From War Thunder Wiki
Revision as of 22:17, 15 May 2019 by AN_TRN_26 (talk | contribs) (Edits.)

Jump to: navigation, search
Rank VI | Premium | Golden Eagles
Challenger DS Pack
2.3 2.3 2.3
Research:5 900 Specs-Card-Exp.png
Purchase:6 300 Specs-Card-Lion.png
Show in game


GarageImage Pz.III J.jpg

The Pz.Kpfw. III Ausf. J (or Panzer III J) is a rank I German medium tank with a battle rating of 2.3 (AB/RB/SB). It was introduced in Update 1.45 "Steel Generals".

General info

Survivability and armour

Armour type:

  • Rolled homogeneous armour
  • Cast homogeneous armour (Barrel shroud, Cupola)
Armour Front Sides Rear Roof
Hull 50 mm (12°) Front plate
25 mm (86°), 50 mm (52°) Front glacis
50 mm (23-69°) Lower glacis
30 mm 50 mm (14-46°) Top
50 mm (10-66°) Bottom
15 mm
Turret 50 mm (10-25°) Turret front
50 mm (12-62°) Gun mantlet
30 mm (20-25°) 30 mm (12-15°) 10 mm
Armour Sides Roof
Cupola 50 mm 10 mm


  • Suspension wheels are 15 mm thick while tracks are 20 mm thick.


Mobility characteristic
Weight (tons) Add-on Armor
weight (tons)
Max speed (km/h)
21.8 N/A 59 (AB)
53 (RB/SB)
Engine power (horsepower)
Mode Stock Upgraded
Arcade 465 572
Realistic/Simulator 265 300
Power-to-weight ratio (hp/ton)
Mode Stock Upgraded
Arcade 21.33 26.24
Realistic/Simulator 12.16 13.76


Main armament

Main article: KwK 38 (50 mm)
50 mm KwK 38
Capacity Vertical
99 -10°/+20° ±180° N/A
Turret rotation speed (°/s)
Mode Stock Upgraded Prior + Full crew Prior + Expert qualif. Prior + Ace qualif.
Arcade 3.30 4.50 _.__ _.__ _.__
Realistic 3.30 3.80 _.__ _.__ _.__
Reloading rate (seconds)
Stock Prior + Full crew Prior + Expert qualif. Prior + Ace qualif.
5.20 _.__ _.__ 4.0
Penetration statistics
Ammunition Type of
Penetration in mm @ 90°
10m 100m 500m 1000m 1500m 2000m
PzGr 39 APC 74 73 59 45 34 26
PzGr 40/1 APCR 118 117 84 56 37 25
PzGr 40 APCR 132 130 94 63 42 28
Shell details
Ammunition Type of
in m/s
Mass in kg
Fuse delay

in m:

Fuse sensitivity

in mm:

Explosive Mass in g
(TNT equivalent):
Normalization At 30°
from horizontal:
0% 50% 100%
PzGr 39 APC 685 2.1 1.2 25 28.9 +4° 48° 63° 71°
PzGr 40/1 APCR 1005 1.1 N/A N/A N/A +1.5° 66° 70° 72°
PzGr 40 APCR 1050 0.92 N/A N/A N/A +1.5° 66° 70° 72°
Ammo racks
rack empty
rack empty
rack empty
rack empty
99 75 (+24) 50 (+49) 25 (+74) (+98) Yes

Left side empty: 50 (+49)

Machine guns

Main article: MG 34 (7.92 mm)
7.92 mm MG 34
Coaxial mount
Capacity (Belt capacity) Fire rate
4,350 (150) 900 N/A N/A

Usage in the battles

Use of this tank is similar to the Pz. III F, and while it does have significantly better armour on the front than its predecessor, the higher BR of 2.3 means it faces MUCH nastier opposition in semi-frequent up-tiers to 3.3. T-34 (1940)s are almost unpenetrable from any side except flat-on below the tracks. M4A1s are similar in speed to you, have thinner sides, are spacious, have powerful guns, and stabilizers. Cromwells are much faster than you with stronger guns. You literally can only hope for them to get overconfident, overextend, and shoot them in the side or rear. APCR post-penetration damage is not reliable enough to be counted upon when you need it the most, plus neither PzGr.40/1 or PzGr.40 can frontally pen a Sherman or T-34 anyway. The gap between 2.3 and 3.3 is tremendous, and is just as crippling as that between 6.7 and 7.7, for an accurate relative comparison.

Furthermore, even in the best circumstances, the high fuse sensitivity makes many lightly-armoured things with strong guns your worst nightmare, since you'll over-penenetrate repeatedly in most cases, allowing easy return fire from the person you failed to knock out, which more often than not cripples you. Enemy SPAAG, in particular, is frustrating to KO because of your 15 mm turret ring weak spot enabling them to spray all over you to KO your gunner and loader.

Pros and cons


  • Accurate and decently powerful gun
  • Great gun depression
  • Good Mobility
  • APCR ammo has very high speed and good penetration, making shooting at long range easier
  • Armour is fairly decent, can protect reliably against beginner's and some lower BR tanks


  • Penetration is a bit lacking, as is post-penetration against things in up-tiers.
  • Awful turret traverse speed
  • Flat armour with little slope, weak side armour
  • Large commander's cupola, often sticking out above the terrain, drawing enemy attention.
  • Rather high fuse sensitivity for such a lacklustre cannon



The Panzerkampfwagen III medium tank or the Panzer III was developed in the 1930s. Starting in early 1934, Heinz Guderian set down some specifications for a new tank, which Army Weapons Department took up to design the tank to weigh no more than 24,000 kilograms with a top speed of 35 km per hour. This tank's role was to be the main tank of the German army and was expected to destroy opposing tanks, as opposed as a tank made to destroy anti-tank guns and opposing infantrymen, which the Panzer IV took up in.

Damlier-Benz, Krupp, MAN, and Rheinmetall produced prototypes meeting the specifications and the Damlier-Benz model was chosen after testing in 1936-1937. The Panzer III model used a leaf-spring suspension in its early models (Ausf. A - Ausf. D) before utilizing a six-wheeled torsion-bar suspension in the Ausf. E and beyond. The Panzer III had a crew of five people, the commander, gunner, loader, driver, and assistant driver. The best feature of the Panzer III during its introduction that is the most overlooked was the three-man turret, which was not as common at the time. This frees the commander to be able to effectively command the tank while maintaining situational awareness rather than be burdened by the role of a loader or gunner, improving the combat effectiveness of the tank. Despite this rather advanced design, the turret did not have a turret basket for the crew. It was a proven design and production began in May 1937. The total number of Panzer IIIs tanks constructed in its production life was 5,774 units (excluding StuG III variant).


The Panzer III started with only 15 mm of armour on all sides, this was quickly upgraded to 30 mm on the front, side, and rear on the Ausf. D, E, F, and G models. Then the Ausf. H placed an additional 30 mm of armour onto the front hull as an interim solution before the Panzer III Ausf. J gave the Panzer III a 50 mm armour thickness on the front and rear. The Panzer III Ausf. J still retained the 50 mm KwK 38 cannon from the Ausf. F, which provided much-needed firepower over the 37 mm KwK 36. The Panzer Ausf. J had a 300 PS Maybach HL 120 TRM engine that gave it a top speed of about 40 km/h (25 mph) with an operational range of 155 km (96 mi.).

Combat usage

The Panzer III Ausf. J gave the German army better armour for their Panzer III and with a better gun. However, it was still considered under-gunned to the Soviet contemporary T-34 and KV-1 tanks as the 50 mm KwK 38 was not powerful enough to penetrate these tanks frontally with normal ammo. This requires the use of APCR, which was in low supply. The Soviet T-26 and BT series light tanks were still easily taken care of and there were still in larger quantities than the T-34s and KVs, but T-34 production was kicking off and it won't be long before the T-34 becomes the main tank of the Red Army.

The Panzer III still needed improvements if it ever was to go up against the more modern tanks and Germany needed it to stay in service as long as possible as their new tanks are being developed. The next variant featured additional armour and a better 50 mm cannon, the 50 mm KwK 39, on the Panzer III Ausf. J1. The armour had an additional 20 mm offset armour in the front hull and turret, plus the 50 mm KwK 39 featured a longer barrel than the 50 mm KwK 38, increasing its penetration values.


Skins and camouflages for the Panzer III Ausf.J from live.warthunder.com. There are plenty of category terms flying around. So looking through every one of them will be necessary.


Read 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.



Paste links to sources and external resources, such as:

  • topic on the official game forum;
  • other literature.

Germany medium tanks
Pz.III  Pz.III B · Pz.III E · Pz.III F · Pz.III J · Pz.III J1 · Pz.III J1 TD · 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.Bef.Wg.IV J
Pz.V  VK 3002 (M) · Panther A · Panther D · Panther F · Panther G · Ersatz M10 · Panther II
M48 upgrades  M48A2 G A2 · M48 Super
Leopard 1  Leopard I · Leopard A1A1 · Leopard A1A1 (L/44) · Leopard 1A5 · C2A1 · Turm III
Leopard 2  PT-16/T14 mod. · Leopard 2K · Leopard 2AV · Leopard 2A4 · Leopard 2 (PzBtl 123) · Leopard 2 PL · Leopard 2A5 · Leopard 2A6
Trophies  ▀M4 748 (a) · ▀T 34 747 (r)
Other  Nb.Fz. · KPz-70
USA  mKPz M47 G · M48A2 C