AMX 30 Valorisé - First of the AMX 32

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6Nl4kyz (2)

The AMX 30 Valorisé is one of the proposed standards that did not get adopted during the AMX 30 B2 program. The cost was too high and some parts were axed to get it within budget.

The AMX 30 Valorisé was the pinnacle of what GIAT could do at the time of the program. They crammed all technologies they could inside the chassis to make it a worthy upgrade.

The most obvious upgrade is the APX M453 (here SAGEM model) periscopic sight that is used by the commander as part of his director stabilizer. We will come back later to this.

The major upgrade over the normal AMX 30 is the new EFAB 120mm gun that was installed.

As one can note the new gun came with a new french APFSDS round as well as the OCC 120G1. It is still compatible with all NATO 120mm rounds as it is the same gun you found on the 4th AMX 32 (AMX 32 120) and all AMX 40s.

The EFAB 120 mm gun was the centre of french APFSDS development until the 105 was kept. This means the 120 has multiple experimental 120mm rounds to choose from.

However among these the closest to reach production is the “120mm AFAC” round, a 5.8kg tungsten apfsds shot a 1700 m/s

the AFAC round is always shown with the 30 Valorisé

Notes : the AFAC round can be used by the AMX 30 valorisé and the AMX 32. The 120mm gun can also use 120mm german rounds.

In FCS term the AMX 30 Valorisé recieved an upgrade over its predecessor.

(link in case it does not play)

“(Taking about gunner’s station) On remplace la référence inertielle du viseur APX M453 par une deuxième référence inertielle liée à l’artillerie”. => “The inertial reference of the APX M453 sight is replaced by a second inertial reference point linked to the artillery (understand the main gun)”.

What does this lingo means ? It just means that when the gunner takes over the control of the gun, the FCS switches from the commander’s hunter killer (director stabilizer) mode to a classic gun stabilizer.

Over the AMX 30, this version got a normal stabilizer (for the gunner) and a hunter killer (director stabilizer) for the commander. This dual system is usually known as COSTAC and is usually portrayed as some weird technology. However through this short clip, we can see there was just a question of lost in translation. As GIAT mostly insisted on the commander’s hunter killer function (that no other 1960s MBT had back then), the normal stabilizer was only considered a back up solution, and therefore was not put forward to the foreign visitors. This led to confusion over the system. Confusion which continued to be carried over to its successor the AMX 32 (but less for AMX 40 as they had corrected their marketing error).

The gunner and commander are provided with LRF and LLTV equipment by their own respective sights (APX M453 and APX M421).

Being part of what led to the AMX 30 B2, it shares motor capabilities with the HS-110-2 740 hp engine and SESM ESM 200 Minerva.

Furthermore there are two versions of the APX M453 which only differ by their external appearance. The one showcased in this suggestion is the SAGEM model (right) however the Sere-Bézu (left) model can be mounted as well and can help create a “second” model of AMX 30 Valorisé should the need arise.

Overall the AMX 30 Valorisé is a good addition to the AMX 30 family providing needed capabilities to the tech tree.

Sources :

Saumur Museum and Cavalry School Library donation to the ECPAD (French Army Archive) document archive - Video exerpts from the COSTAC system video by AMX/APX


Revelant video exerpts

The Tank Magazine 1978


International Defense Review 1977


Interconair Defense Magazine Issue 15 , 1977 (Sept-Dec)


Satory V exhibit by Armées D’Aujourd’hui ( which is Forces Armées Françaises renamed Armée D’aujourd’hui on July 1975, both are published by the Service d’informations et de relations publiques des armées (SIRPA) which means this is a French government/ french army source)

“La tête panoramique stabilisée à deux grossissement du viseur APX M453 pour chars, permettant le tir en marche”

=> The stabilized head of the 2 zoom positions APX M453 sight for tanks, which enables fire while moving (for the commander, its part of the hunter killer mode)


It must be noted that, technically speaking, the 120mm gun equipped with the AMX 30 Valorisé is not the same as the CN 120 G1 later used in the AMX-40.

The early development history of the French 120mm smoothbore gun is confusing. We cannot know much information, but we can still find clues somewhere. The pre-production version of the AMX-40 (P01 and P02) uses a 120mm tank gun formally designated G1, and its EFAB number is CN 120-25.

According to Marc Chassillan, it all started in the early 1970s when EFAB designed the first 120 mm smoothbore gun designated the CN 120-21 for the EPC program.

After about 1975, they tested the 120 mm smoothbore gun on an AMX-30B, which was later converted into the Valorisé configuration in 1977. The exact model of the gun is not known, it’s just named ‘CN 120’ on its munitions markings. The gun is capable of firing the first-generation experimental ‘120 F’ round with a muzzle velocity of 1700 m/s. The CN 120 gun was on display again at the Satory VII expo in 1979.

GIAT first exhibited two AMX-32 prototypes with 120 mm gun at Satory VIII expo in 1981. Based on their munitions markings, we learn that the gun they were equipped with were designated CN 120-24, and its muzzle velocity when firing OFL 120 G1 is 1630 m/s.

The first AMX-40 prototype (P1) was unveiled at Satory IX expo in 1983, and then at the Satory X in 1985, GIAT again exhibited the fourth AMX-40 prototype based on the CH4 hull. According to the munitions markings, we know that the gun they were equipped with were designated as CN 120-21/2, and the muzzle velocity when firing OFL 120 G1 increases to 1650 m/s.

Finally at the Satory XI show in 1987, GIAT displayed the first pre-production vehicle of the AMX-40, along with its 120mm tank ammunition with the ‘CN 120 G1’ markings.



→ 120mm AFAC ←

documents are courtesy of Kawaiirage

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