In 1944, Tiger I production was discontinued in favor of the Panzerkampfwagen Tiger Ausf. B, more commonly known as the Royal Tiger or Tiger II. 492 were manufactured by the war’s end. Weighing 77 tons, the Royal Tiger replaced its predecessor’s thick flat armor with thicker sloped armor that was significantly more difficult to penetrate.
Royal Tigers were exceptionally well protected. From January to April, 1945, they were credited with destroying over 500 tanks on the Eastern Front, at a cost of only 45 Royal Tigers, most of them destroyed by their own crews to prevent their capture after they broke down or ran out of fuel. On the downside, Royal Tigers suffered most of their predecessors’ mechanical problems plus a few more, and were even slower, capable of only 9 to 12 m.p.h. cross country.