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M53/M55

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M53_55 (Stock)

AnnoM53_55.png
Totals
3550000 Price
450 Hit Points
44.6 / 44.7 kgWeight
Crew
  1. Commander
Armor
25.4/12.7/12.7Hull Armor(front/sides/rear, mm)
12.7/12.7/12.7Turret Armor(front/sides/rear, mm)
Maneuver
770 h.p.Engine Power
56.3 km/hSpeed Limit
22 deg/secTraverse Speed
Firepower
1250 Standard Shell Damage
88 mmStandard Shell Penetration
22 Time for Complete Loading
10 deg/secTurret Traverse Speed
Communication
350 mView Range
500 mSignal Range
M53/M55
IX
M53/M55
3550000
Artillery on a modified chassis of the M47 medium tank. The prototype was produced in 1952, and in 1956 the artillery entered service in two variants: the M55 for the Army and the M53 for the Marines. A total of 30 vehicles of both types were manufactured.

M53/M55

Stock

Level Gun Weight (t) Average Penetration (mm) Rate of Fire Dispersion at 100 m Aiming Time
gun VIII 155 mm Gun M46 3264 88/90 1250/1250 2.73 0.68 6
Level Engine Weight (t) Engine Power (h.p.) Chance of Fire on Impact
engine VIII Ford GAC 839 770 20
Level Suspension Weight (t) Load Limit Traverse Speed (deg/s)
chassis VIII T97/T108 23000 44.7 22
Level Radio Weight (t) Signal Range (m)
radio VIII AN/PRC-10 0 500

M53A1

Recon

M55
Level Gun Weight (t) Average Penetration (mm) Rate of Fire Dispersion at 100 m Aiming Time
gun VIII 155 mm Gun M46 3264 88/90 1250/1250 2.73 0.68 6
Level Engine Weight (t) Engine Power (h.p.) Chance of Fire on Impact
engine X Continental AV-1790-7B 1171 810 12
Level Suspension Weight (t) Load Limit Traverse Speed (deg/s)
chassis IX M53/M55 23000 48 24
Level Radio Weight (t) Signal Range (m)
radio X AN/PRC-25 0 750

M55

Attack

T92
Level Gun Weight (t) Average Penetration (mm) Rate of Fire Dispersion at 100 m Aiming Time
gun IX 8-inch Howitzer M47 2776 102/241/102 1850/1450/1850 1.88 0.84 7
Level Engine Weight (t) Engine Power (h.p.) Chance of Fire on Impact
engine X Continental AV-1790-7B 1171 810 12
Level Suspension Weight (t) Load Limit Traverse Speed (deg/s)
chassis IX M53/M55 23000 48 24
Level Radio Weight (t) Signal Range (m)
radio X AN/PRC-25 0 750

Compatible Equipment

Medium Spall Liner
Camouflage Net
Fill Tanks with CO2
Coated Optics
Enhanced Gun Laying Drive
Enhanced Torsion Bars 5+ t Class
Improved Ventilation Class 2
Large-Caliber Artillery-Shell Rammer
Binocular Telescope
Toolbox
"Wet" Ammo Rack Class 2

Compatible Consumables

Automatic Fire Extinguisher
Case of Cola
100-octane Gasoline
105-octane Gasoline
Manual Fire Extinguisher
Large First Aid Kit
Large Repair Kit
Small First Aid Kit
Small Repair Kit

Player Opinion

Pros and Cons

Pros:


  • Gun range: stock: 1400 m, top: 1290 m
  • Very wide firing arc, gun is mounted on a "pseudo-turret" much like the GW Panther
  • Very good speed and acceleration, though still doesn't compete with french artillery
  • Decent traverse rate
  • High alpha gun


Cons:


  • Large profile
  • Second gun has low accuracy


Early Research

  • Nothing carries over from the M40/M43.
  • The AN/PRC-25 radio carries over from the M44.
  • First, research the M53/M55 Suspension.
  • Next, research the 8-inch Howitzer M47.
  • Finally, research the Continental AV-1790-7B Engine.


Historical Info

M-55 8-inch Self-Propelled Howitzer (right) with the M53 155mm Self-Propelled Gun

The M55 was an American fully enclosed and armored self-propelled artillery based on the M53 155 mm assault gun. It had a 203.2 mm howitzer which could traverse 30° left or right, carrying only 10 rounds of ammunition. The gun had a maximum range of 16,916 meters (10.51 miles) with a rate of fire of one round every two minutes. The M55 armor was light, 25 mm maximum, but sufficient to protect the crew from indirect artillery hits or small arms fire.

Development history

M53 & M55 self-propelled howitzers were quite unique vehicles. While borrowing the chassis, hull and automotive components of the M46/M47 Patton tanks, its internal arrangement was reversed to accommodate a rear-set fully-enclosed turret emplacement. The engine and transmission were now fitted to the front of the hull (as opposed to the rear) with the driver being relocated to the front-left of the turret (as in the M53). The track-and-wheel system involved seven double-tired road wheels per side along with the drive sprocket which was mounted at the front of the hull. One notable feature of the running gear was its lack of a track idler at the rear which gave the track link system of the M55 a very identifiable quality. Three track return rollers guided the upper track sections. The gunner crew operated under the protection of an enclosed armored structure which provided security against small arms fire or artillery spray as the steel armor protection was 25mm at its thickest. The complete crew numbered six and included the driver, vehicle commander, gunner and at least two loaders. The primary design characteristic of the M55 was its boxy turret emplacement, which was a turret in name only. Traverse was limited to 30-degrees to the left or right and little else, requiring the vehicle to be itself turned in the direction of fire more often than not. The 203mm M47 howitzer was of good strategic value, able to lob all manner of shells at the enemy position up to 17,000 meters.
M55_howitzer,_rear_view. Note the stabilising dozer
However, due to the large projectiles, the rate-of-fire was limited to just one round per two minutes and stowage aboard the vehicle meant that only 10 rounds could be carried - thusly limiting its tactical value (the M53 managed 20 x 155mm shells). Defense was through a Browning .50 caliber M2HB anti-aircraft/anti-infantry heavy machine gun mounted on a pintle at the commander's cupola.


Power for the M55 vehicle was served through a Continental AV-1790-5B 12-cylinder gasoline-fueled engine outputting at 810 horsepower. This was mated to an Allison CD-850-4 transmission system that featured two forward and one reverse gears. The vehicle, therefore, could manage up to 30 miles per hour on ideal surfaces and featured an operational range out to 160 miles. As improvements were brought into the Patton tank lines, the M53 and M53 vehicles adopted some of these measures including the AV-1790-7B engines and CD-850-4B transmissions. Similarly, the original stick steering control arrangement later gave way to a conventional steering wheel design. Some M55s were utilized operational during the American involvement in the Vietnam War (1955-1975) though they were eventually removed from inventory within time. The M53 and M55 shared some commonality of parts themselves, able to utilized the same ammunition racks and M86 gun mounts which made for some logistical friendliness. Beyond its use in the United States military, the Belgian Army became the only other notable operator of the M55 vehicle. The last M55 was retired from active service (with the Belgian Army) in the 1970s.


Historical Gallery

USA
Light Tanks IT1 Cunningham IIM2 Light Tank IIT1E6-X IIT1E6-X1 IIT2 Light Tank IIT7 Combat Car IIIM22 Locust IIIM3 Stuart IIIMTLS-1G14 IVM5 Stuart VM24 Chaffee VIT21 VIT37 VIIM41 Walker Bulldog VIIT71 VIIIM41B Brazilian Bulldog VIIIT49
Medium Tanks IIT2 Medium Tank IIIM2 Medium Tank IVM3 Lee VM4A2E4 Sherman VM4A2E4 Ripper VM4 Sherman VM7 VRam II VIM4A3E8 Sherman VISherman Fury VIM4A3E2 Sherman Jumbo VIIT20 VIIT23E3 VIIIM26 Pershing VIIIT26E4 Super Pershing VIIIT26E4 Freedom VIIIT69 VIIIT95E2 IXM46 Patton IXT54E1 XM48A1 Patton
Heavy Tanks VT14 VT1 Heavy Tank VIM6 VIIT29 VIIIM6A2E1 VIIIT32 VIIIT34 IXM103 XT110E5 XT57 Heavy Tank
Tank Destroyers IIT18 IIIT82 IVM8A1 IVT40 VM10 Wolverine VT67 VIM18 Hellcat VIM36 Jackson VIIT25/2 VIIT25 AT VIIIT28 VIIIT28 Prototype IXT30 IXT95 XT110E3 XT110E4
Self-Propelled Artillery IIT57 IIIM7 Priest IIISexton I IVM37 VM41 VIM44 VIIM12 VIIIM40/M43 IXM53/M55 XT92
Self-Propelled Guns
USA IIT57 IIIM7 Priest IIISexton I IVM37 VM41 VIM44 VIIM12 VIIIM40/M43 IXM53/M55 XT92
UK IILoyd Gun Carriage IIISexton II IIISexton I IVBirch Gun VBishop VIFV304 VIICrusader 5.5-in. SP VIIIFV207 IXFV3805 XConqueror Gun Carriage
Germany IIG.Pz. Mk. VI (e) IIISturmpanzer I Bison IIIWespe IVPz.Sfl. IVb IVSturmpanzer II VGrille VIHummel VIIG.W. Panther VIIIG.W. Tiger (P) IXG.W. Tiger XG.W. E-100
France IIRenault FT 75 BS IIILorraine 39L AM IVAMX 105 AM mle. 47 VAMX 13 105 AM mle. 50 V105 leFH18B2 VIAMX 13 F3 AM VIILorraine 155 mle. 50 VIIILorraine 155 mle. 51 IXBat.-Châtillon 155 55 XBat.-Châtillon 155 58
USSR IISU-18 IIISU-26 IVSU-5 VSU-122A VISU-8 VIIS-51 VIISU-14-1 VIIISU-14-2 IX212A XObject 261
China
Japan
Czechoslovakia
Sweden