KV-2-Box On Wheels


“Heavy Soviet Tank KV-2. Советский тяжелый танк КВ-2.” by Peer.Gynt is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

The Soviets have a lot of innovative designs during World War 2, especially when it come to tanks. Indeed, they have created the mighty T-34 during the year 1940. But for those of you that have seen movies or played Soviet-related WW2 games might know, the T-34 is not the only tank charging forward to whip the Nazis during the Eastern Front of WW2. There is also another tank, a heavy tank that is distinctive anywhere, with a super big (for the time) gun attached to what might been one of the world’s largest turret. It is also a nightmare to the Nazis, especially to the German tank-destroying team, to defeat. The Nazi tanks, just like when they saw a T-34, run away just from the sight of this chunky boy. That tank is the powerful, bunker-busting, KV-2


The KV-2 belongs to a series of heavy tanks with the same initial. The “KV” is the initial of the Soviet defense politician and Commissar Kliment Voroshilov. He is also the one who keep the massive Red Army functioning. To honor him, the leading engineer of the KV family, Josef Kotin, used the Commissar’s initial as the name for his series of heavy tanks. The KV have been at war since the “Winter War”, in which the Soviets attacked Finland after they agreed to make peace and divide up Europe with Nazi Germany, in the form of KV-1, a T-34 lookalike. The KV-1, and it’s later relatives, were created as a new type of heavy tank when the Soviet T-35, a multi-turret tank and was also the only working type with 5 turrets. The KV-1 is good tank, but many were captured by the Finnish armed forces with some sort of ease. The Finnish Armed Forces used guerilla warfare and bunkers to fight off (and whip) the Red Army. The Red Army then decided that they need something heavier than the KV-1 to handles the bunkers. And so, the Red Army go on and requested for a heavy tank that were capable of bunker-busting. They tried several different types and prototypes (including a SU-100, SPG tank-killer, with a heavier gun), but all failed. The Red Army then turned once again to Josef Kotin to give them a bunker-buster. Josef Kotin, and his design team, then started from scratch. And then produced the KV-2.

Design features

The KV-2 is distinctive anywhere, mainly because of it’s big and chunky turret. Why use that big of a turret? Well, it’s because that the KV-2’s main weapon, a 152mm howitzer, fires very powerful shells. And these shells, of course, makes a very harsh recoil. The sheer weight of the turret made it possible for the tank to handle the recoils, and the turret also acts as a storage spot for ammos. But, however, this did limited the KV-2’s overall mobility and turret traversing speed (how fast can the turret turn). Mainly because of the weight.


Length: 7.31 meters (23 feet and 11 inches)

Width: 3.49 meters (11 feet and 5 inches)

Height: 3.93 meters (12 feet and 1 inches)

Weight: (when fully loaded) 57.9 tons

Speed: (while on paved road) 25 km/h (15.5 mph)

Crew needed: 5 (driver, commander, gunner, and 2 loaders)

Armaments: one 152 mm (5.98 inches) 1938/1940 L20 howitzer or the M-10T model, plus two 7.62 mm DT machine guns

Range: 200 km (120 miles)

Armor: (overall) 75-110 mm (2.95-4.3 inches)

Combat History

The KV-2 have been at war since it’s birth, which is 1940, against Germany. Just like the T-34, the Germans tank-destroying teams always have a hard time fighting against them. As it was proven during the Battle of Raseiniai, which is a tank battle that happened in June of 1941. During this battle, a German tank division called the 6th Panzer Division spotted a KV-2 deep within the German line (Some said that it was a KV-1, but I’m just going to say it’s a KV-2 in this case). The division commander then sent out the anti-tank squadron the try and destroy the KV-2. The anti-tank squad then sent out four 50 mm anti-tank rifles to destroy the KV-2. But none of their shots penetrated the KV-2’s armor. Then the KV-2 turn it’s massive gun toward the anti-tank rifles and destroyed them with ease. Then the anti-tank squad sent out a 88 mm FLAK cannon and position it about 700 meters behind the KV-2. But before it can fire, the KV-2 fired first and blasted the FLAK cannon to bits. Then the division decided to sent out the combat engineers to destroy the tank up close. During the night, several German engineers rushed up to the KV-2 and throw satchel bombs at it, trying to destroy the KV-2’s tracks. But they failed. The next day, the division sent out several panzers to put themselves in a nearby forest and beat the KV-2 with their guns. They also sent out another 88 mm gun to fight the tank. But out of 7 shots from the FLAK cannon, only two actually hit the KV-2. While the Panzers and that one 88 mm gun were doing there work, infantries charged up and volley-fired the KV-2 with machine guns and grenades. Finally, it’s the grenades that did it, knocking out the KV-2. Whatever happened to the KV-2’s crew members were unknown. For the Germans soldiers who went up to the tank said that they dragged out the crew members and buried them with full military honors. But some said that the crew members managed to get out of the tank before the Germans throw in the grenades.

Surviving Vehicles

The KV-2 served throughout WW2 with full military honor. But the sad news is that there were only a few survivors out from the (total of) 203 that were produced. All of them can been seen in war memorials around Russia (including the one from the picture).

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Here is a extra link of the KV-2 in the anime series Girls und Panzers