Soon after SHOT 2015, Beretta announced a new striker fired, polymer framed handgun for civilian, LE, and most importantly military sales. A chassis-based handgun with interchangeable grips, the APX – as it was dubbed – was clearly designed with the US Army’s Modular Handgun System pistol competition in mind. Seeking to become the “M17”, as the winner of the competition will be designated, Beretta has released photos of the APX in a new tan color scheme as the MHS variant of the pistol, through the Facebook page of Retex MAG, a French gun magazine:
Beretta, attempting to retain its stranglehold on US military pistols, hoped to circumvent the Army’s Modular Handgun System program with its updated M9A3 handgun, but that pistol was rejected as not meeting the Army’s requirements for a new handgun. Beretta’s back-up horse is the APX, which will likely compete against the SIG P320, a variant of the S&W M&P, the H&K VP9/40, and possibly other entrants. The deadline for the competition was extended from February 1st to the 12th, possibly because not enough entrants had made submissions. It’s known that Sturm, Ruger & Co will not be entering the competition, citing the competition’s high cost and high risk. The US Army has repeatedly held competitions between manufacturers who were expected to fund most or all of their participation, only to cancel the program and leave everyone unhappy.