Norway has selected the 24 K9 Vidar (Versatile Indirect Artillery) self-propelled 155 mm howitzer in its bid to replace their current M109A3GNMs dating from the 1960s. The deal with Hanwha Land Systems also includes 6 K10 ammunition resupply vehicles. The K9 Thunder is a South Korean self-propelled 155 mm howitzer developed by Samsung Techwin for the Republic of Korea Armed Forces and now manufactured by Hanwha Land Systems. It was developed to supplement and then replace the K55 self-propelled howitzers in South Korean service. K9 howitzers operate in groups with the K10 automatic ammunition resupply vehicle variant.
126 M109Gs were acquired from West Germany between 1969â€“1971. They were then upgraded to the M109A3GN configuration during the latter half of the 1980s. In 2006, there were still 56 M109A3GNs in the Army’s inventory, meaning that at least 70 SPGs had been scrapped after the end of the Cold War. 14 M109A3GNs received additional upgrades in 2007, and were designated M109A3GNM. The upgrade includes, among other things, new intercom and new navigation and positioning systems. The M109A3GNMs are currently the only SPGs that remain in active service (12 with Brigade Nord’s Artillery Battalion and 2 with the Norwegian Army Weapons School) with the reminder of the M109s having been put in storage.
On March 2, 2017, in Seoul, South Korea, the Finnish Defence minister signed a contract regarding acquisition of 48 SPH K9 Thunders, spare parts and training. The Estonian Ministry of Defence has decided to join Finland’s plan to acquire South Korean K9 Thunder 155mm self-propelled howitzers. Estonia will acquire at least 12 SPH K9s and according to current plans should enter service by 2021. Norway can, together with Finland and Estonia, establish a base for a system commonality and thus have an advantage to maximize use of regional subsystems in addition to full system support from Hanwha Techwin.