3rd Panzer Army

3. Panzerarmee
3rd Panzer Army
Active 1 January 1942 - 3 May 1945
Country  Nazi Germany

World War II

Pz Corps
CI Corps
402nd Div
12th Army
6th Airborne Div
8th Inf Div
29th Inf Div
82nd Airborne Div
65th Army
2nd Shock Army
3rd Guards
Tank Corps
49th Army
70th Army
3rd Guards
Cav Corps
19th Army
5th Inf Div
15th Inf Div
11th Armd Div
Mecklenburg: Situation 2 May 1945
Red - Soviet forces, Orange - British forces, Green - U.S. forces, Grey - German forces
Sources: Tieke - p. 447, Allied Situation Map, Ustinow - Map 158
(1) - U.S. 84th Infantry Division, Bold units are 3rd Panzer Army

The 3rd Panzer Army (German: 3. Panzerarmee) was a German armoured formation during World War II, formed from the 3rd Panzer Group on 1 January 1942.

3rd Panzer Group

The 3rd Panzer Group (German: Panzergruppe 3) was formed on 16 November 1940. It was a constituent part of Army Group Centre and participated in Operation Barbarossa and fought in the Battle of Moscow in late 1941 and early 1942. Later it served in Operation Typhoon, where it was placed under operational control of the Ninth Army. Panzergruppe 3 was retitled the 3rd Panzer Army on 1 January 1942.

Orders of battle

At the start of Operation Barbarossa the Group consisted of the XXXIX and LVII Army Corps (mot.).

2 October 1941

3rd Panzer Army was formed by redesignating 3rd Panzer Group on 1 January 1942.

During the Soviet counter-offensive, the 3rd Panzer Army fought its way out of an encirclement and later fought at Tekino, the Duna and Vitebsk. In March 1944, the 3rd Panzer Army took part in the forced assembly and deportation of Russian civilians in the Borisov area. The civilians were deported to Germany for use as forced labor.[1] The army later retreated through Lithuania and Courland, fighting in the Battle of Memel in late 1944.

In February 1945 the 3rd Panzer Army was one of the armies that made up the new Army Group Vistula. On 10 March 1945, General Hasso-Eccard von Manteuffel was made the commander of the 3rd Panzer Army, which was assigned to defend the banks of the Oder River, north of the Seelow Heights, thus hampering Soviet access to Western Pomerania and Berlin. They then faced an overwhelming Soviet attack launched by General Rokossovsky's 2nd Belorussian Front during the Battle of Berlin. On 25 April the Soviets broke through 3rd Panzer Army's line around the bridgehead south of Stettin[2] and crossed the Randow Swamp.

Following the defeat at Stettin, 3rd Panzer Army was forced to retreat into the region of Mecklenburg - the headquarters of 3rd Panzer Army. Manteuffel made negotiations with British generals including Field Marshall Bernard Montgomery at Hagenow on 3 May 1945 so that he with 300,000 German soldiers would surrender to the British rather than Soviet forces.[3]



  1. Hamburger Institut für Sozial Forschung, Verbrechen der Wehrmacht, p. 18
  2. Richard Lakowski, Das Deutsche Reich und der Zweite Weltkrieg, Vol. 10/1, pp. 653-654, München: Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt, 2008
  3. Mitcham Jr/Mueller, Samuel W./Gene (2012). Hitler's Commanders: Officers of the Wehrmacht, the Luftwaffe, the Kriegsmarine, and the Waffen-SS. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 137. ISBN 9781442211544.
  4. Raus, Erhard. Panzer Operations p. 353


External links

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