Posted 05 April 2006 - 02:25 PM
Ok, it seems possible a prototype was available in 1943. But limited production began in 1944 or 1945 and this seems to be the most common reference date for this vehicle. I guess we could go with 1944, it was a pretty rare vehicle so will not get much use. It appears that due the decline of the Luftwaffe during '44-'45 the production run of this vehicle was limited. A post on the TMP site brought the following replies that seem to support this date.'Zaloga says it started production in 1944. Says because of a turret traverse problem full scale production was prevented and only a few hundred were produced.''AFAIKT it was an offshoot of the SU-76. As for numbers I think very few were built (75).The ZSU on the Su chassis was prototyped around the same time as the SU 76 (1942) with 12.7mm, 23mm and 57mm models. The Su-76 started production in 1943, but as the Soviets in 1944 onwards were winning the air war, the ZSU became a low priority.Finally in 1945, the ZSU 37 was developed and a small run of vehicles was produced. None saw action in the great patriotic war.'