Type 89/PLZ-89

Manufacturer: NORINCO - China North Industries Group Corporation - CNGC  
Product type: Armoured Vehicles  
Name: Self-propelled howitzer  

The Type 89, also known as PLZ89 in the manufacturer’s internal designation system, is the 122mm self-propelled howitzer developed in the late 1980s for the PLA. The system is mainly used to accompany the armoured troops in the battlefield to provide medium- to long-range indirect fire support. Several hundred examples have been delivered to the PLA since the late 1990s. A new variant mounted on a 6X6 wheeled chassis with reduced combat weight is currently under development.


The 122mm howitzer has been largely deployed in the PLA to provide medium- to long-range indirect fire support for infantry and armoured troops. However, conventional towed howitzers, which require considerable time for switching between firing and travelling modes, are incapable of keeping the fast pace of the armoured troops in the battlefield. To overcome this weakness, the PLA developed a range of self-propelled 122mm howitzers since the late 1970s and early 1980s, but none was able to meet the requirements of the PLA.

In the early 1980s, the PLA successfully developed the Type 86 (W-86) 122mm/32calibre towed howitzer, which is a Chinese copy of the famous Soviet D-30. The PLA began to develop the self-propelled version of this howitzer in the late 1980s, and the PLZ-89 122mm self-propelled howitzer system was introduced in 1989. By the late 1990s, the Type 89 was deployed by the PLA for operational service. During the 1999 military parade held in Beijing to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the People’s Republic of China (PRC), the PLA first revealed the Type 89 to the public. The artillery system has been frequently appearing in the PLA exercises since 2000.


The Type 89 can be found in the artillery regiment (one howitzer battalion) of an armoured division or brigade. Each battalion has 18 howitzers grouped into three artillery companies. The Marine brigade also has a Type 89 company in its armoured regiment.


The main armament of the Type 89 is the 122mm, 32-calibre howitzer gun barrel developed from the Type 85 122mm towed howitzer, which features the box-shape shield for the recoil-recuperator mechanism mounted above the tube and the multi-baffle muzzle brake.

The howitzer can fire all types of Chinese and Russian 122 mm ammunitions. The maximum range of fire is 18km for standard high-explosive (HE) rounds and 21km for extended range full bore, hollow base (ERFB-HB) rounds. The howitzer is fitted with a semi-automatic loader, with a maximum rate of fire of 6~8 rounds/min. The howitzer carries 40 rounds inside the turret.

Fire accuracy is achieved by a digital fire-control system and a roof-mounted electro-optical sighting for day/night operations.

The secondary weapon include a 12.7mm anti-aircraft machine gun mounted on the roof of the turret, and two sets of four-barrel smoke grenade launchers mounted on the side of the turret.


The Type 89 is mounted on a tracked chassis developed from the Type 77 amphibious armoured personnel carrier (APC). All five crewmembers are protected by a collective anti-NBC systems and automatic fire suppression. The system is powered by a 450 hp 12V150L12 diesel engine, which gives a maximum road speed of 60km/h. The combat weight is 20 tonnes. The Type 89 can swim with the assistance of certain floating devices.

Property Value
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Type 89/PLZ-89
Type 89/PLZ-89
Type 89/PLZ-89
Type 89/PLZ-89
Type 89/PLZ-89
Type 89/PLZ-89
Type 89/PLZ-89
Type 89/PLZ-89
Type 89/PLZ-89
Type 89/PLZ-89
Type 89/PLZ-89