Serbia made a powerful weapon


Jan 8, 2024. Posted by  Balkan Periscope - Hellas

The new 30x173 millimeter cannon, which is produced by "Zastava Arms" and whose effectiveness was shown by the Serbian Army towards the end of last year, is in the final stage before entering the armed forces of the Serbian Armed Forces.

The M80 infantry fighting vehicle (BVP), as well as the "Lazar 3" will be armed with destructive weapons.

The development of the M12 cannon has been going on for the last ten years and is an improvement of the Yugoslav M86 cannon, caliber 30x210B millimeters, which "Zastava" developed in the eighties to equip the BVP M80. However, those vehicles remained armed with a 20 mm cannon.

"In terms of dynamics and kinematics, the M12 automatic cannon of 30 millimeters caliber is the most complex system produced by Zastava Arms, which few in the world can produce in that caliber due to the complexity of the system, as it requires serious technological capabilities. The installation of this cannon is possible on various combat vehicles, and it is used for anti-armor operations with high penetrating power," said the constructor of "Zastava arms" Marko Miljković next to the displayed guns at the "Granit 23" display.

The 30-millimeter cannon has a range of up to 3,000 meters, it is used to support infantry, destroy weakly fortified bunkers and shelters.

The new cannons have already begun to be integrated on the combat vehicles of the Serbian Army.

"This caliber breaks through the wall of a house or residential building with a short burst, destroys other armored vehicles, primarily MRAPs and light armored vehicles such as the JLTV, for example. Also, an important thing is to disable tanks, because this 30-millimeter can from a distance of 1,000 meters completely disable the sensors and all external equipment on the tank, and most importantly destroy the active reactive armor. An example is the US 30x173 mm anti-armor grain that at 1,000 meters, when hitting the target at an angle of 30 degrees, penetrates a 59 mm steel plate. If it hits at the right angle, which is unlikely, it can penetrate more. That's why the rule applies to all of this - a well-trained crew in a well-planned attack," says Goran Janićević, editor of the show "Let me introduce you with...".

At the end of last year, the Technical Repair Institute in Čačak started work on the modernization of the Yugoslav M80A infantry fighting vehicles to the M80AB1 standard, and this year it is planned that the first two companies of a total of 26 units will arrive in the units of the Serbian Armed Forces, with the new Zastava gun of 30 millimeters, the expert website Balkan Security Network wrote recently.

During the 2000s, fast and easily protected wheeled vehicles became the new world trend, but with large-scale tools, and the attention with the M80 was directed to "lazars". The 30mm caliber cannon has a range of up to 3,000 meters.

"In 2012, Serbian Army defined the tactical and technical requirements for a new OBVT armed with a 30 mm cannon, a coupled machine gun and two launchers of modern anti-personnel guided missiles. Such a 'lazar' is needed by the Serbian infantry.

Zastava initiated the development of a new NATO caliber cannon ten years ago 30x173 millimeters based on the old M86. As an alternative, the 'Lazarus 3' solutions with the Russian caliber 30x165 millimeters were offered, but in the Ukrainian war, the advantage of 30x173 millimeters supported by a good fire control system was very clearly demonstrated.

The earlier assessments of the Serbian Army were confirmed to a great extent war," says military analyst Aleksandar Radić for RTS. The Croatian army is also interested in the same caliber of cannon.

"The caliber 30x173 millimeters is a desirable solution for everyone, and the Croatian army installed the Israeli turret with such a cannon on the eight-wheeled AMV. Given that they have acquired 126 pieces and that they plan to acquire another 30 pieces, the Croats plan to increase to 15 - 16 vehicles with the American 'Bushmaster' MK 44S gun.

Almost all other vehicles will only have a 12.7 mm machine gun as the basic variant of the 'Lazarus 3' in the armament of Serbian infantry battalions," explains Radić.​