ADCOR Defense Sues Beretta Over ARX-100

Bad news for the oldest gunmaker in the world. Adcor Industries – makers of the BEAR rifle – have sued Beretta, alleging the company stole proprietary information later used in the development of the ARX-100 rifle. From the Courthouse News Service:

BALTIMORE (CN) – Gun manufacturer Beretta U.S.A stole proprietary information to develop its AR-15 rifle, a gun designer claims in court.
Adcor Industries Inc. and Adcor Defense Inc. sued Beretta U.S.A. in Baltimore County Circuit Court on Friday. The plaintiffs claim they shared proprietary design and manufacturing information with Beretta with the understanding they would manufacture components for the more than 100,000 guns Beretta was given permission by the Department of Justice and Department of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms to produce.
Throughout the two-year development of the firearm, the complaint states, Beretta received a complete bill of materials from Adcor for an AR-15 it produced, purchased equipment to manufacture components through Adcor and sought out information regarding the companies Adcor used to add finishes on the rifles it made.
Adcor claims in the complaint that it eventually produced the first 10 prototypes of the firearm for Beretta and Adcor employees help work out problems with the guns after it was found that parts designed by Beretta failed to operate correctly.
Before cutting off the deal with Adcor and removing the machines it purchased and had in Adcor’s facilities, Beretta received technical guidance on the cutting of its roll mark on the guns, the complaint states.
Adcor claims Beretta currently markets the weapon as the ARX-100. The tactical military-style rifle currently retails for $1,950 on Beretta’s website.
Beretta U.S.A. markets the rifles as one of the most versatile assault rifles available to consumers as it can be completely assembled and disassembled without any tools, has interchangeable barrels and bolts that allow it to shoot several different caliber bullets and has adjustments that allow it to be fired easily by both right and left handed operators, according to its website.
Adcor seeks damages for breach of contract, unfair competition, fraud, civil conspiracy and other claims. It is represented by Thomas Donnelly.

While Adcor is most well-known for its BEAR rifle, this suit does not seem to be particularly related to that rifle’s design. Rather, it sounds like Adcor consulted Beretta closely, only to have Beretta jump ship on them later. The BEAR and the ARX-100 are compared below:


Image source:


Thanks to Axel for the tip!

Nathaniel F

Nathaniel is a history enthusiast and firearms hobbyist whose primary interest lies in military small arms technological developments beginning with the smokeless powder era. In addition to contributing to The Firearm Blog, he runs 196,800 Revolutions Per Minute, a blog devoted to modern small arms design and theory. He is also the author of the original web serial Heartblood, which is being updated and edited regularly. He can be reached via email at


  • 6.5x55Swedish

    That is three ugly firearms..

    • Kjk

      The arx isn’t the best looking. But how is the 92 ugly

      • 6.5x55Swedish

        It’s ok I guess… but only because most semi auto pistols are ugly as hell.

        • Ajax

          You haven’t seen a Glock with an Aimpoint T-1 slide mounted, have you?

          • Joshua

            now that is ugly, your right the 92 is a beautiful gun by comparison to a glock, but to a hi-power? or a 1911?

      • Ian Thorne

        Eye of the beholder. I think the ARX is one of the best looking rifles ever made. Much better in the proper 10″ configuration though.

        • mig1nc

          I rather prefer the Italian CQC version, around 12″ I believe. It just looks “right” to me. Yeah… I like space guns like the FN F2000 and Steyr AUG as well.

      • Anonymoose

        The 92 is hawt.

  • SD3

    Is it wise to argue that they ‘stole’ information to manufacture a gun no one wants?

    I mean, if I were to ‘win’ an ARX-100 in a contest, The 1st thing I’d do is sell it and buy an AK variant.

  • The ARX-100 is derived from the ARX-160. The US patents for the ARX-160 were filed long before the ADCOR BEAR patents.

    • Pat

      The suit isn’t about patent violations the suit is over contract violations.therefore it doesn’t matter who filed patents when, the terms of the contract were breached.

      • J.T.

        Ya, It sounds like ADCOR is saying they helped Beretta get US production of the ARX-100 set up in exchange for being a subcontractor and then Beretta pulled the work from them after all the bugs were worked out.

  • Giolli Joker

    I don’t get the relation ARX-100/AR-15…

    • Anonymoose


  • Lance

    Looks like ADCOR is clamoring for money any way possible.

  • Dillon

    Had extensive time behind a friend’s ARX100 and I can’t say it wowed me. I mean, I guess the price is less offensive, but come on, this is all we get after the fact of the scar, tavor, etc?

  • Kivaari

    It fits the image Beretta has developed for itself.

  • John Evans

    Nathaniel Nathaniel Nathaniel,
    Beretta still isn’t the oldest gun maker in the world….no matter how many times they tell you or how many times you write it.
    Making a a couple of parts is not the same as making a firearm.