Su-17M4

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This page is about the Soviet strike aircraft Su-17M4. For other versions, see Su-17/22 (Family).
Su-17M4
su_17m4.png
GarageImage Su-17M4.jpg
Su-17M4
AB RB SB
11.3 11.0 10.7
Research:300 000 Specs-Card-Exp.png
Purchase:830 000 Specs-Card-Lion.png
Show in game

Description

During the late 1970s, a final and ultimate modernization of the Su-17M fighter-bomber was ordered. The aircraft was upgraded with RSDN navigation, Klyon-57 laser targeting system, SPO-15LE RWR system, the IT-23M optical targeting system for the TUBUS-3 seeker on the Kh-29T missile, and the ability to use the BA-58 targeting system for anti-radiation missiles. The only way to externally distinguish the Su-17M4 over its predecessor, the Su-17M3, is by the presence of multiple extra bleed-air intakes in the rear fuselage, the most noticable one being at the base of the vertical stabilizer. The aircraft would first fly in 1980 and quickly enter service shortly after, supplementing the Su-17M3 fleet throughout the '80s and early '90s, when it was finally withdrawn from Russian service shortly after the dissolution of the USSR. At least one Su-17M4 remains in private service today with Sukhoi, performing the peaceful role of a camera chase plane.

The Su-17M4, introduced in Update "Danger Zone", is the final culmination of the Su-7/Su-17 "Fitter" family of fighter-bombers. The Su-17M4 is a later model of the family, which when compared to the previous Su-17M2, is a major upgrade in almost every way. From the upgraded engine, airframe, and air-to-air missile selection enabling it to perform in dedicated air battles like its predecessor never could, to the major upgrades in ground ordnance allowing it to rain hell from above in mixed battles, all supplemented by the cherry on top: 250+ countermeasures and an upgraded SPO-15LE RWR greatly boosting its survivability in either game mode. The Su-17M4 "Fighter-bomber" is not as great for CAS as its MiG-27 swing wing brother, nor is it as great at dogfighting as well as its MiG-23 cousin. But it performs at a very nice equilibrium of both, allowing it to perform well in either role utilizing hit and run tactics with its large quantity of ground ordnance and generous amount of all-aspect R-60M air to air missiles at the same time.

General info

Flight performance

Air brakes
Allows you to dramatically reduce the flight speed by releasing special flaps
Drogue parachute
Reduces braking distance when landing on any runway
Max speed
at 11 000 m2 052 km/h
Turn time27 s
Max altitude19 500 m
EngineSaturn AL-21F-3
Type
Cooling systemAir
Take-off weight19 t

Describe how the aircraft behaves in the air. Speed, manoeuvrability, acceleration and allowable loads - these are the most important characteristics of the vehicle.

Characteristics Max Speed
(km/h at 11,000 m)
Max altitude
(metres)
Turn time
(seconds)
Rate of climb
(metres/second)
Take-off run
(metres)
AB RB AB RB AB RB
Stock 2,028 2,011 19500 27.3 27.5 167.9 161.2 850
Upgraded 2,062 2,052 26.7 27.0 212.1 190.0

Details

Features
Combat flaps Take-off flaps Landing flaps Air brakes Arrestor gear Drogue chute
X X
Limits Wings (km/h) Gear (km/h) Flaps (km/h) Max Static G
Combat Take-off Landing + -
Min sweep 1,050 630 N/A 476 473 ~10 ~3
Max sweep 1,417 N/A N/A N/A ~11 ~4
Optimal velocities (km/h)
Ailerons Rudder Elevators Radiator
< 740 < 650 < 650 N/A

Engine performance

Engine Aircraft mass
Engine name Number Basic mass Wing loading (full fuel)
Saturn AL-21F-3 1 11,245 kg 391 - 436 kg/m2
Engine characteristics Mass with fuel (no weapons load) Max Gross
Weight
Weight (each) Type 12m fuel 20m fuel 30m fuel 40m fuel
1,800 kg Afterburning axial-flow turbojet 12,385 kg 13,103 kg 14,031 kg 15,045 kg 19,367 kg
Maximum engine thrust @ 0 m (RB/SB) Thrust to weight ratio @ 0 m (WEP)
Condition 100% WEP 12m fuel 20m fuel 30m fuel 40m fuel MGW
Stationary 6,400 kgf 9,039 kgf 0.73 0.69 0.64 0.60 0.47
Optimal 7,232 kgf
(1,200 km/h)
13,188 kgf
(1,417 km/h)
1.06 1.01 0.94 0.88 0.68

Survivability and armour

Flares/Chaff
Aircraft countermeasures to distract IR and radar-guided missiles and also AA radar
Crew1 person
Speed of destruction
Structural0 km/h
Gear630 km/h

Examine the survivability of the aircraft. Note how vulnerable the structure is and how secure the pilot is, whether the fuel tanks are armoured, etc. Describe the armour, if there is any, and also mention the vulnerability of other critical aircraft systems.

Modifications and economy

Repair costBasic → Reference
AB2 925 → 4 285 Sl icon.png
RB7 922 → 11 605 Sl icon.png
SB10 043 → 14 712 Sl icon.png
Total cost of modifications262 300 Rp icon.png
409 000 Sl icon.png
Talisman cost2 900 Ge icon.png
Crew training240 000 Sl icon.png
Experts830 000 Sl icon.png
Aces3 000 Ge icon.png
Research Aces1 140 000 Rp icon.png
Reward for battleAB / RB / SB
80 / 320 / 600 % Sl icon.png
238 / 238 / 238 % Rp icon.png
Modifications
Flight performance Survivability Weaponry
Mods jet compressor.png
Compressor
Research:
8 800 Rp icon.png
Cost:
14 000 Sl icon.png
390 Ge icon.png
Mods booster.png
New boosters
Research:
8 500 Rp icon.png
Cost:
13 000 Sl icon.png
380 Ge icon.png
Mods aerodinamic wing.png
Wings repair
Research:
11 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
17 000 Sl icon.png
490 Ge icon.png
Mods jet engine.png
Engine
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
22 000 Sl icon.png
620 Ge icon.png
Mods aerodinamic fuse.png
Fuselage repair
Research:
8 800 Rp icon.png
Cost:
14 000 Sl icon.png
390 Ge icon.png
Mods armor frame.png
Airframe
Research:
8 500 Rp icon.png
Cost:
13 000 Sl icon.png
380 Ge icon.png
Mods g suit.png
G-suit
Research:
11 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
17 000 Sl icon.png
490 Ge icon.png
Mods armor cover.png
Cover
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
22 000 Sl icon.png
620 Ge icon.png
Mods ammo.png
NR_30_belt_pack
Research:
8 800 Rp icon.png
Cost:
14 000 Sl icon.png
390 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 0.png
Mods napalm fire bomb.png
ZB-500
Research:
8 800 Rp icon.png
Cost:
14 000 Sl icon.png
390 Ge icon.png
Mods pilon block rocket.png
S-8KO
Research:
8 800 Rp icon.png
Cost:
14 000 Sl icon.png
390 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 0.png
Mods heli false thermal targets.png
Flares/Chaff
Research:
8 800 Rp icon.png
Cost:
14 000 Sl icon.png
390 Ge icon.png
Mods weapon.png
NR_30_new_gun
Research:
8 500 Rp icon.png
Cost:
13 000 Sl icon.png
380 Ge icon.png
Mods pilon bomb.png
FAB-250
Research:
8 500 Rp icon.png
Cost:
13 000 Sl icon.png
380 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 0.png
Mods pilon rocket.png
S-24
Research:
8 500 Rp icon.png
Cost:
13 000 Sl icon.png
380 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 0.png
Mods agm missile.png
Kh-25
Research:
8 500 Rp icon.png
Cost:
13 000 Sl icon.png
380 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 0.png
Mods air to air missile.png
R-60M
Research:
8 500 Rp icon.png
Cost:
13 000 Sl icon.png
380 Ge icon.png
Mods gunpods.png
Gun pod SPPU-22-01
Research:
11 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
17 000 Sl icon.png
490 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 0.png
Mods pilon bomb.png
FAB-500
Research:
11 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
17 000 Sl icon.png
490 Ge icon.png
Mods pilon rocket.png
S-25
Research:
11 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
17 000 Sl icon.png
490 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 0.png
Mods agm missile.png
Kh-29L
Research:
11 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
17 000 Sl icon.png
490 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 0.png
Mods ammo.png
ns23_belt_pack
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
22 000 Sl icon.png
620 Ge icon.png
Mods pilon block rocket large.png
B-13L
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
22 000 Sl icon.png
620 Ge icon.png
Mods agm missile.png
Kh-29T
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
22 000 Sl icon.png
620 Ge icon.png
Mods jet engine extinguisher.png
EFS
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
22 000 Sl icon.png
620 Ge icon.png

Armaments

Ballistic Computer
CCIP (Guns) CCIP (Rockets) CCIP (Bombs) CCRP (Bombs)
alt={{{alt}}} alt={{{alt}}} alt={{{alt}}} alt={{{alt}}}

Offensive armament

Main article: NR-30 (30 mm)

The Su-17M4 is armed with:

  • A choice between two presets:
    • 2 x 30 mm NR-30 cannons, wing-mounted (80 rpg = 160 total)
    • 2 x 30 mm NR-30 cannons + 12 x large calibre countermeasures + 256 x countermeasures

Suspended armament

The Su-17M4 can be outfitted with the following ordnance:

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
Hardpoints Su-17M4.png
23 mm GSh-23L cannons (250 rpg) 1 1 1 1
100 kg OFAB-100 bombs 5 1 4 4 1 5
250 kg OFAB-250sv bombs 1 1 3 3 1 1
250 kg OFAB-250Sh bombs 1 1 3 3 1 1
500 kg FAB-500M-62 bombs 1 1 2 2 1 1
500 kg FAB-500Sh bombs 1 1 2 2 1 1
ZB-500 incendiary bombs 1 1 1 1
S-3K rockets 7 7 7 7
S-5K rockets 32 32 32 32
S-8KO rockets 20 20 20 20
S-13OF rockets 5 5 5 5
S-24B rockets 1 1 1 1 1 1
S-25O rockets 1 1
Kh-25ML missiles 1* 1* 1* 1*
Kh-29L missiles 1* 1*
Kh-29T missiles 1* 1*
R-60M missiles 1 2 2 1
S-25L missiles 1* 1*
820 l drop tanks 1 1 1 1
Maximum permissible loadout weight: 4,160 kg
Maximum permissible weight imbalance: 700 kg
* Kh-29T missiles cannot be mixed with the marked options
Default weapon presets
  • 4 x 820 l drop tanks
  • 2 x R-60M missiles
  • 6 x R-60M missiles
  • 28 x S-3K rockets
  • 128 x S-5K rockets
  • 6 x S-24B rockets
  • 80 x S-8KO rockets
  • 20 x S-13OF rockets
  • 2 x S-25O rockets
  • 20 x 100 kg OFAB-100 bombs (2,000 kg total)
  • 10 x 250 kg OFAB-250sv bombs (2,500 kg total)
  • 10 x 250 kg OFAB-250Sh bombs (2,500 kg total)
  • 8 x 500 kg FAB-500M-62 bombs (4,000 kg total)
  • 8 x 500 kg FAB-500Sh bombs (4,000 kg total)
  • 4 x ZB-500 incendiary bombs
  • 2 x S-25L missiles
  • 4 x Kh-25ML missiles
  • 2 x Kh-29L missiles
  • 2 x Kh-29T missiles
  • 4 x 23 mm GSh-23L cannons (250 rpg = 1,000 total)

Compared to the Su-17M2, the Su-17M4 has a few new toys to play with. It has access to two new types of rockets shared by the Su-25. The S-25O heavy rockets are massive, single-shot bunker busters that put the returning S-24s to shame, but only 2 can be carried on the outboard hardpoints, which is a much lower capacity than the Frogfoot's capacity of 8. The S-13OFs are podded HE rockets that can be mounted on the same pylons as the other rocket pods, very effective against light vehicles and sometimes even against armoured targets.

Several new types of guided weapons are available. The Kh-25ML is an improved, extended range variant of the original Kh-25 laser-guided AGM. The S-25L is a laser-guided variant of the S-25 rocket but unfortunately it loses much of its explosive yield. The Kh-29L is a heavy laser-guided AGM with a massive warhead and the Kh-29T is a TV-guided variant. The Kh-29T is the Su-17M4's most important precision weapon: it packs an enormous punch, is fire-and-forget, and most importantly has decent optics and tracking capabilities. Because the Su-17M4 still lacks a built-in TV camera or tracking system like the Su-25T or MiG-27K, it is incapable of using laser-guided weapons to their full potential.

The Kh-23M MCLOS missiles have been removed from the arsenal, but such weapons are largely outdated at the Su-17M4's rank and battle rating.

In terms of air-to-air armament, the main boon is the addition of R-60MK all-aspect IR missiles, which completely replace the original R-60s. Up to 6 can be carried, which is an impressive capacity for a fighter-bomber. Another bonus is that they do not use the same pylons as the guided ordnance, and two pylons are specifically reserved for them. So unlike the contemporary MiG-27M, the Su-17M4 can be prepared for air combat at all times.

Usage in battles

In air battles, the Su-17M4 will suffer against most targets it comes across as the plane itself is an attacker. You are not manoeuvrable and engaging in dogfights is strongly discouraged. Due to the presence of radar missiles, the best way to play the plane in RB is to be a support fighter, trying to stay away from the action before coming in either from the side or on top of a furball/enemy while everyone is distracted, using your R-60Ms to your advantage. Your RWR will be useful and if you do receive a radar lock, it is best to notch and/or try to run away from the enemy, hoping to deter him from attacking you. Head-on attacks are usually not advised as while the R-60Ms are all aspect, they can be easily flared, and it's better to keep them for a more useful situation, unless it's a last ditch effort. Bombing bases can be done but flying directly straight in to the map is risky. On bigger maps such as EC matches, it may be a good idea to take some ground ordnance, and hit ground targets to bleed the enemy tickets, as being a pure "fighter" will usually end in a bad situation.

Ground RB

The Su-17M4 invites comparison to its Mikoyan counterpart, the MiG-27M. Both are swing-wing fighter-bombers with comparable flight performances and arsenals at the same battle rating in Realistic Battles. The Sukhoi's main advantage is that it can carry R-60Ms at all times and has access to lethal S-13OF and S-25O rockets. In contrast, the MiG has to abandon all AAMs if it wants to carry Kh-29Ts, and the remaining hardpoints can only be used for unguided ordnance. The Flogger's can uniquely carry TV-guided bombs for high-altitude standoff bombing against spawn points or capture zones, and boasts an extremely powerful internal cannon, but the Su-17 is a better generalist aircraft for opportunistic tank-busting and combat air patrol.

Another comparison is to the Su-25, another Sukhoi product but a very different aircraft at a lower battle rating. The Frogfoot is a subsonic aircraft with significantly inferior speed, but it also has plenty of reinforced hardpoints and can carry a lot more S-25O and S-13OF rockets, so it is a better and more easily attainable rocket truck for low-altitude surprise attacks. The Fitter's main advantage is in having Kh-29T TV-guided missiles and superior flight performance for competent long-range attacks, which is important when there are enemy SAM systems around.

In general, the Su-17M4 is a jack-of-all trades fighter-bomber. Although it can't keep up with the MiG-27K's ability to annihilate vehicles in infamous high-altitude "orbital strikes", or the Su-25T's ability to repeatedly wipe out an enemy team with high-capacity Vikhrs when the airspace is favorable, the combination of good flight performance and a big capacity of R-60Ms is a strong advantage when enemy jets, helicopters, and strike drones may be around. A loadout of 2x Kh-29T, 6x R-60M, and two S-25O or S-13OF pods is enough to dish out a lot of pain on ground targets and give enemy attackers something to worry about in the low-altitude environment of Ground RB — just remember that as in Air RB, it is unwise to tackle contemporary fighters directly if they have superior agility or long-range weapons.

Radars

SRD-5 - Rangefinding radar
Maximum
Tracking
Range
Minimum
Tracking
Range
Azimuth Tracking
Angle
Elevation Tracking
Angle
7,000 m 300 m ±9° ±9°

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Good overall turn rate and energy retention, can hold 800-1,000 km/h in turns with wings fully un-swept and afterburner deployed
  • Strong elevator authority, can pull out of low-skimming attack runs with no problem
  • Very large amount of countermeasures: 256 x small and 12 x large countermeasures is more than enough to keep missiles off of you
  • NR-30 cannons are very powerful, can also mount up to 4 x GSh-23L gunpods for extra burst mass
  • Excellent loadout options for both AAMs and ground ordnance alike
  • Can act as a very strong supporting fighter with 6 x R-60M AAMs and sweep wing

Cons:

  • Roll rate and overall manoeuvrability are poor at speeds below 500 km/h
  • Primitive RWR
  • It does not have a search radar, just an acquisition radar that is not as good as that of the Kfir and other aircraft with similar radars in this BR.
  • No Radar missiles
  • With wings fully swept-forward, the maximum speed is limited to approximately Mach 0.8 at sea level otherwise the wings will rip
  • No semi-automatic option for managing wing-sweep, only full-manual or automatic wing-sweep settings
  • Gigantic target when wings are unswept
  • Payload is somewhat low, at only 4,000 kg of bombs
  • Cannot carry GBUs or R-13 AAMs like the MiG-27s

History

Describe the history of the creation and combat usage of the aircraft in more detail than in the introduction. If the historical reference turns out to be too long, take it to a separate article, taking a link to the article about the vehicle and adding a block "/History" (example: https://wiki.warthunder.com/(Vehicle-name)/History) and add a link to it here using the main template. Be sure to reference text and sources by using <ref></ref>, as well as adding them at the end of the article with <references />. This section may also include the vehicle's dev blog entry (if applicable) and the in-game encyclopedia description (under === In-game description ===, also if applicable).

Media

Skins
Videos

See also

Related Development
Other jet planes with variable sweep wings

External links

Paste links to sources and external resources, such as:

  • topic on the official game forum;
  • other literature.


Sukhoi Design Bureau (Сухого Опытное конструкторское бюро)
Jet fighters  Su-9 · Su-11
Su-27  Su-27
Strike aircraft 
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Export  ◊Su-22UM3K · ◔Su-22M3 · ◊Su-22M4
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  *CKD and SKD kits assembled by Shenyang Aircraft Corporation

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