FN Announces FN-15 II Series of Updated Tactical Rifles and Carbines

Fabrique Nationale has announced updates to three models in their FN-15 rifle line. These three models – the FN-15 Tactical Carbine II, FN-15 .300 Blk Carbine II, and FN-15 DMR II – have been updated with more modern proprietary FN handguards with M-LOK slots, replacing the previous variants Midwest Industries M-LOK handguards. The new handguards mate to a new FN-made barrel nut, and are advertised to be more solid and rigid than the previous style.

FN15_TAC_CAR_II_Rside-e1480782875960

Oddly, the new rifles are listed with MSRPs $100-$120 higher than the previous models, and are not listed on FN’s website as coming with the MBUS sights of the previous variants. Otherwise, the three FN-15 II models just announced seem to be identical to their predecessors. Still, it’s interesting that FN appears to be reducing the value to the customer in these new offerings – although perhaps that’s debatable, depending on how much better the new handguard system is versus the old.

Given the cost of FN’s rifle line, it seems the company is banking on its name and reputation to remain competitive, as well as modest improvements like the II-style handguard. This puts them on the level to compete directly with semi-premium AR manufacturers like Daniel Defense and the lower ends of the LaRue and Noveske catalogs.





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 nathaniel.f@staff.thefirearmblog.com.


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  • Anonymoose

    They ought to throw in some MBUS Pro sights in there, instead of the generic, janky plastic ones.

    • Joe

      Or 10 Lancer, or Magpul Magazines. THAT, would be worth the extra $150. Half the folks that buy an AR-15 will never mount any type of iron sights, and of the half that do, less than 10 % will in all reality use those sights regularly. Mags are consumables, heck through in a spare parts kit with new bolt, firing pin, gas rings, and extractor assembly, or a decent sling, or a $100 coupon off of any optic in stock at the place of sale. Instead everyone gets stuck with some fugly plastic or steel sights they’ll end up replacing or never use.

  • Bitterwolf

    Is this handguard similar to the offering by Aero Precision?

    • jay

      It looks like Hodge Defense Wedge Lock handguard.

  • you know, I’m as much a fan of AR-15s as the next guy, but I would really like it if, rather than building Yet Another AR-15, reinventing the rail system, or creating Yet Another Type Of Furniture, companies dared to actually innovate new designs.

    I can appreciate the ubiquity of keeping What Works(tm), but surely we can come up with ways to make guns more efficient, lighter, more effective, etc.? Why not truly innovate and design ways to move away from the 150-year-old cartridge system and do something completely different?

    Just feels like we’re hitting a point of saturation where besides the whines of the antigunners, ARs are just another 4-door ho-hum sedan.

    • Jake S.

      Companies don’t do this for the same reason that the vast majority of automotive manufacturers don’t abandon the combustion-based engine wholesale. Because people keep buying cars designed around that system. And at an overwhelming volume. Are there more-efficient and innovative systems available? Absolutely! Oh, they typically cost 30% more or greater than the average combustion engine? No thanks. I have no doubt that there are a slew of engineers tinkering away at the next big thing for firearms. Just don’t expect it to reach a level of affordability for us mere mortals until it is awarded a major defense contract. Given how little headway the Army has made on selecting a replacement for the M4 in the last decade plus, I wouldn’t expect a viable/affordable alternative any time soon.

    • Matt Taylor

      Not asking this snarkily, but do you own a SCAR, or the new MDR? Perhaps The ACR is more your style? That british bullpup? Or any myriad of other designs that have been invented since the 60s? SIG556?

      Jake pretty much hit the nail on the head. Companies are coming out with new designs all the time. They just don’t get widely adopted typically because of cost, or they never hit .mil status so we consider them unreliable.

      I know I’m guilty of it as much as the next guy. Yeah the SCAR is cool, but what does it do that my $1000 AR doesn’t do?

      I’m all for the next affordable rifle being a railgun. #TakeMyMoney

    • DonDrapersAcidTrip

      Because the day someone “innovates a new design” the comment section on this website is just going to be “well heres something looking for a solution to problem that doesn’t exist!!!” there was literally just an article about a laser firing system and the comments were “give the the guys who wasted their time coming up with this a REAL job”

      • Concerned Mother

        This is the exact problem, too many cheap skates and old traditionalists who seem to think that anything new is a direct threat to anything already currently in existence.

  • jay

    That handguard is made by Hodge Defense and is based on the “wedge lock” attachment system, they developed together with Mega Arms.
    Pretty impressive handguards.

    • jay

      FN USA page is advertising this a “FN’ Handguards, so I guess they got the licence for Hodge/Mega Wedge lock handguards.
      Not a bad move in my opinion.

  • Docduracoat

    I’m holding out for a Phased plasma rifle in the 40 watt range!
    The next big thing in guns is likely to be a Tracking Point on every rifle
    You will never miss at any range even on moving targets
    Select the target and the aiming device will fire the gun only when it will make a hit
    That is in the future, but that will be a real “smart gun”!

    • The Brigadier

      Way too expensive. The next big thing is going to be handheld rail guns. Top of the line RGs will shoot darts at 5 km/sec. Everything currently made pales in significance.

  • Herschel Walker

    At least FN is not making ridiculous Delta ring and FSP stuff from the 80’s.

    • 22winmag

      80s?

      Current production Gen 1 FN15s *are* both D-ring and FSP

  • The Brigadier

    It looks vaguely like the new Springfield Saint. I want one a Saint.