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M8 75mm Howitzer Motor Carriage (HMC)

The M8 Howitzer Motor Carriage (HMC) was a modification of the M5 Stuart Light Tank to mount the M2 75mm howitzer. A special turret was designed to fit the Stuart turret ring. Production records indicate that 1,778 of these self-propelled howitzers were built by Cadillac Division of General Motors in Detroit, MI during World War II (1942-1944). They were deployed to armored units in both the European and Pacific Theaters of Operations. It was superceded by the widespread deployment of the M4 Sherman tank with its 105mm main gun.

The M8 75mm Howitzer Motor Carriage carried 46 rounds of ammunition. In addition, it could tow an ammunition trailer with additional rounds.

M-8 Howitzer Motor Carriage Specifications and Performance

Length 14 ft. 6 in. (4.41m)
Width 7 ft. 4.25 in. (2.24m)
Height 7 ft. 7.5 in. (2.32m)
Weight 34,580 lbs. (15,685kg)
Armament 75mm Howitzer main gun, .50 cal. M2 antiaircarft MG
Engine Twin Cadillac 5670cc V-8s, gasoline
Engine Horsepower 110bhp@4000rpm
Maximum speed 35 mph (56km/h)
Range 130 miles (210km)

M-8 Howitzer Motor Carriage from the French Army taking part in the liberation of Paris, August 1944
M-8 Howitzer Motor Carriage from the French Army taking part in the liberation of Paris, August 1944.

75mm howitzer ammunition stacked near an M-8 Howitzer Motor Carriage
75mm howitzer ammunition stacked near an M-8 Howitzer Motor Carriage.

The following four photos were from the personal collection of Staff Sergeant Alex Bratman, Troop E, 92nd Cavalry Reconnaissance Squadron (Mechanized), 12th US Armored Division "The Hellcats". The photos are undated but probably are from the period prior to the 12th Armored going to the ETO in October 1944.

M-8 75mm Howitzer Motor Carriage.  Photo: Courtesy family of SSG Alex Bratman
M-8 75mm Howitzer Motor Carriage. Photo: Courtesy family of SSG Alex Bratman.

M-8 75mm Howitzer Motor Carriage.  Photo: Courtesy family of SSG Alex Bratman
M-8 75mm Howitzer Motor Carriage. Photo: Courtesy family of SSG Alex Bratman.

M-8 75mm Howitzer Motor Carriage.  Photo: Courtesy family of SSG Alex Bratman
M-8 75mm Howitzer Motor Carriage. Photo: Courtesy family of SSG Alex Bratman.

M-8 75mm Howitzer Motor Carriage.  Photo: Courtesy family of SSG Alex Bratman
M-8 75mm Howitzer Motor Carriage. Photo: Courtesy family of SSG Alex Bratman (right).

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