S&W has pulled out of the Army’s next generation carbine competition. Army Times reports …
Smith & Wesson’s M&P 4 is another strong competitor that has backed out for financial reasons. Company officials were confident they had a shot at the contract. But research and development cost a chunk of change, and the competition is drawn out over three years with no guarantee of payoff. Smith & Wesson decided the better financial strategy would be to focus on existing sales and walk away from the carbine competition.
This decision makes sense. The M&P carbines are nice AR-15s but they don’t have any major distinguishing features.
Colt says they are entering the Colt CM901 because they do not want to reveal trade secrets to competitors. This sounds dubious to me. The Army is not looking for multi-caliber capability, so the slightly bulkier 7.62mm capable Colt CM901 would be at a disadvantage against lighter 5.56mm-only competitors. Colt is instead entering their Enhanced M4 carbine. Ironically, Canada had to cancel a weapons purchase last month after the firearm industry refused to hand over technical specifications to Colt’s Canadian subsidiary.
[ Many thanks to Jason & Lance for emailing me the link. ]