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PLZ45



Introduction


PLZ45

Kuwaiti PLZ45 self-propelled howitzers on parade in 2011.
Source: US DoD - © Public domain

Origin
China
Type
Self-propelled howitzer
Entered service
Late 1990's
Status
In service
Development
1980's
Developer
China
Production
1997 - present
Producer
China
Number produced
Over 150 PLZ45
Designations
Type 88
Notable users
Kuwait
Saudi Arabia
Algeria

Description


Introduction

The PLZ45 is a tracked 155mm self-propelled howitzer of Chinese origin. The PLZ45 was developed as a replacement for the aging Type 83 howitzer. Eventually the Chinese armed forces settled on the PLZ05, which is a further development of the PLZ45.

Layout

The PLZ45 is based on a new tracked chassis. The engine and drive train are mounted at the front and the fully enclosed turret is fitted at the rear. The crew of five consists of a commander, driver, gunner and two loaders.

Firepower

The PLZ45 is fitted with a 45-caliber 155mm howitzer capable of firing NATO standard ammunition, although Chinese ammunition is supplied with it. A semi-automatic loader is fitted and holds 24 out of the 30 rounds that are carried in the vehicle. The maximum rate of fire is 4 to 5 rounds per minute, with sustained fire being 2 rounds a minute. Standard ERFB rounds can be fired up to 30km and base bleed variants up to 39km. For self defense a 12.7mm heavy machine gun is mounted on the turret roof.

Protection

The PLZ45 is operated under full armor protection. The steel armor gives protection against small arms fire and shell splinters. NBC and fire suppression systems are fitted. No smoke dischargers are fitted.

Mobility

With its tracked chassis the PLZ 45 has good cross country performance, although its average speed is somewhat limited. The PLZ45 is powered by a 525hp Deutz diesel engine and an auxiliary power unit provides power when the engine is not running.

Users

The PLZ45 is intended for export sales with the more capable PLZ05 being adopted by Chinese forces. Kuwait bought the entire PLZ45 artillery system with all associated vehicles and ammunition.

Variants


Title of new table Item

PLZ45

The PLZ45 is a tracked self-propelled howitzer. Only a single version of the howitzer exists. The PLZ45 has a conventional layout with the driver and engine in the front of the hull and the turret with the other four crew members in the rear of the hull. The armament consists of a 155mm L/45 howitzer connected to a semi-automatic loader and a 12.7mm heavy machinegun for self defense.

PCZ45

The PCZ45 is a ammunition resupply vehicle that accompanies the PLZ45. The PCZ45 is based on the same chassis, but instead of a turret a fixed superstructure is fitted.

Details


Facts PLZ45
General
Origin
China
Type
Self-propelled howitzer
Crew
5 (commander, driver, gunner, 2 loaders)
Dimensions
Weight
33 t combat load
29 t unladen
Length
10.52 m (gun forward)
6.1 m (hull)
Width
3.3 m
Height
2.6 m (turret roof)
3.52 m (with MG)
Main armament
Type
155mm 45-caliber howitzer
Mount
Main gun in turret
Ammunition
30 rounds
Elevation
-3 to +72°, powered
Traverse
360°, powered
Rate of fire
4 - 5 rpm maximum
2 rpm sustained
Range
24 km standard rounds
30 km with ERFB
39 km with base bleed
Stabilizer
No
Secondary armament
Type
12.7mm QJC88 heavy machine gun
Mount
Pintle mount on turret roof
Ammunition
300 rounds, 50 ready to fire
Traverse
Manual traverse and elevation
Stabilizer
No
Chassis
Chassis type
Tracked chassis, 6 roadwheels
Layout
Drive sprocket front, idler rear
Suspension
Torsion bar
Automotive
Engine model
Deutz BF12 L413FC
Engine type
Turbocharged air-cooled diesel
Power output
525 hp
Transmission
Manual, 6 forward, 1 reverse
Mobility
Speed
55 km/h on road
Range
450 km on road
Power to weight ratio
15.9 hp/t
Obstacle crossing
Ground clearance
0.45 m
Wall
0.7 m
Trench
2.7 m
Gradient
58 %
Slope
47 %
Fording
1.2 m
Protection
Armor type
Steel
NBC system
Yes
Smoke system
2x4 smoke grenade dischargers
Equipment
Night vision
Yes
Radio
Yes

Media


Related articles


PLZ05

PLZ45 was never adopted for Chinese service. Many of the design lessons have been incorporated in the PLZ05, a more capable system than the PLZ45.

Norinco QJC88

The 12.7mm QJC88 heavy machine gun is mounted on the turret roof.