TAMIYA 35087 German Sturmgeschutz IV 1:35 Military Model Kit
The Sturmgeschuetz (storm or assault gun) was developed in the 1936-39 period to provide armoured support for the infantry. This came about largely because the new tanks being produced were destined for the panzer (armoured) divisions. In a battlefield situation there was no guarantee that tanks from an armoured division would be available to support the infantry. Thus the idea of the assault gun regiment organic to an infantry division came about. The new assault gun developed was based on the Panzerkampfwagen III Designated Strumgeschuetze III, the assault gun had a low superstructure with its main armament mounted in the superstructure front and given limited travers. Pre-production vehicles were battle-tested in the invasion of France in May 1940, and then ordered into large scale production.
The original idea was for a vehicle able to give fire support for the infantry, but it was soon discovered that an anti-tank capability was even more important. Later models of the StuG III led to the StuG 40 in early 1942, a StuG III with either a 7.5cm Sturmkanone 40 L/43 or (later) a Sturmkanone 40 L/48. In 1943, production of the Pzkpfw III was phased out as being at the end of its development as a gun tank. Because of the great losses of tanks on the Russian front General Guderian suggested that StuG III vehicles be issued to tank divisions as they were cheaper, simpler and quicker to build than tanks. This would have created an even bigger increase in StuG III output which was already insufficient to meet demands. So it was decided in a conference with Hitler in November 1943 to use the chassis of the Panzerkampfwagen IV. The object was to use this new Strumgeschuetze IV for the panzer divisions. This would greatly simplify maintenance as the panzer divisions. This would greatly simplify maintenance as the panzer divisions were all equipped with the Panzer IV tank.