Humvee-Mounted Howitzer Dazzles at Modern Day Marine


An Illinois-based company has developed a stabilized 105mm cannon system designed to be mounted on the back of Humvees, Joint Light Tactical Vehicles and similar-sized platforms.

Mandus Group, in a partnership with AM General, showed off its Hawkeye 105mm Mobile Weapon System at Modern Day Marine 2017.

The system features a U.S. Army M20 105mm cannon and a digital fire control system mounted on an AM General M1152A1 Humvee.

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The self-propelled howitzer features front and rear hydraulic anchors that stabilize the gun when firing, said Sam Kupresin, vice president of business development at Mandus Group.

"We saw that there was a need, because of the way warfare is moving, for a very lightweight self-propelled howitzer," Kupresin said, referring to the counter-fire capabilities of potential near-peer adversaries.

"As soon as you shoot, they know where you are at; the shots come back at you. If you can't shoot and scoot, you're dead," he said.

A towed howitzer cannot be broken down quickly enough in this type of environment, Kupresin said.

"This breaks down in about 30 seconds," he said. "Hit one button, and the hydraulic anchors come up."

"If you want to go lightweight, you can't do it ... without using our technology," Kupresin said. "If you had a regular 105 on the back of this truck, it would break its back and turn it over three times if you fired it.

"This thing reduces the recoil by 70 percent."

Hawkeye 3 (Image courtesy Mandus Group) Hawkeye 3 (Image courtesy Mandus Group)

The Hawkeye carries up to 10 rounds of 105mm ammo and is accompanied by a support truck that could carry additional ammo, Kupresin said. It has a four-person crew -- two ride in the gun truck and two ride in the support truck.

Army and Marine officials have expressed interest the system, Kupresin said.

The Hawkeye is scheduled to do a live-fire demonstration for military officials next week at an Army National Guard range at Camp Atterbury, Indiana, he said.

After that, the plan is to live-fire it at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, in December, Kupresin said.

Right now, the Hawkeye is mounted on the Humvee, but it can also mount on the JLTV with no trouble, he said.

"We mounted and fired it off the back of a Ford F250 pickup," he said. "We shot it off a trailer we bought at Home Depot. It's real flexible."

-- Matthew Cox can be reached at

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