German Armor in Normandy
Softcover, 128 pp
Proceeds from this book sale go towards the AUSA Scholarship Fund
Throughout World War II, all armies modified the composition of their armored units, reducing the troops as tanks became more powerful. The Germans were no exception and the panzer divisions of 1944 bore little resemblance to those that fought in Barbarossa or North Africa.
Only one panzer division was stationed on the Normandy coastline on D-Day, and reinforcements were rushed to the area, thrown piecemeal into battle against the Allies, plugging gaps and conducting frantic counterattacks. Many of the panzer divisions sent in were "1944-Type" divisions - including the 12th SS Panzer Division Hitlerjugend and the 2nd SS Panzer Division Das Reich. Thrust into the effort to repel the Allies from Normandy, they would be defeated within just ten weeks.
This volume of the Casemate Illustrated series starts by exploring the initial struggle to gain control of Caen after the Allies had landed on the beaches of Normandy. The battles over Caen eventually resulted in German Tigers destroying the 7th Armoured Division, with British losses totaling twenty-seven tanks. The subsequent strategies devised by the panzer commanders during Operations Goodwood and Cobra were not as successful, ultimately ending in disaster for the Germans as the Allies broke through the German line towards the end of July.
With over 100 photos, diagrams showing the composition of German armored divisions and color profiles of tanks and other armored vehicles, this is a detailed examination of the German armored forces in Normandy in 1944, focusing on the organization of the 10 panzer divisions that too park, their vehicles, the battles they fought in and why ultimately their combined strength was not enough to hold back the Allied invasion.