Foreign Tractors Overview
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Last Updated: March 25, 2007

Light Artillery Tractor T-20 »Komsomolez«
In the Mid-30s, the Russian Institute for Tractor Technology (»NATI«) initiated the developmentof a small artillery tractor for towing the 45mm AT and 76 mm Regimental gun.
While the first attempt, the ill-fated Pioneer, failed, the T-20 Komsomolez was accepted for production at the Mocow factory No. 37 in 1936.
Equipped with a GAZ-M 50hp engine the T-20 run on the T-38 amphibious tank suspension and was protected by 10mm armour and a 7.62mm DT front machine gun in a ball mount.
The crew consisted of two providing additional space for 6 on two side benches optionally protected by an attachable canvas.
Three main production versions existed differing from each other mainly thru the shape of the gun mount and the rear plate.
Despite of several drawbacks, mainly the narrow tracks and the weak engine, 7780 T-20 left the factory until 1941, of which 6700 were in service by the time of the German attack decreasing to 1662 in September 1942.
Many however were captured by German, Finnish and Rumanian forces who used them for towing their own artillery pieces and - in case of the German army - as 37mm SPG..

Special thanks to Mr. Jochen Vollert, Germany, for providing precious informations.

Late style machine gun housing

Late rear hull with 3 air intakes and spare road wheel

Early rear hull with engine louvers

... towing the 45mm AT Gun on the R-243 Limber

ZiS-30 57mm SPG
In a desperate attempt to compensate the huge tank losses of summer of 1941, the Russian engineers installed the new 57mm ZiS-2 AT gun to the chassis of 101 T-20 tractors of the last production series.

This was quite similar to the experimental ZiS-41 halftrack SPG developed during the same period.

Though the construction was quite instable and the gun crew was only insufficiently protected, the new SPG proved quite effective during the fierce winter fighting around Moscow when it was deployed to the AT batteries of tank brigades.

However, most of the guns were lost by spring 1942 and none survived the war.