The Sd.Kfz.251 "Hanomag" (German: Sonderkraftfahrzeug 251; English: Special purpose vehicle 251) was a German half-track armored personnel carrier designed by Hanomag in 1939. It was the most widely used half-track by the German army in World War II, and inspired many other designs such as the American M3 Half-track and the Japanese Type 1 Ho-Ha. The Hanomag was armored enough to defeat most regular small arms fire, and was usually armed with a heavy machine gun such as an MG34 or MG42.
In Battlefield 1942, the Hanomag is issued to the Wehrmacht, Afrika Korps, German Elite Forces and Royal Italian Army as their half-track (The Imperial Japanese Navy was issued the Hanomag prior to patch 1.5 until being replaced with the Ho-Ha). It has space for six players: one driver, one gunner who mans an MG42, and four passengers. All players within the vehicle have access to a medical cabinet and an Ammunition Box, as well as players directly outside of it. As such, the gunner will never run out of ammo. The Hanomag is more of a mobile troop support vehicle, as it can do relatively nothing to defend itself from tanks. It has similar characteristics to its allied counterpart, the M3A1, though it is much more stable and is less likely to topple over due to a sharp turn or a sudden explosive force.
— In-game description
The Sd. Kfz 251 Halftrack appears in most singleplayer war stories, usually as a static map object or when dropping off enemy German reinforcements, although friendly controlled halftracks appear at times during The Last Tiger.
In multiplayer, the Sd. Kfz 251 is the German counterpart to the United Kingdom's M3. It is capable of carrying four players, including a driver and front, back and top gunners - the latter of which operate two fixed traverse MG 34s from exposed positions atop the hull. Unlike the M3, the front gunner position has a small gunshield for protection from infantry weapons. The half-track may spawn next to a PAK 40 or Flak 38 emplacement which it can tow. The vehicle is impervious to small arms and has approximately the same health and armor as the Panzer 38(t).
The Sd. Kfz 251 appears in Firestorm as either randomly spawned on the map Halvøy or able to be airdropped in using a looted Flare Gun - Vehicle. It is largely unchanged from its multiplayer rendition, with the Firestorm-specific limitations of fuel, inability to be repaired, and finite ammunition for the on board machine guns at 150 rounds each.
- Due to an oversight, the Wurfrahmen 40 version of the halftrack can be driven in the second act of Tirailleur. The vehicle has a driver and two gunner seats, with the driver controlling the rocket launches - however when used by the player the rockets cannot be aimed and shoot straight forward.