G6 howitzer

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G6 howitzer
G6 howitzer
Type Self-propelled artillery
Place of origin South Africa
Service history
Used by South Africa, Oman, United Arab Emirates
Wars South African Border War
Production history
Manufacturer Denel
Produced 1987 – Current
Weight 46,500 kg (46.5 t)[1]
Length 10.4 m (34 ft 1 in)[1][2]
Width 3.5 m (11 ft 6 in)[1]
Height 3.4 m (11 ft 2 in)[1]
Crew 6
3–5 (G6-52 Extended Range)

Caliber 155 mm[2]
Rate of fire G6-52: 8 rpm
G6 M1A3: 6 rpm
Sustained: 2 rpm
Effective firing range Standard: 30 km (19 mi)
Base bleed: 39 km (24 mi)
V-LAP: 52.5 km (32.6 mi)
M9703A1: 67 km (42 mi)

1 x 155mm T6 L/52 (Caliber: 155mm - Scope estimated 33 km to 42 km)
Engine air-cooled diesel
525 hp (391.49 kW)
Suspension 6×6
Road: 700 km (430 mi)
Off-road: 350 km (220 mi)[1]
Speed Road: 85 km/h (53 mph)
Off-road: 30 km/h (19 mph)[2]

The G6 self-propelled howitzer is a South African artillery piece, developed around the ordnance of the G5 howitzer

In addition to the logistical mobility afforded by a wheeled chassis, the G6 is protected against counter battery fire and is able to defend itself in an unsecured area.

The chassis is mine-protected. The G6 is produced in South Africa by the Land Systems division of Denel. It entered production in 1987.

Ammunition characteristics[edit]

G5/G6 ammunition
  • Maximum range:
    • 30,000 m with standard HE rounds,
    • 39,000 m with HE base bleed rounds, and
    • 42,000 m with HE base bleed rounds (BB—fired from G6-52)
    • 50,000 m with HE base bleed rounds (BB—fired from G6-52 extended range)
    • 52,500 m with a special velocity-enhanced long range projectile (V-LAP—fired from G6).
    • 58,000 m with a special velocity-enhanced long range projectile (V-LAP—fired from G6-52).
    • 67,450 m M9703A1 V-LAP round (tested successfully to 73,000 m by Denel in G6-52 extended range platform)
  • Minimum range: 3,000 m.
  • Rate of fire: 4 round/min, 2 round/min sustained.
  • Ammunition: 155 mm ERFB. 47 rounds, 50 charges, 64 primers and fuzes
  • Accuracy: 0.1% of range in azimuth, 0.48% of range in range
  • In 2012 four rounds of M982 Excalibur precision guided munitions were fired to a range of 38 km, all landing within 5 m of the target.[3]


  • G6

G6 Rhino

  • G6 M1A3: exported UAE version
  • G6-52 (23 litre chamber)
  • G6-52 extended range (25 litre chamber)
    • Reduced crew to 3–5;
    • can fire projectile up to 67 km at a rate of fire of eight rounds/minute;
    • increased off-road speeds to nearly 70 km/h;
    • implemented multiple rounds simultaneous impact (MRSI) technology and can land six (G6-52L variant) or five (G6-52) rounds simultaneously at targets up to 25 km away; and
    • is currently undergoing extensive trials.
  • G6 Marksman: a British SPAAG version, combining the G6's base vehicle with the Marksman turret.[4]


Map of G6 operators in blue

Combat history[edit]

The G6 was deployed by expeditionary units of the South African Defence Force during the Angolan Civil War, making its combat debut during Operation Moduler (part of the Battle of Cuito Cuanavale) in December 1987. On one occasion reconnaissance elements observed Angolan interceptors attempting to take off from an airfield near Cuito Cuanavale and directed G6 artillery fire that destroyed four Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21s on the ground.[8] However the advantage that the G5 and G6's gave the South Africans on the ground could not be pressed to their advantage against the Cubans who held air superiority, so a military stalemate was reached.[9]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e "Weapon systems: Artillery - GV6". South African Army. Retrieved 4 January 2010. 
  2. ^ a b c Greeff, I.B. (June 1992). "South Africa's Modern Long Tom". Military History Journal (The South African Military History Society) 9 (1). ISSN 0026-4016. 
  3. ^ http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1G1-290906341.html
  4. ^ "Denel in UK gun link-up". Flight International (Flightglobal.com) (14–20 September 2004): 10. September 2004. ISSN 0015-3710. 
  5. ^ a b c "G6 155mm Self Propelled Howitzer, South Africa". army-technology.com. Retrieved 1 January 2010. 
  6. ^ G6 L45 self-propelled towed gun-howitzer
  7. ^ "G6 Rhino 155mm SELF-PROPELLED GUN-HOWITZER". GlobalSecurity.org. Retrieved 1 January 2010. 
  8. ^ South Africa's Modern Long Tom. South African Military History Society, June 1992, Volume 9 Issue 1.
  9. ^ Onslow, Sue (2009). Cold War in Southern Africa: White Power, Black Liberation. Routledge. p. 231. ISBN 1135219338. 

External links[edit]