M109A6 "Paladin"

Would you like to see the M109A6 in-game?
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0 voters

Welcome to the suggestion for the M109A6, also known as the Paladin. Despite people often calling the M109 series as a whole Paladin, the A6 is the only variant that uses this nickname. In-game, the M109A6 would offer increased armor and mobility over the current M109A1. I’d also like to suggest it receive M795, the successor of the M107 projectile, with more explosive filler and a greater muzzle velocity.

Overview

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An M109A6 at Yuma Proving Ground, circa 1990s.

In the 1970s, the US Army was seeking to improve the M109A2s and M109A3s it had in service, starting with a set of annual exercises known as HELBAT, standing for Human Engineering Laboratory Battalion Artillery Test. These were conducted at Aberdeen Proving Ground, and would result in the US Army being able to identify its future artillery needs. By the 1980s, the US Army had three options before it, continue upgrading the M109A2 and M109A3 with modest upgrades, a more extensive program known as HIP (Howitzer Improvement Program), or an entirely new design, which would later lead to the XM2001 Crusader.

The HIP project examined three different new weapon upgrades, including a 58-caliber XM282, a lightweight 39-caliber XM283, and an upgraded 39-caliber XM284 based on the M185 used on the M109A2. After testing, the XM824 was chosen as the winning armament for the upgrade program. Another part of HIP included the ability to ‘shoot-and-scoot’. Prior to this, self-propelled artillery had to deploy in a static location, their positions surveyed, and the entire battery connect to the fire direction center. This meant that it took a while for artillery to be set up, and was vulnerable to counter-battery fire. The MAPS (Modular Azimuth Positioning System) was developed for the M109, which used a compact and economical ring-laser gyro for its inertial navigation. This was linked to a digital ballistic computer and weapon servo control. After inserting a fire order into the computer, the computer would combine it with data from MAPS and lay the gun accurately on target. The resulting HIP M109 was type-classified as the M109A6 in February of 1990, and was nicknamed “Paladin” after the main character of the Western TV series Have Gun – Will Travel. The M109A6 received a new turret capable of mounting all of the technology introduced from HIP.


An M109A6 Paladin waits to be fired in support of day-one of the Iraqi security forces’ advance toward Mosul to retake the city from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant at Qayyarah West, Iraq, October 17th, 2016.

Low rate production began in September 1991, and the 2nd Battalion, 17th Field Artillery Regiment stationed at Fort Sill, Oklahoma was the first to receive M109A6s in June of 1993. It would continue to be issued to Army units, and by the time of Operation Iraqi Freedom, was in service with the 3rd Division Artillery, 3rd Infantry Division, known as “Marne Thunder”, which bore the brunt of much of the US Army’s fighting on the way to Baghdad. The divisional artillery commander, Colonel Thomas Torrance explained his view on the M109A6 in Field Artillery magazine:

The combat performance of the M109A6 is magnificent. It is an extremely capable system that consistently put rounds down range in less than two minutes after mission receipt, even while on the march. Firing batteries regularly fired from superhighways, narrow secondary roads, and open deserts to deliver their munitions with devastating accuracy. The system held up well to the rigors of battle as shown by our fighting strengths never dropping below 51 of 54 systems.

Operation Iraqi Freedom also saw the use of two new types of ammunition used by the M109A6, including the SADARM precision-guided munition, as well as the M795 high explosive round, an extended range successor to the older M107. In total, the “Marne Thunder” fired 13,923 155 mm rounds during Operation Iraqi Freedom, and continues to see service with the US to this day, as well as Saudi Arabia. More recently, M109A6s have been sent to Ukraine, where it has seen service alongside its older family members.


An M109A6 from Charlie Battery, 1st Battalion, 41st Field Artillery Regiment, 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division during Exercise Combined Resolve V at Grafenwöhr, Germany, October 6th, 2015.

Specifications

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M109A6_1

Crew: 4
Mass: 27.5 tons
Length: 9.1 m (30 ft)
Width: 3.1 m (10 ft 4 in)
Height: 3.2 m (10 ft 8 in)
Main armament: 155 mm M284
Main armament ammunition: 39 rounds
Secondary armament: 12.7 mm M2HB (600 rounds)
Engine: 440 hp Detroit Diesel 8V71T
Maximum speed: 56 km/h (35 mph)

Sources

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Lathrop, R., and Jim Laurier. M109 155mm Self-Propelled Howitzer. Osprey, 2004.
https://www.military.com/equipment/m109-paladin
Paladin M109A6 155mm Artillery System - Army Technology

Gallery (Warning, large amount of pictures)

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Your spoiler with images broken

+1;

Thank you, I had to remove an image that was of an M109A7, I must have deleted one of the tags unintentionally!

1 Like

Absolute +1 for 7.0

One of many vehicles I would like to see added in the near future so every country (almost) has a TT and premium ~7.0 SPG and ~7.7 SPG

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US
M109A6, TT, ~7.0

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Late model of the M109 with improved armour, engine, reload system, and armament.
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M1299, TT, ~7.7

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SPG based on M109A7 with autoloaded 155mm L/58.

M109A7, premium, ~7.0

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M109A6 with shared automotive components from Bradley.
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Germany
VCA-155, TT, ~7.0

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TAM with Palmaria turret.
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PzH 2000, TT, ~7.7

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German SPG sharing automotive components with Leopard 2 featuring autoloaded 155mm L/52 and LRF.

SP70, premium, ~7.0

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Prototype SPG based on Leopard 1 featuring 155mm L/39.
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Soviet Union
2S19, TT, ~7.0

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Russian SPG based on hybrid T-72/80 featuring autoloaded 152mm L/47.
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2S19M1, TT, ~7.7

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2S19 upgraded with faster autoloader, improved engine, and LRF.

2S3M2-155, premium, ~7.0

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Prototype export variant of 2S3 featuring assisted loaded 155mm and LRF.
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Britain
AS-90, TT, ~7.0

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British SPG featuring autoloaded 155mm L/39.
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AS-90 L/52, TT, ~7.7

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Prototype AS-90 with 155mm L/52 and LRF.
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AS-90D, premium, ~7.0

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Tropicalized AS-90 for operation in desert conditions.
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China
PLZ45, TT, ~7.0

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Chinese export SPG equipped with assisted loaded 155mm L/45.
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PLZ05, TT, ~8.0

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Chinese SPG equipped with autoloaded 155mm L/52, thermal sights, and LRF.

PLL09, premium, ~7.0

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Chinese wheeled SPG featuring assisted loaded 122mm L/32 and LRF.
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Italy
Palmaria, TT, ~7.0

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Italian export SPG featuring autoloaded 155mm L/41 on OF-40 hull.
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PzH 2000, TT, ~7.7

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PzH 2000 in Italian or Hungarian service.

Palmaria (proto), premium, ~7.0

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Palmaria prototype as trialed by Italian Army.
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France
AuF2, TT, ~7.7

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AuF1 featuring autoloaded 155mm L/52 and upgraded engine.
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AuF1 (T-72), premium, ~7.0

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Prototype of T-72M1 fitted with AuF1 turret offered for export to India and Egypt.

Sweden
K9FIN Moukari, TT, ~7.7

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K9 Thunder in Finnish service, similar to K9 VIDAR but lacking thermals.

Bandkanon 1A, premium, ~6.7

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Bandkanon based on Strv 103A instead of Strv 103C.

Israel
Doher, TT, ~7.0

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Israeli modification of M109A5, similar to the M109A6 though lacking the add-on armour.
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Sholef, TT, ~8.0

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Israeli prototype SPG based on Merkava Mk 1 featuring autoloaded, twin-plane stabilized 155mm L/52.
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M-72 Roesh, premium, ~7.0

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Prototype SPG based on Sho’t featuring 155mm L/39.
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3 Likes

M109A7 would better fit as the tech tree variant instead of the A6, considering it is the most modern and best variant in service, with a much stronger engine giving it superior mobility to any other (US) M109.

but +1 for suggestion

Guys, we don’t need any more Paladins spammed everywhere.

Put the M109A7 in the tree and save the premium spot for the M109A2 HFHTB, which is fitted with a 750hp engine and 25mm Bushmaster.

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3 Likes

Don’t we already have this why do we need another?

“we already have the M60A1 AOS why would we want the M60A3 TTS?”
It’s a dramatically upgraded model!

4 Likes

As I mentioned in the post, this version has slightly better armor and mobility, and if given the M107 HE round’s replacement, M795, could be more lethal by way of better muzzle velocity and high explosive content.

2 Likes

Yeah it was just a quick list off the top of my head, I’d definitely change a few things out

I just want more SPG’s period. So +1, obviously.