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Panzer IV is the common name of a medium tank that was developed in the late 1930s by Germany and used extensively in World War II. The official German designation was Panzerkampfwagen IV (abbreviated PzKpfw IV) and the tank also had the ordnance inventory designation SdKfz 161.
The Panzer IV was the workhorse of the German tank corps, being produced and used in all theatres of combat throughout the war. The design was upgraded repeatedly to deal with the increasing threats from enemy forces.
As the Panzer IV was intended to fill an anti-infantry combat role, early models were fitted with a low-velocity 7.5 cm KwK 37 L/24 gun, firing high-explosive shells. After the Germans encountered heavy tank designs such as the Soviet KV-1, the Panzer IV Ausf. F2 and G were armed with the high-velocity 7.5 cm KwK 40 L/43 tank gun. Later IV G models, and all subsequent Panzer IVs, were armed with the longer 7.5 cm KwK 40 L/48 tank gun. The gun could be manually elevated between -10° to +20°, with the turret, under hand or electrical power, have a full 360° traverse. The gunner aimed through an articulated telescope with a limited 25 ° view and 2.5x magnification. The German army considered the gun to be effective up to 1,000 m, expecting 70% first-shot hits at this range and 100% hits at 500 m. Firing at extreme range, 3,000 m, 4% of shots were expected to hit (in controlled tests only 17% of shots struck their target at 3,000 m as opposed to 99% at 1,000 m)