The Allied high command already knew by D-Day that Sherman tanks fitted with the short barreled 75mm gun could not penetrate the front armour of the German Panther and Tiger Tank. This is why they assigned one 76mm armed Sherman to every three 75mm Sherman tanks when ever possible.
M4A1 76mm Sherman Tank
The Normandy Tank Museum is not hard to miss. It is next to the main N13 (E46) motorway. Set your Sat-Nav to the town of Catz in Normandy and then the road of La Fourchette or Rue de la Fourchette to be directed to the Museum entrance.
The M4A1 Sherman Tank was powered by a petrol Continental R975 C1 9 cylinder radial engine that produced 400 hp. It had a top road speed of 30 mph (48 km/h). It had an operational range of around 120 miles (193 km) The tank had a crew of five, commander, driver, gunner, loader and co-driver/machine gunner.
Its armour thickness ranged for 25 mm to 75 mm. It was armed with the long barreled 76 mm M1 gun. It had less High Explosive (HE) and smoke performance than the standard short barreled 75 mm gun, the higher-velocity 76 mm gave better anti-tank performance, with firepower similar to many of the armored fighting vehicles it encountered, particularly the Panzer IV and StuG vehicles. It was fitted with two 30-06 Browning machine guns, one in the hull and the other next to the main gun in the turret.
M4A1 Sherman Tank was armed with a higher-velocity 76 mm gun
The M4A1 76mm Sherman Tank gun barrel is missing its muzzle brake that reduced recoil and increased the working life of the gun barrel.