M 14-41 Medium Tank

The M 14-41 Medium Tank was an improved version of the M 13-40, with a more powerful engine and better desert equipment. The M 14-41 was given a more powerful 145hp SPA 15T engine (up from 125hp on the M 13). A number of minor detail changes helped to improve reliability. The name appears to have been semi-official, occurring in many but not all Italian documents.

The precise number of M 14-41s produced is unclear, but was somewhere between 600 and 800, all produced by Ansaldo at Genoa. Ansaldo's own documents suggest that they produced 710 M 13-40s and 752 M 14-41s. The M 14-41 was also produced as a command tank (M 14-41 Centro Radio command vehicle). This had extra radio equipment and two radio antenna.

Most Italian medium tank battalions in North Africa received the M 14-41 during 1942, and it was probably the most important Italian tank during the Axis advance into Egypt in the summer of 1942. Both the M 13 and M 14 were present in some numbers at the battle of El Alamein in the autumn of 1942, and many of both models were lost during the battle or the retreat into Tunisia. Five tank battalions were issued with the M 14-41 during the final battles in Tunisia early in 1943. The 131st Centauro Armoured Division fought its last battles in Tunisia in March when it clashed with American troops advancing on Tunis. Every Italian tank in North Africa was lost when the Axis forces in Tunisia surrendered on 9 May 1943.

Weight: 14 tons/ 31,966lb
Crew: 3
Armament: 47mm Ansaldo 47/32 gun in turret, one 8mm machine gun in turret, two machine guns in hull
Armour: 14-45mm
Engine: 145hp SPA 15T eight-cylinder liquid cooled inline diesel
Top Speed: 20mph
Length: 16ft 1inft
Width: 7ft 6.6in
Height: 7ft 10.5in

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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (18 April 2012), M 14-41 Medium Tank , http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/weapons_M_14-41.html

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