155mm Self Propelled Gun M53, an American Boom Stick

Would you like to see this vehicle added to the game?
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Hello All, Today I’d like to propose the addition of the 155mm Self-Propelled gun M53.




The M53 is an American Self Propelled Artillery Gun, which was developed and prototyped by mid 1952, prototype designation Gun 155mm SP T97, it was produced until mid 1955. It came armed with the 155mm T80/M46 Heavy Artillery gun, and carried a load of 20 complete rounds of ammunition in the casemate. Due to limited funding, to keep production simplified, and to ensure maximum interchangeability, it used many features and components from other vehicles that were developed around the same time. Such as the tracks and running gear from the M46 and M47 tanks, the now common AV-1790-5 engine with the CD-850-4 transmission power pack combo, and eventually the Steering wheel system from the M48. After 1956, the Army converted all of their M53’s to the M55 configuration. However, the Marines kept using the M53 through Vietnam, eventually being replaced by the 8in M55, and then the lighter M110.

Its place in the Game

Going by its capabilities and the fact that it was produced through the mid 1950’s. I see it as being pretty capable Korean to Vietnam War Era vehicle. As such, I would suggest an approximate battle rating range of 7.0 to 8.0. We already have similar vehicles in game, such as the Japanese Type 75 SPH. And the US tree, has long been missing a heavy direct fire self-propelled artillery gun, especially in the Tier 5 area… The M53’s main gun with the capability to fire a high pen APHE round, and proximity fuzed HE rounds, would make it quite deadly against most vehicles. Though the relatively high silhouette of the vehicle, may make it difficult to hide in cover.

Vehicle Specifications


  • Crew: 6, Commander(turret right), Gunner(turret right front), 3x Loader/Cannoneers (Turret), Driver(Turret left front)
  • Weight(combat): 98,700lbs (44,769kg) 44.7Tons
  • Length: 27ft 1in (791cm) Hull, 31ft 7in (972cm) Gun forward
  • Height: 11ft 8in (347cm) Over AAMG
  • Width: 11ft 8in (358.1cm) Over fenders
  • Turret Ring Dia: 59.5in (151cm) Inside
  • Ground Clearance: 18.5in (47cm)
  • Ground Pressure: 11.8psi


  • Primary Armament: 155mm Gun (T80)M46, M86 Mount, Casemate Turret (20rnds)
  • Rate of Fire(max): 2 rounds/min
  • Traverse: 60° @ 10°/sec (Manual and Hydraulic)
  • Elevation: +65° to -5° @ 7.5°/sec (Hydraulic)
  • Stabilizer: None
  • Secondary 1: .50cal M2HB MG, flexible ring Mount on cupola, 360° (Manual) (900rnds)


  • Assembly: Welded

  • Hull: Rolled Homogeneous Steel

  • Armor Hull: Upper Front (19mm @ 10°), Lower Front (19mm @ 57°), Sides (12.7mm @ 0°), Rear (12.7mm @ 0°), Top (12.7mm @ 90°), Floor (19mm @ 90°)

  • Turret: Rolled Homogeneous Steel

  • Armor Turret: Gun shield (12.7mm @ round), Front (12.7mm @ 20.5°), Sides (12.7mm @ 0°), Rear (12.7mm @ 0°), Top (12.7mm @ 90° )


  • Engine: Continental AV-1790-5B or 7B, Gasoline, 12cyl
  • Net HP: 704hp @ 2800rpm
  • Gross HP: 810hp @ 2800rpm
  • Net Torque: 1440ft-lb @ 2000rpm
  • Gross Torque: 1610ft-lb @ 2200rpm
  • Transmission: GM CD-850-4 or 4B, 2 Ranges Forward, 1 Reverse
  • Suspension: Torsion Bar
  • Steering: Mechanical, Wobble stick, or steering wheel
  • Brakes: Multiple Disc
  • Speed: Road Max High Range: 30mph (48km/h), Low Range: 12mph (19km/h), Reverse: 12mph (19km/h)
  • Max Grade: 60%
  • Min Turn Circle: Pivot

Armament information and Ammunition

The 155mm Self-Propelled gun M53 used the 155mm (T80) M46 Gun. According the Hunnicutt’s this gun has a bore length of 45calibers and had a basic ammunition load of 20 rounds. Firing M101 HE shell with either normal or super charge. M104 WP Smoke shells, or M104 HD Gas shells (these wouldnt apply to the game). The gun, at least according to Hunnicutt’s could fire 1rnd/min. However, according to FM 6-40 Field Artillery, Gunnery, April 1957. The gun could fire at a rate of 2rnd/min.

FM 6-40 as well as FM 6-93, also list the following ammunition as usable by the (T80) M46 Gun.

  1. 155mm M101 Deep cavity HE Shell, with either Point detonating, Timed, or VT proximity Fuze
  2. 155mm M112 AP Shell, base detonating fuze
  3. 155mm M104 WP Smoke Shell,
  4. 155mm M118A1 Illumination shell Timed fuze.

Ammunition Specifications

M101 HE Shell

  • Weight: 95.73lbs (43.42kg)
  • Muzzle Velocity(super Charge): 2800ft/s (853m/s)
  • Burst Charge: 15.48lbs (7.021kg) TNT
  • Fuze: Point Detonating

M101 HE Shell, Deep Cavity

  • Weight: 95.10lbs (43.14kg)
  • Muzzle Velocity(super Charge): 2800ft/s (853m/s)
  • Burst Charge: 14.61-14.91lbs (6.62-6.76kg) TNT
  • Fuze: Point Detonating, Timed Mechanical, or VT proximity

M112 APBC-HE Shell

  • Weight: 100lbs (45.36kg)
  • Muzzle Velocity(super Charge): 2745ft/s (837m/s)
  • Burst Charge: 1.44lbs (653g) Exp. D
  • Fuze: Base Detonating
  • Penetration RHA (Wiki calc): 246mm @ Vertical 10m Range

M104 WP Smoke Shell

  • Weight: 97.90lbs (44.4kg)
  • Muzzle Velocity(super Charge): 2800ft/s (853m/s)
  • Burst Charge: 15.6lbs (7.076kg) WP
  • Fuze: Point Detonating





References used

Patton, A history of the American Main Battle Tank, by RP Hunnicutt.

FM 6-40 Field Artillery Gunnery April 1957

FM 6-93 155mm Assault Gun M53, and 8-inch Howitzer M55, Self Propelled, Field Manual

TM 9-1300-203 Ammunition for Anti Aircraft, Tank, Anti Tank, and Field Artillery Weapons, August 1960

TM 9-1901 Artillery Ammunition June 1944

TM 43-0001-28 Army Ammunition Datasheets, Artillery Ammunition

Correspondence Thru 1956 - Gun, 155mm, SP, T97 - Courtesy of Harold Biondo’s Patreon Page.




My BOY! Its beautiful. Personally I vote 6.7 or 7.0 max for the sake of its 30s reload time and weak armor and size. We have the T30 at 6.7 as it is, but that has armor. The Auf1 is 7.0 with a 7.5s reload albeit no AP, and most other SPHs and TDs of high caliber are between 6.3-7.0. With the M53 having the lomgest reload of them all for the sake of an AP shell

I love everything except the reload. 30 seconds is a long time, and it’s not launching a bomb like the sturmtiger. I have a feeling gaijin might end up ‘balancing’(lowering) the reload on this thing if added.

Could be devastating but difficult to use, given the lack of a turret and long reload. Nonetheless a fun vehicle. +1

I figure they’d possibly do that if necessary. Granted from reading on various military forums, I gather from what vets have said, if the crews ignored safety protocols they could definitely push out a lot more than 2rpm from the gun if necessary.

The 2rpm is most likely sustained RoF in an indirect fire role.

I just posted a request for american SPG’s too but nowhere near this in depth. Its not that I wouldn’t want to see this vehicle in game, but personally I wish we could have a few other additions first or a line of arty vehicles. The ones I really want to see are the M41 HMC, M12 GMC, and the M40 GMC. These would be mobile, ammunition limited glass cannons that would have a good gun and mobility but not be OP. I would like to see them because the playstyle would be very fun to me and a big one is adding fire support to help deal with heavier armor after volumetric. What do you think about this?

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I’d like to see all those too. I just haven’t had time to suggest them for the US tree. I know the guns on the M12 and M40 can use most of the same ammunition as the M46 gun here, except the VT-fuzed shells, as I don’t think those came out till post-war.

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I didn’t play USA but why not? +1

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