These are the first photos I have seen of the updated QBZ-95 rifle, which is speculated to enter front-line service later this year.
The changes are (From Wikipedia) ….
QBZ-95 variant titled “G” fires the heavier 5.8x42mm round, with a heavier longer barrel and a redesigned muzzle break. The “G” variant has an altered butt stock, trigger guard, and a repositioned thumb fire selector switch above the pistol grip. The carrying handle has retained the Chinese quick release mount rail, but also has added the Picatinny rail as a supplement. It has been seen in service in small numbers for testing and evaluation in first quarter of 2010. It has been speculated that this variant will enter full service in late 2010, replacing the original QBZ-95 assault rifle introduced into service in 1995. The original QBZ-95 rifles will be handed down to second line and reserve troops, while front line troops receive this variant.
Overall a decent upgrade, although I like the trigger guard/foregrip concept of the original. It looks like China’s Type 56 (AK-47 variant) may be phased out.
[ Many thanks to Sven for emailing me the link. ]
[Hat Tip: China Defense Blog]