UDES 03 “Gittan II” tier VIII Swedish prototype armed with the stock 9,0cm gun.
The UDES 03 is one of the proposed light armored fighting vehicle concepts jointly developed by Defense Material Administration research group UDES and weapons developer Bofos, being designed by the latter.
In the early 1970s, UDES was part of an effort to find a new light AFV series for the Swedish Army. More specifically, UDES would develop, study, analyze, assess, and catalogue different concepts for new AFVs alternatives. An earlier concept that was essentially a precurser to the UDES 03, the Objekt 2013 A, was used as a basis to develop two testing rigs for gunnery and mobility. UDES contracted Bofors for the shooting and suspension test rig, and Hägglunds for the mobility test rig. Once tests were complete and results assessed, the data was distributed to Bofors and Hägglunds to produce concept designs.
The UDES 03 itself was a proposal designed by Bofors. This turretless design featured hydropneumatic suspension, a high power to weight ratio, a had a crew of 3. It mounted a 10,5cm main gun that was linked to a coaxial 20mm or 30mm autocannon mounted on the right side of the vehicle. An remote LMG, probably an FN MAG, looks to be mounted on a telescopic mount that could be raised from and lowered back into the hull. It may or may not be linked to the main gun in terms of its elevation and depression as an additional MG coaxial. It met all the requirements set forth by UDES, but a focus shifted towards a turreted alternative designed by Hägglunds designated the UDES 14 which had essentially all the same specs except it was turreted. However, in the end the program was terminated. Despite the UDES 03 only ever existing in blueprints and a rusting test rig, data gathered from the development would be used later to develop the CV90 AFV and Strv. 103.
Review: The UDES 03 is like some heavily armed, sleek AFV-supercar hyrbrid that looks like something out of a James Bond movie. It is the stealthiest and most mobile “tank destroyer” at tier VIII. Its extremely low profile gives it the highest concealment rating, and its light weight combined with a 550hp engine gives it good acceleration. The UDES 03 also has a top speed of 70 kph forward, and 50 kph in reverse, giving it speed that rivals fast mediums and light tanks. Its 10,5cm main gun has high shell velocity and the highest armor penetration among tier VIII TDs. It’s highly angled hull provides good protection against small caliber rounds, and better overall protection than previous tiers. However, the armor is still too thin at 20mm max to have much effectiveness against most rounds, and it makes the UDES 03 extremely vulnerable to HE rounds, and thus easy prey for arty. It also has a very low base view range of around 350m, meaning it will often rely on other units to spot the enemies and keep them lit. Traverse speed is also poor. Finally, The UDES 03 is the first Swedish afv to feature the new and unique “Siege Mode” which activates the hydropneumatic suspension giving it one of the lowest gun depressions by raising the entire back of the hull so as to allow engagement while revealing as little of the vehicle. In game, siege mode dramatically improves aim time and allows continued usage of binoculars and camoflage netting only when traversing the gun. Speed is reduced to 5 kph forward and in reverse and it takes 2 seconds to make the transition into and out of siege mode. A quirky thing about siege mode for the UDES 03 due to having a gun that can elevate, is that when the hull angle is raised, it will only lower when the aimer is fully elevated which can be a nuisance as one might find themselves unintentionally revealing more of the hull than necessary. All this makes for a high performance sniper unit. It can quickly deploy, remain relatively undetected, and easily get good hits from long distances, inflicting high damage from afar. It can almost just as quickly fall back and redeploy to a different position once spotted or should the situation require it. It is very ill-suited to urban environments, short range combat, and leading the attack in most instances. I have found that the UDES 03 has a more defensive nature, being especially at home while dug into defendable and well concealed positions. This may be simply due to having to switch modes in order to depress the gun which sacrifices mobility in return. As such, preplanning is advised when playing this unit, so as to find the best positions from which to engage enemies and support team mates.