|Bolo Mark||XVIII (Gladius)|
|Year of Introduction||2672|
1x 60cm Hellbore
6x 25cm howitzers
Heavy VLS missile system
12x ion bolt Infinite Repeaters
While the Mark XVI was more agile and easier to deploy than the Mark XVII , it proved less popular in combat than its companion mark because of its lighter offensive power. The Mark XVIII replaced both the XVI and XVII in relatively short order as the new 'standard' Bolo in an attempt to combine the best features of both its immediate predecessors. As usual, the new vehicle went up in size and weight (late-model Mark XVIIIs approached 10,000 tons), and space-to-ground deployment became a problem. Main armament was the Mark XVII's 60cm Hellbore, but the infinite repeaters were reduced to twelve with the deletion of the bow battery (which had been found to compromise the structural integrity of the glacis plate). The Mark XVIII adopted a 'sandwiched' hull: an outer ablative hull, then a thin hull of early-generation duralloy, and finally the flintsteel main war hull. The Mark XVIII also added a third fusion plant, which, with additional improvements in fire control, plasma containment technology, and weapons power, permitted its Hellbore to engage spacecraft even in medium orbit. The Mark XVIII formed the first 'general purpose' regiments of the Dinochrome Brigade and, in successive models, remained first-line Concordiat equipment for over a century. Maximum road speed fell to 70 kph and maximum 'sprint' speed fell to only 80 kph, but except in the roughest terrain, a Mark XVIII was as fast cross-country as on a road. (Of course, for vehicles as large and heavy as a Bolo, 'roads' had long since become a purely relative concept.)
Source: A Brief Technical History of the Bolos by Prof. Felix Hermes, Ph.D.