The Second World War was a catalyst for the creation of many armoured vehicles, including heavy tanks. These vehicles were quite rare at the start of the war, but this changed radically in 1941-42. The Red Army was the most heavily invested in heavy tanks. At first, Soviet heavy tanks followed the classic path of gaining more and more weight, as a result of which the KV-1 became overloaded. The need for mobility led to the KV-13 and KV-1S. The result of this new branch of development was the IS-1 (IS-85) tank, which was quickly replaced with the IS-2 (IS-122). The tank combined powerful armament with sufficient mobility and high levels of protection. Nevertheless, work on modernizing the IS-2 began in the spring of 1944.
|Kirovets-1 at the NIBT Proving Grounds, December 1944.
|The first mention of a tank called 701-A, mid-November 1944. The prototype is already being assembled.
|The new tank was also called Object A in correspondence.
|Not a lot remained from the IS-2.
|The Object A began factory trials by the end of November.
|The components inside were similar, but the layout of the engine compartment was different.
|The tank was a ton heavier than its predecessor, but it had much better protection.
|The tank in travel position.
|The name Kirovets-1 was introduced in mid-December of 1944.
|The tank was already called IS-3.
|During mobility trials.
|The mobility of the tank was equal to the IS-2.
|Reliability was also similar.
|Location of ammunition. It was positioned comfortably, but the layout of the fighting compartment was constricting.
|Vision from the tank.
|The fighting compartment was uncomfortable and cramped.
|Penetration trials showed that the turret needed improvement.