Caesar 8X8 For Czech Republic

Nexter Caesar 8X8.

SHAH ALAM: The Czech Republic has signed an order for 52 Caesar 8X8 truck mounted self propelled howitzers on Sept. 30. This will be the second order for the Caesar 8X8 SPH after Denmark which bought 19, 15 in 2017 and additional four in 2019. Shephard Media listed that the contract price for the 52 Caesars at some US$351 million (RM1.4 billion) including support, spares and training.

From Nexter

Nexter Caesar 8X8

On September 30, 2021, Czech Defense Minister Lubomír Metnar signed a contract for the acquisition of 52 CAESAR self-propelled artillery guns in an eight-wheel drive (8×8) version, in the presence of French Minister of the Armed Forces Florence Parly and Nicolas Chamussy, CEO of Nexter Group. With this major order, the Czech Republic becomes the third European customer and the seventh user of the CAESAR in the world. With more than 350 units ordered in France and abroad, the CAESAR is the benchmark in the wheeled artillery systems market.

A consolidating partnership

After the sale of 19 CAESAR 8×8 to Denmark mounted on Tatra Trucks chassis and the supply of 6×6 TITUS armored vehicles to the Czech Army, produced under license with the Czechoslovak Group (CSG), cooperation between Nexter and the Czech defense industry is developing around a large-scale artillery program. In addition to Tatra Trucks, who supplies the chassis, the contract provides for the involvement of several CSG Group companies: Excalibur Army is in charge of assembling the CAESARs intended for the Czech Republic, Tatra Defence Vehicles produces the armored cabin locally, and RETIA integrates the communication resources and equipment linked to the artillery fire control system. The partnership also covers ammunition, mainly with the companies STV and Explosia, to enable local supply of conventional shells and modular charges. Special ammunition such as complex ammunition or ammunition with insensitive explosives will be supplied by Nexter’s ammunition unit.

A modern, proven and robust artillery system

CAESAR is a 155mm (52 caliber) self-propelled gun in service since 2008. This weapon system, designed by Nexter, is the main armament of the French army’s artillery regiments as well as many foreign artilleries that have chosen this robust, high-performance gun. Designed for direct support of troops in contact or support in depth, it has proven its worth in numerous external operations. Its high performance makes Nexter an undisputed reference in the field of land artillery.

By selecting the CAESAR eight-wheel drive (8×8) version, the Czech Ministry of Defense has chosen a system that is perfectly suited to high-intensity combat. On the one hand, this version of the CAESAR carries 36 shells, which gives it a high ammunition autonomy. On the other hand, resupply is carried out at a high rate (three minutes compared with ten for its fully automated competitors). Thanks to its low mass, the CAESAR 8×8 has a lower fuel consumption than heavy tracked howitzers, which is a major advantage in high-intensity combat configurations where the fluidity of logistical supplies is threatened by long-range artillery. Lastly, the CAESAR is recognized for its excellent battery in and out of action performance.

Nexter Caesar 8X8.

— Malaysian Defence

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24 Comments

  1. Good for them but kinda weird cuz just recently excaliburarmy introduce the dita 8×8..Or maybe their govt are not really confident with that platform..just my guess..1.4 bill for 52 thats about 30-31 mil per piece..noway we can afford them..

  2. Our menhan Hishamudin Hussein is best buddies with China.

    Their PCL-181 are quite nice, and at RM9 million per piece is much more affordable than the Caesar 8×8. Surely H2O could get these for our army right?

  3. It helps that only the weapons platform & ancillary comes from France as the trucks are most likely built on Tatra which is Czech. Helps in their defence industry.

    @Firdaus
    The true cost is likely closer to Denmark’s order which goes for RM12.5mil a piece plus ancillary.

  4. Off topic, interesting to note that purportedly Argentina has budgeted USD $664mil for 12 JF-17 or USD $55mil a pop plus ancillaries. Quite the pricey plane for something that is non-Western & non-Russian.

  5. The PCL-81 may be “nice” and “cheap” but what is the barrel life, is it digitised to the same level, does it have the same level of growth potential, can we use a Western FCS and FDCs with Western gear with it, etc?

  6. Tom Tom,

    If one desires a certain level of mobilty and the operational flexibility that comes with it : 8×8. A 4×4 will be slightly cheaper and will be easier [having a smaller footorint] to be air transportable but these plus points are marginal.

    The important thing is the gun being able to do its job of being where it’s needed [in various tyoes of terrain and weather conditions which affects terrain and road cobditions] to provide indirect fire support of maneuver fornations.

  7. The 6×6 weight is ~18tons
    The 8×8 weight is ~29tons
    The M109 weight is 28tons

    If the weight and subsequent limited ability to cross various terrain & bridges was key to TDM rejecting the M109, the same can be said for 8×8 version of Caesar. of course, Nexter asserts that the 8×8 weapons platform has longer model life due to its greater expansion potential than the 6×6.

  8. @ Akmal

    Heard from gov insider that LCS project will be delayed to another RMK. No budget due to covid and other procurements. LCS is not useful compare to LMS or smaller patrol boat.

  9. It wasn’t the weight issues that led to the cancellation of the M109 SPH deal, it was I believed was to ensure that a tender for SPH could be held. Officially it was cancelled as the M109 was deemed to be too old.

  10. From what I was told, in addition to the costs associated with running a tracked platform, there were a host of other issues which led to the conclusion that it wasn’t a good long term return of investment and wasn’t cost effective from our perspective. Another factor is that the Artillery Directorate has always been more inclined towards a wheeled platform.

  11. @Marhalim
    While it is prudent & due process to go thru tender for new buys, but surely even I, who had been arguing for open tenders, realised this is not possible when buying 2nd hand unless there’s plenty of genuine offers on the market. I highly doubt that.

    Age is just an excuse as these veterans will be relifed and upgraded to the latest export standard then; M109A5. Whatmore as a platform, the M109 have proven to be long lasting and many even older variants are still serving in other nations. One such, Indonesia, gladly received hundreds of relifed M109 for service while TDM twiddle their thumbs hoping for brand new Caesars to fall into their laps.

  12. Yes that was the reason made in a press release issued by the then Defence Minister, deputy and the Ministry on December 7, 2019. Please Google to find the press release

  13. LGMS,

    The decision to get them wasn’t even an army one in the very first place. Like with the Little Birds.

    Nothing is written in stone. Diffrent armies have different preferences and concerns. For us M109s were just not a good return of investment in the long term, we have no issues waiting a while more.

  14. The then Menhan & his deputy knows nuts about defence matters, I bet you know more than those 2 combined plus their sycophants. It was a convenient alibi for failure, put forth by an administration trying to cut spending as LGMS said, and more intent on blaming game & finger pointing than solving the problem.

    The issue is, the administration before it had put up an unnecessarily austere RMK11 with shortfall of budget to go around, and lacking the financial means to buy brand new SPH leads to the only viable next option: used SPH. Rightly or wrongly, that was the limitation imposed on spending and respective parties should work with the budget given. Another option was not buying anything and twiddle our thumbs, which we did. Perhaps such delay tactics might work out eventually for TDM, but while we wait for brand new Caesars others have strengthened their arty force.

  15. @joe
    The Argentinian buy is typical for a fully-capable light fighter, plus training in a new type. We should expect the same price tag.

  16. Philippines FA-50 buy also includes training in a new type. Inclusive of extensive simulator training systems set up in the philippines. It does not cost as much as what the argentines are budgeting for.

  17. Apparently there are system differences between the 6×6 Caesar and the 8×8 version. The 6×6 is fully manual operated while the 8×8 has an autoloader for easier operations. Fascinating.

  18. Both have semi auto loaders, as the rounds and charges need to put into the cradles before they are placed into the chamber before firing. The automatic loaders are only available on the ones with a remote turret like Archer, Rheinmetall and Yugoimport NORA.

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