Caesar front running for Army's Truck mounted Artillery
Indian army had a requirement of more than hundred's of truck mounted 155mm 52 cal artillery's for it's strike corps and new mountain strike corps. Under the artillery project, Army looks to induct range of artillery systems, like towed, self propelled and now this truck mounted. Like other procurement's, this truck mounted artillery too comes under make in India program.
For this project vendors from all over the world requested to provide information about the respected system to Indian army evaluation team. The French teamed with Ashok Leyland and L&T offered the Caesar System, South Africa teamed with TATA offered Denel, Serbia teamed with OFB and BMEL offered the Nora system. While BAE Archer never made any attempts. which is the known better system in truck mounted artillery.
As the performance wise Ashok Leyland and Nexter made Caesar is front running to seal the deal. Caesar is the known battle proven artillery system operated by French, Saudi and some other nations. It's a 155mm 52 Cal heavy artillery system, used to suppress the enemy firing ranges. Caesar had an automatic reloading system can holds 18 ready to fire rounds. with the firing range of upto 50km using rocket assisted projectiles or some 40 kilometers with normal shells.
The Caesar is light weight, can comes with the either 8x8 or 6x6 wheels, can also easily air lifted by the existing IAF's C 130 air lifters. The entire system, that is Truck and gun weights around some 18 tons only for 6x6 and weights around 30 tons for 8x8. The Caesar is already operationally deployed by many nations include Thailand who claimed two Cambodian BM 21's.
Caesar is one of the finest option for the Army, can be used with existing Ashok Leyland trucks. and in performance wise it's better who operationally deployed hot and cold weather conditions around the world. Can also launch guided projectiles for effective fire power. although all artillery's can fire guided rounds.
The other one who competing the deal is the South African Denel teaming with the TATA. who offering the Denel G6 for the Army's truck mounted artillery program.G 6 also a good competitor in terms of fire power and range. The G 6 is weights around 46 tons, due to it's large size and 6x6 wheel platform. Making hard stance for air transport.
G 6 can capable to strike targets upto 67 kilometers thanks to it's V LAP round. Normally it's effective firing range is upto 40 kilometers same like other system, along with auto re loader and other known modern systems like fire control and target acquisition.
G 6 can fire only 4 rounds per minute, which is low compared to it's competitors. 6-8 rounds is the known good figure for such systems. Since truck mounted artillery can perform shoot and scoot with the delay of 30 to 60 seconds. making hard to find the potion of the artillery using weapon locating radars.
G 6 already deployed by several Arab army's and the South African army. In India that gun placed in the TATA truck who unveiled the model in defense exhibition in last year.
The DPSU also teamed with the Serbians for the Truck mounted artillery project. State firms like OFB and BEML joins with Serbian state firm to produce the Nora B 52 in India. The artillery is already operational under the Bangladeshi ground forces.
Nora is also a comparable systems to other competitors, with better range fire power and integrated network systems. With better firing capability Nora can fire 6-10 rounds per minute. using normal and guided shells for effective fire power. The Nora also works with the Russian standard artillery ammunition's like Krasnopol guided shells.
The entire system weights around some 30 tons, fitted in a 8x8 platform. Nora already operational in Myanmar, Bangladesh and Kenya, Nora is a better system comes in handy price compared to others. In India Nora can be made by OFB and carried by BEML trucks.
BAE Archer is the one who is a better system compared to all the above, developed by the Swedish firm, Archer shares similar characteristic with existing Bofors and Dhanush artillery system. Archer is comes with Volvo truck. In case of Indian orders Volvo India can deliver those trucks. Despite heavy looking the Archer weights below 30 tons. with this weight Archer can be air lifted using A 400 and C 130 J.
Archer can carry 21 ready to fire shells, can be refilled with an minutes. Archer can fire and scoot within 30 seconds. Archer can fire more than 8 rounds per minute, can achieve the fire rate by using both guided and normal shells. Archer is an best performing Truck mounted artillery. compared to others Archer costs more. Archer is already operational under Swedish, Norwegian and Croatian army's.
IA yet to conduct the field trials, however by looking the performance, as already said Ashok Leyland Caesar is the best one for Indian Army.