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David Willey, The Tank Museum Curator, presents this Tank Chat on the subject one of the most famous German armoured weapons: 70 ton Panzerjäger Tiger (P). Originally known as the Ferdinand, then later renamed Elefant, 90 of this heavily armed and armoured vehicle were built, seeing service in the Soviet Union, Italy and Germany. 

Although deployed as an assault gun or tank destroyer, the Elefant had its origins in Ferdinand Porsche’s attempt to build what became the Tiger tank. The Ferdinand/Elefant had an impressive combat record (despite the mechanical and defensive issues). Historians estimate the vehicle had a 10-to-1 kill ratio and was one of World War II’s most successful tank destroyers.

This particular Elefant fell into Allied hands during the battle of Anzio (Italy). In 1944, the Elefants served on the Italian front, but were rather ineffective as their weight of nearly 70 tonnes did not allow them to use most Italian roads and bridges. This Elefant is part of The Tiger Collection at The Tank Museum, Bovington, on loan from the US Army Ordnance Training and Heritage Center, VA. It has returned to Europe, seventy-two years after World War II ended.

The vehicle is part of the "Tiger Collection" display at the Bovington Tank Museum in Dorset, UK from April 2017.


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