Taurus ART556 assault rifle and CT556 rifle

At LAAD ’11 Taurus introduced a new assault rifle called the ART556. The rifle, as its name suggests, is chambered in 5.56x45mm NATO.

Externally, the rifle appears to have borrowed features from the FN SCAR and the Bushmaster ACR. It has a forward charging handle that looks like it is able to be switched to either the left or right side. The upper is aluminum and the lower is polymer with an integrated magwell grip. The gun appears to use an AR-15 compatible pistol grip. It has a safe/semi/3 round burst/full selector switch.

If Google Translate is doing its job correctly, I believe that the above gun has a 10″ barrel and weighs 7.9 lbs.

A civilian legal version of the rifle is named the CT556. It is only capable of semi-automatic fire.

[Hat Tip: mexicoarmado.com ]

Steve Johnson

Founder and Dictator-In-Chief of TFB. A passionate gun owner, a shooting enthusiast and totally tacti-uncool. Favorite first date location: any gun range. Steve can be contacted here.


  • drew

    Well if they don’t charge out the ass for it then it could out sell the ACR and the SCAR put together in a very short time.

  • Will

    The word import comes to mind… Hopefully Taurus will bring it to the US market. It will probably be priced pretty well too, around $800-$900 as a rough guess(hopefully).

  • TCBA_Joe

    5.56 rifle with a 10″ barrel that weights 7.9lbs?

    That’s a heavy rifle.

  • Jay

    At first look it seems more like an ACR. Whereas the CZ-805 seem more like the SCAR.

    I think I would like the CZ-805 more than the others. Unless Remington will come out with their version of the ACR and have the interchangeable lower mag-well and less weight.

  • MarkM

    Taurus doesn’t necessarily build junk, we aren’t talking a South FLA vendor machining bits and pieces in a rented industrial park.

    Does it have the latest features most designs are adopting, yes. Polymer lower, aluminum upper (extruded?), full length top rail, pinned construction. Probably piston because of the forward charging handle on an op rod, potentially adjustable gas, adjustable stock.

    Same old M16 cheap flimsy issue mag doglegged to feed a round needing a continuous curve but stuck in a straight mag well. That means shortloading 30 rounders by two to get the first round to feed because feed lip pressure is too high. If this ever sells in the US, Pmags should come with it.

    Judging by the exterior concepts and the makers reputation, it’s likely a good shooter, given decent magazines. It also suffers a bit from copyitis and depending on the M16 mag well. Nature of the market right now, shooters are deliberately choosing economy over proper design. Can’t blame Taurus for that.

    The interesting question is, will Taurus submit it to the Improved Carbine competition? Even if not, will they market it to their market base in South America as an economic alternative to the high priced brands?

    I think that has a better than 50/50 chance, given that it works well (really no reason not to,) and some attitude by buyers who don’t want to pay for more Norte Americano or European guns.

  • Ray

    @Jay the SCAR draws inspiration from the CZ-805 if I remember correctly.

    I quite like this rifle, the magwell looks a little too awkward for my liking personally. Is the charging handle reciprocating?

  • Yet another “me too!” design. I doubt that we’ve had so many look-alike military rifles appearing since the days of bolt actions.

  • ap

    clown shoes

  • Matt

    It looks as though the mag well is large enough to accept 7.62 NATO mags. Also the mag release looks as if it designed to work with multiple mag design. Looks like you could change out the upper and a completely different gun like the new Colt. Just my $.02 .

  • Hogan

    I welcome this.

    I have a hankering for another 5.56 rifle, but unless I want another AR, it looks like I’ll need to spend almost 2,000, and I’m just too cheap for that.

    I’ve picked up a few taurus products over the last few years (an 851, tracker in 44mag, and a 93r .22lr), and I have been really impressed with them.

  • Jeffy

    Buy one soon before they pull the plug on the dollar.

  • joe

    if its under 800$ i’ll buy one!

  • A rifle with a 10″ barrell? Thats a pistol is it not? 16″ is the ATF limit. Don’t look for this in a civilian version any time soon…

  • Wes Rampage

    It is more a Carbine than a Rifle. Why the author of this article never pointed that out, sort of disappoints.

  • Dave

    That would look good next to my AK-47 & kel-tec PLR-16.

  • Dave

    I want one

  • nick ferrell

    with a full mag an m16 weighs about 7.3 lbs. Its not that heavy….

  • As a former Parachute Infantryman, I would have to agree with TCBA_Joe that this battle rifle is a tad too heavy for practical purposes. I have conducted countless road marches and a 7.9 pounds seems like it would wear on our servicemembers. The current battle rifle the M16, while it definitely has it’s flaws, weighs only 6.35 pounds and 7.76 pounds fully loaded with a 30 round magazine. If it’s going to be heavier, give it a bigger round to chamber like the 6.8mm or the 7.62mm rounds.

  • gatekeeper

    Hopefully for a Taurus it can perform better than there other products ill hold my breath for em but id take a wasr=10 over a taurus model assault rifle any day

  • jim

    Don’t like the looks of it.

  • anonymous

    Guys, this is absolutely nothing like an ACR. This isn’t airsoft, there is a lot more than a gun just looking similar to another to make it outsell one.

    Where is the Ambi mag release. Where is the Ambi Charging handle, Where is the quick release barrel (that also offers a quick caliber change). It looks like it has a lot of non AM stock crappish parts also. You think a magpul or tangodown battle master grip would come stock, as well as some troy or ace mbuis.

    IMO, this gun looks like the same old crap everyone has been trying to do, but only a few pulled it off. (Thing magpul/bushmaster), and FNH Scar.

  • Vaughn Hathaway

    We don’t need a new 5.56 battle rifle unless we are going to get into a new jungle war soon. We need a rifle with the range nearer to that of an Russian or NATO 7.62.

  • SkilletsUSMC

    Ummm…. That magwell gipe is heinous ugly… But if it were re-designed, and the price was right (AR price), I might check one out.

  • charles222

    Interesting. It’d be nice if you could swap out that folding stock for a collapsible, though.

  • charles222

    Edit: Wait, nevermind…didn’t see the collapsing portion right away.

    Hopefully this’ll keep the Taurus rep for cheap + quality.

  • Darla

    I think it will be interesting to see. I hope they have their quality control on this one. The thing I like best about Taurus is that they actually produce and ship guns. I move a lot of them because of that one fact. Unlike Keltec that promises but we don’t see the goods. I haven’t gotten any spec sheets on this from Taurus yet but i will post them if I do.

  • Alexandre

    Thanks for posting this. It is probably meant to compete with the recent Imbel’s rifle. Only time will tell what will become of it in the international military market. I am under the impression that the said market is overflowing with new assault rifles…

  • Dr Dave

    Just because it looks like a SCAR doesn’t make it a SCAR. No doubt it would sell though. Something I just don’t understand….

  • Low Chop

    It appears to be a well made carbine. The price will determine if it is a winner or not. Taurus has made quite a few well made and popular firearms in recent years. I own three Taurus handguns now, and am looking forward to checking this one out. Well done Taurus.

  • jadchad

    well hopefully it will run better than my PT745. Magazine Lock/Release sheared off before I had 150 rounds through it

  • Spanky

    I have been a collector of Winchesters for years, have a few as you can surmise, but to pay that much for a winchester 94 borders on the surmise that everyone out there is a millioniare. No way.

  • Rick

    I would love to see this come to the states.With Taurus’ reputation for quality and they stand by their product I think it will go great here. Hurry and release it !

  • I would not buy anything that was made by Taurus, especially an assult rifle…

  • Zip

    Ok looks cool, sounds like a good idea but it’s made by taurus. Just like the handguns theres a reason they are cheaper. Taurus products main line of buyers are aimed at a lower budgeted clientel. “Quality” If your picking guns because the price you shouldnt be buying guns. Put some money into a custum AR or at least one of a proven in combat brand. Just a thought but yall do what you want to.

  • jdun1911

    My AR15 10.5 inch barrel weighted below 6lbs and that’s with a micro optic and mount. My 20″ AR weight around 7.9. Hate to see how much weight Taurus 20″ version will be.

    The magwell look hideous.

    I don’t know why they put an integrated magwell grip. There’s no need for it because griping the magwell is bad for stability of the firearm. This is compounded by the fact that it will be very front heavy like the ACR. Fingers might be lost in a KB! if you grip in the magwell.

  • Another weapon that shoots BB’s. What a waste. Why don’t they ask our soldiers why they would rather carry a Chinese AK than any of these government contract toys. Thank God I was able to get ahold of an AK in VietNam.

  • PFC. R

    It’s not a heavy rifle, it weighs slightly more than an M4, which is a really light piece of junk.

  • blackavenger

    Maybe they will send me one to test down by the southern Texas border. Looks promising.

  • joe blow

    The Kel-Tec SU 16 is lighter, cheaper, well built in the USA and very accurate. Unless Taurus will sell this for under $500.00 why buy one?

  • Jeff

    Damn dude, at least try to crack a bit of a smile next time.

  • Armored

    This rifle’s stock actually looks better than the SCAR or the ACR’s in that it looks as though it has the classic Bushmaster M4 stock adjustable pressure/pad button configuration, which I think is easier to adjust. What I didn’t like about the ACR was the two tiny little buttons on either side of the stock that you had to press in order to adjust the stock, it felt awkward and I can’t imagine having to do this with gloves. The SCAR I handled also had the same problem except it only had one button on one side and wasn’t ambidextrous and that too also felt awkward to me; the cheek piece on it also felt cheap. This rifle may be a winner and if not I’ll just buy a Bushmaster modular Carbine or maybe Noveske or even Knights armament AR rifles.

  • Brandon

    Such an ugly magwell. Why? you shouldn’t even be gripping it there!
    I’m guessing $1200-1500 on the civilian market, something competitive with Sig and Ruger’s piston AR designs.

  • I am definitely interested. Now I am concerned about what the price ($) tag is going to be. Any body know the MSRP $ ??

  • Lance

    Lose the stupid but stock and get something that feels and looks something decant use a H&K or Magpul stock that would look and feel much better.

  • Josh

    Ugliest magwell ever.

  • Gerald

    Is it just me, or does the guy in the first pic look an awful lot like Clyde Barrow of Bonnie and Clyde fame? If we swapped the ART556 with a BAR, then threw on 1920s garb, this guy could play the role in a movie or something. He even has the cold, hard killer look.

  • jdun1911


    It’s a short barrel rifle (SBR under 16inch) because it has a stock. It is not illegal to own unless you live in a non-NFA state. States that allows NFA you just have to fill out the forms, do a trust or CLEO sign off, and $200 check.

  • John

    Slap on a 18.6″ barrel then send it to Canada and I’ll be happy.

  • EricX

    Looks nice but I’m gonna hold off and wait for the Civy Beretta AR160! That is WAY cooler and better than the ACR, SCAR and this one that I’m sure Taurus will find a way to screw up one small part and give the whole platform a black eye!

  • Keep it @ $1000.00 and Ill buy one.

  • Gordon

    If this rifle is of the quality of the Taurus pistols I’ll pass. I work in firearm sales with a major dealer and handle any issues or repairs as well for the firearms we sell. The Taurus firearms lineup are a mass produced, inexpensive gun with poor quality fit and finishes. We see more Taurus guns needing repair due to quality issues than any other firearm. As for comparing it to the ACR or FN SCAR I doubt highly that it will ever outsell them. You get what you pay for and the SCAR is definitely hard to beat.

  • Joe

    I hate to say it, but i have yet to own a Taurus firearm that hasnt had problems. Every stinking one, and i kept trying. All were purchased new and several went back for service, one twice. None of my other firearms have ever had issues, except for a bad spring in one SIG. Even my cheap old Kel-Tec P32 functions fine, pocket lint and all.

    Sigh. This looks cool, but count me out.

    (for the record: two revolvers, one 709 slim, one thunderbolt, and one millenium pro)

  • zincorium

    While everyone is right that Taurus is going to be competing on cost here, there’s no reason to assume offhand that build quality sucks. Buying one before they get reviewed and evaluated would be pretty silly anyhow, and that initial reliability/unreliability should matter more to you than the company’s past reputation.

    Looking forward to learning more.

  • Southernshark

    I thought this was a firearms Blog….

    It appears to be a modified Imbel MD97, a 5.56mm version of the FAL, also made in Brazil. This product has been out for over a decade. Its not an ACR copy or a SCAR copy.

  • Lance

    I bet till be way over $1000 dollars that way like they can take gun owners to the town like H&K and FN and Remington and Colt dose remember your buying the name.

  • James Cress

    I have a Taurus 92 that is about 30 years old. I have put tens of thousands of rounds through it. A couple of years ago the block cracked. That normally happens with the Beretta at somewhere around 10-15 thousand rounds. I sent the pistol back and expected to get a bill, after all, it is 30 years old. They replaced the block for free. I now have several Taurus weapons, all of them perform very well with no issues. Like all modern designs, they have taken some shortcuts to keep prices reasonable but the basic weapons are solid and reliable. I am very impressed. I wish them well with their new assault rifle. I would love to check one out. It looks to me like they looked at the desirable features from several designs and leveraged them. A smart move.

  • clem

    “I do not know if all the Taurus bashing is justified or not, but the fact that no LEA in the United States issues Taurus guns tells me more than all the threads in the web.”

    Lord Palmerston

  • clem

    No Taurus for me!

  • Jim Senig

    The new Taurus looks cool but as usual anything that looks cool is going to cost you out the butt.Most of us can’t afford exspensive toys any more.Gas,food and medical bills are killing us all. I can’t even afford ammo for my saiga 7.62×39 any more It’s no fun to have a cool weapon if all you can do is sit and look at it.

  • Matheus
  • C J

    clem, no agency may issue Taurus weapons, but if you talk to cops that have to buy their own weapons you’ll find a lot of Taurus pistols.

    I’ve had 14 Taurus pistols and revolvers over the last 25 years and still own 8 of them. The only problem after thousands of rounds was a revolver that lost timing. Two weeks after a trip to Miami, it was good as new.

    The simple fact of the matter is that Taurus has been making arms for police and military all over the world for a lot of years. They’ll make no inroads to military or police agencies here, but the civilian market could be wide open with products at a competitive price.

  • clem

    “The simple fact of the matter is that Taurus has been making arms for police and military all over the world for a lot of years.”.


    Also, I’m a retired LEO and I can’t recall any agency that would allow a Taurus weapon to be carried on duty by their officers. But, I could be wrong.

    I own 4 Taurus weapons and the last one is a piece of junk, which I bought NEW!

  • Lance

    Some of the larger copy Taurus pistols like the PT-92 and PT-1911 are good most of there own designs are crap. I dont get this craze over plastic rifles now almost all real solders and cops use ARs amd or Mini-14s far better than the FN crap or this crap before you know it Taurus will be making ARs like every one else.

    Ohh by the way I doubt this gun will be imported since it lacks 922r parts since no one makes them here.

  • cc19



  • Deb

    We need these for Christmas We ll rock the year right

  • carlos brazil

    ola as forças armadas do meu pais o brazil carecem de um fuzil a decadas
    em 2010 ficamos sabendo que a imbel [Indústria de Material Bélico do Brasil]
    esatava construindo o imbel ia2 um fuzil parecido com o scar nos calibres 762 e 556.
    o ia2 iria substituir os m16a2 e m16a3 da marinha os fnfal [lixo] e para fal
    [lixo] do exercito e os hk33 e sig sauger da força aeria, eu fiquei feliz mas agora a taurus que tambem e brasileira fez esse fuzil, a taurus e muinto melhor que a imbel e se o ia2 e uma arma moderna e comfiavel imagina esse art556 nossa deve ser com parado ao hk 416 417 e scar.
    so achei negativo o fato de ele ser apenas 556

  • carlos brazil

    o video do imbel i a2

  • carlos brazil

    o fuzil ia2 so apareçe depois dos 3,50 minutos