15cm sIG 33 B Sfl
The 15cm sIG 33 B Sfl is a rank I German tank destroyer with a battle rating of 1.0 (AB/RB/SB). It was introduced in Update 1.67 "Assault". Based on the Panzer II chassis, it mounted a 150 mm cannon and was used during the North African campaign.
Survivability and armour
- Rolled homogeneous armour
|Armour||Front (Slope angle)||Sides||Rear||Roof|
|Hull||35 mm (11°) Front plate
20 mm (73°) Front glacis
35 mm (14°) Lower glacis
|15 mm||15 mm|
|Superstructure||30 mm (12°) Gun mantlet||15 mm||15 mm|
- Suspension wheels are 10 mm thick while tracks are 15 mm thick.
- Hull underside right above tracks is 15 mm thick and belly armour is 5 mm thick.
The Sturmpanzer II does have enough armour to stop low BR tank rounds, however it should not be relied upon to stop high velocity or high penetration rounds, especially from other SPGs. It is an open-topped vehicle, and since it has no machine guns, it is very vulnerable to air attack.
Despite having very little armour, it does have a lot of empty space in the tank to resist multiple penetrating hits before being destroyed. However, it is hull-breakable against 75 mm or larger guns with sufficient AP velocity or HE capability.
|Game Mode||Max Speed (km/h)||Weight (tons)||Engine power (horsepower)||Power-to-weight ratio (hp/ton)|
The Sturmpanzer II can go up to 45 km/h, but due to the low power-to-weight ratio of 17.04 hp/ton in AB and 9.74 hp/ton in RB, the practical top speed is significantly less. Reverse speed is decent, up to -8.4 km/h. It has a decent turning capability when moving at higher speeds, but when stopped it can barely turn due to its weight.
Modifications and economy
The Sturmpanzer II mounts a s.I.G.33 infantry support cannon, which can fire HEAT or HE rounds. The shell velocity is very slow (240 m/s), so slow that it can be awkward to target moving targets or those at long ranges, especially with HE rounds. The calibre of the gun is 15 cm (150 mm/5.9 in). The Sturmpanzer does not have any other weapons.
The J.Gr.38 HE shell penetrates 61 mm against all armour angles. The 8.6 kg explosive mass ensures that anything that gets penetrated is instantly knocked out or is so badly crippled that a follow-up shot is guaranteed.
- Note: the HE on this is so powerful that it can even one-shot top rank tanks reliably, but due to the huge mobility disadvantage, this is not recommended unless you know exactly what you are getting yourself into.
The J.Gr.39 HI/A HEAT shell penetrates 185 mm against vertical armour and still has a 4.16 kg TNT equivalent of explosives behind it, giving it effectively 40-45 mm penetration from the explosion splash on top of the HEAT superplastic copper jet penetration. In one of the minor updates, 120 mm and larger HEAT rounds were altered to act more like HE shells to benefit top rank vehicles - tanks such as the Sturmpanzer are unintentional beneficiaries of this change.
|150 mm s.I.G.33||Turret rotation speed (°/s)||Reloading rate (seconds)|
- J.Gr.38 (HE): This round is extremely powerful, and can destroy pretty much every tank at the same battle rating as the 15cm sIG 33 B Sfl. It requires only a hit on the tank, underneath it, or in close proximity to be effective. It completely ignores the armour of most tanks you will face, and is very good at destroying a tank in one shot. It is likely that you will knock out several crew members and/or detonate their ammunition.
- J.Gr.39 HI/A (HEAT): This round is effective, just as is the high-explosive round, but unless you are up-tiering the vehicle, the HEAT round is likely a worse choice. It has more penetration, but that penetration is unlikely to be useful at this BR. Plus, the HEAT does not have near as much post-penetration damage as the HE round, meaning you may waste 2 shots on 1 tank, whereas the HE round may have knocked it out in 1 shot. As such, unless you are up-tiering the tank you will not need HEAT, and you should probably only take a few rounds (if any), just in case you run across something like a B1 Bis.
|Ammunition|| Type of
|Penetration @ 0° Angle of Attack (mm)|
|10 m||100 m||500 m||1,000 m||1,500 m||2,000 m|
|Ammunition|| Type of
| Fuse delay
| Fuse sensitivity
| Explosive Mass
(TNT equivalent) (g)
| 9 (+9)
| 5 (+13)
| 0 (+18)
How much ammo to carry?
The most logical ammo loadout would probably either be 18 shells or 9 shells. 18 shells would be logical if you expect to be in the battle for a long time where you might run out of ammunition otherwise. If you don't expect to be firing as much or for as long, then you might consider taking only 9 shells. Taking only 9 shells removes all the ammo from the right side of the tank, which could possibly save your life. 9 shells is probably the most balanced ammunition loadout in terms of survivability and endurance. Of course, you can also take an amount of shells between 9 and 18 in order to partially (but not completely) deplete this first ammo rack. This would be useful if the user desires a longer firing time but still wishes for better survivability. At higher BRs 3.0 or more, recommended amount of shells is 18 or any number of them, since even if your ammunition doesn't detonate, you are still likely to be destroyed relatively quickly.
Usage in battles
The Sturmpanzer has no air defence weapons, therefore partnering with an SPAA tank at the back of the map is a viable option. For those operators who prefer to close-range brawl with other low-tier tanks, then sticking with another tank is a good idea, mainly due to the long reload time, allowing your partner tank to help fend off any enemy advancers. It has the capability to knock out much higher battle rated tanks, so if you're up-tiered, there is still a good chance of survival. However, it is imperative to get a shot off first, because if you come across a higher tier tank, there may not be a second chance. Stay on the move after firing, fall back to safety to reload and then re-engage. Another tactic is to try facing down a street while partly undercover. The Sturmpanzer is a relatively small vehicle and many beginning players will not notice the tank, especially if only part of the vehicle is exposed. Patiently wait for an easy target to turn onto the street then fire before they realize where they are being fired from. It is critical to remember the shell drop of the tank cannon after being fired, compared to other tanks, the shell drop is significant over any distance. It is advisable to always fire just above where other tanks would typically target to allow for shell drop and hitting of the enemy vehicle where intended instead of lower than expected.
Due to the huge HE splash ability and sheer calibre of the gun, it can even be used to battle high-rank IFVs - BMP-1s at 7.3 are especially common to encounter. It does the same thing to BMP-2s, M3 Bradleys, Warriors, Centauros, and many other vehicles. The HE splash, however, is strong enough that it can one-shot the light vehicles such as the M41A1 Bulldog, any AMX-13 variation, Crusaders in lower ranks, and many others. Purposely up-tiering it can be a very effective way to earn Silver Lions with the "God Mode!" award - destroying an enemy vehicle 5.0 BR ranks higher (BR 7.0+) than you which nets 20,000 Silver Lions.
B1 bis: This is one of the few tanks that you will face while playing at your original BR that you may struggle to destroy. These tanks are heavily armoured and much of their hulls can withstand a shot from your gun, even from the side. If you are facing one of these tanks, aim for the turret. The turret is one of the only places you can reliably do damage to the B1 bis, and you can often get a 1 shot kill if you hit the turret. Note: The B1 bis looks extremely similar to its less well-armoured predecessor, the B1 ter, and it can be incredibly hard to tell which variety it is except at closer ranges. If you can't tell which it is, just aim for the turret to be safe, but if it is a B1 ter the hull is a viable option.
Pros and cons
- Deadly HE with 65 mm penetration and 8.6 kg TNT filler destroys anything at its rank (eg. B1 bis, M5A1, T-50) or even in a purposely up-tiered battle (eg. Leopard 1, AMX-30 or even the M1 Abrams)
- HEAT offers 185 mm penetration, posing a great threat against WW2 heavy targets like M4A3E2, IS-1, KV-1E, etc
- Adequate mobility: moderate top speed and fast hull traverse when driving allows it to deliver heavy blows from unexpected positions
- Low and small profile makes it easy to hide behind bushes or covers
- Can withstand a few hits on certain parts of frontal armour, which may bounce low-penetrating tanks like M16 MGMC or P.7.T AA
- Very long reload means close-range combat is impossible without allied support, as it will be defenceless for around 20 seconds
- Quite hard to find a chance to fire: limited gun traverse and extremely curved trajectory means it's hard to track and hit moving/distant targets
- HE and HEAT get detonated by various obstacles like fences and brick walls, making some positions difficult to shoot from
- Poor survivability overall: thin armour can get penetrated by anything, especially heavy MG found on M16 MGMC, and the open top means it is vulnerable to strafing aircraft, nearby bombs and exploding artillery shells
- Very slow at turning on the spot, might not be able to get gun on target in time
- Although speed is decent, most opponents still outrun it easily, for example M5A1, T-50, M22
The Sturmpanzer I Bison was a self-propelled gun, consisting of a 150 mm sIG 33 heavy infantry gun mounted on top of a Panzer I chassis, together with a lightly armoured casemate to protect the gun servants. It was stop-gap vehicle used as an infantry support vehicle and showed its limits during the invasion of France and the Low Countries. The weight of the gun and the additional armour strongly hindered the mobility of the tank and caused premature mechanical wear. The gun installed very high on the chassis together with the casemate made the Sturmpanzer I a target of choice on the battlefield due to its very tall silhouette. The casemate did not protect all gun servants: the gunner and the commander were protected but loaders were extremely exposed as the casemate wasn't designed long enough to cover the rear of the vehicle. The extremely cramped layout of the vehicle made it impossible to stow ammunition: it had to be brought by a separate dedicated tank.
The need for the Sturmpanzer II was born early in 1941 when Rommel requested self-propelled guns to support his armoured divisions in North Africa. This led the German Army to consider mounting the heavy gun sIG 33 on a vehicle chassis more fit to the task. The requirements for the new vehicle were to provide a less cramped layout for the gun and the crew to operate in optimal conditions, to give a silhouette as small as possible and to carry its own ammunition onboard, while maintaining the crew count, operational range and top speed of the previous Sturmpanzer.
After the battle of France, the German Army focused on equipping their tank divisions with Panzer III and IV. The Panzer II tanks were recycled into other vehicles to assume different combat roles: tank destroyers, self-propelled guns, training vehicles or reconnaissance tanks. The availability of the Panzer II made it a natural successor of the Panzer I for the project. The first prototype used the standard chassis of a Panzer II, which revealed a similarly cramped layout. To remedy the issue, the chassis was widened by 32 cm, lengthened by 60 cm and a 6th roadwheel added along with track links. The new casemate was open-topped but effectively surrounded the crew compartment, with a reinforced frontal gun shield. The 15cm sIG 33 B Sfl also carried 30 rounds. The loaders were still slightly exposed to gun fire when fetching ammunition around the vehicle but the emphasis was put on keeping a silhouette as small as possible. The operational range was increased and the crew count of 4 maintained together with the top speed. 12 vehicles were built in November and December 1941.
The 15cm sIG 33 B Sfl served in North Africa, in the German 707th and 708th Heavy Infantry Gun Companies Heavy Infantry Gun Company until their destruction or surrender in 1943.
- Vehicles equipped with the same chassis
- Other vehicles of similar configuration and role
- [Wikipedia] 15 cm sIG 33 auf Fahrgestell Panzerkampfwagen II (Sf)
- [Tanks Encyclopedia] 15cm sIG 33 auf Fahrgestell Panzerkampfwagen II (Sf)
|Germany tank destroyers|
|Based on Pz.38(t)||Marder III · Marder III H · Jagdpanzer 38(t)|
|Based on Pz.I||Panzerjäger I|
|Based on Pz.II||15cm sIG 33 B Sfl|
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|Based on Pz.IV||Jagdpanzer IV · Panzer IV/70(V) · Panzer IV/70(A) · Brummbär · Dicker Max · Nashorn · VFW|
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