20F2 (20 mm)

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The GIAT Industries 20 mm F2 (otherwise known as GIAT M693) is a dual feed autocannon which fires the standard 20x139 mm munitions. It is a gas operated autocannon that has three firing modes, those being single shot, burst and safe. The gas system of the weapon operates via two vents on either side of the barrel, through which the gases push against the two pistons. While firing, the two pistons are pushed back, moving the struts backwards so that the breech block can move to the rear. In this way, all the firing forces are developed along the barrel centerline which maximizes accuracy.

Vehicles equipped with this weapon

General info

Main calibre of the weapon is the 20x139 mm bullet. The length of the autocannon is 2,600 mm, while the barrel itself is 90 calibres (1,800 mm). The height of the autocannon was 260 mm and the weight was 71 kg. Rate of fire can be up to 900 rounds per minute, with the penetration force of up to 57 mm.

Available ammunition

  • Default: HEFI-T · HVAP-T

Comparison with analogues

Comparable cannons to 20F2
Name Year of Creation Mass Rounds Per Minute Ammunition Maximum Penetration
20 mm MG 151/20 1941 42 kg 600 - 750 RPM 20 x 82 mm 26 mm
Hispano HS.9 1933 48 kg 360 - 420 RPM 20 х 110 mm 26 mm
Hispano 404 1932 49 kg 700 - 750 RPM 20 x 110 mm 26 mm
Hispano Mk.I 1940 49 kg 700 - 750 RPM 20 x 110 mm 26 mm
Hispano Mk.II 1941 50 kg 600 - 850 RPM 20 x 110 mm 26 mm
Hispano Mk.V 1944 38 kg 700 - 750 RPM 20 × 110 mm 26 mm
AN/M2 1942 49 kg 600 RPM 20 × 110 mm 33 mm
ShVAK 1936 40 kg 700 - 800 RPM 20 × 99 mm 27 mm

Usage in battles

The 20F2 shoots bullets that can pierce up to 57 mm of armour. This makes the 20F2 autocannons adequate enough to pierce trough most light vehicles with relative ease. However, if the angle is steep enough, the 20 mm bullets will just bounce and won't even scratch the enemy target, such as the BMP-2's frontal armour. If one does not have a HEAT round loaded and fears that an APFSDS round might not cut it, they can resort to using their 20F2 to dispatch the light vehicle, as the 20 mm bullets have good spalling and will annihilate light vehicles within short bursts.

If one is dueling an MBT, the 20F2 can make short work of the hostile's cannon or tracks, rendering them unable to fight. If you are in a close quarters scenario or your main cannon is disabled, you can also try to penetrate the back armour, which in most cases leads to setting them ablaze if a fuel tank or the engine is struck, such as the Leopard 1.

Pros and cons


  • High fire rate
  • Shreds trough light vehicles and in some cases even MBTs, thanks to its 57 mm of penetration
  • It is attached to the mantlet, allowing the user to still use their main cannon with ease
  • Can damage or destroy modules relatively quickly


  • Overheats fairly quick
  • Limited ammunition pool, ranging from 480 to 1,000 rounds in some tanks
  • Gives away the position of the user easily, as every round is also a tracer
  • It is fairly inaccurate at longer ranges


The design of the M693 is based on the earlier 20 mm M621 autocannon. The main difference between the M693 and the M621 is, that the M693 differs in firing the more powerful 20 x 139 mm round and having a dual belt feed mechanism. The M621 main emphasis was lightness, while the M693 emphasis was just pure firepower. It entered service in the 1970's but the development began somewhere late 1960's. It was produced by the Groupement industriel des armements terrestres (otherwise known as GIAT). Thousands of these autocannons were produced.

Sometime in the 1980s, the companies Direction des Constructions Navales (otherwise known as DCN) and GIAT were contracted to design the F2 20 mm cannon, which was basically the navalised version of the M693 that the French Army used and sold to export.

The navalised F2 20 mm cannons are used to this day by the French Navy.



See also

External links

France tank cannons
20 mm  20F2
25 mm  SA35 L/72
37 mm  SA18 L/21 · SA38 L/33
47 mm  SA34 L/30 · SA35 L/32 · SA37
75 mm  APX · APX Canon de 75 mm modèle 1897 · SA35 L/17 · SA44 · SA49 · SA50 L/57
90 mm  D.911 APX · CN90 F2 · CN90 F3 · CN90 F4 · D915 · DEFA F1 · SA45 · SA47
100 mm  SA47 L/58
105 mm  CN-105-F1 · Modele F2 · PzK M57
120 mm  GIAT CN120-25 G1 · GIAT CN120-26 F1 · SA46
142 mm  ACRA
155 mm  GCT F1 · Schneider 155 C · L'Obusier de 155 Modèle 1950
15 mm  MG 151 (Germany)
20 mm  MG 151 (Germany)
30 mm  Bushmaster 2 Mk.44 (USA)
37 mm  M6 (USA)
40 mm  Bofors L/60 · QF 2-pounder (Britain)
75 mm  KwK42 (Germany) · M3 (USA) · M6 (USA)
76 mm  M7 (USA)
90 mm  M3 (USA)
105 mm  M4 (USA)