The Landing Vehicle Tracked (LVT4) -
In production December 1943
The amphibious LVT4, in production by December 1943, was armoured and armed. Troop carriers and cargo carriers were armed with up to four machine guns (2 x .50 cal and 2 x .30 cal) and the British version (the Buffalo) was equipped with a 20mm cannon. The LVT(A)4 tank was fitted with a 75mm high angle howitzer.
The troop carriers had the capability, if landed in numbers, to deluge enemy machine gun, mortar and anti-tank gun bunkers with tens of thousands of shells and bullets a minute. While the LVT(A)4 tanks accompanying the troop carriers could exploit the deluge of fire to target and destroy anti-tank guns, mortars and machine gun bunkers.
Mass production of these vehicles started in 1943 and they were being used by the United States as the first wave assault craft in all amphibious invasions in the Pacific war in 1944. None were used on D-Day in Normandy. The result was the high casualty rates, the lack of achievement of D-Day targets, and the Allies' failure to win the war in 1944. An estimated 5 to 10 million extra people died as a result of this delay.