On October 20, 2023, the Russian state-owned conglomerate, Rostec, proudly declared the successful conclusion of state trials for the 2S35 Koalitsiya-SV 152mm self-propelled howitzer. Designed to replace the 2S19 Msta-S, what’s surprising is that mass production of the 2S35 had already commenced on August 10, 2023, even before these state trials reached their finish line.
The ongoing conflict in Ukraine appears to be expediting the development and manufacturing of new Russian armored vehicles, with a clear intention to deploy them swiftly to the battlefield. These vehicles include the T-14 Armata Main Battle Tank (MBT), expected to see deployment as early as 2024, the TOS-2 thermobaric rocket launcher, the 2S43 Malva self-propelled howitzer, the covert and exceptional Predel-E coastal radar, and the 2S18 Pat-S, serving as a model for a novel amphibious self-propelled howitzer.
The 2S35 Koalitsiya-SV, operated by a three-person crew, exhibits technological advancements that position it favorably in comparison to Western equipment. This new self-propelled howitzer features an unmanned, remote-controlled turret housing a 152mm gun, while the crew’s survival compartment is situated in the chassis.
The primary role of the 2S35 Koalitsiya-SV is to neutralize artillery and mortar batteries, armored vehicles, and enemy personnel. Moreover, it is designed to take down air and missile defense systems, control posts, and field fortifications. A standout feature is the introduction of fully automated shot preparation processes, streamlining critical procedures such as projectile selection, fuse installation, and gun aiming. This leads to a remarkable reduction in the time required to initiate firing while ensuring an impressive rate of fire.
Armed with a high-elevation 2A88 152mm gun, the 2S35 Koalitsiya-SV boasts an automatic loader with an average firing rate of 10 rounds per minute, and it can store a total ammunition capacity of 60 rounds, possibly even 70. The vehicle’s rear turret area is equipped with a munition resupply system for replenishing ammunition from a specially designed resupply truck with assisted manipulator arms.
This 152mm gun has the capability to utilize a broad spectrum of ammunition, encompassing conventional explosive shells (with a range of 29 km), rocket-assisted projectiles (40 km), and the laser-guided 30F39 Krasnopol missile (20 km). While the automatic loading mechanism is not used for the Krasnopol missile due to its length, new munitions under development may extend the range to up to 70 km.
In terms of mobility, the 2S35 Koalitsiya-SV incorporates a small integrated dozer blade at the front, enabling it to quickly establish a semi-entrenched firing position in 12 to 40 minutes, depending on the type of soil. If no position preparation is needed, the vehicle can be ready for action in just 90 seconds.
Further enhancing its capabilities, the vehicle features a remote weapon station armed with a 12.7mm Kord machine gun as secondary armament, along with twelve 81mm 902B Tucha smoke grenade launchers for deploying wide-spectrum smoke screens. These launchers are accompanied by four small automatic detectors, likely millimeter-wave radars, installed at the four upper corners of the turret. These detectors theoretically provide 360-degree coverage, with the launchers directed forward at approximately 40 degrees from each side.
With night vision systems ensuring 24/7 operations and an automatic sighting system for enhanced shot accuracy, the 2S35 Koalitsiya-SV empowers its crew to efficiently monitor and adjust shooting parameters from within the protected vehicle.
Initially planned to be equipped with the unified Armata tracked platform, the 2S35 now retains a modified chassis from the T-90A Main Battle Tank (MBT). Weighing in at 55,000 kg, this self-propelled howitzer can reach speeds of up to 60 km/h, demonstrating impressive mobility. With a range of 500 km, it can partake in extended operations without concerns of fuel shortages.