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155-mm self-propelled howitzer


The PLZ05 self-propelled howitzer may enter service with the Chinese Army in the near future

Entered service 2008
Crew 4 - 5 men
Dimensions and weight
Weight ~ 35 t
Length (gun forward) ~ 12 m
Hull length ~ 6 m
Width ~ 3.6 m
Height ~ 3 m
Main gun 155-mm howitzer
Barrel length 52 calibers
Machine guns 1 x 12.7-mm
Projectile weight ?
Maximum firing range up to 39 km
Maximum rate of fire 8 - 10 rpm
Elevation range - 3 + 65 degrees
Traverse range 360 degrees
Ammunition load
Main gun ~ 30 rounds
Machine guns ~ 500 rounds
Engine Deutz diesel (?)
Engine power 517 hp (?)
Maximum road speed 55 km/h
Range 550 km
Gradient 60%
Side slope 30%
Vertical step ~ 0.8 m
Trench ~ 2.8 m
Fording ~ 1.2 m


   The PLZ05, also referred as the Type 05, is a recent Chinese development. It was developed to replace to the Type 83 SPH. The PLZ05 evolved from the PLZ45, that was intended for the export market. The first prototype was completed in 2003 and it was revealed in 2005. The PLZ05 was adopted by Chinese Army in 2008. As of 2015 nearly 300 of these artillery systems are in service with Chinese Army.

   The PLZ05 is armed with a 155-mm / L52 howitzer. Its predecessor, the PLZ45, was fitted with a 155-mm / L45 howitzer. The PLZ05 has a longer barrel, as well as longer range of fire. Turret of the PLZ05 was enlarged and resembles that of the Russian 2S19 Msta-S. It has a semi-automatic ammunition loading system. Some sources claim, that this autoloader has been copied from the 2S19. It is worth mentioning, that the Chinese Army was unsatisfied with indigenous semi-automatic loader of the PLZ45.

   The PLZ05 is capable of firing a full range of Chinese 155-mm munitions. Range of a standard projectile is estimated to be around 30 km. Rocket assisted projectile has a range of 39 km. The PLZ05 is also capable of firing Chinese precision guided projectiles. In the 1990s China obtained the Russian Krasnopol laser-guided projectile technology. Later it successfully developed its own precision guided munitions. This projectile has a maximum range of 20 km.

   It has been reported that China developed a GPS-guided 155-mm projectile. It is claimed that this projectile has a whooping maximum range of 100 km and accuracy of 40 m.

   Secondary armament consists of a 12.7-mm machine gun, mounted on top of the roof.

   Armor of the PLZ05 protects against small arms fire and artillery shell splinters. NBC protection and automatic fire suppression systems are fitted as standard.

   This artillery system uses a tracked chassis, which is very similar to that of the PLZ45. It is most likely that it is powered by a Deutz turbocharged diesel engine, developing 517 hp. This engine is license-produced in China and is used on a number of military machines.

   This self-propelled howitzer is supported by an associated ammunition resupply vehicle, which carries ammunition under armor on the battlefield. The resupply vehicle carries about 90 rounds. Automated delivery is 8 rounds per minute. This support vehicle is fitted with a crane, which is used for ammunition handling operations and can be also used to replace the powerpack.




   PLZ52 is claimed to be an export version. Some sources report that this artillery system has a maximum range of 53 km with rocket-assisted projectile. Maximum rate of fire is 8 rounds per minute. It has been reported that thi artillery system is capable of Multiple Round Simultaneous Impact (MRSI) firing. It can launch up to 4 rounds that would hit the same target simultaneously. It is claimed that the PLZ52 is powered by a 1 000 hp engine;

   PLZ04 is also believed to be an export version. It has a slightly longer 54 caliber barrel.

Video of the PLZ 05 self-propelled howitzer

Additional Info



PLZ05 ammunition resupply vehicle