In recent years, Egypt has taken significant steps to modernize and upgrade its military capabilities. One area of focus has been the enhancement of its artillery, which plays a crucial role in both defensive and offensive operations.
Egypt’s military factory 200 has spearheaded these efforts by initiating modifications and upgrades to two of its aging artillery systems: the M46-1M 130mm towed field gun and the D-30 122mm towed howitzer.
Egypt’s military factory 200 has upgraded the M46-1M 130mm towed field gun by installing the cannon on modified armored Kraz 6322 6×6 heavy-duty truck chassis, thereby turning it onto a mobile artillery system.
The M46-1M 130mm towed field gun, a reliable and proven weapon, has served Egypt’s armed forces for several decades. Egyptian army operates a huge numbers of the M46s within the mechanized infantry units.
This modification efforts was first introduced in 2016.
However, the need for mobility and increased firepower prompted Egypt to transform this traditional towed gun into a mobile artillery system.
This involved mounting the cannon on a modified armored Kraz 6×6 truck chassis. The integration of the M46-1M onto a mobile platform significantly enhances its versatility and operational capabilities. The modified system allows for rapid deployment, quick relocation, and improved firing accuracy, making it a formidable asset on the battlefield.
Likewise, Egypt’s military has adopted a similar approach to modernize the D-30 122mm towed howitzer, another long-standing artillery piece in its inventory. By transforming it into a mobile artillery system, mounted on Ural 4320 trucks with a reinforced frame and hydraulic stabilizers, Egypt has enhanced its flexibility and operational efficiency.
The Ural-4320 is a general purpose off-road 6×6 vehicle, produced at the Ural Automotive Plant in Miass, Russia for use in the Russian army.
The mobile configuration enables the D-30 to swiftly maneuver across various terrains and respond to changing battlefield conditions effectively. The reinforced frame and hydraulic stabilizers ensure stability during firing, improving accuracy and reducing setup time.
These upgrades and modifications signify Egypt’s commitment to maintaining a modern and formidable artillery arsenal. By transforming towed guns into mobile artillery systems, Egypt can quickly adapt to evolving combat scenarios, efficiently deploy firepower, and effectively support ground operations.
The increased mobility and flexibility of these upgraded systems enable Egypt’s military to swiftly respond to threats, reinforce defensive positions, and conduct offensive maneuvers with precision and speed.
Additionally, the domestic modifications carried out by Egypt’s military factory 200 showcase the nation’s growing expertise in defence manufacturing and technological innovation. The successful transformation of these artillery systems highlights Egypt’s capability to leverage its industrial capabilities and tailor weapons to its specific operational requirements. This indigenous modernization approach also contributes to the growth of Egypt’s defence industry, fostering local technological advancements, and promoting self-sufficiency in defense production.
The modernization and upgrade initiatives undertaken by Egypt reflect the country’s commitment to maintaining a strong and capable military force. By enhancing its artillery capabilities, Egypt aims to strengthen its deterrence, protect its national security, and contribute to regional stability. These advancements align with Egypt’s broader defense strategy, which seeks to modernize its armed forces and develop a self-reliant defense industry to meet future challenges effectively.
As Egypt continues its journey towards military modernization, the upgrades to its aging artillery systems demonstrate the country’s determination to adapt to the evolving nature of warfare. The transformed M46-1M 130mm towed field gun and the D-30 122mm towed howitzer mobile artillery systems exemplify the nation’s efforts to leverage technology, enhance mobility, and optimize firepower. These advancements not only bolster Egypt’s defense capabilities but also underscore its status as a regional military power committed to ensuring peace and security.
Also, as part of the modernization process, Egypt recently adopted a domestic upgrade of Sakr/BM21 Multiple Rocket Launchers by converting the rocket tubes into disposable canisters and installing an indigenously developed fire-control system (FCS).
Some of the Egyptian-made rockets were supplied to Ukraine, after Egyptian military officials were discovered planning to supply Russia with artillery, rockets, and gunpowder.
Similarly, another effort in this modernization plan has been embarked by signing a contract with South Korea for the supply, transfer of technology (ToT) and local production of K9A1 EGY self-propelled Howitzer, which will likely replace the American-origin M109 155 mm SPHs.
Cairo plans to begin production of the K9 howitzer this year, and will eventually involve 67% of components being produced locally.
Egypt and South Korea signed a USD1.65 billion contract during the International Defence Exhibition & Conference (IDEX 2022) held in Abu Dhabi in February 2021 for the production of unspecified numbers of the K9A1 EGY version of the howitzer and K10 ammunition vehicle.
Discussion by the two countries first began at the sidelines of the EDEX 2021 exhibition in Cairo.
Significant progress was made in their negotiations in January last year, when President Moon Jae-in told local media on January 20, that South Korea and Egypt are on the final stage of discussions to co-producing the K2 Black Panther main battle tank in Egypt, and the acquisition of the K9 155mm self-propelled Howitzer from Hanwha Defense.
The Egyptian government’s plan is to export Egyptian weapons to African and Middle Eastern countries in order to further extend Egyptian influence in the continent.