Indian Army will induct 145 M777 towed howitzers and 100 K9 self-propelled howitzers in 2020


In 2020, the Indian Army will continue its induction of 145 air-mobile M777 howitzers from BAE Systems and 100 K9 Vajra 155 mm/52 caliber self-propelled tracked howitzers from South Korea. 


Indian Army will induct 145 M777 towed howitzers and 100 K9 self propelled howitzers in 2020 925 001
Indian Army K9 Vajra 155 mm/52 caliber self-propelled tracked howitzer at DefExpo exhibition in 2018. (Picture source Army Recognition)


The K9 VAJRA-T 155mm/52 is a tracked self-propelled howitzer that features some technical specifications to respond to the needs of the Indian Army. The main weapon of the K9 Thunder consists of one 155mm / 52 caliber gun able to fire standard M107 high-explosive (HE) projectile. It is compatible with standard NATO 155-mm ammunition. The maximum range of fire is 30 km with standard HE projectile and 40 km with a rocket-assisted projectile.

The K9 self-propelled howitzer has a crew of five, consisting of commander, driver, gunner, assistant gunner, and loader. The hull and the turret are made of all-welded steel armor to provide protection against the firing of small arms and shell splinters.

In January 2017, BAE Systems received a $542m contract from the US Department of Defense to provide 145 M777 howitzers to the Indian Army. The 155mm, 39 Caliber Ultra light Howitzers have been procured from the United States under Government to Government Foreign Military Sales and will be assembled in India by BAE Systems in partnership with Mahindra Defence.

The Indian Army received its first shipment of two M777 light towed howitzers on May 18, 2017, in New Delhi from the United States ready to be used.

In December 2019, the Indian Army has for the first time test-fired M982 Excalibur precision-guided, extended-range artillery projectiles from M777 155 mm 39-caliber towed ultra-light howitzer guns. A total of 7 artillery regiments are planned to be equipped with 18 guns. The first regiment is planned to be raised by end-2020 with 15 guns supplied by BAE systems and three guns supplied by Mahindra Defense Systems Limited.


Indian Army will induct 145 M777 towed howitzers and 100 K9 self propelled howitzers in 2020 925 002
U.S. Marines with India Battery, 1st Battalion, 11th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, load an M777 howitzer during exercise Steel Knight (SK20) at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, California, Dec. 8, 2019. (Picture source U.S. DoD)


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