The Crotale is an all-weather short-range surface to air missile (SAM), which can be used to intercept low-flight anti-ship missiles and aircraft. It has been developed by Thomson CSF Matra and exists in two versions, a mobile land-based version and a ship-launched one. The Crotale was initially deployed in 1971 and remains in service. A modernised version, the Crotale NG (New Generation) entered production in 1990.Originally the Crotale R440 system was developed by Thomson-Houston (and Mistral) in France for South Africa. However, the success of the system convinced the French armed forces to purchase the Crotale for both for the army and navy. The Crotale point defense system has been adopted by several other armed forces since its introduction.

Class Missile
Type Surface to Air
Manufacturer Loral Corporation
Production Period 1964 - 1964
Origin France
Country Name Origin Year
France 1971
Country Name Operational Year Retirement Year
Chile View
China View
Egypt View
Finland View
France 1971 1971 View
Greece View
Korea View
Libya View
Oman (Muscat) View
Pakistan View
Saudi Arabia View
South Africa View
Thailand (Siam) View
United Arab Emirates View
ManufacturerName Production From Production To Quantity
Loral Corporation 1964 1964 View
Thomson-CSF 1964 1964 View
Matra 1964 1964 View
General Information
Developed by France
Deployed by Bahrain, Chile, China, Dubai, Egypt, Finland, France, Greece, Libya, Oman, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, UAE
Development Year 1964
Deployment Year 1971(Crotale), 1980(Shahine)
Platform Crotale: P4R wheeled armored vehicle Naval Crotale: aboard 12 French ships Crotale NG/VT-1: tracked vehicles, ships and permanent installations
Launcher container/canister (Crotale), sealed launch tube (Crotale NG/VT-1)
Number manufactured 7,950( through 1998)
Contractor Thomson-CSF(prime contractor), Matra Defense (shahine missile), Loral Corp., Loral Vought Systems Co. (VT-1 missile)

Dimensions and Performance
Length 2.9m(R.440), 2.34m(Crotale NT(VT-1))
Body Diameter 15cm, 16.5cm
Wing/Fin span 54cm,
Launch Weight 83kg, 73kg
Range 500-13,000m, 500-10,000m
Speed Mach 2.3, Mach 3.5
Altitude 5-15km, 6-15km

Propulsion solid propulsion
Warhead 15kg forward directed blast warhead(R.440/R.460), 13kg blast-fragmentation (VT-1)
Guidance command guidance by digital radio link (Crotale), Improved line of sight command (Naval Crotale), A modular approach that allows a variety of surveillance/tracking radars to be chosen. (Crotale NG/VT-1)

End notes