M163 VADS lacks MK149 APDS round

All M163 variants lack an APDS (20mm MK149 Armor-Piercing Discarding Sabot cartridge) round that their M168 cannons can fire.
This is based on:
(MK149 Armor-Piercing Discarding Sabot cartridge Brochure)
“Compatible with all M61 and M197 gun systems”

(Jane’s Ammunition Handbook)
" APDS MK149 Mod 4: Similar to AP-I M53 but with the addition of a red tracer; 102 g; MV 1,030 m/s
tungsten carbide subprojectile in light alloy sabot; 110g; MV 1,000 m/s. Specifically for US Navy
Phalanx Close-In Weapon System (CIWS) but compatible with all M61 and M197 gun systems" (Annex image below)
Captura de pantalla 2024-05-29 122800

(Jane’s Land Based Air Defense (Annex image below))

+Remember that the m163 System uses the m168 cannon, which is part of the m61 Vulcan guns system
+Should be noted that General Dynamics says in the brochure that the round is compatible with “all M61” systems. (in addition to the others) so we can assume the round was tested on the M168.
+Even if it is inferred that the current version of the m163 cannot fire these rounds, other versions (M163A1, M163 PIVADS) can do so, which would lead to this ammunition being added as a modification to the existing m163 (at least the American one)
as has happened with other vehicles in the game.
+Regarding balance, the high br (7.7) of the M163 makes it unviable to play in a lineup that is firm in its br
The T114 (7.7 light tank) is premium
Like the T54E2 (7.7 medium tank)
Leaving as the only option in the tech tree for a line up:
The biggest problem is that the m163 is the first anti-aircraft gun after a large gap from the m42 Duster (4.0 BR) in the line of American anti-aircraft guns, which limits its rise in br. But at the same time the m163 has to cover another gap from 7.7 to the M247 Sergeant York (9.0)
gap in which if it is used minimally higher (for example 8.0) it tends to constantly see other more advanced Spaags and with greater capabilities (Search radar and apds or larger caliber) such as:
Gepard (8.3)
ZSU-23-4 (8.0)
ZSU-37-2 (7.7-This in the same br being much better than the m163 in some aspects)
Chieftain Marksman (8.3)
Type 87 (8.3)
The MK149 APDS should be added to the m163 even if that means that it has to raise br to 8.0 or at an absurd extreme 8.3 this would give it defense capabilities and minimum competitiveness against ground targets (such as disabling the barrel cannon or being able to do some damage on its sides) currently the m163 has difficulties even facing light vehicles such as the Marder and the BMP.


That would be nice to have a belt that can kill ground vehicles. Personally I feel that the M163 isn’t even that good at anti air though. so moving it up in br would be the worst thing you could possibly do


It’s not that good at anti-air simply because it isn’t, at least compared to other SPAA systems of similar BR. People will bring up how the ZSU’s search and track radar isn’t that good, and the response will always be “at least it gets a search radar.”

You’re better off leading by instinct with the M163, track radar doesn’t pick anything up 75% of the time and I end up having to press my lock button about 8 times just to get it to track.


Reminder that this is small caliber APDS designed to be used against missiles and aircraft, it’s penetration can already be seen on the PG-02 in the Japanese costal tree and frankly it is quite meh.

Even with it I cant see the VADS going up because it is 100% not a big power boost.


Still better than nothing

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Its going to be going from this

To this


Aka you wont really be penetrating anything you cant already penetrate.

aren’t those values a bit too high ?


That’s a 60% increase in penetration? You’ve gone from barely penning a BMP-1 frontally to shredding a BMP-2D with ease.


I’ve saw 3 guys together Brrrttt’ing the skies at the same time while I was in a Yenisei.

It’s pretty mobile, so a ground target focused belt addition would be nice. Its not like it’s OP or anything, I mean it’s still a 20mm round with hardly much pen… make a bug report if you want to see it ingame

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I dont recall the BMP-2D getting superior front armor to the BMP-1, pretty sure you can front pen both to begin with, although, its 13mm and 19mm, thats not an exceptionally high bar to begin with.

13mm and 19mm? The hell are you talking about? The BMP-1 turret is pushing 35-50mm while the hull can’t even be shot without a ricochet. The 2D is much the same, but now the turret has much more intricate geometry that can lead to snapshots of upwards of 50-100mm.

Why are you trying to shoot the turret of a BMP when 80% of the vehicle is lightly armored hull.

Because 100% of the hull is an auto-ricochet


At 45deg, that penetration does look pretty accurate.


Oh, by the way this could / was also used carried in the M197 & GPU-2/A as used by the Super Cobra
(AH-1T / -J / -W, Idk about the -1Z ) with the restriction that it could only be fired from the fixed forward position due to the risk of the air intake ingesting a sabot.

it isnt, with those values it would be penning around 45 mm at 45º instead of the 30mm that it should be able to pen

as you can see it has almost the same pen as the 20mm apds from the rh 202 at 100m, so yeah i would say that those are a bit too high

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Russian helis getting APDS but American 20 mm that isn’t even limited to US only, doesn’t, that’s always awesome to see…

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The radar is worthless. but even as far as eyeing it goes it is a very difficult one for me to eyeball on the go. unless the plane I am shooting at is flying in a straight line. I honestly do better with the M42 crop duster but the M163 is the 7.7 so naturally I take it because…it’s cool and basically worthless in my hands unless a bmp comes along lol

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Yep. But hey at least with the XM800T we’ll have a second 20mm autocannon to use for spaa purposes :p

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