German Wiesel III Armored Vehicle:


The Wiesel was an interesting combat vehicle produced by the German Republic. "Wiesel" means "Weasel"in German. While only lightly armored and extremely lightweight, the design was extremely useful in supporting troops and in other roles. Air transportable, In many ways, the Wiesel filled the role which was later filled by ground power armors. It was well liked by the troops who operated it and was an integral part of the German Army.


With the revolution in super strong materials, the German Army needed to upgrade their lighter vehicle along with their tanks. Some suggested simply refitting the Wiesel armored vehicle which were already in service with new armor. There was support for this in many government circles due to the enormous cost of building an upgraded Leopard tank. Eventually though, engineers were able to convince government leaders that a new build Wiesel would be a better choice.


The new design became known as the Wiesel III and has many upgrades over the original design. It is slightly larger than the original Wiesel I and is more similar to the Wiesel II in the basic chassis. There are several basic designs with three basic designs being most common. There is one which carries a powerful cannon, a second version which carries missiles, and a third version which is a troop transport. There are variants of the troop transport design which are designed as ambulances, command vehicles, and ammunition carriers. Other versions include models which mount a 120 mm Mortar for long range support almost like an artillery design and a radar version with a powerful long range radar. The Wiesel served in gunfire support and anti-tank roles until those roles were taken over by power armors in mainline roles. Still, the Wiesel III was retained in secondary roles which many crews preferring them over power armors in the role.


The New German Republic operates the Wiesel still after the coming of the Rifts where crews still consider the design extremely effective. Some crews would like to see an updated version produced with upgraded weapons and a fusion reactor instead of the propulsion system carried in the design. A small number have found their way into the hands of Mercenaries where they are mostly considered quite valuable. Some have been upgraded but many are still virtually in their original condition.


Power for the Wiesel is provided by an advanced fuel cell system like most designs built during the initial revolution in high strength alloys and composites. Small fusion reactors were still about two decades away in most cases. Still, the system is extremely efficient and the design has a range of around eight hundred kilometers. It is surprisingly fast as well with a top speed of around 100 kilometers per hour on roads. Many people after the coming of the Rifts think that tanks and armored vehicles have less mobility than robot vehicles but this is not the case. The Wiesel III can climb up to a 60% grade and can cross trenches and climb barriers.


The new alloys and composites have made the Wiesel III to be virtually immune to corrosion. As a result, a surprising number have survived. Due to their simple construction, the Wiesel is also easy to maintain and repair. As a result, most Triax and New German Republic mechanics prefer to work on them over most power armors. Even though a relatively simple design, the Wiesel carries an advanced sensor array. The design does not have full life support but has full protection against chemical, biological, and radioactive attacks.


The troop transport model and those designed from it are armed with a single light weapon mount. Originally, a liquid propellant weapon was fitted but was replaced by a light rail gun on most models. All models carry Firefly defensive systems. Most versions of the vehicle are designed to be operated by a crew of two with troop transport models designed to carry four troops in addition to the crew.


For the missile armed version of the vehicle, the vehicle carries eight medium range missiles. Because of the dual role capability of the medium range missiles which were developed in the middle of the Twenty-First Century, the vehicle is considered useful both for anti-air and bombardment roles. Slightly different missiles are often used for anti-aircraft tasks, a higher speed missile with a slightly smaller warhead. A lightweight radar system is mounted in this version of the vehicle.


The cannon armed version replaces the original 20 mm cannon with a more powerful 30 mm cannon.It is the only version which carries a turret. Payload for the cannon is reduced from four hundred to three hundred rounds although most crews considered the additional firepower well worth the reduction in ammunition. The cannon is mainly used for ground support although can be extremely useful against against aircraft as well.


The Mortar Carrier version has a light weapon mount for self defense like the standard troop transport model. The mortar carrier is designed to be operated by a crew of three and is a breach loading mortar. It is not in a turret but is designed to fire forward of the vehicle. It can agle to either side of center for targeting purposes. Total payload for the mortar is forty-five rounds and a wide variety of different rounds are available for the weapon mount. Maximum range is 8 kilometers for the mortar, slightly longer than a standard 120 mm mortar, and around three to four rounds can be fired within around fifteen seconds of being made ready to fire. The mortar vehicle is also fitted with feet which it plants to keep stable when firing to keep stable. This is required due to the extremely lightweight nature of the design.


Model Type: Rheinmetall Landsysteme Wiesel III
Class: Light Armored Personal Carrier / Weapon Platform

Crew:Transport ModelTwo (Driver and Gunner)
Missile ModelTwo (Driver and Missile Gunner)
Auto-Cannon ModelTwo (Driver and Cannon Gunner)
Mortar ModelThree (Driver and 2 Mortar Crew)
Troops:Transport ModelFour (Two in Ambulance and Command Models)
Missile ModelNone
Auto-Cannon ModelNone
Mortar ModelNone


M. D. C. by Location:

Troop Transport / Cargo / Ambulance / Command Model
8 mm Liquid Propellant Gatling Gun (Forward):25
8 mm Railgun (Forward):40
Rear Hatch50
Medium Range Missile Model
Medium Range Missile Launcher125
Auto-Cannon Model
Weapon Turret:140
Rheinmetall Mk 30 RH-305 30 mm Auto Cannon (In Turret)40
120 mm Mortar Model
Rheinmetall 120 mm Heavy Mortar (Rear):50
8 mm Liquid Propellant Gatling Gun (Forward):25
8 mm Railgun (Forward):40
Support Feet (4)25 each
[1] Headlights (2):4 each
Firefly Chaff Launchers (2):25 each
Reinforced Crew Compartment:50
[1] Main Body:225
[2] Treads (2):30 each


Notes:
[1] Depleting the M.D.C. from the main body will shut the vehicle down completely, rendering it useless.
[2] Depleting the M.D.C. of a tread will immobilize the tank until it is replaced. Replacing a tread will take 1D6x10 minutes by a trained crew (2 replacements are carried on board) or three times as long by the inexperienced. Changing the tread is only possible when the vehicle is not under attack.


Speed:
Ground: 62.1 mph (100 kph), on land; it cannot travel on or underwater. The vehicle is designed to traverse virtually all terrain and can climb at up to a 60% grade although at a much slower speed (About 10% of maximum road speed). It can also climb barriers and ford trenches. The vehicle can also handle side slopes of up to 30%.
Maximum Effective Range: 497.1 miles (800 km) with fuel cell system.


Statistical Data:
Height: 6.92 feet (2.11 meters)
Width: 6.08 feet (1.852 meters)
Length: Hull: 13.78 feet (4.20 meters) With Barrel Forward (Auto-Cannon Version): 15.91 feet (4.85 meters)
Weight: 4.63 tons (4.2 metric tons) fully loaded
Cargo: Transport Models: 1,102.3 lbs (500 kilograms) in addition to standard gear. All Others: Minimal storage space; about two feet (0.6 meters) for extra clothing, weapons, and personal items.
Power System: Fuel Cell System
Black Market Cost: Transport / Cargo Versions / Ambulance Versions: 425,000 credits. Command Version: 475,00 credits. Missile / Auto-Cannon / Mortar Models: 575,000 credits.


Weapon Systems:

  1. Transport Model: Also includes command and control and ambulance models.
    1. Front Mounted Weapon System: The armored vehicle has a mount in the forward area. This mount has a 360 degree swiveling fire-arc and is capable of tracking aerial targets even directly overhead the Leopard. It can be fired manually, or from within the turret with computer guidance. As such, it is a somewhat crude but efficient CIWS for use against missiles and aircraft as well as ground personnel.
      1. Heckler & Koch LPM-8-B Liquid Propellant Machine-gun: This weapon was designed when it was clear that the older 7.62 mm machine-gun design would be inadequate. In later models, this was replaced by a rail gun but many older models still retained this weapon. The weapon can fire all types of burst available to machine guns except extended bursts. The weapon uses a special liquid propellant which delivers about four times the force of nitro-cellulose propellant and the weapon fires an 8 mm round.
        Maximum Effective Range: 3,000 feet (914 meters)
        Mega-Damage:
          Single Shot (Costs 1 attack): 1D6
          Ten Round Burst on One Target (Costs 1 attack): 5D6
          Ten Round Burst on 1D4 Target (Costs 1 attack): 1D6
          Thirty Round Burst on One Target (Costs 1 attack): 1D6x10
          Thirty Round Burst on 1D8 Target (Costs 1 attack): 2D6
        Rate of Fire: Equal to combined hand to hand attacks of gunner.
        Payload: 800 rounds
      2. Heckler & Koch RLG-8G millimeter Rail-Gun: Replaces the liquid propellant machine-gun in later models. Rail gun does not need to carry any propellant giving a higher ammunition capacity and has a longer range than the previous liquid propellant weapon.
        Maximum Effective Range: 4,920 feet (1,500 meters)
        Mega Damage: Single shot does 2D4 and 20 round burst does 1D6x10
        Rate of Fire: Equal to combined hand to hand attacks of gunner; usually the commander.
        Payload: 1200 rounds (60 bursts).
  2. Missile Version:
    1. Medium-Range Missile Launcher: A medium range box launcher is mounted above the vehicle. Launcher is usually controlled by the gunner, but can be fired by the driver if the gunner is injured. Launcher is normally outfitted with High-Explosive, Fragmentary or Plasma missiles. The launches can engage air and ground targets. When used for anti-air roles, special missiles are often carried with a higher top speed than a conventional medium range missile.
      Maximum Effective Range: Varies with missile types, medium range missiles only (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
      Mega Damage: Varies with missile types, medium range missiles only (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
      Rate of Fire: Can fire missiles one at a time, or in volleys of two (2) or four (4) missiles.
      Payload: 8 medium range missiles.
  3. Auto-Cannon Version:
    1. Rheinmetall Mk 30 RH-305 30 mm Auto Cannon: Mounted in a turret with a 360 degree rotation and can angle up to 85 degrees to target aircraft as well as ground targets. Primarily role is against ground targets. Controlled by a gunner. The 30 mm cannon fires heavy ramjet rounds with armor piercing warheads which inflict as much damage as most heavy rail guns. The ramjet rounds inflict great damage and can quicky punch through the front armor of a tank or the main armor of a giant robot.
      Maximum Effective Range: 6,000 feet (1,830 meters).
      Mega Damage: 2D6x10 for a burst of 20 rounds, 3D6 for each round.
      Rate of Fire: Equal to the gunner's hand to hand attacks; each burst counts as one melee action.
      Payload: 300 round drum magazine (15 bursts.) Reloading is done inside the vehicle and takes two melee rounds (30 seconds) for two crewmen or passengers and six melees (90 seconds) if only one person is involved or the people aren't trained in the reload procedure.
  4. Mortar Version:
    1. Rheinmetall 120 mm Heavy Mortar: Can angle up to 85 degrees and is designed to be a breach loader and requires a crew of two to operate. While it cannot rotate like a turret has the ability to angle up to 15 degrees to each side. It is extremely useful in the short range indirect fire roll. The vehicle must drop feet and plant before firing due to its light weight. Range is less that true artillery but is still extremely effective in indirect fire roles. There are special guided rounds available although rare. See Battlefield Mortars for Rifts for more details.
      Maximum Effective Range: 26,250 feet (8,000 meters) with a minimum range of 660 feet (200 meters)
      Mega-Damage: By mortar round type (See Battlefield Mortars for Rifts for more details. Fragmentation 2D6x10 (50 feet/15.2 meters), High Explosive 3D6x10 (30 feet/9.1 meters), Armor Piercing 3D6x10 (20 feet/6.1 meters), Plasma 4D6x10 (40 feet/12.2 meters), and has a vast number of other type of rounds as well).
      Rate of Fire: 12 rounds per minute (three per melee) for one minute, 8 rounds per minute after one minute of fire (two per melee.)
      Payload: 45 rounds total
    2. Front Mounted Weapon System: The armored vehicle has a mount in the forward area. This mount has a 360 degree swiveling fire-arc and is capable of tracking aerial targets even directly overhead the Leopard. It can be fired manually, or from within the turret with computer guidance. As such, it is a somewhat crude but efficient CIWS for use against missiles and aircraft as well as ground personnel.
      1. Heckler & Koch LPM-8-B Liquid Propellant Machine-gun: This weapon was designed when it was clear that the older 7.62 mm machine-gun design would be inadequate. In later models, this was replaced by a rail gun but many older models still retained this weapon. The weapon can fire all types of burst available to machine guns except extended bursts. The weapon uses a special liquid propellant which delivers about four times the force of nitro-cellulose propellant and the weapon fires an 8 mm round.
        Maximum Effective Range: 3,000 feet (914 meters)
        Mega-Damage:
        Single Shot (Costs 1 attack): 1D6
          Ten Round Burst on One Target (Costs 1 attack): 5D6
          Ten Round Burst on 1D4 Target (Costs 1 attack): 1D6
          Thirty Round Burst on One Target (Costs 1 attack): 1D6x10
          Thirty Round Burst on 1D8 Target (Costs 1 attack): 2D6
        Rate of Fire: Equal to combined hand to hand attacks of gunner.
        Payload: 800 rounds
      2. Heckler & Koch RLG-8G millimeter Rail-Gun: Replaces the liquid propellant machine-gun in later models. Rail gun does not need to carry any propellant giving a higher ammunition capacity and has a longer range than the previous liquid propellant weapon.
        Maximum Effective Range: 4,920 feet (1,500 meters)
        Mega Damage: Single shot does 2D4 and 20 round burst does 1D6x10
        Rate of Fire: Equal to combined hand to hand attacks of gunner; usually the commander.
        Payload: 1200 rounds (60 bursts).
  5. Firefly Chaff Launcher (2 - All Versions): Located on the sides of the turret they are designed to confuse incoming missiles. The launchers do this by launching both flares and active radar decoys. Chaff isn`t actually in use any more, but the name sticks around. The decoys and the flare rockets float down by parachute; Effects last for one minute (4 Melee rounds.)
    Rifts Earth decoys systems are assumed to not operate on Phase World missiles due to technological difference. Reduce effects by 20% against smart missiles (Add +20% to rolls for smart missiles.)
    Range: Around tank only; Rough distance of 80 ft (24 m) around tank.
    Mega Damage: None
      01-35 - Enemy missile or missile volley detonates in chaff cloud - Missiles are all destroyed..
      36-60 - Enemy missile or missile volley loses track of real target and veers away in wrong direction (May lock onto another target.)
      61-00 - No effect, enemy missile or missile volley is still on target.
    Payload: 18 each for a total of 36. 36 reloads are carried, reloading takes five melees. IF you want to get out of the tank to do so.


Sensory Equipment:

Special Notes:



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Writeup by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).


Copyright © 2009, Kitsune. All rights reserved.



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