After much teasing, IWI debuted their new civilian specific X95 rifle at this year’s Shot Show in Las Vegas. While we’ve seen select-fire SBR NFA controlled samples in the past, this was the first time a consumer ready rifle has been seen. For the unfamiliar, the X95 is an enhancement to the Tavor platform, currently in service with the Irsael Defense Force.
Essentially, the X95 changes the positioning of the Tavor’s magazine release and charging handle, while compressing the overall size. IWI US has had to undo some of that compression work in order to make the gun accessible in the USA, but they’ve gone about it in some very clever ways.
First, they’ve given it a 16.5″ US approved barrel. Then extended out the original handguard with it. The X95 handguard is actually a polymer quad rail with integrated rail covers forming the fore-end grip.
Second, they’ve extended the rear butt stock. Fun fact: the original rubber butt pad of the Tavor is designed around the 40mm under barrel grenade launcher. If you look at the IDF’s current X95 carbines, there’s little to no butt pad at all. But IWI US has expanded and reshape do the butt pad to meet overall length requirements.
The biggest difference for experienced Tavor shooters is the new magazine release that sits ahead of the pistol grip in a position reminiscent of an AR-15’s setup. The bolt release has also been slimmed down, and the repositioned charging handle now has a latch similar to the forward assist. The X95 ships with a slimmed down version of the extended Tavor trigger guard. But an alternate pistol grip is available with a traditional trigger guard.
Also new at the IWI booth was the original Tavor chambered in 300 Blackout. I’ve seen various valiant aftermarket conversions for the rifle, but IWI has redesigned the gas block specifically for the new cartridge. This adjustable gas block can be accessed through the Tavor’s side vents and calibrated for super-sonic and sub-sonic loads, as well as suppressed and unsuppressed firing.
I’m afraid I haven’t done a very good job attempting to photograph the new gas block on the range. We couldn’t exactly strip and disassemble a rifle. But I hope we’ll get a chance to take a closer look at IWI’s new system on the show floor.
The X95 is expected to be on the shelves of gun stores early this spring, with an MSRP of $2k. The .300BLK Tavor is slated to appear later in the fall of 2016. While a new .300BLK rifle is expected to be just under $2k, a conversion kit for existing Tavor owners was ball parked at $499.