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M3 scout car question...

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Originally posted by Der Kuenstler:

How far back do these things need to be to keep them from getting killed by small arms fire? I keep getting mine wrecked in a 5000 pt battle by infantry in trees and they are aleady 150 meters back...


One thing I'd say about any recon elements in CM is don't use them for recon. Infantry is always the best eyes and ears, recon assets are best used late battle as fire brigades when everyone is busy - otherwise they're toast.

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The problem comes from German HMGs.

The sides of the M3, and the M5 halftrack all angles, is only 8mm. The German HMG in the game is allowed to penetrate more like 10mm at 100 yards. I've seen them KO allied halftracks at ranges up to 400m, though they need flat side angle at that distance.

The *front* facing of the M3 is a bit better though, at 15mm. That will stop HMG fire.

A better MG proof Russian transporter is the universal carrier - but it doesn't have nearly as much MG firepower (one weak low ammo MG, instead of 2 with bottomless ammo).

M3s should come out only late once enemy AT weapons are smashed, and before then have to keyhole and show front facing only, to one position at a time. And avoid close approach to HMG positions, specifically.

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Originally posted by dieseltaylor:

On HMG's I was surprised in a recent game to kill a Somau with a Russian 12.7mm at very close range. A fluke but very welcome.

The use of M3's late in the game to turn flanks on already upset infantry is very effective. I suspect having mortars to counter HMG's discovered bythe infantry would also be smart!

I've had one credited with 2 PzIII's, it was in the upper floor and they went by underneath - even so, I'm almost sure it's an error in reporting as it was the last thing to hit them.
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Originally posted by Der Kuenstler:

I see - well I am in a position where he has just run a few squads into a clump of palm trees and a 100 point flag - I don't belive any HMGs have had time to set up yet. I just wanted to hose the guys he's still got in the open but apparently I got too close.

It is not only range that determines vulnerability. If you have two or three M3s spaced closely together, they can generally put out a sufficient weight of fire to supress the enemy infantry, thus making them effective at a closer range than a single car.

As others have said, the best use for scout cars and gun halftracks is to cut down infantry in the open. They are also good for lighting up unarmored transports. However, if you are engaging good order infantry in a terrain that offers them cover, it is wise to keep your lightly armored units out of range of the squad LMGs. These units should also not be kept in any one place for too long, as even light mortars can ruin a perfectly good White.

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