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Artillery / Towed guns / Soltam M-68

Soltam M-68

General Facts

  • TYPE
    Towed howitzer


    G4 (M-71 in South African service)

    1968 (M-68)
    1974 (M-71)

    Tampella & Soltam

    1970 - ? (M-68)
    1975 - ? (M-71)

    Israel - Soltam

    Over 200 produced.


    High tow speed on road and in the field
    Limited maximum range in M-68


The M-68 is a late Cold War era towed howitzer of Israeli origin. It was the first indigenious towed howitzer produced in Israel. The M-68 may have been partially or fully designed by Tampella of Finland. The M-68 was developed into the M-71, which in turn forms the basis of the newer M845 and TIG towed howitzers developed in Israel.


The M-68 uses a split trail carriage with four roadwheels fitted on two bogeys. In transport configuration the ordnance is rotated rearwards to align with the trails. A direct and indirect fire sight are located on the left side of the cradle. The 33-caliber ordnance is fitted with a fume extractor and single baffle muzzle brake. The M-71 is an improved model with 39-caliber ordnance and compressed air rammer. A crew of 8 is required to operate the weapon. There is no gun shield.


The M-68 and M-71 fire NATO standard 155mm ammunition. The M-68 has a maximum range of 21 km with NATO standard shells and 23.5 km with Tampella ammunition. The longer barrel of the M-71 increases the maximum range to 30 km with base bleed ammunition. The rate of fire is 4 rpm for short periods and 2 rpm sustained. The compressed air rammer on the M-71 increases the maximum rate of fire to 5 rpm.


The M-68 is towed by a 6x6 5-ton truck. The four wheel chassis and large tires allow for a high cross country speed. The weight distribution of the ordnance in travel configuration results in a high maximum road speed of 100 km/h. There is no APU and the M-68 is too heavy to transport by hand.


The M-68 and M-71 have been sold to various nations in Africa and Asia. Both models also saw service in Israel and are reported to remain in storage. The M-71 was actively used by South African forces during the various conflicts in Southern Africa.



M-68: The M-68 is the baseline production model and was the first towed howitzer to be produced in Israel. The M-68 combines the Tampella designed split trail chassis with the indigenious 155mm 33-caliber ordnance. The M-68 can be identified by the limited space between the muzzle brake and fume extractor.

  • Specifications:
  • M-68
TypeTowed howitzer
Ordnance155mm L/33 howitzer, 5.180 m barrel
Elevation-5 to +52°
Traverse84° total
Rate of fire4 rpm (max), 2 rpm (sustained)
Range21.0 km with NATO standard ammunition, 23.5 km with Tampella ammunition
Carriage4 wheel split trail carriage, 0.38 m ground clearance, 2.2 m track
Weight8.5 t (firing position), 9.5 t (travelling)
Length7.2 m (travelling)
Width2.58 m (travelling)
Height2 m (travelling)
Towing vehicle6x6 truck
Speed100 km/h on roads


M-71: The M-71 is an improved model of the M-68. It differs from the M-68 in having a longer 39-caliber barrel with associated improved range. The M-71 also has a compressed air rammer that increases loading speed, especially at elevation. The M-71 was produced in larger numbers than the M-68.

  • Specifications:
  • M-71
TypeTowed howitzer
Ordnance155mm L/39 howitzer, 6.045 m barrel
Elevation-3 to +52°
Traverse90° total
Rate of fire5 rpm (max), 2 rpm (sustained)
Range23.5 km with standard ammunition, 30.0 km with base bleed ammunition
Carriage4 wheel split trail carriage, 0.38 m ground clearance, 2.2 m track
Weight9.2 t (travelling)
Length7.5 m (travelling)
Width2.58 m (travelling)
Height2.12 m (travelling)
Towing vehicle6x6 truck
Speed100 km/h on roads


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