Kraus Maffei MBR-09 Gladiator Main Battle Robot

MBR-09 Gladiator Main Battle Robot 1

ROBOTECH Technical Files

by Peter Walker and Pieter Thomassen, with Robert Morgenstern

edited by Tim Wing


  • MBR-09 reference file
  • MBR-09 gallery

Designation: Kraus Maffei Destroids GmbH MBR-09 Mk II/III Gladiator Main Battle Robot

I. Dimensions:

  • Total Height: 10.2 meters
  • Total Depth: 3.0 meters
  • Total Breadth: 5.3 meters
  • Weight: 19.2 metric tons (dry)

II. Type:

  • One man, all weather, medium main battle Destroid mecha.

III. Service History:

  • Mark II: Served with the United Earth Expeditionary Force (UEEF) Tactical Corps from 2021 until replaced by the Mark III in the late 2030s and Marine Corps from 2021 until 2034.
  • Mark III: Served with the UEEF Tactical Corps from 2036 until 2042.

IV. Propulsion:


  • One Tirolian mecha proto-generator (known on Earth as the RT/PS-2a), providing electrical power to the mecha; output classified.

Reserve Power Supply:

  • CT HDB-4SC superconductor battery, can typically supply 400 kW for 16 hours.

V. Performance:

  • Maximum speed: 193 kph.
  • Generator endurance: 12 years operational use.

VI. Electronics:

Radar tracking:

  • Westinghouse TPG-307 medium range (up to 50km) UWB phased array pulse-Doppler, for detection and tracking of targets, and with battlefield surveillance modes.

Optical tracking:

  • Phillips AllView multi-band digital camera system, for medium range all attitude infra-red imaging, optical and ultra-violet band detection and tracking
  • Thomson LT-5 multi-frequency laser ranger and designator.

Tactical Electronic Warfare System (TEWS):

  • Elettronica Radar Warning Receiver (RWR)
  • OlDelft Infra-red Warning Receiver (IRWR)
  • Westinghouse ALQ-250(V) active sensor jammer
  • Chaff dispenser
  • Flares.

VII. Armament:

(Mk II)

  • 2 x General Electric GRA-10 heavy laser cannon mounted on the shoulders, each cannon can fire laser pulses of 10 MJ once every two seconds, or a sustained pulse rate of 5 MJ per second. Lasers are powered by the main power supply. Cannons can rotate over 90 degrees of arc and elevate over -15/+65 degrees of arc.

(Mk III)

  • 2 x Robotech Research Group M-1255 120mm laser cannons mounted on top of the mecha, can rotate over 90 degrees of arc and elevate over -15/+65 degrees of arc. Cannons fire 10 MJ particle beams with a rate of fire of 60 salvos per minute, sustained fire at lower power settings is possible. Drawing power from the mecha’s protoculture power system, the particle beams have effectively unlimited ammunition.

(all)MBR-09 Gladiator Main Battle Robot 12

  • 1 x Vickers mk6 dual laser turret. Turret contains two small lasers, optimized for use
    against personnel and lightly armored vehicles. Laser cannons fire 2.0 MJ in 1.5 seconds of rapid-fire pulses.
  • 1 x GR-102 missile launcher in the chest, 24 internal 190mm x 540mm variable warhead, short range (8.2 km) Mach 3.0 combined infra-red imager and active radar homing Hammerhead missiles.


  • 1 x MM-12: a hand held, four tube launcher for 190mm x 540mm variable warhead, short range (8.2 km) Mach 3.0 combined infra-red imager and active radar homing Hammerhead missiles. Each tube contains three missiles for 12 missiles total.
  • or 1 x GU-13 three-barreled 35mm gun pod, firing 2000 rounds per minute, 600 round capacity, stored in the pod itself, and in a non-detachable ‘magazine’. Ammunition is a mix of Tungsten-coated depleted Uranium Armor Piercing Spin-Stabilized Discarding Sabot (APSSDS), High Explosive Armor Piercing (HEAP) and tracer rounds. Weapon is hand-held.
  • or 1 x EP-13 three-barreled 80mm particle gun pod, firing 170 rounds per minute in full automatic mode, also capable of firing all three barrels simultaneously in semiautomatic mode at approximately one shot per second. This weapon fires 8.2 MJ pulses per barrel in each mode, with its own dedicated protoculture cell and capacitor banks in the ‘magazine’. This weapon, built into an external shell identical to that of the GU-13, was developed in 2032 by the REF, but didn’t see wide use until 2037. Weapon is hand-held.

VIII. Armor:

The armor on the Gladiator is a new development in low-mass composite-materials Chobham plating that became the standard for all Terran mecha after its application to the VQ-6A Vandal. Aside from the respectable protection provided against projectiles, missiles, and other kinetic weapons, this armor is also resistant to plasma globes (annihilation discs), lasers, and to a lesser extent, particle guns, owing to the fact that the armor can flake off and evaporate in layers under fire from such high-energy weapons, taking much of the weapon’s energy and converting it into the latent heat of sublimation in the armor. The armor stops all small arms, heavy infantry weapons fire, and light mecha-mounted weaponry, and provides good to excellent resistance to medium mecha-mounted weaponry, such as the Valkyrie’s 55mm APFSDS round, and poor to fair resistance to heavy mecha-mounted weaponry, such as the VHT’s 105mm APFSDS rounds.

The Gladiator provides full protection from nuclear, biological, and chemical hazards, using an overpressure cockpit environment activated by radiation and hazardous chemical sensors, or manually when biological warfare conditions are anticipated. The internal consumables supplies can provide atmosphere for three days maximum.


MBR-09 Gladiator Main Battle Robot 5The introduction of new technologies in the years after the First Robotech War made the creation of a new series of Destroids possible. With it came a reappraisal of the tasks of the Spartan. This model Destroid, which was originally built from several off-the-shelf components, had proven to be a very capable close-in combat and as a combat engineer mecha. However, compared with the standard Zentraedi Battle Pod, the Spartan was under-gunned and outmaneuvered, although there was no comparing the superior armor plating on the Spartan with that on the Reguld. The Spartan’s successor, the Gladiator, was therefore designed to be faster and more heavily armed than the Spartan, because the UEEF (if not the UEDF) saw the good points of fast, hard-hitting mecha.

The Gladiator was a major improvement in the areas of speed and firepower on the Spartan. The new mecha had as many energy weapons as the Zentraedi Battle Pods. In addition to this heavy laser armament, the Gladiator had a smaller laser turret under its chin, which was optimized to engage low-armor targets and unarmored personnel. The Gladiator featured a reasonably large missile battery in its chest. The arms and hands could carry additional weapons.

First entering service in 2021, the Gladiator was used throughout the Sentinel Campaign in fast strike missions and flanking operations. The Destroid was complemented in this task, by Condor.

There is one variant, the Mk III Gladiator. Introduced in late 2036, this mecha is identical to the Mk II, save for the replacement of the GRA-10 laser cannons with M-1255 120mm laser cannons. This was done out of standardization considerations, as these were the same MBR-09 Gladiator Main Battle Robot 10cannons mounted on the Alpha fighter based MBR-08 Spartan II and because they offered better penetration and yield. Though the Gladiator continued to serve well into the early thirties, they were eventually replaced by the less expensive Spartan IIs. Though cost was a consideration, the fact that the Gladiator’s production line in West Germany was closed in 2022 was the primary reason. All Mark III Gladiators were of course built from existing Mark IIs, as they came in for depot level rebuilds. The last of the Gladiators were withdrawn from service in 2042.




Robotech (R) is the property of Harmony Gold. This document is in no way intended to infringe upon their rights.

Original artwork by: Tatsunoko Production Co., Ltd. and Tim Wing

Acknowledgement is extended to Peter Walker, Pieter Thomassen and Robert Morgenstern of the unofficial Robotech Reference Guide. Peter Walker, Pieter Thomassen and Robert Morgenstern are given credit for all quotes and paraphrasing of the unofficial Robotech Reference Guide that has been utilized in this publication. 

Images from – Robotech II: The RPG, Robotech Expeditionary Force Field Guide (March 1989)

Content by Peter Walker and Pieter Thomassen, with Rob Morgenstern, edited by Tim Wing

Copyright © 2000, 1997, 1995 Robert Morgenstern, Pieter Thomassen, Peter Walker; 2016 Tim Wing