On 31st of January, Indonesian Army has just received 12 Nexter CAESAR 155mm self-propelled howitzers (SPHs) along with simulators and auxiliary armored vehicles. The use of the CAESAR SPH by Indonesian Army proved to be so satisfactory that a second purchase contract amounting to € 60 million for 18 additional CAESARs was announced during the Idex 2017 defense exhibition. Under the contract, Nexter will also provide FINDART firing control system, Caesar simulators for training, and more than 50 artillery battalion auxiliary armored vehicles assembled in Indonesia by its local partner PT Pindad.
In November 2012, Nexter Systems signed a contract with Indonesia for the purchase of 37 CAESAR 155mm self-propelled howitzers, 36 of which would equip two artillery regiments, battalions of three batteries each (6 units per battery) and one for training. The cost was € 115 million. Nexter Systems would give the company PT Pindad technologies to provide the service of artillery systems in Indonesia. Indonesia ordered the Caesar based on the Sherpa 6×6 chassis by then Renault Trucks Defence (now Arquus) that configuration being Sea Transportable Indoneian Air Navy Landing Platform Docks and Landing Ship Tank.
ESAR (CAmion Équipé d’un Système d’ARtillerie or Truck equipped with an artillery system) iss a French self-propelled 155 mm/52-calibre gun-howitzer, installed on 6X6 or 8×8 truck chassis. Examples built for the French Army use a Renault Sherpa 10 chassis, examples built for export utilize the 6×6 Unimog U2450L or 8×8 Tatra chassis. The CAESAR platform was developed by the former GIAT Industries (now known as Nexter) and is operated by the French, Indonesian, Saudi Arabian, Denmark, Lebanon and Thai militaries. It can be transported by C-130 or A400M, and has a firing range of approximately 42 km using an Extended Range, Full Bore (ERFB) shell, and more than 50 km using rocket assisted shells.
The CAESAR holds 18 rounds and is typically operated by a crew of five, though if necessary, the CAESAR can be operated by as few as three persons. The system is integrated with a fully computerized system, providing an automatic control. Nexter is developing an armored cab for the CAESAR in response to demand for more protection for the crew. The additional armor will protect against IEDs and roadside bombs, anti-vehicle mines, and 155 mm shells landing as close as five meters (16 feet) away from the vehicle. It can be added to the cabs of existing CAESARs. Heavier armor will increase its weight by 400 kg (880 pounds) and raise the price by 4-5 percent.