Despite their original design as antitank weapons, most unguided rocket launchers get pressed into service for battlefield demolition work, targeting bunkers and buildings that are used as firing positions. The RGW 90 LRMP was designed to handle a lot more of this sort of demolition work, while keeping some anti-armor capability for moderately armored targets. Which is fine by me; a 90mm HEAT warhead is going to be pretty marginal against most modern MBTs.

The RGW 90 LRMP is a derivative of MATADOR, also known as RGW 90, which is itself a derivative of Armbrust. Armbrust is a contemporary of the American M72 LAW, and like the LAW, it is a single-shot antitank weapon. It’s even about the same caliber. A significant difference is in the operation. The Armbrust puts a propellant charge between two pistons. The front piston pushes the projectile out the front, and the rear piston pushes a bunch of shredded plastic bits. The mass of the projectile matches that of the plastic bits, and the pistons don’t leave the launch tube. This removes the danger of backblast. RGW 90 offers a few different warhead options in a larger 90 mm caliber.

The RGW 90 LRMP (a.k.a Wirkmittel 90) uses a unique, programmable, tandem-HESH warhead with a fragmentation jacket. It’s optimized for blowing up battlefield obstructions and ruining a bunker’s day. It’ll be great in a city, and while it’s going to do plenty of damage to moderately armored vehicles, it’s not the best choice for engaging MBTs. Which is fine. Those tend to be equipped with lots of composite and reactive armor these days. Plus, there are lots of other weapons that look to take down tanks. Few are optimized for demolition.

An electronic sighting unit, made by Hensoldt, is paired with the RGW 90 LRMP. It can be detached and moved from launcher to launcher. The sighting unit handles rangefinding and airburst settings, if desired, as well as elevation adjustments for range. With the electronic sighting unit, Dynamit Nobel claims the RGW 90 LRMP has an effective range of 1,200 meters, which is outstanding. I suspect but can’t confirm that the round uses some kind of rocket assist to reach that range.

The RGW 90 LRMP weighs a bit less than twenty pounds, making it two pounds heavier than the AT4-CS (which is safe to fire in confined spaces) and about five pounds heavier than the regular AT4. However, the AT4 does not feature a programmable warhead, and the AT4 does not have an electronic sighting unit to assist in making accurate long range shots.

Overall, I think the RGW 90 LRMP is a pretty compelling light antitank weapon, with an unusual (and welcome) specialization.

2 thoughts on “RGW 90 LRMP

  1. Checkmate

    Seems a bit heavy. The light variant of the Airtronic RPG weighs around 8 pounds. Ofc no programable warhead (but I think one can be made in this case). Those sighting units are dammed heavy…

  2. parvusimperator Post author

    Right. Also there’s the countermass system, and IIRC it’s bigger than most RPG-7 warheads (anti-structure type warheads). But yeah, the sight isn’t light either.

    That said, even a simple laser rangefinder addon is a pretty big boon for effectiveness. The vast majority of soldiers suck at estimating range.


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