Built by Hanomag this light tank project was born roughly at the same time as the Leopard I and was aimed at replacing the Walker Bulldog in service and provide a cheaper tank able to deal with Soviet armour, specialized for armed reconnaissance.
By the Patton old 90 mm was still a potent weapon. Pending replacement in the Bundeswehr, it was decided to reuse it in German-made tank-hunters. General design tended to be close to the very successful era Jagdpanzer IV.
This was designed to be a light recon tank destroyer, the idea was for mobility to relocate and take positions very quickly then use the gun to unload HEAT-FS or APDS-FS at short to medium range due to the poor velocity of the gun.