Sdkfz 234 Armored Car
Sonderkraftfahrzeug 234 with the 50mm cannon
|Role||Medium Scout vehicle|
|Upkeep per Minute||-5.376|
|Produced By||Sturm Armory|
|Primary armament||20mm Kwk 38 autocannon|
|Secondary armament||7.92mm Maschinengewehr 42|
|Max. Speed||7 m/s|
The Sdkfz 234 Armored Car is a medium Vehicle fielded by the Wehrmacht in Company of Heroes. Armored enough to be impervious to small-caliber weapons and equipped with fast-firing 20 mm cannon, this vehicle can patrol Wehrmacht territory and fight effectively with enemy infantry units. In addition, it can be equipped with 50 mm cannon, which is effective not only against medium vehicles, but also enables fighting heavier armored units.
Known as Schwerer Panzerspähwagen(Heavy armored reconnaissance vehicle), the SdKfz 234 Armored Car or better known as SdKfz 234 Puma('Puma' for short) is an 8 wheel armored car of the Wehrmacht Armed Forces. This vehicle was intended for reconnaissance, scouting, artillery spotting, light harassment, and infantry support. The SdKfz 234 Armored Car has better armor, better weapons, and more mobility than most of the previous models, and was also designed to have an imposing look, and became a popular vehicle among the German Infantry as well as Officers during World War II.
The SdKfz 234 Armored Car is an 8 x 4 medium vehicle available once a Sturm Armory is constructed. It has 15mm armor on the front that is slightly sloped, 8mm on its side and 10mm at the rear, with 6 to 10mm from top to bottom. Its armor proved to be slightly better compared to the M8 Greyhound and the SdKfz 222 Armored Car in the game. It provides protection from small arms and machine gun fire. Initially armed with a 20mm KwK 30 L/55 autocannon and a MG34, the SdKfz 234 Armored Car proved to be a lethal vehicle against infantry. Its 20mm KwK 30 L/55 autocannon can rapidly cut down infantry with its high rate of fire of 200 round per minute and is also effective against lightly armored targets such as the Jeep, Bren Carrier, and M3 Halftrack. It can also be upgraded with a 50mm KwK 39/1 L/60 Light AT cannon, providing sufficient firepower against Allied armored targets and infantry. Most Axis players will purchase this upgrade to increase its lethality against units such as the M8 and M10 in numbers.
The SdKfz 234 Armored Car is an effective heavy reconnaissance vehicle, able to scout and recon an area of the battlefield while still being capable of tackling most enemies. Highly maneuverable, it can travel through enemy territory, identify an enemies position and move back to friendly territory quickly. If upgraded, the 50mm Light AT cannon can provide excellent harassment against infantry, light and medium vehicles, base structures and fortified strategic points. Some Axis commander prefer to use it as hit and run vehicle while performing reconnaissances thanks to its high speed and good maneuverability.
The SdKfz 234 Armored Car works best when supported by infantry or kept in pairs of 2-4 for hit and run assault or raiding. It can also provide support for panzers, using its cannon to suppress and cut down infantry.
While most Armored Cars become obsolete in the later stages of battle, this is where the Puma shines. With an upgraded 50mm gun, the Puma can now effectively engage heavier vehicles. Of course the Puma can't stand up to enemy tanks directly, they can be used for flanking enemy tanks while supporting friendly tanks. If used correctly, the Puma becomes an effective tank-killer.
The Sdkfz 234 is initially equipped with 2 weapons. 20 mm automatic cannon, and a secondary weapon, MG42. Both are mounted on the turret. Later, it can be equipped with 50 mm cannon instead of 20 mm. Each of these weapons is effective against other units.
20 mm KwK 38 Edit
Basic weapon of Sdkfz 234 is dreaded 20 mm cannon. Its effective against enemy infantry units and light vehicles.
This weapon fires from 4 to 5 bullets per burst with 3.5-4.5 interval between each burst. After 2 such bursts weapon must be reloaded, what takes about 6 seconds. Each bullet takes 25-30 points of damage, what enables killing infantry very rapidly.
Accuracy values are good for these weapon, especially for short and medium ranges, where each bullet has 75% for reaching the target. At long distance this value is equal to 50%. Note however, that accuracy Is lowered by half, if vehicle is moving.
As mentioned earlier, this armament is not designed to fight against heavier armored units. Penetration values are weak for this weapon, and although few shots will be able to go through armor of medium vehicles, it won’t be able to win engagements with these units in fire exchange(unless they are equipped with ineffective anti-vehicle weapon).
The MG42 is a secondary weapon of the Sdkfz 234. Its range is equal to 25 meters and shoots from 20 to 24 bullets per burst. Each burst lasts from 3 to 4 seconds. Each bullet, which hits the target inflicts 3 points of damage.
Though fire rate is decent, its accuracy is not. On maximum range only 5% of bullets will hit the target. Unfortunately, it doesn't improve much if the target is closer. Accuracy rises to 10 % on 13 meters and to 35% on 6 meters, respectively.
50 mm Gun Edit
The Sdkfz 234 can be equipped with this weapon if the proper upgrade has been purchased. This armament replaces the 20 mm cannon, changing the role of the vehicle from anti-infantry to anti-vehicle. Although it will still be able to hit enemy soldiers, this weapon is less effective against infantry than the basic weapon of this vehicle.
Each shot from this cannon delivers 67.5 points of damage and reloads for 5 to 6 seconds. This enables the Sdkfz 234 to win engagements with other medium vehicles in fire exchanges. It will take only 4 or 5 shots to destroy an average vehicle. Penetration values enables fights with most enemy vehicles from the front except for the heaviest units, like Churchill tanks or M26 Pershings. When fighting with these flanking maneuvers may be necessary.
Finally, few words about accuracy of this weapon: on short and medium range every shot will hit the target! Even at long range each bullet has a 75% chance to hit. As for almost every weapon, its accuracy is lowered by half if vehicle is moving.
50 mm Gun Edit
- Requires escalation to Battle Phase
- Equipps the Sdkfz 234 with a 50 mm Gun
- Removes the 20 mm cannon
- Costs 75
- Takes 30 seconds to install
The only upgrade available for the Sdkfz 234 is the 50 mm Gun. This is a weapon designed to fight with enemy armored units. Needless to say, the Sdkfz 234 won't be able to fight so effectively with infantry units as it would without this weapon. It may not be necessary to install this upgrade unless the enemy has a large amount of vehicles at their disposal.
The Sdkfz 234 Armored Car is classified as a medium vehicle, and gains veterancy through Vehicle Veterancy Upgrades available at the Kampfkraft Center. Every vehicle already on the battlefield or that will be built receives the proper upgrades. These bonuses are cumulative to each other.
|Level 1 Veterancy:
|Level 2 Veterancy:
|Level 3 Veterancy:
With eight wheels to carry it, the SdKfz 234/1 Armored Car is a valuable Axis vehicle that should be used to engage infantry with its 20mm rapid firing gun. Its strong engine lends the vehicle for reconnaissance roles, but with the Puma 50mm gun upgrade, the unit can prove to be a threat against heavier Allied armor and other vehicles.
- The armored car is very effective at taking out enemy infantry.
- The upgraded gun will lower its effectiveness versus US infantry severely, although it seems to have an easier time versus British infantry. It is effective versus Stuarts though, and can sometimes do a number on M10s. Against M8s though, it serves in a mostly defensive capacity. It may not always be necessary to upgrade the gun until heavier Allied vehicles begin to appear on the field.
- They are good escort units for your onmap artillery especially for your walking stukas.
Although very effective against infantry, the Puma is a lightly armored vehicle. It is vulnerable to all anti-tank weapons, and machine guns equipped with armor piercing rounds can penetrate its armor and destroy it easily. Although the 50mm cannon gives this vehicle a bit of anti-vehicle power, it is still unable to win fights against tanks on its own and it can act only as support unit against such targets. Mortar teams – which aren’t designed to be anti-tank weapons – can damage its engine with random hits, which can deprive Sdkfz 234 one of its biggest advantages - mobility. Keep this vehicle in motion as much as possible in order to avoid such situations.
As mentioned earlier, the Puma is an anti-infantry vehicle and to some degree you may effectively engage infantry equipped with anti-tank weapons. However, while you can underestimate slow-flying PIAT grenades and recoilless rifles(which often seem to fly through the Puma’s armor without doing any harm), watch for Ranger squads. Although Bazookas are well known from their poor accuracy and penetration, rockets from those weapons will never fly through like recoilless rifles do. Rangers can also rapidly close the distance to the point where accuracy problems doesn’t really matter. Take additional care when enemies have large amount of these elite infantry men at their disposal and even more in cities, where the infantry has plenty of places to hide.
When told to move:
After destroying enemy unit:
When issued with attack-move order:
When damaged, in battle: