FMC/Rheinmetall M-113G1 AOPV

     Notes: The M-113G1 AOPV (in German, the M-113G1 Beobachtungspanzer) sort of takes a middle road between a bunch of artillery spotters with hand-held equipment and a fully specialized M-113-based FISTV such as the American M-971.  The M-113G1 AOPV has a mission equipment set on an extendible mast that projects the sights and equipment above the vehicle, but only just enough to give the equipment and sights free play.  The mast and the equipment set is raised through the standard M-113-type rear hatch.  The equipment pod has a thermal imager, image intensifier, a laser rangefinder, and a laser designator.  The standard commanderís cupola is retained and has a pintle mount, though normally for a smaller machinegun than is normally fitted to an M-113.  The fourth crewmember has a small computer that is good for producing fire solutions, but only one at a time; it is not a particularly high-powered computer.  The M-113G1 AOPV has one long-range data-capable radio, one other long-range radio, and one short-range radio.  Much of the internal and external upgrades are similar to the US M-577A1.

     As an M-113 variant (specifically, an M-113A1 variant), the M-113G1 AOPV has many things in common with an M-113A1.  The driver is on the front left, and steers and brakes using tillers. He has three vision blocks to his front; the center one can be replaced with a night vision block. The M-113G1 has a hydraulic ramp at the rear with another hatch set into it on the left side.  The ramp can be quickly opened by simply dropping it, or lowered more slowly by using engine power to help control the speed at which the ramp lowers.  There is a large, rear-opening hatch on the rear deck; the equipment mast and pod is raised through this.  On the left front; somewhat to the rear of the driverís position, is the commanderís cupola; he has no night vision gear, but has all-around vision blocks and the cupola manually turns. The handle to operate the ramp it to the rear of the driver, and it is the driver that is responsible for opening and closing the ramp under most circumstances.  The M-113G1 uses the engine of the M-113A2, which is a General Motors 6V53T turbocharged diesel developing 212 horsepower and has an improved cooling system.  The M-113G1 also has smoke grenade launchers Ė a cluster of four on each fender, like that of the M-113A2, but of German make.

     The M-113G1 AOPV is later upgraded to the M-113G3 AOPV, which had the same mechanical, automotive, and fuel tank upgrades of the M-113G3G.  This includes uses the Mercedes-Benz MTU 6V183 TC 22 turbocharged diesel engine with a fully-automatic ZF LSG 1000 transmission.  The engine develops 335 horsepower, and the driver has standard controls and can use alternate controls to make a pivot steer.  The M-113G3 AOPV has vastly-upgraded fire control and calculation computers, able to control up to two batteries, survey sites (and give an emergency, lower-accuracy survey by use of a hand-held laser rangefinder), and feed through radio precise coordinates to the guns, even if he cannot see them; he can also relay commands like traversing fire, elevating or depressing fire, or bracketing.  The elevating pod has FLIR instead of thermal imaging, independently-moving double-range image intensification, and a longer-range laser rangefinder and laser designator (6000 meters). The M-113G3 is equipped with a mapping computer. The fuel tanks are moved to the rear, on either side of the ramp on the upper hull (like the M-113A3 in use by the US).

     Twilight 2000 Notes: About 10% of M-113 AOPVs are M-113G3 AOPVs.  However, half of the M-113G1s are equipped with the computers, radios, and elevating pod of the M-113G3 AOPV instead of their standard equipment, and have had their fuel tanks moved to the rear. They do not, however, have the GPS and mapping computer; they do retain their inertial navigation hardware.  About 25% of these partially-upgraded are armed with M-2HBs instead of MG-3s at the commanderís positions.  (One picture featured in Der Spiegel in January of 1997 showed an upgraded M-113G1 AOPV armed with an MG-3/HK GMG in a double mount at the commanderís position, and cases of machinegun and 40mm ammunition hung outside of the vehicle.)

 

Vehicle

Price

Fuel Type

Load

Veh Wt

Crew

Mnt

Night Vision

Radiological

M-113G1 AOPV

$445,359

D, A

930 kg

11.14 tons

4

9

Passive IR (D), Image Intensifier (Pod), Thermal Imaging (Pod)

Shielded

M-113G3 AOPV

$428,441

D, A

835 kg

11.33 tons

4

10

Passive IR (D), Advanced Image Intensifier (Pod), FLIR (Pod)

Shielded

M-113G1 AOPV (T2K Type 1)

$419,264

D, A

820 kg

11.36 tons

4

10

Passive IR (D), Advanced Image Intensifier (Pod), FLIR (Pod)

Shielded

M113G1 AOPV (T2K Type 2)

$324,938

D, A

750 kg

11.5 tons

4

10

Passive IR (D), Advanced Image Intensifier (Pod), FLIR (Pod)

Shielded

 

Vehicle

Tr Mov

Com Mov

Fuel Cap

Fuel Cons

Config

Susp

Armor*

M-113G1 AOPV

150/105

38/26/3

360

62

CiH

T2

TF3  TS3  TR3  HF6  HS4  HR4

M-113G3 AOPV

175/122

44/31/3

360

78

CiH

T2

TF3  TS3  TR3  HF6  HS4  HR4

M-113G1 AOPV (T2K Type 1)

147/103

37/26/3

360

63

CiH

T2

TF3  TS3  TR3  HF6  HS4  HR4

M-113G1 AOPV (T2K Type 2)

145/102

36/26/3

360

64

CiH

T2

TF3  TS3  TR3  HF6  HS4  HR4

 

Vehicle

Fire Control

Stabilization

Armament

Ammunition

M-113G1/M-113G3 AOPV

None

None

MG-3 (C)

2000x7.62mm

M-113G1 AOPV (T2K Type 1)

None

None

MG-3 (C)

4000x7.62mm

M-113G1 AOPV (T2K Type 1)

None

None

M-2HB (C)

3000x.50 BMG

*The mastís armor is an abstraction based on itís true mass and the difficulty for an enemy to hit such a small target.  In addition, hits on the mast which result in a crewmember being hit are instead treated as misses.

 

Rheinmetall Leopard AOPV

     Notes: This is a vehicle where I have not been able to determine whether or not it ever entered service; I have given stats here on this page as if it did enter service.  Some 333 conversions were scheduled to take place by 1995, but they may have fallen victim to the budget axe.  The Leopard AOPV, last I heard, was to replace Jagdpanzer AOPV and most M-113G AOPV vehicles.

     The Leopard AOPV (in German, the Leopard Beobachtungspanzer) is a FIST version based on the Leopard 1A5 tank.  The result is a highly-survivable FIST platform.  Broadly, the Leopard AOPV is similar to the Leopard 1A5, to the inclusion of a dummy cannon on the turret to hide the fact that it is a higher-priority-target FIST vehicle rather than an average tank.  The turret is heavily modified; the internal main gun components are not installed, and the turret carries part of the extra radio gear, part of the mission-specific computers, and enhanced day and night vision gear.  The turret also has an advanced laser rangefinder with a range of 15 kilometers, and a laser designator with a range of 10 kilometers.  The turret also has an advanced image intensifier for day and night use with a range of 15 kilometers during the day and 8 kilometers during the night, and an advanced FLIR.  The commander also has a second laser rangefinder and image intensifier (of normal capability) at his position, and he can access all vision devices on his vehicle.  The Leopard AOPV has two data-capable long-range radios, a medium-range radio, and a short-range radio.  A 5kW APU is also carried. The Leopard AOPV has the maps and equipment to do manual fire solutions if necessary, but the Leopard AOPV is designed to primarily do its calculations on a special computer built and programmed for that purpose, and similar to that on the later versions of Jagdpanzer AOPV. The Leopard AOPV was at last check equipped with in inertial navigation; I would imagine that GPS would equip them now; with GPS, add $10000.  The crew is protected by an NBC Overpressure system and an automatic fire detection and suppression system for the turret, driverís compartment, engine, and fuel tanks.

     Like the Leopard 1, the Leopard AOPV has a conventional crew layout, with the driver to the front left side, the commander on the right of the turret below and to the right of him, and the loaderís hatch on the left side of the turret.  The loader and gunner actually are part of the FIST, and help find targets, designate targets, and computer fire solutions.  The only weapon remaining in the turret is the former coaxial machinegun, which does not have any ballistic computer, laser rangefinder, or stabilization.  The ammunition ready bin to the right of the driver houses equipment on the Leopard AOPV. The driver has three vision blocks allowing vision to the front and partially to each side.  The Leopard AOPV has a rare feature among military vehicles Ė the commander has auxiliary driving controls, and can drive the Leopard 1 from his cupola, if in a somewhat awkward fashion.  He also has auxiliary controls for the main gun.  The commanderís cupola has seven vision blocks giving him a 360-degree view, and he has a 1x/6x/20x periscope on the turret roof itself that can be rotated independently of the cupola and allows day/night vision.  The commanderís hatch can be fully open, fully closed, or locked into a position that allows the commander to peek out at his surroundings, but is only open a little.  The periscope has an aiming reticule for use when firing his machinegun from under armor.  (In the latter case, an image of the gunnerís aiming reticule is projected onto the periscope.)

     The turret of the Leopard 1 is all-welded. The Leopard 1 has a fully automatic transmission. The engine is a Daimler-Benz DB-838 830-horsepower supercharged diesel which can also run on JP8 jet fuel.  The engine and transmission is combined into one powerpack that can be removed as a unit.  The suspension is optimized for some of the roughest terrain around. The tracks are US-designed, but can be replaced with German-designed anti-skid tracks.  In either case, the tracks have rubber track pads.

     Twilight 2000 Notes: 33 of these conversions had been accomplished before the start of the war, to replace M-113 based observation vehicles. 

     Merc 2000 Notes: These conversions were never done.

Price

Fuel Type

Load

Veh Wt

Crew

Mnt

Night Vision

Radiological

$406,618

D, G, A

700 kg

38.9 tons

4

21

Passive IR (D, C), Image Intensification (C), Advanced Image Intensification (Turret), 2nd Generation FLIR (Turret)

Shielded

 

Tr Mov

Com Mov

Fuel Cap

Fuel Cons

Config

Susp

Armor

145/102

37/29

985

413

Trtd

T6

TF44Sp  TS19Sp  TR13  HF49Sp HS13Sp  HR8

 

Fire Control

Stabilization

Armament

Ammunition

None

None

MG-3, MG-3 (C)

5500x7.62mm

 

Rheinmetall Wiesel 2 FDC

     Notes: Wiesel 2 FDC is similar to the Wiesel Battalion Command Post Vehicle, but internally it is modified specifically to serve its role within units made up of Wiesel 2 120mm mortar units.  These modifications include a GPS set with an attached mapping computer, a surveying set to set positions for the guns of the unit, a small laser rangefinder on a small pod atop the vehicle, used primarily if the FDC is unable to survey firing positions first.  The FDC has a small but powerful computer which ties together all functions, as well as being able to generate firing solutions for eight guns and transmit them wirelessly to the gun vehicles.  (The Wiesel 2 FDC can also be used with other types of guns, but has problems with generating fire coordinates outside the maximum range of the Wiesel 2 120mmís mortar.)  The vehicle also has a secondary computer can generate fire solutions for four additional guns or take over the GPS/mapping functions, surveying features, and laser rangefinder functions so that the main computer can generate the four extra solutions.  The FDC can also communicate with and coordinate with up to four other FDC vehicles, and these do not need to be of the Wiesel 2 type; this allows coordination between a wide variety of indirect fire vehicles, howitzers, and mortar units.  To communicate fire solutions and other data and communicate them to other FDCs, as well as to transmit this information to other units (including mapping coordinates), the Wiesel 2 FDC has a pair of long-range radios which are data-capable, plus a pair of short-range radios for more mundane communications between units. The Wiesel 2 FDC can likewise receive fire solutions from other FDCs or mortar ballistic computers; 20 fire solutions from FDCs/mortar units can be received and stored, as well as 10 fire solutions or requests from other units, including FIST units.  (Old-style maps, protractors, pens, and fire solution tables and circles are carried just in case.)

     Note that the Wiesel 2 FDC is not a FIST or reconnaissance vehicle and does not have the equipment to be one.

     The Wiesel 2 FDC is essentially a standard Wiesel 2 with only slightly raised sides (about 100mm); these raised sides allow for the housing of equipment and to allow the crew to move about easier.  Automotively, the Wiesel 2 FDC is the same as other Wiesel 2s, having a 1.9-liter Volkswagen 109-horsepower turbocharged diesel engine and a ZF fully automatic transmission.  Despite what seems to be inadequate power for an armored tracked vehicle, the low weight makes the Wiesel 2 FDC, like other Wiesel 2s, fast and nimble. The driverís controls are standard, with a steering wheel, and a pedal for the gas and brake. The driver can also use auxiliary controls to perform pivot steering.  The driver is in the front left, just behind the glacis plate; the commander has a ring mount on the right.  The engine and transmission are to the right of the driver and in front of the commander; on the glacis is a hatch which gives access to oil, transmission fluid, and radiator fill points, as well as the engine air filter. Since the crew may have to operate in a chemical environment, and the crew also needs freedom of movement, the Wiesel 2 FDC is equipped with an NBC overpressure system.  (The Wiesel 2 does not have a backup NBC scrubber system for the crewís protective masks, as the hoses would actually get in the way of the small confines of the vehicle.)  In addition, the MG-3 of the Wiesel 2 FDC can be aimed and fired (though not reloaded) from inside the vehicle.  The commander also has a small degree of night vision capability through his front vision block. 

     Twilight 2000 Notes: Like the Wiesel 2 Mortar Carrier, the Wiesel 2 FDC was also a rare vehicle in the Twilight 2000 timeline; perhaps slightly more than one Wiesel 2 FDC present for every Wiesel 2 Mortar Carrier.  However, a Twilight 2000 FDC vehicle uses primarily inertial navigation integrated with its mapping computer.  The computer are also take up more space, and interior space for the crew is more cramped.

Vehicle

Price

Fuel Type

Load

Veh Wt

Crew

Mnt

Night Vision

Radiological

Wiesel 2 FDC (Current)

$169,947

D, A

200 kg

4.67 tons

4

7

Passive IR (D), Passive IR (C)

Shielded

Wiesel 2 FDC (T2K)

$132,697

D, A

180 kg

4.69 tons

4

7

Passive IR (D), Passive IR (C)

Shielded

 

Vehicle

Tr Mov

Com Mov

Fuel Cap

Fuel Cons

Config

Susp

Armor

Wiesel 2 FDC (Current)

160/112

40/28/3

80

17

Stnd

T2

HF4  HS2  HR2

Wiesel 2 FDC (T2K)

159/111

40/28/3

80

17

Stnd

T2

HF4  HS2  HR2

 

Vehicle

Fire Control

Stabilization

Armament

Ammunition

Wiesel 2 FDC

None

None

MG-3 (C)

2000x7.62mm

 

Thyssen Henchel Jagdpanzer AOPV

     Notes:  The Jagdpanzer Rakete was an early Cold War tank destroyer that persisted into service into the mid-1980s.  (It is covered in German Self-Propelled Guns.) Though 333 Jagdpanzer Raketes were later converted into Jaguar 2 ATGM carriers, 165 were converted into FISTVs called Jagdpanzer AOPV (Artillery Observation Post Vehicle) or Jagdpanzer Beobachtungspazer.  I have not been able to discover whether these vehicles are still in service, or when they served if they are no longer in service.  Germany appears to be the only country that used them.

     The hull of the Jagdpanzer AOPV (called in German the Jagdpanzer Beobachtungspanzer) is broadly similar to the Jagdpanzer Kanone (minus the gun, of course). The driver is on the front left side, with an overhead hatch that opens to the right and three forward vision blocks.  One of these blocks can be removed and replaced with a night vision block.  The commander has a cupola near the center right of the vehicle, with all-around vision blocks; a pintle mount for a weapon is mounted.  The commander also has a periscope which can be rotated through 270 degrees, and has magnifications of 1x, 6x, and 20x; this is mounted in front of the cupola.  The hatch for the loader remains (including its all-around vision blocks), but the gunnerís and loaderís positions themselves have been deleted and replaced with mission-specific equipment.  The Jagdpanzer Kanoneís coaxial machinegun has also been deleted. The main gun and all its associated equipment is removed, and the opening for the gun and mantlet plated over.  The crew is protected with an NBC overpressure system.  On each front corner of the roof is a quadruple cluster of smoke grenade launchers.

     The Jagdpanzer AOPV is powered by the original Daimler Benz MB-837 diesel developing 500 horsepower, coupled to a manual transmission.  The driver has a steering yoke and appropriate foot pedals.  Behind the driver is the mission compartment, which houses two crewmembers.  The crewmembers man radios, including two data-capable long-range radios, a medium-range radio, and a short-range radio.  The Jagdpanzer AOPV has a ruggedized computer appropriate to its tasks of assisting the crew in producing fire solutions, navigating, and coordinating supporting fires.  The radios and computer can interface with artillery/mortar/MRL fire control computers with ground-mounted units as well as transmit coordinates to higher headquarters. On the deck next to the commanderís cupola is an armored hatch which automatically opens upon command; this hatch protects an elevating pod containing sensors, including telescopic sights, an image intensifier, a thermal imager, a laser rangefinder, and a laser designator. The sensors in the pod are accessible by the crew (except for the driver) and can be interfaced with the computer. Storage is provided for maps, especially in early models, as well as codebooks. The crew uses and maps and manual equipment to plot supporting fire in extremis.

     Originally, the Jagdpanzer AOPV was equipped with a gyrocompass for navigation, which was later upgraded to inertial navigation.  Rumors state that the inertial navigation was to be supplemented with GPS, but I have not been able to discover whether or not this upgrade was ever made.  (I have included stats for all three versions below.) Computers were also supposed to be upgraded at the same time as the installation of GPS, and sensors were supposed to be upgraded, but I have not been able to confirm this either, though I included it in the stats below.

     Twilight 2000 Notes: About 80 of these conversions had been completed before the Twilight War.

Vehicle

Price

Fuel Type

Load

Veh Wt

Crew

Mnt

Night Vision

Radiological

Jagdpanzer AOPV (w/Gyrocompass)

$419,441

D, G, AvG, A

500 kg

27.5 tons

4

11

Passive IR (D), Image Intensifier (Pod), Thermal Imaging (Pod)

Shielded

Jagdpanzer AOPV (w/Inertial Navigation)

$428,441

D, G, AvG, A

500 kg

27.5 tons

4

11

Passive IR (D), Image Intensifier (Pod), Thermal Imaging (Pod)

Shielded

Jadgpanzer AOPV (w/GPS & Upgrades)

$446,133

D, G, AvG, A

500 kg

27.5 tons

4

11

Passive IR (D), Image Intensifier (Pod), FLIR (Pod)

Shielded

 

Vehicle

Tr Mov

Com Mov

Fuel Cap

Fuel Cons

Config

Susp

Armor

Jagdpanzer AOPV

129/91

30/21

470

270

Stnd

T6

HF14  HS7  HR5

 

Vehicle

Fire Control

Stabilization

Armament

Ammunition

Jagdpanzer AOPV

None

None

MG-3 (C)

4000x7.62mm