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Tracked Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS) [ 1968 ]

The Israeli Army MAR-290 system mated the rocket rack of the Soviet Katyusha system with the chassis of an American or British combat tank.

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 05/14/2019 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site.

Having captured large stocks of Soviet-made BM-24 "Katyusha" unguided rocket-launching systems from its neighboring enemies, the nation of Israel reconstituted these weapons for their own service. What resulted as a new series of tracked Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (MLRSs) which went to carry to the designation of "MAR-290". The conversion began in the late 1960s and eventually involved two combat tank chassis - the American M4 Sherman Medium Tank (of World War 2 vintage) and the British-made Centurion Main Battle Tank (MBT) - serving as carrier vehicles.

The modification saw arrangement of a four-tube launcher unit sat over the existing tank chassis - as such the vehicle retained its performance capabilities including favorable off-road mobility. The launcher was designed to face the rear of the vehicle while elevation was controlled through a hydraulic arm which angled the launcher to the required degree. The four launch tubes were 290mm in caliber and seated either High Explosive, FRAGmentation (HE-FRAG) or anti-personnel cluster munition rockets that were 5.45 meters in length and weighed some 600 kilograms apiece. Engagement ranges were out to 25,000 meters with a firing window of just 10 seconds needed. Reloading could be accomplished in 10 minutes. The finalized vehicle featured a typical crew complement of four and was locally defensed by a single 7.62mm medium machine gun as well as any personal weapons carried by the crew.

MAR-290 vehicles were first used in anger during the 1982 Lebanon War.


Service Year

Israel national flag graphic


National flag of Israel Israel
(OPERATORS list includes past, present, and future operators when applicable)
Fire Support / Assault / Breaching
Support allied forces through direct / in-direct fire, assault forward positions, and / or breach fortified areas of the battlefield.

24.6 ft
7.5 m
11.1 ft
3.38 m
11.2 ft
3.4 m
65,036 lb
29,500 kg
32.5 tons
(Showcased structural values pertain to the base MAR-290 production variant. Length typically includes main gun in forward position if applicable to the design)
Powerplant: VARIABLE: 1 x Engine developing between 400 and 650 horsepower.
21.7 mph
(35.0 kph)
279.6 mi
(450.0 km)
(Showcased performance specifications pertain to the base MAR-290 production variant. Compare this entry against any other in our database)
1 x 290mm Rocket Launcher Unit.

Supported Types

(Not all weapon types may be represented in the showcase above)
Variable - dependent upon rocket launcher installation and reloads carried by accompanying resupply vehicle (if any).

MAR-290 - Base Series Designation
MAR-290 (Sherman) - Katyusha launcher on Sherman Medium Tank chassis.
MAR-290 (Centurion) - Katyusha launcher on Centurion Main Battle Tank chassis.

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