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Seoul progresses vehicle-mounted tactical missile programme

According to DAPA, the new KTSSM-II will have a greater range than the baseline KTSSM (pictured above), which Hanwha has said has a range of between 130 and 180 km. (Janes/Jon Grevatt)

South Korea's Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) has said it will invest KRW290 billion (USD218 million) over the next four years to complete the development of an upgraded version of its guided Korean Tactical Surface-to-Surface Missile (KTSSM).

DAPA said on 19 September that funds for development of the new KTSSM-II will be available from September 2023 to December 2027. It said prototype development will be led by the Agency for Defense Development (ADD), a DAPA subsidiary, with involvement from local industry.

The Hanwha group is expected to be named prime contractor to build the prototype. Hanwha developed the baseline KTSSM and has been involved in preliminary KTSSM-II development. Without identifying Hanwha, DAPA said ADD is preparing to sign a contract with a local company to lead production of the KTSSM-II prototype.

DAPA said that once operational the KTSSM-II will improve the capability of the Republic of Korea (RoK) Armed Forces to respond to artillery threats from North Korea. The agency said the missile will also be positioned for exports. Hanwha had not responded to Janes questions about the KTSSM-II programme at the time of publication.

The KTSSM-II is a vehicle-mounted version of the KTSSM that offers increased range and penetrative power over the baseline missile. Both missiles are guided and are intended to target North Korean underground artillery assets, bunkers, and defensive positions. Such North Korean systems include M1978 170 mm self-propelled howitzers (SPHs) and M1985 and M1991 240 mm multiple-rocket launch systems.

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