A Malcador Defender of the Vraksian Traitor Militia during the Siege of Vraks

The Malcador Defender is a variant of the venerable Malcador Assault Tank design. It is not widely used by Imperial armed forces at the present time and is in fact little known even within the Imperial military. In many regions of the Imperium, the Malcador passed out of common service many millennia ago.

The few Malcadors that remain in the Emperor of Mankind's service have been relegated to the Departmento Munitorum's strategic reserve, to the arsenals of second-line Planetary Defence Forces or are maintained in active service only by a few units of the Astra Militarum due to ancient tradition.

The Malcador Defender is arguably the most effective of the Malcador tank variants. It is more common in many Imperial armouries than the standard heavy tank upon which it is based.


The Malcador Defender variant of the Malcador Assault Tank replaces the standard tank's limited-traverse turret embrasure-mounted Battle Cannon with five Heavy Bolters. The tank retains the original's sponson-mounted weapons but like the Malcador Annihilator it replaces the hull-mounted Heavy Bolter with a Demolisher Cannon. The sponson weapons can carry either two Heavy Stubbers, Heavy Bolters, Heavy Flamers, Lascannons or Autocannons. The overall shape of the tank reduces the traversing range of its sponson and hull weapons, producing a limited arc of fire due to its heavy armour plating and reinforced weapons mounts. The tank's upper turret embrasure is heavily modified to mount five separate Heavy Bolters angled to provide 360 degrees of fire coverage.

This shifts the tank's role to that of serving as a mobile fortress that is often referred to as a breakthrough tank. It is well-suited to close-quarters combat, trench warfare and urban warfare engagements. In this role, the Defender's Demolisher Cannon can be used against well-fortified positions and enemy strong-points, while its multiple Heavy Bolters can sweep areas for hidden infantry and defend the tank from a close assault.

Although the Malcador Defender is very cramped, fitting a large crew of 8 into its tightly-packed and blazingly hot hull, it is as prone to engine problems as the other variants of the Malcador tank, and its battlefield role means that it seldom operates far from support or resupply. This can mitigate the design's inherent problems and its firepower and considerable protection can make it a valuable asset to Imperial forces for both offensive and defensive engagements.

The Malcador Defender can be outfitted with a variety of upgrades and attachments, such as Camouflage Netting, Extra Armour Plating, an improved communications system, a Hunter-Killer Missile Launcher, a mine sweeper, a pintle-mounted Heavy Stubber, rough terrain modifications, track guards, a Searchlight, and Smoke Launchers.

Adeptus Mechanicus Technical Specifications

Malcador Defender
Vehicle Name: Malcador Defender Main Armament: Hull-mounted Demolisher Cannon
Forge World of Origin: M'Khand Secondary Armament: 5 Heavy Bolters, 2 sponson-mounted Lascannons
Known Patterns: I - IX Traverse: 60 degrees
Crew: 1 Commander, 1 Driver, 5 Gunners, 1 Loader Elevation: -2 to 20 degrees
Powerplant: HL330 v12 Multi-Fuel Main Ammunition: 18 Rounds
Weight: 105 Tonnes Secondary Ammunition: 7,500 Rounds
Length: 9.6 metres Armour:
Width: 4.4 metres
Height: 3.9 metres Superstructure: 180 millimetres
Ground Clearance: .65 metres Hull: 160 millimetres
Max Speed On-Road: 25 kilometres per hour Gun Mantlet: N/A
Max Speed Off-Road: 18 kilometres per hour Vehicle Designation: 8677-032-8391-ML036
Transport Capacity: N/A Firing Ports: N/A
Access Points: N/A Turret: N/A

Also See


  • Imperial Armour Volume One - Imperial Guard (Second Edition), pp. 141-142, 146, 267
  • Imperial Armour Volume Six - The Siege of Vraks - Part Two, pp. 90, 150-156
  • Imperial Armour Volume Seven - The Siege of Vraks Part Three
  • Imperial Armour Volume Twelve - The Fall of Orpheus, pg. 225
  • Imperial Armour Apocalypse, pg. 16
  • Imperial Armour Apocalypse (Second Edition), pg. 18


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