Pz.III B

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Pz.Kpfw. III Ausf. B
germ_pzkpfw_iii_ausf_b.png
AB
RB
SB
General characteristics
Brief
Detailed
1.0/1.0/1.0BR
5 peopleCrew
86 %Visibility
front / side / backArmour
14 / 14 / 14Hull
16 / 14 / 14Turret
Mobility
16.0 tWeight
477 hp250 hpEngine power
30 hp/t16 hp/tSurface density
39 km/h forward
6 km/h back
35 km/h forward
5 km/h back
Speed
Armament
37 mm KwK36 cannonMain weapon
121 roundsAmmunition
2.9 / 3.7 sReload
-10° / 20°Vertical guidance
2 x 7.92 mm MG34 machine gunCoaxial weapon
3 600 roundsAmmunition
8.0 / 10.4 sReload
150 roundsBelt capacity
900 shots/minFire rate
Economy
freeResearch
freePurchase
freeRepair
Sl icon.pngCrew training
1 000 Sl icon.pngExperts
10 Ge icon.pngAces
100 % Rp icon.pngReward for battle
30 % Sl icon.png20 % Sl icon.png10 % Sl icon.png

Description

GarageImage Pz.III B.jpg


The Pz.Kpfw. III Ausf. B is a rank I German medium tank with a battle rating of 1.0 (AB/RB/SB). It was introduced in Update 1.59 "Flaming Arrows".

General info

Survivability and armour

The Pz.III B is one of the worst starter vehicles in terms of overall survivability. The armour thickness of the hull and sides are 14.5 mm thick, with 16 mm on the turret face. This isn't even enough protection to nullify heavy machine gun fire, which leaves this vehicle almost universally vulnerable from almost all vehicles present in the lower ranks. By angling the hull, you can potentially bring the protection up to 20 mm effective on the front and sides, but this is a superficial boost to armour and will still not reliably protect the tank from any incoming rounds. The only advantage survivability wise this vehicle has is the crew count as it has 5 members. Because most of the incoming fire is going to be from low caliber AP rounds, it's very unlikely that this tank will be taken out in a single shot, though this is more of a passive advantage and not something you can actively make use of.

The Pz.III B, distinguishable from the E by the cylindrical cupola

Mobility

The Pz.III B has fairly unimpressive mobility across all fronts, it can reach a max speed of 35 km/h in RB modes, and 39 km/h in AB modes. Compared to other reserve tanks, this is on the slower side by a large margin and therefore will struggle when it comes to reaching good spots early, pushing across the map and retreating from combat. This tied with the lack of meaningful armour really hurts this tank's overall performance. The only positive aspect of this tanks mobility is its hull traverse, which can help turn the turret and cannon quicker than just using the turret traverse on its own.

Armaments

Main armament

Main article: KwK 36 (37 mm)

The Pz.III B is equipped with the 37 mm KwK36, which is a fairly underwhelming weapon performance wise. It can penetrate most lower rank vehicles at close range, but at further ranges the gun really does start to struggle. It's also fairly inaccurate, which makes aiming for certain weak spots quite difficult.

It comes with two available rounds -

  • APHE- Max 47mm penetration- Low penetration but higher damage potential
  • APCR- Max 86mm penetration- High penetration but lower damage potential.

It's best to consider taking a mix of both types of ammunition. The APHE has the potential to one-shot some enemy tanks, but will be completely ineffective against the more heavily armoured vehicles; for these tanks, it's best to use APCR and aim for flat surfaces. The APCR does very little damage internally, so try to aim for crew members if possible.

Machine guns

Main article: MG 34 (7.92 mm)

This vehicle is equipped with two coaxial 7.92 mm MG34 machine guns. As there are two of them, these machine guns are quite potent against enemy anti-air trucks and even against the slower biplane aircraft commonly encountered in lower rank battles. However, they have no functional viability against armoured vehicles and only serve as a last ditch effort to kick up dust or blind an enemy vehicle by firing at their optics.

Usage in battles

Pz.III B 1.jpg

Overall, the Pz.III B doesn't have many reliable advantages, both the armour and firepower leave a lot to be desired, although its mobility is somewhat functional. However, it just doesn't have any decent aggressive aspects to it that good mobility benefits, meaning that although it is the Pz.III Bs most functioning asset, it's still not reliable to play aggressively on the move. The Pz.III B isn't equipped with a short stabiliser, meaning that the gun will be very unstable when coming to a stop, whereas the majority of allied vehicles do have this feature. So if you were to run into one of these vehicles on the move, your enemy will likely get the first shot off, and as your armour protection is so poor they will likely deal critical damage.

A somewhat reliable way to stay alive in this tank is to play hull-down, a lot of the rounds you'll be taking will be small caliber AP shots. If only your turret is exposed, these rounds will only usually take out 2 crew members at most, allowing for you to back off, repair and reengage. Try not to play too far away from your enemies. The performance of the gun is overall very poor at distances, so even though survivability will be increased by playing at range, firepower will be very inconsistent, so try to find a spot that isn't too far away from combat.

The turret traverse of the Pz.III B is also very poor, at 4.2 degrees a second in RB mode, because of this it's a good idea to use the hull traverse to swing the turret around faster. The hull traverse itself is fairly fast, so utilising this is a decent habit to get in to. The situation you most want to avoid is losing your driver or engine, as your mobility is the only thing that will keep you in the fight, and the way to ensure this primarily is to stay in cover and not advance too far into the map. If an enemy gets on your side or rear, there's nothing you can really do as your turret traverse is disappointingly poor, so watch your flanks and try to minimise the possibility of an enemy getting behind you.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Reasonable acceleration
  • Large crew count
  • Access to APCR
  • Fast reload

Cons:

  • Weak frontal armour
  • Vulnerable to heavy machine guns
  • Lackluster firepower
  • Very slow turret traverse
  • No short stabiliser

History

The Pz.III was supposed to be the main tank of Germany's Panzer Divisions at the start of the war, but its design wasn't finalized until 1939. Approximately 70 early models (A through D, varying primarily by their suspension systems) were made before full-scale production began with the Pz IIIE and F models. All these early models were withdrawn from service by April of 1940.

Media

Excellent additions to the article would be video guides, screenshots from the game, and photos.

See also

Links to the articles on the War Thunder Wiki that you think will be useful for the reader, for example:

  • reference to the series of the vehicles;
  • links to approximate analogues of other nations and research trees.

External links


Germany medium tanks
  Nb.Fz.
Pz.III  Pz.III B · Pz.III E · Pz.III F · Pz.III J · Pz.III J1 · Pz.III L · Pz.III M · Pz.III N
Pz.IV  Pz.IV C · Pz.IV E · Pz.IV F1 · Pz.IV F2 · Pz.IV G · Pz.IV H · Pz.IV J · Pz.Bfw.IV
Pz.V  Panther A · Panther D · Panther F · Panther G · Ersatz M10 · Panther II
Trophies  ▀M4 748 (a) · ▀T 34 747 (r)
Post-war  KPz-70 · mKPz M47 G · M48A2 C · M48A2 G A2
Leopard  Leopard I · Leopard A1A1 · Leopard 2K · Leopard 2A4 · Leopard 2A5