Japan buys 300 Swedish SAAB’s Carl-Gustaf multi-role weapons

The Japan Self-Defense Forces, commonly known as JGSDF, have recently commissioned Saab for a sizable order in regards to the multi-faceted, transportable weapon system, Carl-Gustaf. This new partnership will see the production of over 300 units, with delivery slated for the year 2025. 

Australia buys the M4 recoilless gun: the killer of T-90 tanks
Photo credit: SAAB

Offering a remarkable level of tactical adaptability owing to its broad capacity for various ammunition types, the Carl-Gustaf system is not only eminent for its lightweight profile but has also garnered recognition as the leading shoulder-launched weapon across numerous countries. A faithful ally of the Japan Self-Defense Forces, the system has been in active service since 1979. 

Regarding this noteworthy order, Görgen Johansson, the spearhead of Saab’s Business Area Dynamics, expressed that this acquisition serves as solid evidence of our weapon system Carl-Gustaf living up to the demanding standard set by the Japan Self-Defense Forces. We anticipate maintaining and enhancing their capabilities.

Demonstrating its efficacy on the battlefield, the Carl-Gustaf system offers the efficacy soldiers demand. The system’s broad spectrum of ammunition types makes it a versatile ally, capable of crippling armored vehicles or structures or lighting up the battlefield during nocturnal operations. 

With a respected and illustrious history dating back to its inception in 1948, the Carl-Gustaf system has been exported to over 40 nations worldwide, underscoring its global acceptance and popularity.

About Carl-Gustaf multi-role weapon system

The Carl-Gustaf multi-role weapon system is a versatile and widely used weapon system that has been in service since the mid-20th century.

Australia buys the M4 recoilless gun: the killer of T-90 tanks
Photo credit: SAAB

It is a shoulder-fired recoilless rifle that is designed to be used by infantry units for a variety of purposes, including anti-armor, anti-personnel, and bunker-busting operations. The weapon system is known for its reliability, ease of use, and effectiveness in a wide range of combat scenarios.

The Carl-Gustaf multi-role weapon system has several key technical characteristics that contribute to its effectiveness on the battlefield. It has a range of approximately 1,000 meters, allowing infantry units to engage targets at a significant distance.

The weapon system is also lightweight, weighing around 14 kilograms, which makes it highly portable and easy to maneuver in various terrains. Additionally, it features a reloadable breech-loading mechanism, enabling rapid firing and quick reloading during engagements.

Australia buys the M4 recoilless gun: the killer of T-90 tanks
Photo credit: SAAB

Warheads and operational range

One of the notable features of the Carl-Gustaf multi-role weapon system is its wide range of warheads, which provide versatility in combat situations. The system can be equipped with various types of ammunition, including high-explosive anti-tank [HEAT] rounds, high-explosive dual-purpose [HEDP] rounds, smoke rounds, and illumination rounds.

HEAT rounds are designed to penetrate armored vehicles, while HEDP rounds are effective against both armored targets and personnel in the open. Smoke rounds provide concealment, and illumination rounds are used for lighting up the battlefield at night.

The operational range of the Carl-Gustaf multi-role weapon system depends on the type of ammunition used. With HEAT rounds, the system can engage targets at distances of up to 700 meters, while HEDP rounds have an effective range of approximately 1,000 meters.

Smoke rounds can be fired up to 1,200 meters, and illumination rounds can illuminate an area up to 2,000 meters away. These ranges allow infantry units to engage targets effectively at various distances, enhancing their operational capabilities on the battlefield.


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