Swedish Tanks – Part XVIII: Strv 74

Author: sp15 (US server)

The list of previous parts is at the bottom of the article.


While I’m working on an article about how the S-tank could work in WoT, here is something I forgot to cover

First entering the service in 1957, the Strv 74 was part of the Swedish attempt to modernize its armored force in the early-mid 50′s. The vehicle was a modification of the WW2 era Strv m/42 design, which had provided the main firepower of the Swedish armored forces between 1943 and 1953.

The main difference between the m/42 and the Strv 74 was the use of a longer 75mm gun and the use of a bigger turret to house the new gun. The idea of rearming the Strv m/42 with a more powerful gun was kicked around from as early as 1944, when it ebcame clear that the short 75mm gun would no longer be a viable anti-tank weapon. The early attempts to improve the Strv m/42´s firepower were however unsuccessful and were cancelled in 1948.

1944 schematics for the “divided turret”


The original idea from 1944-48 was to use a new type of turret with the gun placed as close to the rear as possible and to have the gun equipped with a 3 round magazine, which would be fed by the loader. The design got as far as the prototype stage, but it was scrapped after the war with the project cancellation.

In 1954, the idea of upgunning the Strv m/42 was brought up again – it became clear that the then-current tanks of the Swedish army with the exception of the recently purchased Centurion Mk.3 were hopelessly obsolete even against late WW2 designs, like the T-34-85. A research committee was formed to discuss how the Strv m/42 was to be improved and several options were proposed. The first option was to replace the turret of the vehicle – this was referred to as Option A and was divided into three alternative turret designs.

A.1: New turret of conventional type
A.2: New turret of type “AMX” (oscillating)
A.3: Turret of type “Divided Turret” (the 1944-48 project)

The 2nd of these options (Option B) was to simply rebuild the tank to its tank destroyer version (Pvkv m/43), 86 of which were already in service with the army.

Of the proposed alternatives, the A.1 was preferred most, as it would allow the tank to keep its impressive 15dg of gun depression – it would also be the cheapest solution. However, this option would increase the weight of the vehicle the most and this, plus the massive turret, would mean that the armor would have to be reduced. Option A.2 was discussed but ultimately scrapped, since it was found that the turret ring of the AMX 13 was too big to fit the m/42. Theoretically, it would offer good firepower with only a slight increase in weight, but with a big loss in gun depression. The third and final variant, the A.3, was dismissed almost right off the bat, most likely due to the complexity and cost of the mechanical loading system.

Strv 74-A.1 plans from 1954


My interpretation of the Strv 74-A.2


In all the cases, the tank was to be rearmed with the Lvkan m/36 75mm L/60 anti-aircraft gun. This gun was going out of service and was compatible with the 75mm armor-piercing ammunition already developed during and after World War 2 for existing anti-tank guns, so it was an ideal and cheap solution. As it became clear that alternative A.1 was the most viable, work began on rebuilding the Lvkan m/36 to make it fit the new turret. To achieve this, the barrel was cut down from L/60 to L/56,5 and a new recoil system was added.

Lvkan m/36 being converted for use in the Strv 74


Sometime during this time, a wooden mock-up of the turret was also built and tested on a m/42 chassis. Later, it was fitted with the first prototype turret and by 1957, it was ready for production. Production was handled by Landsverk (the company behind the m/42) and Hägglunds & Söner, who would later go on to produce the IKV91 tank destroyer and the CV90 IFV. Compared to the Strv m/42, the Strv 74 was actually more different than you would think, the changes included:

1: more equipment (smoke grenade launchers etc) and aesthetic changes
2: removal of the bow gunner to increase ammo capacity
3: engine change/refit to a more reliable Scania-Vabis 607 (340hp)
4: introduction of new radio
5: improvements to the suspension and the addition of new wider tracks
6: new turret & gun

Although it was initially thought the weight increase wouldn’t be greater than 1,5 tons, it turned out that it would be closer to double of that number and the final design ended up with the weight of over 26 tons. It was however found as well that despite the increased weight (and in some cases) less powerful engine, the mobility was even better than the one of Strv m/42, thanks to wider tracks. The performance of the main gun was rated as roughly equal to that of the AMX 13´s, both when it came to regular AP and subcaliber APDS ammunition.

Mock-up and Prototype turret


Production version


The armor of the Strv 74 was actually thinner than that of the Strv m/42 it was based on. Not ruin the suspension or other components, the weight of the vehicle was a primary concern and due to this issue, the armor of the turret was very thin. Turret front had a huge gun mantlet, which was 20-30mm thick and covered 20mm of armor underneath, the turret sides and rear were only 20mm thick as well. The hull was barely changed, but an additional storage box was added to the front, over where the hull mounted machinegun was before and the hatches for the transmission were strengthened. The hull front was 55mm thick with sides 30mm and rear 20mm thick.

Armor scheme


The majority of produced Strv m/42 tanks were converted to the Strv 74 standard between 1956 and 1958. Initially, they were used in armored brigades to support the then relatively small number of Centurions in Swedish service, but as Sweden purchased more Centurions in 1956 and 1958, the Strv 74 was relegated more and more to reconnaissance and other secondary roles. In 1970′s, most were replaced by the IKV 91 tank destroyer and scrapped. However, a few survived and were used mainly for infantry support in the armored reserve. The last of these was removed from service in 1984, at which point the chassis was 41 years old.

Today, a number of vehicles survive at various museums. ?ost are located in Sweden as you would guess, but one can also be found it the Russian Kubinka museum. One Strv 74 was been restored to the original m/42 version and can be seen in the Arsenalen armor museum in Sweden.

The rebuilt Strv m/42


Strv 74 at the Arsenalen museum


In World of Tanks

The Strv 74 is unfortunately the only viable candidate for a tier 6 Swedish medium tank. This means that it will need some really good soft stats, since it really does not have that much going for it. Since the armor is almost completely useless, I would expect the gun to be the tank’s main strength. It has 15dg of gun depression, but would likely also need good accuracy and a good rate of fire. When it comes to mobility, I have no good news, the historical 340hp engine only gives the tank a power to weight ratio of about 13hp/t and even with the more powerful Volvo A8B engine used on the Strv m/42, it’s still pretty bad at 14,6hp/t.

All in all, I expect this tank to be almost exclusively a sniper with mediocre mobility and no armor, but with good soft stats and gun characteristics.


Strv 74

Weight: 26 tons
Length: 6,08m
Width: 2,43m
Height: 3,30m
Crew: 4
Engine: Scania-Vabis 607 (340hp)
Top speed: 45kph
Main armament: 7,5cm L/56,5 kan Strv 74
Depression/Elevation: -15/+15
Radio: Ra 400, Ra 121

http://www2.landskrona.se/kultur/landsv … start.html
http://tanks.mod16.org/2014/01/08/minut … -strv-m42/
http://tanks.mod16.org/2013/11/23/meeti … -strv-m42/
http://tanks.mod16.org/2013/11/23/alter … -strv-m42/

Part I: http://ftr.wot-news.com/2014/03/07/swedish-tanks-part-i-strv-m21-29/
Part II: http://ftr.wot-news.com/2014/03/12/swedish-tanks-part-ii-strv-m31-strv-fm31/
Part III: http://ftr.wot-news.com/2014/03/15/swedish-tanks-part-iii-landsverk-l-100-and-l-120/
Part IV: http://ftr.wot-news.com/2014/03/21/swedish-tanks-part-iv-landsverk-l-60/
Part V: http://ftr.wot-news.com/2014/03/27/swedish-tanks-part-v-strv-m37-and-strv-m41/
Part VI: http://ftr.wot-news.com/2014/04/08/swedish-tanks-part-vi-sav-m43/
Part VII: http://ftr.wot-news.com/2014/04/18/swedish-tanks-part-vii-strv-m42/
Part VIII: http://ftr.wot-news.com/2014/05/08/swedish-tanks-part-viii-pvkv-m43/
Part IX: http://ftr.wot-news.com/2014/05/12/swedish-tanks-part-ix-tlp-46-and-strv-leo
Part X: http://ftr.wot-news.com/2014/05/15/swedish-tanks-part-x-strv-lansen/
Part XI: http://ftr.wot-news.com/2014/05/17/swedish-tanks-part-xi-ls-50/
Part XII: http://ftr.wot-news.com/2014/06/01/swedish-tanks-part-xii-emil-1951/
Part XIII: http://ftr.wot-news.com/2014/07/15/swedish-tanks-part-xii-emil-1952-1958/
Part XIV: http://ftr.wot-news.com/2014/07/23/swedish-tanks-part-xiv-strv-81/
Part XV: http://ftr.wot-news.com/2014/08/06/swedish-tanks-part-xv-strv-a-strv-t-strv-k/
Part XVI: http://ftr.wot-news.com/2014/08/13/swedish-tanks-part-xvi-the-s-tank-1956-1961/
Part XVII: http://ftr.wot-news.com/2014/08/21/swedish-tanks-part-xvii-strv-103/

20 thoughts on “Swedish Tanks – Part XVIII: Strv 74

  1. nice article! :) btw SS, there’s a little screw up in the text under the 3rd image, it starts again

  2. hmmm… reading the same part twice for the first part?

    and i guess the cheiftain’s hatch reminded you of this.

    • Well ive been thinking about making this article since before i started on the S-tank one but i thought i may aswell finish discussing the high tier swedish meds and TDs before i go back to the Strv 74

    • Or Chi-Ri if we get the 3-round autoloader.
      And it’s a good bit smaller too, being lower than an M4 and far narrower.

  3. If it had really nice gun stats, it would make tier 7 med easily. I would love play one, that 15° of gun depression is just ridiculous.

  4. I think you exaggerate a bit when you say it would be a slow tank, at 14,6hp/t (the Sherman which is so similar to the M/42 in so many ways got less than that) it is true that it wouldn’t be a very fast tank, but neither would it be slow. With good traverse and gun stats it could become quite a nimble little killer, making full use of every little hill to off-set the disadvantage of the poor armour.

  5. Very very yes…. I’ve been pushing for the 74 for at least the past 18 months or so in a Pan-European tree over on the NA forums.

  6. Medium tank? It looks like a Chaffee with a severely anorexic hull.

    Medium, ROFLMAO it’s a light, give it normal MM and it’ll be fine even under that label. AS for not breaking up a line… see American autoloaders.

    • so you propose to use a tank almost as tall as the maus and with worse power to weight ratio than any of the tier 6 light tanks in the game as a light tank…

      how terrible

      • That would be terrible I love to play light tanks all of em but that 1 I wouldnt even consider

  7. I would see it as a very viable T6 Medium.
    Hull armor is not worse than a lot of the others, and a [most likely] better than average gun [/gun handling] can be used to not cry about the weakish turret armor.

    I imagine it as a little slower, but nimbler, competitor to the VK 30.01(D).

  8. I hope it has good mobility too (sta-1/leo style) because we don’t need another mediocre chi-to chips… Gun is not everything and chi-to can’t into companies or stronkhold.