In the Market

Slovakia is currently in talks with Ukraine and could be selling them the Zuzana-2, 155mm self-propelled howitzers on the hurry-up.

The 155 mm Zuzana 2 self-propelled Howitzer in action. Image Credit:
The 155 mm Zuzana 2 self-propelled Howitzer in action. Image Credit:

Slovak Defense Minister Jaroslav Nad has announced his country is in talks with the Ukrainian government over the potential sale of Zuzana 155 mm self-propelled howitzers to Ukraine.

The Zuzana is an upgraded eight-wheel drive variant of the Dana self-propelled howitzer from Czechoslovakia.  The weapon is currently being used by the armed forces of Slovakia and Cyprus.

The Defense Minister said he was negotiating with Kyiv over whether the sale would be of the older Zuzana 2000 variant or the newer Zuzana 2. However, there was no mention of how many of the units they would be selling.

Slovakian armed forces took delivery of 16 Zuzana howitzers between 1998 and 2000. In 2018, they ordered an additional 25 units of the Zuzana 2 from their state-run defense company, KONŠTRUKTA-Defense.

If purchased, reports state that it will take Ukrainian troops at least one week of training before they can efficiently use their new weapons.

The Specs

The Zuzana 2 is among the most advanced artillery systems available. It is based on an armored 8X8 wheeled chassis. This is less expensive to build and operate than a comparable tracked vehicle and can more easily travel on roads without tearing them up as tracked vehicles do.  It is armed with a turret-mounted 155 mm/L52 gun-howitzer. The gun is mounted externally between two separated compartments of the turret and is fitted with an autoloader.

Shells and charges can be loaded automatically at any elevation of the gun. The crew compartment is completely isolated from the gun and autoloader mechanism, and they are protected from powder gasses generated during firing.  The turret transverse is a complete 360°, yet the firing envelope is limited to 60°.