M4A3(75) Sherman Medium Tank
Lot No. 1046
Auctioned on Saturday, July 12, 2014
Sold for $299,000
Length: 19' 4” (5.90-m)
Width: 8' 5” (2.61-m)
Height: 9' 0” (2.74-m)
Hull front: 2” (51-mm)
Turret front: 3” (76-mm)
75-mm Gun M3
1x .50-cal machine gun M2HB
2x .30-cal machine gun M1919A4
Engine: Ford GAA, 8-cylinder, 450-hp
Fuel Capacity: 168-USG (635-l)
Range: 130-miles (209-km)
Speed: 26-mph (41-km/h)
The tank being offered, medium tank M4A3(75) Sherman, serial number 2779, was built in October 1942 by Ford Motor Company. It is an early production M4A3 as it is equipped with direct vision slots. This vehicle was rebuilt late during World War II or early in the post-war period and has many rebuild features that include full applique armor on the hull sides, welded up direct vision slots with applique armor over them, applique armor on the right front of the turret, spare track block stowage on the turret sides, torsion bar hinges for the engine deck doors, and a modified M34 mantlet with extension for a retrofitted M70 gunner's direct sight telescope. This vehicle features a fresh cosmetic restoration. Fans, radiator and fuel tanks are present. The transmission and driver's controls are all present. The 75-mm main gun has been replaced by a 76-mm gun M32 from a Walker Bulldog. Both driver and co-driver's hatches function. Gunner's seat is present. Tracks and roadwheels are in very good condition.
To help counter the shortage of radial aircraft engines that had been the primary means of powering U.S. tanks for sometime, various other engine types were developed and used in the M4 Sherman series of medium tank. One of these engines was the Ford GAA, 8-cylinder. First tested in 1941, the GAA ran 85 hours on a test stand without any trouble. In January 1942, the Ordnance Committee authorized this engine for the medium tank M4. The new M4 was designated the M4A3.
Ford Motor Company completed its first M4A3 in May 1942. This one along with two others were quickly shipped off for testing along with five different GAA's that were all slightly different from each other. After some minor changes, the M4A3 was accepted into full scale production beginning in July/August 1942.
While the M4A3 was still equipped with direct vision slots like the other M4 variants, it was produced only with later model heavy-duty VVSS bogies and a one piece, all-cast, differential housing. Other M4 types were produced early on with the type of bogies seen on M3 medium tanks and three-piece differential housings. M4A3 production ended at Ford in September 1943 after 1,690 had been built. Initially, none of these M4A3's were deployed overseas, having been retained stateside as training vehicles. However, as the units being trained deployed overseas, the worn out training tanks were re-manufactured. A number of these early M4A3's ended up being sent to Europe after the Battle of the Bulge in January 1945 as replacements. A few others saw combat on Okinawa in 1945. Post-war, many found their way into U.S. Army National Guard units.
Transport Cost to Storage: $3,960