|Manufacturer:||NORINCO - China North Industries Group Corporation - CNGC|
|Product type:||Armoured Vehicles|
WMZ322 is a 122-mm tracked self-propelled howitzer designed and manufactured by the Chinese defense company NORINCO (North Industries Corporation). The first information about these artillery system was published in 2005, but NORINCO never officially provided technical information about this product. According to some Chinese military sources, WMZ322 is offered for export under the name SH3.
WMZ322 has high mobility and firepower, which is provided by a computerized fire control system. WMZ322 is in the service of the Chinese army. In November 2017, the office of the President of Rwanda, Paul Kagame, published a photo on his Flickr account, which showed SH-3, which participated in military exercises in Rwanda, code-named "Hard Punch II".
The layout of the WMZ322/SH3 is very similar to the PLZ-89, especially in terms of the turret design, most of the differences in the suspension. Another feature of WMZ322 is that the driver is in the front left part of the hull, but the PLZ-89 has two hatches, the driver is in the same place, and the commander's seat is behind him. The WMS322 has a crew of five peoples. The turret is installed in the rear part of the hull, it has one door, rear located. The hull and the turret provide protection from small arms firing and fragments of artillery shells.
The WMZ322/SH3 is powered by a Deutz BF8M 1015CP water cooled diesel engine with a power of 450 hp. It provides a maximum speed of 60 km/h and a maximum range of up to 500 km. On the sides there are six paired rubberised road wheels, having a torsion suspension, sprocket wheels in front, guide wheels at the rear and three supporting rollers.
WMZ322/SH3 is equipped with a turret very similar to PLZ-89, an older version of the 122-mm Chinese-made tracked self-propelled howitzer. It uses the same type of main armament that consists of one Type 89 122/32-mm cal howitzer borrowed from a Type 85 towed howitzer that has a box screen for a recoil mounted above the barrel and a muzzle brake. The gun is equipped with a semi-automatic loading system that provides a rate of fire from 6 to 8 rounds per minute. The maximum range of standard ammunition is 18 km, for EFRB (Extend Range Full Bore) - up to 22 km and 27 km - for projectiles with Rocket Assisted Projectiles (RAP). The vehicle has amunition total of 40 rounds. The 12.7-mm machine gun is mounted on the roof of the turret, near the commander's hatch. On the sides of the turret there are also four smoke grenade launchers.
Standard equipment WMZ322/SH3 includes a infrared night vision device, a meteorological sensor, a NBC protection, an automatic fire-extinguishing system and a GPS navigation system. WMZ322 is also equipped with an automatic fire control system that includes a digital ballistic computer, an optical sight for day and night vision and a laser range finder installed at the top of the turret.