I'm not sure if this has been addressed here before, but I was wondering what everyone thought about the Ferdinand/Elefant? Ever since I was a kid, I kept running across books that described the vehicle as a failure, usually noting that it's lack of secondary armament made it vulnerable to soviet infantry. In my youth I imagined soviet soldiers non-nonchalantly strolling up to them and slapping magnetic charges on the vehicles with impunity. Of course, as I got older and read more, I gained a more realistic picture of the Elefant. Still, I kept running into books describing the vehicle as a failure or a waste, even when they would acknowledge it's firepower and armor. This all got me thinking, was the Ferdinand/Elefant a failure? Some sources have noted that it finished the war with a 10:1 kill ratio. That hardly sounds like a failure to me. Many accounts make it sound as if these vehicles all got wiped out at Kursk, and yet sources say there were 50 left after the battle. Considering that only 91 total were built, that means more than half of them survived the battle. Considering the appalling attrition suffered by the tank forces at Kursk, this ratio does not seem so bad. Certainly this vehicle had some serious shortcomings. It was slow and heavy and suffered from reliability issues. In that way it was not much different from most late war German designs. It also gets criticized as a waste of resources, but that seems odd to me. The chassis for the vehicle already existed, Porsche counted his chickens before they hatched and had made 100 or so hulls of his failed tiger prototype. By converting these into Elefants, it seems to me the Germans got pretty good value out of something that was essentially waste. So why does this vehicle seem to get so much hate? I half suspect part of it is because it was so damn ugly, being not nearly as elegant looking as many other German late war designs. Thoughts anyone?