WZ141:The sharp blade of the Chinese Airborne Forces

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WZ141 is China’s Airborne Combat Vehicle in the Cold War under the threat of the Soviet Union’s armored torrent, the Airborne Forces proposed to design an airborne combat vehicle: it has strong anti-armor firepower, and it can descend behind the enemy group in wartime, which can not only slow down the advance of the enemy’s armored forces, but also use the firepower advantage to cut off its supply line and create conditions for the counter-shock.In the end, the project was terminated and mass production was not achieved.
【There are only early pictures of two 105 recoilless guns】
【WZ141 No. 1 test vehicle】
【WZ141 No. 2 test vehicle】

R&D History:


In the 60s of the last century, relations between China and its northern neighbor became increasingly strained, culminating in the Zhenbao Island conflict in 1969. Although tensions have eased since the conflict, it cannot be ignored that the Soviet Union is still eyeing northern China. Once the conflict resumed, the Soviet armoured clusters would flood through the Chinese border defenses and go inland. In the face of such a grim situation, China has launched several projects to improve its anti-tank capabilities, including the 122 tank project, the 302 anti-tank missile project, and so on. These battles are all Army-led, anti-armor and anti-cluster capabilities that focus on passive defense. However, at this time, there is still a certain offensive and passive weapon project, which is the WZ-141 double-barreled airborne combat vehicle dominated by the Airborne Forces, under the threat of the Soviet armored torrent, the Airborne Forces proposed to design an airborne combat vehicle: with powerful anti-armor firepower, it can be dropped behind the enemy group in wartime, which can not only slow down the advance of the enemy’s armored forces, but also use the advantage of firepower to cut off its supply line and create conditions for counter-shock. Tracing back to the source, such airborne tactics were also partly influenced by the Soviet Union’s airborne combat theory, which was characterized by the need for equipment with strong firepower and high flexibility.
From April 11 to 23, 1975, a symposium on the development of armored forces was held in Nanjing. The meeting affirmed the “armored light cavalry” tactics proposed by the Airborne Forces for fighting behind enemy lines, discussed and preliminarily decided on the project of developing light airborne combat vehicles, and conducted joint experiments with new models such as anti-tank missile launchers in the future. In October of the same year, at a meeting of the Central Military Commission on weapons and equipment in Beijing, this concept was further developed, and four key requirements for airborne combat vehicles were determined.

  1. Excellent strategic mobility. The compact size is convenient for air transportation, and the weight of the body takes into account the upper limit of 22,000 kg for the main transport aircraft (An-12). When fighting on the ground, the weight should also be controlled to the point that there is no need for a special tank transporter for transportation, and it should be limited to the load range of ordinary trucks.
  2. Good off-road performance. Considering that the future combat environment is the Three North region (Northeast China, North China, Northwest), this vehicle must have excellent off-road performance. Similarly, in order to seize strategic points and “fight and withdraw quickly”, it is necessary to ensure the high-speed performance of highways.
  3. Powerful firepower and survivability. The vehicle had to be able to hit the frontal armor of the T-55/62, the main tank of the Soviet Union, and on top of that, it had to have armor protection against small arms and artillery shell fragments.
  4. Vehicleization. In a series of self-developed tank projects, the Army’s experience is to carry out generalization and vehicle family, and such excellent experience should also be developed into projects for the Airborne Forces. In the future, the development of airborne self-propelled anti-aircraft guns, airborne personnel carriers and so on on this chassis will be considered.
    By December 1977, the first prototype had been built and was given the designation WZ-141, and even by the standards of the mid-70s, the power of the 105mm recoilless gun looked outdated, and to combat Soviet tanks, new weapons were needed. The WZ-141 has an HJ-73 anti-tank missile mounted on the top of each of the two guns, with an armor-piercing thickness of more than 500mm, a range of 3 kilometers and a low profile that is enough to cope with the combat environment at this time. In addition to the two standby shells mounted on the turret, there were two spare rounds in the car.
    After the design is completed, the prototype is sent to the test site for preliminary testing. The results of the experiment can only be described as so-so: the results of the test of protection effectiveness showed that the front of the hull could withstand the firing of a 7.62mm rifle at 100 meters, but the side and rear of the hull were basically equivalent to running naked. If the weakness of the armor is a last resort for mobility, then the results of this driving test are not very good. The top speed is around 60 km/h, but the driving feel is not very good – the driver has to correct the direction several times while driving, because the center of gravity of the chassis is tilted to the right. The domestic TZ2120A gasoline engine is liquid-cooled, which overheated many times during the driving test, and the vehicle has no floating capacity at all. The WZ-141, which was troubled in the mobility subject, also had a big flaw in the shooting subject. First of all, the muzzle velocity of the shell of the Type 75 recoilless gun is too low, the trajectory is very curved, and there are certain problems with range and accuracy. The second is that the gun has a long firing and reloading step, and it will take even a skilled operator more than a dozen seconds to fire the next shot. The old problems of recoilless guns - the storm at the tail of the gun and the obvious sound-light flame characteristics are naturally not a lot. The Airborne Forces made two-handed preparations, improving the existing prototype on the one hand, and building a second prototype on the other. Let’s start with car No. 1, which, after quite a few improvements, was again tested for more than a thousand kilometers of driving. While some driving problems were solved, the problem of overheating, lack of power and reliability in the engine was not solved. In such a situation, the second car was built.
    The No. 2 car changed the conservative design of the prototype and quite boldly adopted a large number of new technologies such as foreign engines (German F6L413F air-cooled diesel engines), dual flow dynamics, liquid-pneumatic suspension, and automatic track hydraulic adjustment system. Although the German diesel engine was larger and heavier than the domestic gasoline engine, the No. 2 car was forced to redesign the chassis (mainly by adding an air intake to accommodate the air-cooled diesel engine), but the original engine overheating problem was solved. Reliability has increased a lot, and the increase in unit power has also led to a speed of 80 km/h. What’s more, fuel consumption has good figures, and for the WZ-141, the longer travel per unit of fuel also indirectly reduces the weight of the vehicle and saves tonnage for other subsystems. There are also some changes in the armament, first of all, the two seatless guns that were originally symmetrically arranged are now all installed on the right side of the turret, which improves the difficulty of aiming for the gun commander to a certain extent. But the center of gravity of the vehicle, which was already tilting to the right, is now completely hopeless. It turned out that such an improvement did not reduce the difficulty of reloading, and the reload time for shooting was still very long. The HJ-73 anti-tank missile remained the same, but the Type 77 machine gun was replaced by a lighter Type 56 7.62 mm machine gun. However, the advantages of the liquid-pneumatic suspension are evident here – when the vehicle chooses the right hilly surface for cover, the firing angle can be improved by adjusting the height of the vehicle (the adjustable range is 170mm-400mm). Ideally, the vehicle would be able to shoot only with the barrel of the gun and the launcher of the anti-tank missile. It greatly protects itself and improves the survivability of the vehicle.
    Unlike several projects of the Army of the same period, which were completed but still had some inheritance, the fate of the WZ141 airborne combat vehicle can be described as tragic. Tested at the end of the 70s, it soon saw the reform and opening up of the motherland and the consequent “Sixth Five-Year Plan” helpless choice. At a moment when all major branches of the armed forces are grabbing the cake, even the main air force has been forced to dismount several projects, and the airborne troops under the shadow of the air force naturally cannot even drink soup. The WZ-141 was tested on the ground with the An-12 in 1980 and has not been used since. On the one hand, there was a shortage of funds, and on the other hand, the airborne troops in the early 80s also saw the new airborne theories and equipment of the West, and began to think about their own positioning and tactics in the new era. Then the WZ-141 seemed outdated and out of place, and the whole project ended forever in 1985.

weapons and equipment:


Two Type 75 105mm recoilless guns are installed on the turret of the WZ141 fighting compartment, which are improved by the military industry on the basis of the American M40A1 and M40A1C, two vehicle-mounted 105mm recoilless guns. The maximum range of anti-personnel blasting grenades is about 7400m, loaded with 2.6kg of TNT explosives, the direct range of armor-piercing shells is about 580m, the maximum effective range is about 1020m, and the depth of armor piercing against 65-degree inclined armor is 180mm. The ammunition load of the WZ-141 is 18 rounds. A Type 77 12.7mm machine gun is mounted on top of the turret.The WZ-141 installed an HJ-73 anti-tank missile on each of the roof of two guns, with an armor-piercing thickness of more than 500mm,In addition to the two pending rounds mounted on the turret, there are two spare rounds in the car. [The two seatless guns of the improved WZ141, which were originally symmetrically arranged, are now all mounted on the right side of the turret, which to a certain extent improves the difficulty of aiming for the gun commander ;The Type 56 7.62 mm machine gun replaced the Type 77 machine gun,Fires 3,000 rounds];The average shell reload time is 12 seconds。

Protection and maneuverability:


The results of the WZ141’s protective effectiveness test are that the front of the hull can withstand the fire of 7.62mm caliber rifle rounds at 100 meters, and the rear side of the hull is basically equivalent to running naked
dynamical system:
The WZ-141 had a fully enclosed aluminum welded body. The engine compartment is located on the right side of the front, and the driver’s seat is on the left side. The No. 1 test vehicle is equipped with a 176 hp TZ2120A gasoline engine [liquid-cooled engine] developed by the Tianjin plant, with a top speed of about 60 km/h. A shutter was installed above the engine compartment for inspection and maintenance. There are three periscopes in front of the driver, and there are also steering wheel controls.
The No. 2 test vehicle of WZ141 uses a large number of new technologies such as German F6L413F air-cooled diesel engine, dual flow driving, liquid-pneumatic suspension, and crawler hydraulic automatic adjustment system. Although the German diesel engine was larger and heavier than the domestic gasoline engine, the No. 2 car was forced to redesign the chassis (mainly by adding an air intake to accommodate the air-cooled diesel engine,Elsewhere has not changed), but the original engine overheating problem was solved. Reliability has increased a lot, and the increase in unit power has also led to a speed of 80 km/h
【Photo of WZ141 using liquid gas suspension】



WZ141 is a regret in the development of Chinese airborne combat vehicles, and adding it to the game can supplement the gap in the Chinese technology tree for lightly armored units in the game, and the first and second test vehicles of WZ141 happen to be one that can be used as a silver coin to buy a vehicle, and the other can be used as a gold coin to buy a vehicle






Place of origin: China
Combat full weight: 6.2 tons
Tankmen: 3 (Driver, Commander, Gunner)
Maximum Speed:
Bus No. 1: 60 km/h
Bus No. 2: 80 km/h
Vehicle No. 1: TZ2120A gasoline engine made in Tianjin, China [176 hp]
Car No. 2: Deutz F6L413F air-cooled diesel V-engine
Armament: Type 75 105mm Gun (18 spare ammo)
Machine gun:
Car No. 1: Type 77 12.7mm machine gun
Car No. 2: Type 56 7.62mm machine gun [3000 rounds of ammunition]
Length: 4.66 m
Width: 2.40 m
Height: 1.86 m
Ground pressure: 39.2 kPa / 5.68 lbs per square inch
Power/weight ratio: 30.4 hp per ton / 22.7 kW per ton



WZ-141 Super Light Model Anti-Tank Fighting Vehicle - Tank Encyclopedia
WZ-141 — Chinese Prototype Airborne Tank - Sino Records
Chinese WZ 141 ultra light AFV | Secret Projects Forum
WZ141空降战车 - Wikiwand
飞行的装甲战车——Wz141 - 哔哩哔哩
东方双头龙——中国WZ-141双管空降战车小传 - 知乎
空降铁骑——空中投送突击车的发展 - 哔哩哔哩


i thought there already was a suggestion for this thing lol, having two variants AND (if i read correctly) one with 50 cals and another one with ATGMs sounds like a really good and fun tank to play, +1 i hope we see it in game some day :)

edit: out of curiosity i checked BRs on similar vehicles, the first one without the ATGMs could be at 6.7 like the japanese type 60 SPRG or the american M50, and the one with ATGMs could be 8.0 or something similar since the bmp-1 has the same misiles and is at that BR


Massive MASSIVE yes!

hope it’s on the technology tree. enable everyone to obtain
nowadays, Chinese TT is still filled with a lot of copy and paste, lacking unique content
just like the M64 being an event vehicle was a bad decision


Full of copy and paste? you’re just too lazy to play the TT; yes, ranks 1-4 have quite some copy and paste, but at least they are getting all the good vehcles together from each TT and putting them in the same TT.
If you ever try the ZSD63/PG87 you will know that it is really fun and the chinese TT is underrated.
anyways +1

  • 1 in tech tree

at least 50% , air TT is even worse

the person who underestimated it is gaijin



Number 1 prototype with machine gun would be a good 7.0 or 7.3 to fill the lineup

Number 1 prototype with ATGMs could be premium/squadron/event at 8.0

Number 2 prototype for tech tree at 8.0

All 3 so adorable

to be fair its multiple variants so you could do both or make one a squadron/BP/event reward and other TT

double recoilless rifles paired with hj73 (is the E variant possible?), count me in. But i’m more interested in the variant with a type60 sprg style turret. the 2 vehicles could make for a perfect regular and premium additions, boasting quite a unique combination of weaponry.

The project ended well before HJ73E was developed so it only had access to the original HJ73.

A player who too lazy to play CN TT won’t have 89 CN vehicles and 41 of them are fully upgraded :(
And i saw a lot of criticize CN TT said it’s fully C&P vehicles at low tier, even not considering these high tier domestic vehicle


Even mid tier has good domestic otions, Gaijin has been working on China very well imo
Aviation could use some work, but othr than that it’s uqite good

Hello, from the information I have collected about the WZ141, the HJ73 carried by the WZ141 seems to be able to penetrate 500mm armor, and this armor-piercing depth is not possessed by the original HJ73, because the original HJ73 only has 400mm armor-piercing ability, so I think that the HJ73 carried by the WZ141 is an improved model of the original HJ73, and the name is HJ73A Information about it indicates that its armor-piercing capacity can reach 500mm, there is no tandem warhead, but the guidance of the missile has been improved and is no longer manually controlled guidance.

thank you very much, so the vehicle would be placed around 7.7 and no longer 6.7 if implemented.

Always room for more recoilless rifles.