Root NationArticlesWeaponsWeapons of Ukrainian Victory: The 105mm 2-CT Hawkeye Self-Propelled Howitzer

Weapons of Ukrainian Victory: The 105mm 2-CT Hawkeye Self-Propelled Howitzer


Ukraine has received the latest American 2-CT Hawkeye self-propelled artillery unit, which is currently undergoing testing in the US Army. Today, we cover everything about this 105mm self-propelled howitzer.

It’s known that the delivery took place in April 2024, but this remained a secret until now, as disclosed by AM General program director Mike Evans. At this time, we don’t know how many 2-CT Hawkeye units the Ukrainian Armed Forces have received or if there will be additional deliveries of this lightweight self-propelled 105mm howitzer.


We decided to take a closer look at what AM General’s latest product entails. In this article, we are excited to share the details with you.

Read also: Weapons of Ukrainian Victory: Mistral Anti-Aircraft Missile System

What is interesting about the 2-CT Hawkeye?

The 2-CT Hawkeye is a lightweight mobile weapon system (MWS) developed by AM General in collaboration with Mandus Group. It integrates a 105mm M20 cannon onto the M1152A1 HMMWV (Humvee) platform.

This self-propelled 105mm howitzer is designed to neutralize and destroy ground troops and fortifications through both direct and indirect fire.

The Hawkeye howitzers are currently in service with the US Armed Forces but are still undergoing testing. AM General introduced the Hawkeye MWS on the Humvee platform at the AUSA 2016 defense exhibition. The howitzer was also showcased at the International Defence Exhibition and Conference (IDEX) in Abu Dhabi in February 2019.


The Illinois National Guard deployed the 2S22 Hawkeye systems during simulated exercises at Camp Grayling in July 2019. As part of the “Northern Strike 19” exercises in northern Michigan, US National Guard troops tested the new lightweight 105mm Hawkeye howitzer with reduced recoil mounted on a Humvee chassis. The 2S22 Hawkeye howitzer system is still considered experimental, despite being first introduced in 2011. The exercises, held from July 22 to August 2, 2019, involved about 5,000 National Guard soldiers and military personnel from US allied countries including the UK, Netherlands, Bulgaria, Latvia, Estonia, and Jordan.

Read also: Weapons of Ukrainian Victory: Long-range AASM Hammer bombs

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Conceptual features of the 2-CT Hawkeye air defense system

The 105mm 2-CT Hawkeye self-propelled howitzer on the all-wheel-drive Humvee chassis meets the demands not only of the American military but also the requirements of foreign customers for similar artillery systems. It is safe to say that, to date, this is a unique opportunity to acquire a self-propelled howitzer at an affordable price. This artillery system can be used by expeditionary forces and highly mobile units. It aligns with the concept of fire support for airborne and air assault units, making it ideal for the armament of light infantry units. In the US, this role has recently been filled by the 101st Airborne Division and the 82nd Airborne Division.


This self-propelled artillery system is ideally suited for the concept of an artillery raid, a tactic practiced by the field artillery of the aforementioned divisions for over half a century. The primary striking force in such an operation is the field artillery, with very limited forces—such as a platoon or battery—being deployed for the attack. This is sufficient to achieve most tactical or operational objectives. The self-propelled artillery unit, equipped with a 105mm weapon on a Humvee chassis, ensures rapid deployment to necessary positions either by road or air.

In this context, the key measure of effectiveness is not the power of the 105mm ammunition or maximum firing range, but rather the high rate of fire combined with the superior mobility of the artillery units. This enables them to conduct swift fire missions and quickly exit their firing positions.


The 105mm 2-CT Hawkeye self-propelled howitzer, based on the proven Humvee chassis, significantly enhances the mobility and firepower of light infantry units. The system’s survivability is increased due to its ability to quickly change positions and maneuver. This artillery system is especially suitable for airborne operations. It can be transported by helicopters or transport aircraft and deployed either by landing or parachute. The Hawkeye artillery system substantially boosts the combat power and readiness of airborne units, providing them with an effective fire support tool that is combat-ready almost immediately after deployment.

The universal 105mm caliber and the use of a time-tested chassis simplify the logistical operations for using and maintaining the artillery system in the field. Furthermore, soldiers with existing artillery skills can easily master the system, requiring minimal additional training.


The 105mm Hawkeye self-propelled howitzer system on the multi-purpose military off-road vehicle platform features a soft recoil technology. This technology is used to reduce the recoil force of the howitzer during firing. The principle of the technology is to apply a counter-acceleration to the recoiling shell just before the propellant charge ignites. This can reduce the recoil energy by approximately 50%. Consequently, it reduces the load on the gun carriage through the trunnions, allowing developers to significantly reduce the weight of the artillery system compared to conventional towed howitzers of the same caliber with full barrel recoil.

Combining the 105mm artillery system with reduced recoil on the legendary and reliable Humvee chassis has created a dynamic artillery platform. This platform allows for rapid deployment to necessary artillery positions and quick withdrawal if needed. The American self-propelled artillery system enhances the combat capabilities of light infantry units and their tactical flexibility. Importantly, the crew size for such a system is half that of traditional towed 105mm artillery systems used by the U.S. military. This reduction in crew size contributes to enhanced operational efficiency and mobility, crucial for modern military operations.

Read alsо: Weapons of Ukrainian Victory: T-155 Firtina self-propelled artillery system

2-CT Hawkeye compact design

The combat weight of the Hawkeye self-propelled artillery system on the Humvee chassis does not exceed 4.4 tons. Its dimensions are approximately 5 meters in length, 2.4 meters in width, and 2.3 meters in height when deployed. The reduced recoil, a key feature of the 105mm Hawkeye howitzer, enables its integration onto various chassis platforms, offering flexibility in deployment and operational use.


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Earlier, Mandus presented a variant of mounting the howitzer on the chassis of the lightweight tactical vehicle Mack Sherpa with an armored cabin. Additionally, it’s possible to install it on the chassis of traditional commercial pickups, such as the Ford F250. Due to its lightweight design, the self-propelled artillery system can be lifted by heavy transport helicopters like the CH-47 Chinook (using slings) and easily accommodated in medium-range military transport aircraft like the C-130 Hercules.

The compact design of the Hawkeye facilitates logistics and reduces maintenance costs, as its critical components or assemblies can be replaced at the unit level if necessary.

Read also: Weapons of Ukrainian victory: Storm Shadow / SCALP-EG cruise missiles

Engine and mobility

The HMMWV platform is equipped with a 6.5-liter V8 turbocharged diesel engine that produces 190 horsepower (142 kW) at 3400 rpm. It is paired with a four-speed automatic transmission (GTP).

The vehicle achieves a maximum speed of 113 km/h and has a range of over 400 km. It provides excellent mobility off-road across various types of terrain to support multiple fire support missions. The Humvee can traverse gradients up to 40% and side slopes up to 30%. Approach and departure angles for the vehicle are 48° and 39° respectively.


The vehicle can overcome vertical obstacles up to 0.3 meters high, trenches up to 0.5 meters wide, and fords up to 0.76 meters deep (with preparation for up to 1.52 meters). With its standard four-wheel drive (4×4) and a 190-horsepower diesel engine, the vehicle ensures good maneuverability across most types of terrain.


The lightweight 105mm self-propelled howitzer 2-CT Hawkeye, featuring reduced recoil technology, is based on the standard American M102 howitzer. The barrel length of the new howitzer is also 27 calibers, and this value can be increased upon customer request. The firing range of the new artillery system is limited to 11.6 km using standard ammunition and extends to 19.5 km when using 105mm rocket-assisted projectiles.


It is worth noting that the 2-CT Hawkeye can utilize the entire range of 105mm ammunition currently in service with the U.S. Army, including high-explosive fragmentation shells, smoke rounds, illumination rounds, and cluster munitions with ready-to-use submunitions, among others.


The impressive aspect of the installation is its maximum rate of fire, which reaches 10-12 rounds per minute. With such high firing speed, the artillery system mounted on the versatile Humvee chassis perfectly embodies the “shoot-and-scoot” concept. This means that after firing several rounds at the enemy, the installation can quickly relocate, minimizing the risk of incoming enemy fire. This mobility makes the mobile version of the lightweight American 105mm howitzer far more practical than towed versions like the M102 and M119 howitzers. Another significant advantage is the reduced crew requirement to 4 personnel, with the ability for emergency operation by just two soldiers. Positioned on an open platform, the system allows easy horizontal traverse of the cannon over 360°. Additionally, the gun can be elevated from -5° to +72° vertically. Collectively, these features make the new artillery installation an excellent alternative to standard towed 105mm artillery systems currently in use by the U.S. Army.

Read also: Weapons of Ukrainian Victory: Review of the Patriot air defense system

Fire control system

The digital fire control system of the 2-CT Hawkeye howitzer includes several key components: the LN-270 inertial navigation system (INS) from Northrop Grumman, the MVR-700C radar, the DFS-02 direct fire sight camera from Sekai Electronics, the S67-1575-76 GPS antenna from Sensor Systems, and the gunner’s display unit (GDU) DK10.


The self-propelled artillery system is also equipped with an optical fire control block featuring the M187A1 telescope mount, which includes the M137A2 panoramic telescope.

Read also: Weapons of Ukrainian Victory: ATACMS missiles for HIMARS and MLRS

2-CT Hawkeye specifications

  • Weight: 4.4 tons
  • Length: 5 m
  • Width: 2.4 m
  • Height: 2.3 m
  • Crew: 4 persons
  • Armament: one 105 mm cannon
  • Deployment time: up to 2 minutes
  • Engine: V8, 6.5-liter turbocharged diesel engine
  • Range: 400 km
  • Speed: 113 km/h
  • Range: 11.6 to 19.5 km.

Read also: Weapons of Ukrainian Victory: All about AHS Krab howitzers

Certainly, the information about the United States officially transferring the 105-mm self-propelled howitzers 2-CT Hawkeye to Ukraine has not been confirmed yet. Therefore, we can only speculate whether these self-propelled artillery units are already on the front lines. Nonetheless, if deployed, they would significantly bolster the artillery capabilities of the Ukrainian Armed Forces.

Thanks to its rapid rate of fire and mobility, the 105-mm self-propelled howitzer 2-CT Hawkeye could inflict considerable damage on Russian units. It could become a decisive factor during artillery duels that frequently occur on the front lines. One thing is certain: Ukraine’s partners trust its Armed Forces, indicating continued support with modern weaponry. This means Ukrainian defenders will continue to receive state-of-the-art defense systems.


In Ukraine, there is currently a diverse array of self-propelled artillery units gathered, including AHS Krab, Caesar, Zuzana, AS90, M109, M119, L119, M777, FH-70, TRF-1, and PzH 2000. I am confident that the latest American self-propelled artillery unit, the 2-CT Hawkeye, will fit well into this esteemed company because it does not require specific ammunition types and can utilize all types of 105-mm shells available.

The introduction of modern self-propelled artillery units is a significant acquisition for the Armed Forces of Ukraine. Russian forces have limited capabilities to counter them, giving Ukrainian defenders a distinct advantage. Our soldiers skillfully strike back at the aggressors, destroying their positions, command posts, tanks, and armored vehicles.

We eagerly await our Victory. It will surely come because evil must be punished. Ukraine will prevail! Glory to Ukraine! Death to the enemies!

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Yuri Svitlyk
Yuri Svitlyk
Son of the Carpathian Mountains, unrecognized genius of mathematics, Microsoft "lawyer", practical altruist, levopravosek
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