Medium Tank M71-4

M7: General
Date of first acceptance December 1942 Total acceptances 7
Manufacturer International Harvester Corp. Crew
5 men:
  • Commander in turret left rear
  • Gunner in turret left front
  • Loader in turret right
  • Driver in hull left front
  • Assistant driver in hull right front
M7: Dimensions
Combat weight 53,950lbs
24,470kg
Height 93"
240cm
Length without gun, without fenders 206"
523cm
Gun overhang forward 4"
10cm
Width 112"
284cm
Tread 91.5"
232cm
Ground clearance 16"
41cm
Fire height 77"
200cm
Turret ring diameter 64"
160cm
Ground pressure, zero penetration 10.7psi
.751kg/cm²
M7: Armament
Type Mount Ammunition Traverse Max traverse rate Elevation
75mm Gun M3 M47 in turret 71 rounds 360°
(manual and hydraulic)
24°/sec +18° to -8°
(manual)
.30cal M1919A4 MG Flexible in turret AA mount 4500 rounds 360°
(manual)
-- Manual
.30cal M1919A5 MG Coaxial to 75mm gun 360°
(manual and hydraulic)
24°/sec +18° to -8°
(manual)
.30cal M1919A4 MG Ball mount in right bow Manual -- Manual
Stabilizer
Elevation only
M7: Armor
Assembly
Welding
Hull
Cast homogeneous steel
Location Thickness Angle from vertical
Upper front 1.5"
3.8cm
50°
Lower front 1.5"
3.8cm
Upper sides 1.25"
3.18cm
0° to 50°
Lower sides 1.25"
3.18cm
Upper rear 1.0"
2.5cm
Lower rear 1.0"
2.5cm
19°
Top .75"
1.9cm
90°
Front floor 1.0"
2.5cm
90°
Rear floor .5"
1.3cm
90°
Turret
Cast homogeneous steel
Location Thickness Angle from vertical
Gun shield (cast) 2.5"
6.4cm
Front 2.0"
5.1cm
23°
Left side 1.5"
3.8cm
21°
Right side 1.5"
3.8cm
24°
Rear 1.5"
3.8cm
11°
Top .75"
1.9cm
90°
M7: Automotive
Engine Continental R975 C1; 9 cylinder, 4 cycle, radial gasoline
Horsepower Net: 350@2400rpm
Gross: 400@2400rpm
Torque Net: 800 ft-lb@1800rpm
Gross: 890 ft-lb@1800rpm
Fuel capacity 138gal
522L
Transmission Spicer automatic, 3 speeds forward, 1 reverse
Steering Controlled differential, steering levers
Brakes Mechanical, external contracting
M7: Suspension
Type Road wheels Track return rollers
Vertical volute spring 2 bogies/track;
2 wheels/bogie
3/track
Drive sprockets Idlers Shock absorbers
13-tooth front drive Trailing adjustable with volute spring at rear of track None
M7: Track
T48
Outside guide, double pin, chevron, rubber
Width 16.56"
42.06cm
Pitch 6"
15cm
Shoes/track 71 Ground contact length 152.5"
387.4cm
M7: Performance
Max level road speed 30mph
50kph
Max trench 78"
200cm
Max grade 50% Max vertical obstacle 24"
61cm
Min turning diameter 64'
20m
Max fording depth 36"
91cm
Cruising range ~100mi, roads
~160km, roads

The M7 medium tank began its life as a light tank design, but its weight increased from the first design maximum of 14 tons (13,000kg) to over 26 tons (24,000kg), which moved the vehicle into the medium tank category. The drivers were provided with protected vision slots in the upper hull plate as well as an escape door in the lower left hull behind the driver. The commander and loader had their own square split hatches. The M4 Sherman was in full production by the time M7 production was scheduled to commence, and since M7 showed inferior performance when compared to the standardized US Army medium tank, the M4A3, the M7 was not selected for service.

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References

  1. Hunnicutt, R.P. Stuart: A History of the American Light Tank, volume 1. Navato, CA: Presidio Press, 1992. Reprinted with permission from Stuart, R.P. Hunnicutt ©1992, available from Presidio Press, 505B San Martin Drive, Suite 160, Navato, CA 94945.
  2. Chamberlain, Peter, and Chris Ellis. British and American Tanks of World War Two. Frome, England: Cassell & Co., 2000.
  3. AGF Board No. 2. Development of Armored Vehicles, volume 1: Tanks. 1947.
  4. Kirk, William. "Medium Tanks." TANKS! 19 Oct 2000. 21 Debc 2001 <http://mailer.fsu.edu/~akirk/tanks/UnitedStates/mediumtanks/MediumTanks.html>. TANKS!

Last updated 29 Mar 2014.
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© Copyright 2001-14 Chris Conners