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United States' M7 medium tank

Photos

M7 Medium Tank:
United States' M7 Medium Tank
Aberdeen Tank Museum

Design

The Ordnance Board ordered four prototypes from the Rock Island Arsenal to be replacements for the M3 and M5 light tanks and these were designated the T7 Light Tank. As development progressed it was asked that a 75 mm gun be installed and this brought the vehicle up to the weight class for a medium tank.

The 57 mm gun fired a 6.25 lb shell at a muzzle velocity of 2,800'/sec.

Using the turret ring from a Canadian Ram tank, the pilot vehicle was finished in June 1942. A 75 mm M3 gun was installed eventually installed.

In February 1943, the Armored Forces didn't want both the M7 Medium and the M4 Medium so an order for 3,000 was cancelled after seven had been produced.

Production

  • M7: 7
    • Manufacturer: International Harvester Co

Variants

  • T7E2: Prototype light tank with a cast hull, cast turret, Wright radial engine, and a British 6 pdr (57 mm) gun.
  • M7: Standardized in December 1942.

Specifications

  M7
Crew 5
Physical Characteristics  
Weight T7: 11.6 tons, 11,793 kg
M7: 25 tons, 28 tons, 25,401 kg
Length 16' 10", 17.1'
5.15 m
Height 9'
2.74 m
Width 7.7', 7' 8"
2.34 m
Width over tracks  
Ground clearance 16"
Ground contact length 152"
Ground pressure 10.5 psi
Turret ring diameter  
Armament  
Main 37 mm
57 mm M3
Secondary  
MG 2: 7.62 mm MG
2: .30 cal M1919K4 MG
.30 cal M1919K4 MG
.30 cal M1915K5 MG
Side arms  
Quantity  
Main 90
Secondary  
MG 8,000
Side arms  
Armor Thickness (mm) 64
Front: 1.5"
Side: 1.25"
Hull Front, Upper  
Hull Front, Lower  
Hull Sides, Upper  
Hull Sides, Lower  
Hull Rear  
Hull Top  
Hull Bottom  
Turret Front 2"
Mantlet: 1"
Turret Sides 1.5"
Turret Rear  
Turret Top  
Engine (Make / Model) Wright R-975
Continental & Wright
Bore / stroke  
Cooling Air
Cylinders 9
Capacity  
Net HP 340@2,400 rpm
Power to weight ratio  
Compression ratio  
Transmission (Type) Automatic
3 forward, 1 reverse
Steering Controlled differential
Steering ratio  
Starter Electric
Electrical system  
Ignition Distributor
Fuel (Type) Gasoline
Octane  
Quantity 138 gallons
Road consumption 1.3 mpg
Cross country consumption  
Performance  
Traverse Power and hand
Speed - Road 30 mph
48 kph
Speed - Cross Country 18-20 mph
Range - Road 100 miles
Range - Cross Country  
Turning radius  
Elevation limits  
Fording depth 36"
Trench crossing  
Vertical obstacle  
Climbing ability 17° (30%) slope
Suspension (Type) Vertical volute spring
2 two wheel bogies and one idler wheel each side.
Wheels each side 2x2
Return rollers each side 3
Tracks (Type) Rubber block, double pin shoe
Length  
Width 16.5"
Diameter  
Number of links 142
Pitch 6"
Tire tread  
Track centers/tread 7.7'

Sources:

  1. The Encyclopedia of Tanks and Armored Fighting Vehicles - The Comprehensive Guide to Over 900 Armored Fighting Vehicles From 1915 to the Present Day, General Editor: Christopher F. Foss, 2002
  2. Tank Data, Aberdeen Proving Grounds Series, 1968?
  3. Profile AFV Weapons #46 Light Tanks M22 Locust and M24 Chaffee, Colonel Robert J. Icks, 1972
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site