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Pbv 302 BILL: Scandinavian Frugality

The Pbv 302 is a Swedish APC, developed in the mid 1960s as a replacement to the outdated Pbv 301. Soon, tankers in War Thunder will have the chance to take command of an experimental anti-tank version of this widely produced APC as it makes its way to the game as part of the next major update

Briefly: An experimental version of a widely used Swedish APC converted into a tank hunter thanks to the installation of an ATGM launcher.

Pbv 302 BILL, light tank, Sweden, Rank VI

Features:

  • Powerful ATGM launcher
  • 20mm autocannon
  • Amphibious
  • Light protection
History

Development of the Pbv 302 began in the mid 1960s as the AB Hägglunds company began working on a replacement for the dated Pbv 301 APC. The design of the new Pbv 302 was heavily influenced by the American M113 and also shared some common parts with it such as tracks and suspension elements. Unlike the M113 however, Swedish engineers decided to outfit the vehicle with a fully rotatable turret, housing a 20mm cannon. This was intended to give the vehicle good offensive capabilities against soft ground targets or low-flying aircraft.

Following successful testing, the Pbv 302 was adopted into service and went into mass production in 1966. A total of 518 vehicles would be produced before production ended in 1972. Apart from serial production vehicles, a number of special variants were also developed afterwards, such as command, reconnaissance and recovery vehicles.

During the 1980s however, the Pbv 302 underwent several modernization programs in an effort to extend its service life. In this period, Swedish engineers also experimented with developing new variants of the vehicle, aiming to improve the Pbv 302’s firepower, protection and mobility. One such experimental version was the Pbv 302 BILL. It incorporated the Rbs 56 ATGM launcher and thus allowed the Pbv 302 to engage even more heavily armored targets or reinforced fortifications. However, as the Cold War came to an end, so did the budget cuts start for the Swedish military. As a result, further work on these experimental versions of the Pbv 302 was canceled due to a lack of funding.

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In War Thunder, the Pbv 302 BILL will be a new light tank making its way to the top ranks of the Swedish ground forces tree with the release of the next major update. Small, nimble and packing a deadly punch is how the Pbv 302 BILL is best described and today’s devblog is here to share all the details about this unique Swedish ground vehicle, arriving soon to tankers’ hangars.

So let’s begin with the Pbv 302’s weapons. Like many Cold War-era light vehicles, the Pbv 302 comes fitted with a single 20 mm Akan m/47D cannon as standard. Featuring a high rate of fire and good ballistic properties, the cannon provides an excellent solution to countering other light hostile vehicles or even low-flying aircraft and helicopters. However, tankers are best advised to not attack more heavily armored opponents head-on, at least not with the autocannon.

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For this job, the Pbv 302 BILL has a special tool available: namely, the Rbs 56 ATGM launcher, already familiar to some seasoned War Thunder tankers. Being the same missile launcher found on the Strf 9040, the Rbs 56 is not your typical anti-tank missile. Instead, the Rbs 56 is a top-attack missile, meaning it detonates above the target, thus causing the penetration to occur at the usually least armored parts of a combat vehicle. This trait also allows the missile to be fired on vehicles hiding behind cover or terrain since the missile can easily fly over these and still inflict damage to the enemy.

Fun fact: The 20 mm cannons found on the Pbv 302 were previously used on the Saab J29 jets and were simply repurposed once the latter were decommissioned and scrapped.

Being a light vehicle means that the Pbv 302 BILL doesn’t feature any notable form of protection. Its 20-25 mm of frontal armor plating ensures adequate protection against machine gun fire and shrapnel, but won’t be effective enough to stop high-powered autocannons and anti-tank munitions. On the other hand, the light protection also results in a rather low weight of just 14 tons.

The Pbv 302 BILL will soon be making its way to the top ranks of the Swedish ground forces tree and will become available to all tankers as a new high tier light tank. In the meantime, be sure to keep a close watch on our news as we continue unveiling other exciting new additions and features awaiting you in the next major update. Until then, happy hunting tankers!

You can greatly speed up the research on this vehicle with:

CV 90105 TML Pack
The Kit Includes:
  • CV 90105 TML (Rank 6, Sweden);
  • 2000 Golden Eagles
  • Premium account for 15 days;
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