M37 105-mm Howitzer Motor Carriage
Lot No. 1053
Auctioned on Saturday, July 12, 2014
Sold for $195,500
Length: 18' (5.49-m)
Width: 9' 10” (3-m)
Height: 9' 4” (2.84-m)
.5” (12.7-mm) all around
1x 105-mm howitzer M4
1x .50-cal M2HB machine gun
Engine: Twin Cadillac Series 44T4 16-cylinder (8/engine), 220-hp (110-hp/engine)
Fuel Capacity: 110-USG (420-l)
Range: 100-miles (160-km)
Speed: 35-mph (56-km/h)
The vehicle being offered, M37 105-mm HMC, serial number 115, was built in October 1945 by American Car and Foundry. It was used as a training vehicle at Fort Knox until the mid-1950s after which time it was sent to Sioux City, Iowa for display. It was sold for scrap in 1989 in very poor condition. A complete and thorough restoration of the M37 took place at the MVTF during 1994-95 with many parts being rebuilt or replaced. This M37 is arguably the best one in existence. Both the interior and exterior paint are in excellent condition. It marked as a vehicle belonging to C Battery, 276th Field Artillery Battalion. A tow cable is stowed on the hull glacis plate along with the pioneer tools. The pioneer tool set includes the shovel, axe, mattock and mattock handle. All suspension components are in excellent condition and function normally. It is currently fitted with T85E1 rubber chevron tracks. Bows for the fighting compartment foul weather cover are mounted on each side of the superstructure. The foul weather cover is not included. All exterior lights are present and intact. Two track clamps are stowed in canvas bags on the front of the superstructure. Four spare track links are mounted on the hull rear. The driver's hatch opens and closes normally. The driver's instrument panel is complete. All driver’s controls function normally. The main armament elevates and traverses smoothly. The indirect fire periscope and direct fire telescope both have good glass with clear sighting reticles. A set of aiming stakes along with a set of ramming staffs are stored in the fighting compartment. Included is a full-load of 105-mm howitzer round packing tubes that are loaded into the fighting compartment ammunition racks. Several loose rounds are also present. Two water cans, three canteens, and three chemical decontamination canisters are also included. It was last driven in January 2014, and runs on auxiliary fuel tanks only.
The M37 105-mm Howitzer Motor Carriage (HMC) was developed to improve upon the very successful M7 Priest 105-mm HMC that was based on the M3/M4 medium tank chassis. Developed using the M24 Chaffee light tank chassis, the M37 provided significant improvements over the M7 including increased howitzer traverse, easier ammunition replenishment, lighter weight and a higher top speed. Standardized for production in January 1945, production didn't actually begin until September 1945 and ended in October of the same year after a run of 150 vehicles was produced.
While produced too late to see action in World War II, the M37 HMC saw heavy service with U.S. Army field artillery units in the Korean War. After the Korean War ended, the M37 was phased out of service in favor of the M52 105-mm HMC that was based on the M41 Walker Bulldog. M37's were then exported to U.S. NATO allies including Spain. During the 1960s and early 1970s, they could be seen in Hollywood movies such as “Battle of the Bulge” and “Patton”.
Please note, this lot is a registered Destructive Device. Bidders for this lot must meet certain qualifications; please review the BATFE guidelines posted at Aucitonsamerica.com/littlefieldDD.
Transport Cost to Storage: $2,640