Melbourne, FL based Fight Lite Industries is the current company that was formally known as Ares Defense until it was renamed. Our own Pete M. published the press release showing the MXR’s introduction before SHOT, and we got a further in-depth look at the MXR while at the actual booth on the floor. The idea of the MXR came from an operational requirement from several LE agencies in Europe following the attacks on the Bataclan Theater in Paris in November of 2015. According to the designer, officers armed with handguns were severely outgunned by the AKM armed terrorists. Similar to why Britain’s London Met CT unit is adopting 5.56x45mm Sig MCXs, is to combat the threat levels that opponents are reaching within Europe. Having a pistol caliber carbine in an officers patrol car would offer a much more significant advantage over a duty handgun when dealing with Bataclan-like terrorist attacks, especially when it takes the same magazines and ammunition. Ballistics of 5.56x45mm/.300 BLK versus a 9x19mm round against body armor aside, a pistol caliber carbine certainly solves the logistical issue.
This was one of the driving concepts behind the MXR, in addition to breaking into the pistol caliber carbine market in the United States. The company isn’t going to be doing this with the full auto variant but instead with the pistol variant equipped with a stabilizing brace, or in the rifle variant with a 16″ legal barrel, and a telescoping AR stock on a buffer tube. Conversion between calibers can be done through the magazine well, and the barrel, choosing from a variety of manufacturers for the magazine. These include Sig Sauer, Beretta, Glock, CZ, among others. Calibers currently range from .22 LR, 9x19mm, and .45 ACP, but should increase if demand does as well. Converting or changing barrels is extremely simple, using a sort of round barrel nut at the edge of the forend to unlock the barrel and pull it out. Charging handle is on the left side, while the magazine well is on the right, and these options are not ambidextrous. Keymod slots align the three and nine o’clock sections of the forward rails, while picatinny interfaces align the twelve and six o’clock portions.
And of course the companies MCR, a carry over from the previous belt/magazine fed upper receiver was reintroduced, with some different iterations than the previous Shrike light machine gun/rifle(within the U.S. civilian market). The MCR is being offered in a number of different barrel configurations with both fluted, normal, suppressed, 16″ and 12″(SBR or separate receiver).