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Spanish Army strengthens artillery capabilities with 4X4 Uro Vamtac ST5.

| Defense News Army 2024

On December 2023, Artillerymen of the Almogávares VI Parachutist Brigade conducted tests with two new Vamtac ST5 vehicles from the Galician company Urovesa, designed for transporting and supplying ammunition for the Light Gun L-118 howitzer. The evaluation of these vehicles took place during the Thunder 23 live-fire exercise.
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4X4 Uro Vamtac ST5 armored artillery tractor in service with the Spanish Army. (Picture source: Spanish MoD)

In October 2023, the Spanish Army further enhanced its capabilities by acquiring Vamtac vehicles designed for towing and supplying parts for the Light Gun. This acquisition, valued at 9.3 million euros, includes two configurations: one for towing the 105mm Light Gun howitzer and another for transporting its ammunition. These specialized vehicles are based on the Vamtac ST5 platform, with higher suspension heights and increased wheel spacing.

These vehicles are essentially replicas of the Vamtac ST5 SK95, used for transporting the howitzer and its ammunition. The concept is the same; both use the same chassis, the main difference being that the Vamtac ST5 SK95 features a higher cabin. These latter vehicles are currently in service with the Galicia VII Brigade and the Canarias XVI Brigade.

The ammunition transport version of the vehicle features a single cabin, with the rear part reserved for projectiles. Meanwhile, the version designed for towing the howitzer has a double cabin, allowing for the transport of the howitzer's crew and equipped with the necessary tools for moving the artillery piece.

They have also been introduced this year to the Almogávares VI Parachutist Brigade. However, tests with the classic Vamtac ST5 versions indicate that the standard cabin option will likely be chosen for Bripac.

Known as the Vamtac SK, these models are powered by a Steyr engine, delivering 217 horsepower and a displacement of 3,200 cm³, surpassing the capabilities of the previous Uro Mat-18.16 tractor. The Vamtac SK maintains a permanent 4x4 transmission with a transfer differential and a high and low gear system, enabling operation on side slopes of up to 40% and overcoming steep inclines of up to 78%. This ensures maneuverability in challenging terrains.

The towing vehicle version is designed to transport the howitzer crew, the howitzer itself, and its equipment on a single platform. It offers space for the immediate-use transport of up to eight rounds and includes provisions for establishing a fixed communication network if necessary. The ammunition transport variant is equipped to carry the required ammunition, offering versatility and various configuration options.

Developed by UROVESA, the Vamtac, which stands for "Vehículos de Alta Movilidad Táctica" or High Tactical Mobility Vehicles, has gained international recognition, particularly in its ST5 variant. It serves armed forces worldwide, including those of the Dominican Republic, Morocco, Romania, and Venezuela, and has been deployed in various missions from Afghanistan to Congo and Lebanon. A key feature of the ST5 is its high level of protection, capable of withstanding ballistic impacts, mines, and IEDs, and offering NBC (Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical) protection.


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