Here’s the revised version of the text:
Today, I’d like to introduce a unique technical marvel from France: a Mercedes-Benz Unimog outfitted with the RAPIDFire turret developed by Thales.
The story of this vehicle traces back to the turn of the century when France and Britain initiated the production of the CTA 40 mm. This new generation autocannon utilized cased telescoped ammunition for optimal space efficiency. The versatility of the 40mm soon found its way into various projects, from upgrading existing IFVs to serving as a naval weapon station. In 2013, Thales showcased the RAPIDFire, a turret designed for France’s next-generation ships but adaptable for both land and sea. To demonstrate its versatility, Thales mounted the turret on a Mercedes-Benz Unimog, a vehicle already in service with the French army, notably as the Caesar.
A prototype of the TITUS equipped with this weapon system is expected to be unveiled in 2022.
The RAPIDFire turret is armed with the 40mm CTA, capable of firing a variety of ammunition types, including APFSDS (able to penetrate 140mm of RHA at 1500m), pellet rounds, multi-purpose HE, and SAP, which can breach 240mm of concrete. With a firing rate of up to 200 rpm, it boasts a ready rack of 140 rounds and an additional 80 rounds stored in the vehicle. The turret is equipped with infrared sensors, a laser rangefinder, and a gyro-stabilized FCS with an optronic sight, allowing for visual identification up to 30 km and target tracking up to 15 km. It offers two firing modes: a fast mode at 200 rpm and a slow mode at 80 rpm.
Built on the Mercedes-Benz Unimog 6x6 U2450 cross-country truck chassis, the RAPIDFire vehicle is powered by a Mercedes-Benz LA 6-cylinder turbocharged diesel engine producing 240 hp. With a manual transmission offering 8 forward and 1 reverse gear, it can achieve a top speed of 95 km/h and cover a distance of 600 km on a single tank. The fully loaded RAPIDFire weighs between 15 to 16 tons, resulting in a power-to-weight ratio of approximately 16 hp/t.
The system requires a two-person crew, both housed in an armored compartment at the front of the truck, designed to withstand small-caliber machine gun fire.
While the RAPIDFire lacks a standalone search radar, its advanced FCS can identify, lock onto, and predict firing solutions. This can be simulated in-game as a lead indicator, similar to radar-guided SPAA mechanics. This addition would provide France with a powerful SPAA equipped with HEVT, diversifying the 9.0+ French lineup. Plus, it’s stabilized!