SOMUA S-35 Medium Tank

Last updated on February 17th, 2019 at 09:49 pm

The SOMUA S-35 medium tank was the first tank in which both the turret and the hull had an all cast construction.

SOMUA stands for Société d’Outillage Mécanique et d’Usinage d’Artillerie, the French company that manufactured the tank.

The turret on the SOMUA S-35 had a traverse that was powered electronically. The main armament consisted of a 1.85 inch (47 millimeter) gun. There was also a coaxial machine gun.

SOMUA S-35 medium tank Source: German Federal Archive
With a 190 horsepower engine, the SOMUA S-35 could move at a maximum speed of 25 miles per hour (40 kph).  It had a range of 150 miles (257 km).

The armor on the SOMUA S-35 was 1.58 inches (40mm) thick.

500 SOMUA S-35 medium tanks were built.

When the Nazis invaded France in 1940, the SOMUA S-35 was a better tank, with better armor and better weapons, than the German tanks of the time.

Nevertheless, the approximately 250 SOMUA S-35s on the front lines were unable to repel the Nazi blitzkrieg.

The Germans captured some SOMUA S-35 medium tanks and put them into service for themselves. The Italians used them as well.

Later on in World War II, the Free French were able to recapture some SOMUA S-35s, which were then used by the French Army.


SOMUA S-35 Medium Tank

Active: 1935
Crew: 3
Weight: 19.2 tons (19,500kg)
Length: 17ft 7.8in (5.38m)
Height: 8ft 7in (2.62m)
Width: 6ft 11.5in (2.12m)
Weapons: Main – 1.85in (47mm) gun, Secondary – 0.295 inch (7.5mm) machinegun
Armor Maximum – 1.58in (40mm)
Engine: V8 gasoline, 190hp
Speed: 25.3mph (40.7kph)
Range: 160 miles (257 km)