Sweden asks for more 155mm FH77BW L52 SPG firing Excalibur shells

PARIS ($1=0.95 Euros) — Sweden is ready to buy another artillery self-propelled gun [SPG] from the next generation Archer – FH77BW L52 [or just Archer SPG] of BAE Systems, whose heart is the fully automatic 155mm/L52 artillery gun. The news comes from Paris, where the international exhibition for defense and security Eurosatory has already ended. It is reported that during the exhibition the Swedish government sent a letter of intent [LoI], which has already been signed by BAE Systems.

Sweden asks for more 155mm FH77BW L52 SPG firing Excalibur shells
Photo credit: Wikipedia

Sweden is the only operator at the moment of the new 155mm/L52 Archer SPG and has 48 units of this weapon system. The company said that since Russia invaded Ukraine in late February, demand for 155mm/L52 Archer SPG has increased. The Archer SPG may soon be the main artillery armament in the Swiss army, where the system has been admitted to the final stage of the national tender for a new artillery system.

The U.S. military is also familiar with the 155mm/L52 Archer SPG after the system took part in some tests on U.S. soil related to a new U.S. Army self-propelled howitzer. Although the US government’s 155mm howitzer program failed, just two months ago the Pentagon sent a representative to Sweden to inspect the self-propelled artillery, further fueling rumors of new interest from Washington.

About 155mm/L52 Archer SPG

155mm/L52 Archer SPG was to increase the artillery capabilities of two Scandinavian countries – Norway and Sweden. The idea for a next-generation artillery gun was developed and manufactured by BAE Systems, but Norway later abandoned the 155mm/L52 Archer SPG and focused on acquiring South Korean K9 Thunder self-propelled howitzers. Thus, only Sweden remained the only system operator to date.

Sweden asks for more 155mm FH77BW L52 SPG firing Excalibur shells
Photo credit: Wikipedia

155mm/L52 Archer SPG is integrated on a 6×6 Volvo chassis and is powered by a single diesel engine, guaranteeing 320 horsepower of the entire artillery configuration. The suspension is solid axles, multilink, hydraulic suspension [called “independent suspension” by Volvo, meaning solid axles are not rigidly fixed to the frame]. 90 km/h is the maximum speed that the Archer SPG can reach. 650 km is the maximum distance that the artillery system travels with a full fuel tank.

The main armament is a Swedish 155mm cannon FX77. The howitzer has secondary weapons for close combat protection: the Kongsberg Protector remote weapon system, with an integrated 12.7mm machine gun, smoke grenades, and the ability to fire anti-tank guided missiles [ATGM].

155mm/L52 Archer SPG is designed to work with various projectiles such as standard artillery shells with a range of 30 km, base-bleed artillery shells with a range of 40 km and gained popularity with its high range [60 km], combat effectiveness, and destructive capabilities M982 Excalibur projectiles. 155mm/L52 Archer SPG can fire between 8 and 9 artillery shells per minute of each type.

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