2S7M Malka - Theoretically Possible Is The Best Kind Of Possible

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TL;DR: A big gun on a huge chassis carrying 8 rounds.

History:

Motorizing howitzers and anti-tank guns has always been a necessity when it comes moving them through hostile territory. Towed guns, while cheaper, take time to set up and can succumb to hostile terrain. Placing them onto tracked or more robust wheeled platforms allows for easier rides through challenging terrain while also mitigating or even eliminating setup time. This mindset and ones like it have lead to hundreds if not thousands of self-propelled howitzer designs. Most being failures but a few, like the 2S7, going on to full scale production. The 2S7 began as Object 216 in the 1970s, a project to mount a long range and extremely powerful howitzer onto a mobile chassis. The chassis would be unique to the project but would incorporate parts of the T-80 MBT. The V-46-I engine, developing 780hp, would be centrally mounted and a large spade would be placed at the rear. A range of 25km was set a requirement for the project, leaving only 3 candidates for its armament. The 180mm S-23, the 180mm B-1-P, and the 210mm S-72. The S-72 was chosen as it was the most ballistically suitable out of the three, however, a problem quickly arose. No one actually had the tooling necessary to mass produce 210mm howitzers. That being said, the Barrikady Factory did have tooling for mass producing 203mm howitzers left over from when they produced the 203mm B-4 howitzer way back in WW2. It was suggested that the S-72 be modified and reduced to a caliber of 203mm to avoid the cost of having to make tooling for 210mm howitzer mass production from the ground up. This suggestion was approved and the 2A44 203mm howitzer was born. This weapon would be mounted on the rear of the chassis and have access to 15 degrees, left and right, of horizontal traverse. It would also be fitted with the OP-4M sight for direct-fire use as well as a semi-automatic loader that allowed for an ROF of 1.5rpm. The vehicle would also carry four rounds of ammunition on board. The vehicle would enter service as the 2S7 Pion. By the late 2010s, the 2S7 Pion was starting to show its age and certain world events had made its production and maintenance difficult. As such, a modernization project was started. The result would be designated the 2S7M Malka. This upgrade would replace several Ukrainian made parts with new Russian ones. The V-46-I engine would also be replaced by the V-84V that developed 840hp. The semi-automatic loader would be upgraded as well, allowing for a much better ROF of 2.5rpm. Lastly, on-board ammunition capacity would be increased from 4 to 8 rounds. The 2S7M Malka continues to serve to this day and remains the largest armored vehicle in the Russian arsenal.

Place In War Thunder:

There are very few things in War Thunder as satisfying as demolishing vehicle with over large weapons. These derp vehicle have been continuously carving out their own niche on the War Thunder battlefield in recent years and are constantly getting closer and closer to cementing themselves as their own vehicle class with their own hard-liner fanatics. The two vehicle 2S7 family is very commonly referred to as the most powerful SPG in the world when it comes to things like raw singe-shot damage. Speaking of, the 3OF43 projectile fired by the 2A44 carries a warhead filled with 17.8kg of A-IX-20 explosive. There isn’t a single vehicle, in-game or not, that would survive a direct hit from this monster. Unfortunately, as, despite having direct-fire sights, the 2S7M was designed for long-range fire, it has 0 degrees of gun depression. This could be somewhat mitigated if given the option to use the low-charge ammunition configuration, which would lower velocity. On the flip side, if you wish to snipe, a full charge can be loaded for a 203mm round delivered at 960m/s. In addition to the HE round, the 2S7M can fire a concrete piercing round called 3G3 Galyan that was designed to target large bunkers. Unfortunately, I haven’t found any number regarding penetration. Playstyle would be pretty unique. The 2S7M isn’t a slouch with its top speed of 50kph but calling it fast isn’t fitting. The aforementioned lack of gun depression would also vastly limit positions you could take. Your gun crew is completely exposed and your armor is weak. Your gun is everything you have. 8 rounds, while it might sound small, can easily equal 8 kills simply due to your raw destructive power. Your reload isn’t at all bad either at only 24 seconds. For a gun as large and devastating as the 2A44, that’s practically nothing. Both going rambo and sitting back would both be viable playstyles. Full charge rounds would be pretty easy to aim at distance and your relatively fast reload would allow you to be a decent support on close combat. Your real enemies are going to aircraft and artillery strikes as either can put you out of commission in an instant. Since the 2S7M is Russia’s main long range SPG, it has a place in the tech tree, potentially filling the gap between the PT-76 and ASU-85, maybe even foldered with its less effective 2S7 Pion predecessor. That being said, due to its unique nature, it could easily end up as a premium or event vehicle. I personally believe that either one of the 2S7s would be perfect for a future “Dreams Do Come True” event.

Specifications:

Armament: 203mm 2A44 howitzer

Dimensions: 13.12m, 3.38m, 3.00m

Weight: 46500kg

Armor: Proof against small arms fire and artillery shell splinters

Crew: 6

Ammunition: HE and Concrete Piercing

Speed: 50kph

Horsepower: 840hp

Pictures:

Front View:

Rear View:

Direct Fire:

On Trailer:

Sources:

2S7 Pion - Wikipedia
2S7 Pion - WikiTanks
2S7 Pion | Weaponsystems.net
203mm shells for 2A44 howitzer | Weaponsystems.net
2S7 203-mm Self-Propelled Gun
2S7 Pion / Malka (M1975)
2S7 Pion 2S7M Malka 203mm self-propelled gun howitzer data

5 Likes

The emperor of thunder. +1

1 Like

+1

1 Like

Please no! I wouldnt want such fun to be locked behind a grind fest, I also dont have the time for it. I hope it apears in tech tree.

2 Likes

I definitely agree which is why I also suggested it to fill the gap between the PT-76 and ASU-85. Here’s to hoping.

Miniature Gustav

1 Like