Between the 1946 and 1948 the Argentinean government acquired a huge amount of surplus WW2 armament from European countries, mainly from the UK. According to “Blindados Argentinos”, by Ricardo Sigal Fogliani, several variants of the Sherman were acquired by 0.20 US$ the kilo and exchanged for agricultural products.Among these units there were Sherman Vs (M4A4 75mm) and Fireflies (76mm) complete with the British radio equipment, camo netting, etc. In some cases these units were drafted from British service so hastily that equipment and gear from previous crews were found inside upon delivery in Argentina.
As far as the total number of Shermans in Argentinean service goes sources differ a lot, but consensus is around 150 Sherman Vs and 260 Sherman Fireflies were acquired. Later in their lives these Shermans would be the base of several indigenous and very interesting modifications in the form of the “Sherman Repotenciado” (Repowered Sherman) featuring an FTR 105mm gun, refurbished suspension, locally produced tracks, and more interestingly a Poyaud 520 V8 Diesel engine with 450 CV.
But let’s not go ahead of ourselves just yet. The subject of this review is the 75mm equipped Sherman V currently guarding the gate of the “Estado Mayor Conjunto” (Joint Chief of Staff) building, downtown in Buenos Aires, Argentina.