CAESAR 8x8 Nexter Systems
155mm wheeled self-propelled howitzer France
The Caesar 8x8 is an upgraded version of the 6x6 Caesar wheeled self-propelled howitzer using 155/52 caliber cannon. This artillery is designed and manufactured by the French Defense Company Nexter Systems. This version of the Caesar was unveiled during the defense exhibition in London, DSEI in September 2015. The Caesar 8x8 presented at DSEI was based on the Tatra T-815 8x8 chassis, but the Nexter 155mm artillery system can be fitted on other 8x8 truck chassis available on the military market manufactured by Renault trucks defense, Rheinmetal MAN military and Sizu. The French company has developed the new concept of the Caesar to response of new customer requirement of the using of the new automatic loading system and to increase the payload to carry more ammunitions and charges. The Caesar 8x8 can come into action in less than 1 min, and can go out of action in the same time. It can be easily transported by military aircraft such as C-130 and A400M. On March 2017, Denmark has selected the Caesar 8x8 to replace their current American-made m109A3 155 mm tracked self-propelled howitzer which in in service since 1965. The 6x6 Caesar has already been used in combat operation in Mali, Afghanistan, Lebanon and recently in Iraq. In March 2017, the Danish Ministry of Defence has announced that the French company Nexter will supply Denmark with new artillery systems Caesar 8x8 155mm wheeled self-propelled howitzer. Denmark has purchased 15 units of the new system and have an option for 6 more. It will replace the 32 US-built M109A3 self-propelled howitzers.
CAESAR 8x8 variants
-CAESAR Nexter Systems with Unimog chassis U2450 6x6
-CAESAR Nexter Systems with Renault Trucks Defense Sherpa 5 chassis 6x6
-CAESAR Nexter Systems with Ashok Leyland chassis 6x6
-CAESAR Mk2 Nexter Systems wheeled self-propelled howitzer
The main armament of the Nexter Caesar 8x8 consists of one 155mm/52 cal gun which is similar to the cannon mounted on the 6x6 Caesar. The Caesar 8x8 as a maximum rate of fire of 6 rounds/min. It can carry a total of 30 155mm projectiles and charges, the 155mm cannon has a powered elevation of maximum +72° and traverse 30° left/right and a large hydraulically operated spade is lowered at the rear to provide a more stable firing platform. The CAESAR 8x8 has a brand new fully automated ammunition loading system. It is operated by a crew of 2-3 men. It can be also fitted with a semi-automatic loading system for charges and shells. To increase the rate of fire an automatic projectile and charges loader are mounted on each side of the breech, each are loaded manually by the crew. In road position, the cannon is held at the rear of the crew cabin by a clamp which is operated by remote control. The Caesar 8x8 has a firing range from 4.5 to 40 km with standard ammunition and 55Km using VLAP (Very Long range Artillery Projectile) rounds. It can be also used against land targets at a maximum range of 2Km. In option, the roof of the truck cab can be fitted with a remotely operated weapon station armed with a 7.62 mm or 12.7 mm gun.
|Design and protection|
The Caesar 8x8 is based on an 8x8 Tatra chassis with a standard unarmored crew cap at the front of the vehicle and the artillery system at the rear. The crew cab has 1 single door on each side. The ammunitions and charges are stored in boxes located on each side of the truck chassis. In option, the vehicle can be fitted with an armored cab that provides ballistics protection STANAG 4569 Level 3 against firing of small arms 7.62x51mm AP (Armor Piercing) and Mine protection Level 2 blast explosion 6Kg of TNT under the wheels. The crew cab can accommodate a total of 5 military personnel. The Caesar 8x8 has a crew of 5 consisting of a commander, a driver, a gunner and 2 ammunitions loader but it can be reduced to 3 people. All the firing operations are performed outside of the vehicle. The Caesar 8x8 has a gross weight from 28.4 to 30.2 tons depending on the level of armor protection and a length of 12.3m, a width of 3.1 m and a height of 2.80 m.
|The CAESAR 8x8 uses an 8x8 military Tatra trucks chassis motorized with an air-cooled 410HP Diesel engine. The vehicle can run at a maximum road speed of 90 km/h and 50Km/h in off-road conditions with a maximum cruising range of more than 600 km. The Caesar 8x8 is able to climb forward slopes up to 40%, side slopes of 30%, and a fording depth of 1.20 m without preparation. It can cross trenches up to 2.10 m.|
|Standards equipment of the Caesar 8x8 includes an onboard computerized fire control system and a global positioning system/inertial navigation system. The vehicle is also equipped with auxiliary power units and maintenance tools as spare wheels, winch, and more.|
|One 155mm/52 Cal. gun||standard non-protected cab, can be upgraded to ballistic protection level 3 and mine protection level 2, IED protected|
|Denmark||28,400 to 30,200 kg|
|France||90 km/h on road and 50 km/h in off-road condition|
|Inertial Navigation System for land navigation and gun laying GPS compatible, Muzzle Velocity Radar, Ballistic computer (adaptable to any Fire Control System), Auxiliary Power Unit, Maintenance (spare wheels, winch, ...)||600 km|
|From 5/4 to 3/2 soldiers||Length: 12.3 m; Width: 2.8 m; Height: 3.1 m|
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