dropped
the Ievel of damage inflicted was not sufficient to significantly disrupt
production at the site.
Three heavy daytime raids carried out by both the RAF and USAAF on 10th
September, 3rd October and 19th October 1944 caused significant damage
with the raids in October completely destroying the truck assembly lines
and buildings .
More than 2410 tons of ordnance was dropped on the M ·A· N
facility and the railway marshalling yards south east of the plant during these
three raids. Panther production was seriously disrupted by these air raids
with the plant delivering 140 vehicles in September but only 78 in October
1944. The company's employees were able to carry out some repairs that
allowed them to complete 103 Panthers in November and 100 in December.
However, the RAF carried out a particularly heavy raid dropping 2156 tons
of ordnance on the night of 2nd/3rd January 1945; this effectively wiped
out any significant Panther production at the facility for the rest of the war

A teleprint giving details of the damage to the plant was sent to the
armnarments ministry on 4th January by Mr. Mader, the leader of the
commission for Panther production (Leiter des Arbeitsauschusses Panther
Fertigung) . It stated that the plant had no electrical power gas or water and
that significant damage had been inflicted on buildings used for production
of the Panther. Mr. Mader also stated that only 10% of the employees were
abIe to report for work due to the lack of transport caused by the significant
damage to the infrastructure in the surrounding area


One of the most significant pieces of correspondence relating to Panther
production at the M·A·N Nurnberg facility in 1945 was sent by Mr. Lucht to
a Mr. CIaaszen at the armaments ministry in Berlin on 22nd February 1945
following two further heavy raids by the USAAF on the 20th and 21st of
February. This correspondence lists the material and manpower needed to
effect repairs at the M·A·N plant in Nurnberg and restore the plant's Panther
production capacity. The most significant part of the report is an addendum
for Saur giving details on the number of Panthers completed and under
construction compared to the projected 50 vehicles that the armament
ministry wanted M·A·N to complete in February. The figures given for the
month up to 22nd February were 16 Panthers completed, accepted by the
Wehrmacht and delivered. An additional 3 Panthers were accepted by the
Wehrmacht but had not yet been delivered, giving a total of 19 Panthers
completed for February. There were a further 7 Panthers that were still
being worked on that could be completed if electricity, gas and water were
restored at the plant before the end of the month
Following the extensive damage caused by the RAF air raid in January, the
armaments ministry had reduced the number of Panthers they expected
M·A·N to complete in February to 50. Mr. Lucht was now forced to reduce
this figure to 26. Significantly, the correspondence goes on to say that 20
Wanne were also completed at Alkett by M·A·N personnel that were not
included in the projected figure of 26 for February!
A further insight into the desperate situation at the M A·N facility in Nurnberg
is also included in this correspondence. Mr. lucht requested the ministry's
approval for alternative arrangements to move the completion of Panthers
to a new site. This proposal had been discussed during a meeting between
M·A·N management and the Wehrmacht inspectors who proposed moving
the completion of M·A·N Panthers to the facilities at Hainberg instead of
Grafenwehr as previously agreed. Mr. Lucht then went on to say that there
would be a savings in time and fuel if this alternative arrangement was
accepted and that the improved weather in spring and summer months
would reduce the difficulties involved in working from Hainberg. It also
mentions that fuel, ammunition arid equipment could easily be transported

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