interesting stuff there.. and your varous threads.. agree btw.. might be best in one single thread perhaps in the designer forum.This sort?
The ZIS-5 truck (Russian Vehicle Note 47) had a half-track version produced from 1942 to try to aleviate the effects of bad roads. It was inspired by the French and German vehicles.
Underpowered and with a tremendous fuel consumption, the ZiS-42(M) was not the definite solution for the notorious bad road conditions, but instead it was a valuable stopgap until the arrival of the Lend-Lease all-wheel-drive trucks.
Or this sort?
Soviet military intelligence had little interest in British light tanks before the war. In April of 1941, GABTU knew about the Light Tank Mk.VI, Mk.I and MkIII cruiser tanks, the Mk.I infantry tank, and some kind of "heavy tank model 1940". Even in September, when negotiations about supplying the USSR with British vehicles were underway, the information on available tanks was sparse. The Light Tank Mk.VI and Light Tank Mk.VII "Tetrarch" got mixed up into one tank. The resulting "light Vickers tank" had a 37 mm gun with a coaxial machinegun, maximum armour thickness of 17.5 mm, weighed 8.5 tons, and had a maximum speed of 30 kph.
Data on tanks loaded on the first convoy in late September of 1941 is even more interesting to researchers, as it contains a "Light Tank Mk.8". This index was carried by the "Harry Hopkins" tank, but the characteristics listed show that it is undeniably a Tetrarch. The document said that 20 such tanks will arrive with PQ-1, but instead a batch of 20 Matildas and Valentines was sent. Supplies of lighter tanks were paused for the time being.
In early October of 1941, thanks to military intelligence, GABTU received characteristics of nearly all tanks built by Great Britain and the United States. In early December, GABTU received detailed information about production of British tanks. The numbers retrieved match up very well with modern data from British sources. The first 15 Mk.VII tanks were built in the fourth quarter of 1940, 30 in the first quarter of 1941, and 20 in the third quarter. 35 more tanks were awaited before the end of the year.
These numbers match perfectly with Tetrarch production numbers. Their registration numbers range from T.9266 to T.9365, or 100 tanks overall. Intelligence reports indicated that no tanks were planned for production in the first quarter of 1942, which indicated that production was being shut down. Reports also described plans for a new Light Tank Mk.8 with a mass of 10 tons and thicker armour.
By then, a batch of Tetrarchs was finally sent to the USSR. The light tanks were the first to come through the south passage. On December 27th, 1941, 20 tanks arrived at Zanjan, Iran. This batch was also the last, since due to the rather humble characteristics of the Tetrarch, further orders were pointless.
Photos and letters about this shipment indicate that at least a portion of the tanks were used. Among them were some of the first built Tetrarchs, T.9266, T.9267, and T.9268, built back in October-November of 1940. Photos of these tanks show insignia of the 10th Royal Hussars Regiment from the 1st Armoured Division. This unit was the first to receive Tetrarchs and used them as training tanks. To be fair, not all tanks sent were used. Serial numbers T.9315 and T9319 pop up in letters, and the tank currently displayed at Patriot Park has the serial number T.9328, all of which were built in the third quarter of 1941. These tanks had no markings and were not used as training tanks.
On May 25th, 1942, the 151st Tank Brigade began formation in Leninakan, Armenia. It was headed by Colonel V.A. Kornilov. According to documents, the Tetrarchs and their crews were included in the brigade. On June 20th, the brigade was included into the 45th Army of the North Caucasus Front.
The North Caucasus Front, especially its tank units, was a rather interesting formation. The most popular tank here (remember, this is the summer of 1942) was the T-26 (Russian Vehicle Note 6). The T-26 was also the most numerous in the 151st Tank Brigade. In total, as of early June of 1942, the brigade had 25 T-26es and 20 Tetrarchs, listed as MK-VII or MK-7.
The main goal of the 151st Tank Brigade in the 45th Army was guarding the border. The army, commanded by Lieutenant-General F.N. Remezov was located on the border with Iran. On May 21st, 1942, in the port city of Bandar Shah (now Bandar Torkaman), a receiving department for imported tanks was formed. The tanks themselves were only shipped to the USSR in the end of the summer, but trucks and various other Lend-Lease cargo used that route as well. The 45th Army and the 151st brigade guarded those supplies. In July, Tetrarch T.9328 was sent to Kubinka.
On January 1st, 1943, the 151st Tank Brigade (25 T-26es and 19 MK-7s) from Leninakan, as well as the 563rd (21 M3 Lights (Russian Vehicle Note 48) and 9 M4A2s (Russian Vehicle Note 50)) and 564th (10 T-34s (Russian Vehicle Note 14) and 20 T-26es (Russian Vehicle Note 6a)) Independent Tank Battalions were transferred to the Black Sea group of the Transcaucasian Front. Initially the tank brigade was subordinate to the 47th Army, where it faced its first battle.
Alas, the heroism of the tankers could not change the flow of events. Due to poor communication with artillery and retreat of the infantry, the tanks also had to fall back. Later days were spent in futility trying to break through the enemy's defenses once more.
Another tank from the 1st tank battalion was knocked out on January 27th. Thanks to energetic action on behalf of Senior Technical Lieutenant I.I. Fetisov, who personally drove another tank, the tank was evacuated from the battlefield. For his initiative, Fetisov received the "For Battle Merit" medal.
To strengthen the attack on January 31st, tanks of the 47th Army were united into one battalion commanded by Colonel Kornilov. By then, the 151st TBr reported only 14 functional tanks. On that day, the joint battalion went on to attack height 224.5. 6 tanks were lost in one day, including Bal's tank. By then, the tanks under his command destroyed 18 pillboxes and killed 70 enemy infantrymen. When Bal's tank was knocked out, he managed to drag wounded gunner Taranov from the tank, take him to the rear, and return to battle. Leading 50 infantrymen, the Senior Lieutenant managed to take the surviving pillboxes. For this, he was awarded with the "For Courage" medal. Sadly, even such heroism did not alter the overall battle.
As of February 1st, 1943, Kornilov's joint battalion contained 9 functional MK-7s. On that day, the tanks attacked again, but the offensive stalled without infantry support. Taking losses, Kornilov's tanks retreated to their initial positions. On the next day, the joint battalion was sent to the reserve. On February 11th, the battalion was transferred to the 216th Infantry Division, with which the tanks attacked height 224.6 the next day. The results were the same: the infantry did not support the tanks. The result was 4 burned and 5 knocked out vehicles. The attacks on subsequent days went about the same way. On February 28th, the 151st Tank Brigade was transferred to reserves and moved to the 56th Army.
In mid-March, the brigade received new tanks, including captured ones. Its own tanks, including 14 MK-7s (4 of them nonfunctional) were sent to the 563rd Independent Tank Brigade on March 19th, which took part in an unsuccessful landing at Novorossiysk. The nonfunctional tanks were sent to the 3rd Infantry Corps which used them as pillboxes in defense of the Shapsugskiy bridge.
Gradually, the Tetrarchs broke down. By the end of May, only 7 remained functional. They were transferred to the 132nd Independent Tank Regiment, which was likely not happy about this new addition. Thanks to a lack of parts and heavy use, only two tanks worked by September. There is information about transfer to the 5th Guards Tank Brigade, but it requires confirmation. One thing can be said for certain: the combat career of the Tetrarch in the Red Army was over in the fall of 1943. Not bad for a tank that served almost two years in total.
The last mention of Tetrarchs in the Red Army dates back to January of 1944. Repairs factory #66 (Tbilisi) lists 3 MK-7 tanks. 6 such vehicles were brought to the factory in 1943, but 3 of them were written off by January. The same fate awaited the remaining tanks, as no spare parts were found to repair them.
See also Russian Vehicle Note N & Note LL