In the museum
Jagdpanzer (JgdPz) 38 – Hetzer
As the early, lightly armoured and increasingly under-gunned German tanks became obsolete, they were rebuilt. A new superstructure – with either an anti-tank gun or an artillery piece – replaced the turret.
The Hetzer is perhaps the most successful rebuild of all the light
tanks. It is based on the superb Czech 38(t) chassi and became
a highly effective tank destroyer with high mobility, and
a small silhouette.
Towards the end of 1943 CKD was tasked with developing a light tank destroyer. The sloping armour principle was used and a 7.5 cm anti-tank gun was mounted on a widened 38(t) chassi. In spite of the
wider chassi, the vehicle was cramped. It was a delicate job
for the designer to fit a powerful gun, engine and transmission
as well as a crew of four in a vehicle which had to be as low
as possible and where the armour sloped inwards.
The Hetzer was finally (November 1944) officially designated
Jagdpanzer 38 (JgdPz 38). In post war Switzerland, a variant designated G-13 was manufactured.