Saudi Arabia evaluating Kalyani Group Artillery | World Defense

Saudi Arabia evaluating Kalyani Group Artillery

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The Pune-based Kalyani Group, which has made a major foray into the field of artillery gun systems, is pitching strongly to supply artillery gun systems to the Saudi Arabian military. Business Standard has learnt that two types of gun systems, both designed and developed by Kalyani Group, are being sent later this year to Saudi Arabia, for trial evaluation by the Royal Saudi Army in the forbidding Saudi Arabian desert.
The guns include the so-called Bharat 52, a 155 millimetre (mm), 52 calibre (cal) towed howitzer that is the first gun the Kalyani Group built. Saudi Arabia will also evaluate the Garuda V2, a 105 mm gun mounted on a light vehicle chassis for added mobility.
Interestingly, Saudi Arabia has not expressed interest in the flagship artillery gun that the Kalyani Group is working one: the eponymous Advanced Towed Artillery Gun System (ATAGS). This futuristic DRDO-designed gun is being built by two private firms in parallel — Kalyani Group and Tata Advanced Systems Ltd (TASL).
Kalyani Group, by virtue of its organic skills in metal castings and forgings, is playing the larger role, including building barrels for its own, as well as TASL’s gun.
Baba Kalyani, chief of the Kalyani Group, makes no secret of his intention to sink whatever money it take for dominating artillery gun production in India. In this his flagship company, Bharat Forge, the worlds’ largest producer of forgings and castings, is to play a leading role.
“Kalyani Group is well along in mastering gun production. We are the equal of the world’s top 2-3 companies in artillery systems,” Kalyani told Business Standard.
Kalyani praises the government’s initiative to boost defence exports, which have already multiplied over the last two years to a total of Rs 10,700 crore. The MoD’s Defence Production Policy of 2018 has set an annual defence exports target of $5 billion by 2024.
“The real efforts in export promotion started 5-6 years ago and to be fair to the system, we have made significant headway. We had a conference about six months ago on ways to boost exports. That was attended by India’s military attaches posted in embassies abroad. Now they are at the front end of export promotion in the countries to which they are posted,” said Kalyani.
The hard-driving Kalyani Group chief is launching the development of new guns without waiting for MoD orders. After the army launched a programme to procure 145 ultralight howitzers from the international market – a $700 million contract that BAE Systems eventually won with its M777 gun system – the Kalyani Group has unilaterally designed and built two different ultralight howitzers, which it intends to offer the army.
“We are offering the guns suo moto, under the “Make-2” category,” said Kalyani. Under this procurement category, companies can offer the MoD defence products they have developed at their own cost.
Of these ultralight howitzers, one is a 155 mm, 39-calibre titanium gun that weighs a mere 4.8 tonnes. Kalyani Group has dubbed it Mountain Artillery Gun – Titanium (MArG-T). Its range matches the BAE Systems M777 gun, with conventional ammunition fired to a range of 25 kilometres (km).
The other gun is a larger, cheaper, all-steel 155 mm, 52 calibre gun that weighs 7.8 tonnes and fires conventional ammunition to a range of 30 km.
“The army can choose what it wants: low weight and higher cost; or higher weight and lower cost. We are offering both options,” says a Kalyani engineer.
“Both these guns are truly indigenous, having been designed by our R&D centre in Pune. While Bharat Forge’s metal working skills are acknowledged worldwide, our Pune R&D centre develops the command and control systems, central computers and automation that goes into gun systems,” says Kalyani.
Kalyani Group’s growing skills provide the military with options they could earlier only dream of. In December 2018, with the Sino-Indian border roiled by the recent Doklam confrontation, then army chief, General Bipin Rawat, visited Kalyani Group and asked whether they could build a truck-mounted 155 mm, 39 calibre gun that could move around on the narrow roads of northern Sikkim.
The gun that Kalyani group developed in response is on display at Defexpo. Based on a 4×4 vehicle produced by Bharat Earth Movers Ltd, the so-called “Go Anywhere Vehicle” offers unparalleled mobility. It is going into firing trials immediately after Defexpo.
The Kalyani Group has a growing relationship with BAE Systems and purchased the British company’s barrel production unit located in the UK. This facility has been physically relocated from the UK to Pune.
For any future artillery orders BAE Systems gets from the international market – including a possible follow-on order from India for more M777 ultralight howitzers – it is likely to source barrels from the Kalyani Group.
Illustrating this relationship, two 155 mm barrels manufactured by Kalyani Group are on display in the BAE Systems stall in Defexpo 2020.
 

Scorpion

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Will stick to the Chinese. I do not think Saudi Arabia is looking to buy more artillery at the moment.
 

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I just find it ironic Saudi Arabia would even be interested in Indian hardware especially since there is plenty of talks of buying the AH-4 and additional PLZ-45s from China
 

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it's their quickest way to help counter Pakistan's JF-17 offers most likely. they been in an race to get the Saudi's to invest in India and so on.

however this is more like propaganda/promotional advertisement, if they claim a foreign country is "interested" in their weapons, their armed forces will most likely buy the said systems. India still lacks behind us and need to focus on their own procurements right now.
they claim most countries have "interest" but the countries never tend to sign the deals, I wonder why that is? ;)
 

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I just find it ironic Saudi Arabia would even be interested in Indian hardware especially since there is plenty of talks of buying the AH-4 and additional PLZ-45s from China
I have not heard of this news either. I am not sure who is spreading fake news here and there.
 

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IDRW has been known for their false reports, and most Indian media claims who say countries are interested in their weapons are usually claiming the weapons have interest so their govt. companies seem to keep public favor (however India is officially growing exports to Vietnam, Myanmar & Philippines)

but let's say the middle east such as the Emirates or Saudia, no, due to the simple fact they have too much NATO-oriented artillery systems or Chinese artillery systems currently serving their respective services.

again, on my point one, many Indians are claiming to dislike this privatization of their defence industries (because of private companies refusing govt. based company workers), this was more or less, to get a positive remark to say, private companies can officially attract us more foreign investors in our defence industry
 

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Will stick to the Chinese. I do not think Saudi Arabia is looking to buy more artillery at the moment.
any future plans for buying SPH's ? I think they would make more sense for KSA .
 

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any future plans for buying SPH's ? I think they would make more sense for KSA .
No plans so far. We have plenty in our inventory now I do not think there is a need for more.
 

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