Army Chief Milley Says Army Is “Taking a Hard Look” at HK416, Other Commercial Off-The-Shelf Rifles

The Heckler & Koch HK416F, as recently adopted by the French Army. Image source: sofrep.com

In recent testimony to the Senate Armed Services Committee, General Mark Milley, the Army Chief of Staff, admitted during questioning that the Army is looking at alternative rifle platforms to the current M4 Carbine. Milley’s comments were made primarily during a conversation with Senator Joni Ernst, transcribed below:

Ernst: “I appreciated Senator King’s comments talking about small arms and the need for modernization and the fact that our 5.56 doesn’t penetrate Russian body armor; I think that was a really important point that was brought out at my subcommittee hearing, and one of the reasons I think many of us will agree the need to prioritize small arms modernization in this year’s NDAA. So, General Milley, once the army does settle on a caliber, then would you rather have something that could be specifically built for infantry forces, and the Army at large, or would you accept something that could be purchased off the shelf.”

Milley: “I don’t know that the two of those are mutually exclusive. There are systems out there today that are off the shelf that with some very minor modifications could be adapted to munitions that we’re developing at Fort Benning that could be used to penetrate these SAPI plates that our adversaries are developing. So, it’s not necessarily an either/or proposition on that one. I think that there’s weapons out there that we can get in the right caliber that can enhance the capability of the soldier.”

Ernst: “That’s good, and I’m glad to hear you say that, because I think there could be some potential savings if we are looking at systems that could be modified taken off the shelf and used for our soldiers. I think that would be something that would be very beneficial to our forces. Retired General Scales testified at that subcommittee hearing and he spoke about a weapon that could fill the role of both the machine gun and the rifle, a light machine gun and a basic rifle. So is the need for a machine gun, would that be a higher priority than that of a basic rifle. Or would they be at the same level of priority?”

Milley: “Well, they are both very important, they compliment each other. I think what he’s talking about is what the Marines are adopting as the M27; we’re taking a hard look at that, and probably gonna go in that direction as well, but we haven’t made a final decision on it. You know, infantry squads, infantry platoons, they gotta have an automatic weapon for suppression, they gotta have the individual weapon as well, so you need both, it’s not one or the other. You have to have both in order to be effective in ground combat.”

Ernst: “OK, well thank you General very much.”

Milley did not elaborate as to whether he meant that the US Army is looking at the HK416 as an option for a standard infantry rifle, or whether he meant that the Army may replace the belt-fed squad automatic weapon with a magazine-fed infantry automatic rifle (IAR), as the USMC has done. Without being able to get inside the general’s head, it is difficult to tell.

The idea that the Army is taking a good look at the HK416 is not entirely surprising. The US Army recently chose the Heckler & Koch G28E to be its Compact Semi-Automatic Sniper System (CSASS), a 7.62mm rifle which is very closely related to the 5.56mm HK416. Given an apparently new 7.62mm projectile development from Fort Benning designed to counter Level IV body armor, and a recent announcement that the Army is looking toward fielding 7.62mm infantry rifles, it seems plausible that the “upgrade” Milley mention was to the 7.62mm caliber, rather than to a new 5.56mm platform.



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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  • RSG

    I have a hard time believing that out of our many high quality manufacturers, that we can’t develop an HK alternative, virtually overnight. And probably at half the cost.

    • 6.5x55Swedish

      Perhaps, but the way the system works very few companies can do it, bot because they cannot make good rifles but because the army require so many things outside of a working rifle.

    • Gus Butts

      Coharie Arms makes the CA-415, which is an HK416 clone. It was featured in John Wick.

      • It warms my heart to know that somebody is undercutting H und K with a clone, I wish them all the luck in the world.

    • Jose

      What about the Remington R5 RGP rifle? It uses the gas piston mechanism of the ACR-E carbine and the Bushmaster version; also as an replacement upper, it could meet the requirements for a new platform, while leaving the M27 for selected special units.

      • Get Over it Fanbois

        Remington, googleplex ew.

    • Get Over it Fanbois

      Union busting contributed to America losing ground manufactures abroad. So it should come as no surprise that it also effected the quality of our own weapons.

      • SomeGuyOverThere

        Oh yeah, Colt is a real shining example of how Union labor is our saving grace for domestic firearms production and military domestic procurement thereof.

        • Get over it Fanbois

          False equivalence. Colt has always been garbage. Unions or not.

          • Major Tom

            A long long time ago Colt used to be known as a maker of quality firearms. Then the 90s happened and well….

      • JoelC

        Create an entire system that awards people for longest time-in/paying dues, and not based of quality of craftsmanship… explain to me how this would make for better manufacturing?

        And yes, I used to work in the trades.

        • What “better manufacturing” do you think we got from a system that treats human workers like cheap disposable parts and leaves them with absolutely no incentive to give a damn about their product or the company they work for? Most of our heavy industry is overseas now; The Arsenal Of Democracy has become a nation of assembly plants where low quality components built in Mexico or China are bolted together for the sole purpose of slapping a fraudulent MADE IN USA on the side.

          Unions have had a hell of a lot of problems with corruption in this country, but the main underlying source of it is politicians who don’t want the appropriate organized crime statutes used to prosecute it because it would damage their donor base. Blame the corrupt, not the system they corrupted.

          • Brett baker

            A big part of the problem is we don’t like productive industry in this country. Farming should be the good old days of grinding toil(but not the higher rates of food poisoning). Heavy industry? Forget it, it’s icky
            . Energy, whether stored solar(fossil) or renewable, NIMBY.
            A factor in the financial crash was we were trying to see how many people financial services can employ. Obviously, not as many as hoped

          • I don’t want to get into politics or economics on originally non-political or non-economic content, but a big reason for manufacturing being outsourced is, aside from obviously cheap labor and lower standards, is taxes. The U.S.A. has the world’s highest corporate tax rate.

          • Except that’s complete bullshit, because no, we absolutely do not have “the world’s highest corporate tax rate”; we have a very high statutory corporate tax rate, but the effective rate is far smaller, and considerably less than that of the EU. Anyone who pretends that corporations are actually paying the full corporate tax rate is either trying to sell you something or so far out of touch with reality that they probably shouldn’t be allowed to control their own finances.

    • Shaun Connery Oliver II

      I agree. Out of curiosity, has anyone looked at F&D Defense’s FD308 before going with the HK417? The way how the FD308 is designed, I bet my money on it. Who wants to see it go toe to toe with the HK417(I mean M110E1 now that it is adopted by the Army)? For starters, based off of F&D Defense’s website, the FD308 starts off at $2,999. Not shabby considering,let alone comparing, the price of the HK MR762, or worse the HK417.

      • Joshua

        The HK CSASS wasn’t even the best rifle. It was just the best “package” meaning it had the best scope/suppressor so they selected the 4th best rifle in order to get the best accessories package.

        • Whether the G28E was the best rifle or not (be interested to learn more about their test results), this “all or nothing” style of procurement is really a step back. What happened to testing a few rifles and taking the best features of all of them? Oh, right, we don’t have an Ordnance system that can do that anymore.

          It’s almost like (say it with me kids) Army procurement is broken.

          • Joshua

            Not like it matters. I haven’t talked to anyone who feels it will become a program of record. Most see it going the PSR.

          • valorius

            I agree, any new rifle program will just waste hundreds of millions before being cancelled.

          • James Kachman

            Taking the best features from multiple rifles… ala “M14”? Army procurement has been broken for a long time, unfortunately, it’s not as simple as reverting to having an Ordnance corps.

            Wish it was, though.

          • Frank

            The M14 was selected because it was developed by the Army, I don’t see how it was anything other than Inferior to the FAL or AR10 as a combat rifle.

          • James Kachman

            Precisely my point, the Army’s Ordnance system can make, has made, some real clunkers. The issue is deeper and harder to fix.

          • Oh, don’t get me wrong, when McNamara burned down the Ordnance Corps, it deserved it. It’s just that replacing that with NOTHING was the wrong move.

          • JoelC

            Working on the civilian supply side of army procurement, I completely agree with you.

          • iksnilol

            Next thing you’ll be saying is that Patrick is short?

        • Max Müller

          Just googled it, seems to be a nice rifle. There are many nice rifles in fact. Falkor and POF have some nice, innovative and lightweight .308 rifles that i might buy (but not even sure if they submitted them). Just sayin the innovation is not dead yet and there were pretty decent alternatives.
          But there was probably some minor detail off. Maybe they aren’t friends with the same high quality scope manufacturers as h&k is. Maybe they didn’t have a cool silencepressor to put on their barrel. Maybe they didn’t have the capacity to meet production in time or they didn’t have the same reputation as h&k. Maybe their rifle didn’t like some ammo they had, like the new super-armor-piercing round they are talking about in all those comitee hearings recently.

      • some other joe

        Did any of these random manufacturers submit proposals to be evaluated?
        Do the design houses have the manufacturing capacity to meet the timeline, either in-house or maintaining quality in outsourced manufacturing? If they source components outside their shop, can their suppliers keep up?

      • iksnilol

        What about Savage’s AR-10?

        • Shaun Connery Oliver II

          The MSR-10 would DEFINITELY be an excellent vote from me! I don’t discriminate because I think Savage would make like a compact version of their Long Range rifle. That is like two of my favorite rifle companies, Savage and F&D DEFENSE. If the FD308 in a 16″ barrel doesn’t make it, I think Savage could take the crown and wow the crowd like it is NO ONE’S business!

    • Joshua

      Plenty can. They just don’t have nearly the lobbying power HK does.

    • thedarkknightreturns

      There has been an HK alternative for years: LWRCI. They have secured some major military contracts, including a large one from a Middle eastern buyer. I feel their system is better than HKs product. LWRCI produces arguably the most refined gas piston AR type rifles on the market. Their innovations including truly Ambi lowers, are a big step ahead. They also produce everything in house, and have very high standards.

  • AC97

    Please don’t suffer from the “Ermahgerd HK Effect”…

  • Jimmy the cracker of corn

    It looks like we might be going back to 7.62×51.
    I don’t see why not. Aluminum cased ammo and a muzzle break & pneumatic buffer should solve all the problems associated with 7.62×51

    • AC97

      Yeah, no.

      -Still has more recoil

      -You will always have a greater load carrying capacity with an intermediate cartridge compared to a full-power cartridge

      -Lower magazine capacity/larger magazines for the same capacity

      -7.62×51 guns are pretty much always going to be heavier

    • PK

      We’d go to something like the .338 Norma before going back to 7.62x51mm. Same general weight/recoil/size, but far superior in terms of penetration and range.

      Not to mention, 5.56x45mm projectiles tend to be far better at penetrating armor than 7.62x51mm, even when both are using purpose-made AP ammo. Speed matters a lot more than the kinetic energy, when it comes to piercing armor, and the smaller diameter helps still more. It’s easier to get a needle through than a baseball.

    • Brett baker

      Aluminum rifle cases? If they function like pistol cases do in my stem, no!

      • Kivaari

        I’ve seen aluminum pistol and revolver cases fail. I don’t trust them.

        • gunsandrockets

          Which calibers? In which firearms? What kind of failures? How frequently?

          • Kivaari

            .38 and 9mm.

          • Brett baker

            9mm stengun, multiple Fred’s per mag. Blazer 115 grain.

          • gunsandrockets

            “fred’s”??

  • Juggernaut

    why Russian body armor penetration? these chickenhawk nitwits are going to get us all killed

    • john huscio

      the Russians could always sell their armor to countries we are more likely to fight

      • Joshua

        Russia’s bet armor is rated GOST R V. That’s the equivelant of NIJ III steel.

        • It’s clear that they’re worried about Level IV, though, which does have me scratching my head a bit.

          • PK

            No kidding. Who do we face, who would we possibly face, that would have Level IV armor as general issue? Is this really just concern over the ease of access on the commercial market bleeding over to nefarious use?

          • iksnilol

            Renegade Americans: Civil War Part Deux?

        • toms

          Wrong, the new russian armor is approximate lvl 4.5 or termed 4+ by the west.

          • Joshua

            So your telling me the Ratnik armor is an imaginary GOST R VII…..because you know that doesn’t exist and the Ratnik 3 armor is rated as GOST R V.

          • int19h

            Plates can be replaced, and Russia does have level IV equivalent plates in service, just not as standard issue for infantry.

          • Uniform223

            “Russia does have level IV equivalent plates in service, just not as standard issue for infantry.”

            > Here in the US level IV+ plates ARE STANDARD ISSUE FOR EVERYONE.

          • int19h

            Sure, but what difference does it make? The point is, so long as Russia remains a likely adversary for US, you have to prepare for the possibility of your targets wearing level IV armor.

  • Brett baker

    Whatever gets chosen (assuming a new rifle/cartridge) the next war will have people saying”we should have kept the m4a1″

    • Major Tom

      You mean like how in Vietnam we had folks saying “we should have kept the M1/M14”?

      • No one

        And how they were all proven wrong when all the pop history myths around the M14 vs M16 settled and it was revelaed the AR-15/M16 was the right choice all along and if anything, we should’ve taken the AR-10 or the FAL if we really insisted on a 7.62mm rifle?

        • Major Tom

          The FAL had/has a stellar combat record. We probably should have gone with it. I can’t say the same for the AR-10.

          • valorius

            We probably should’ve just stuck with the m1/2 carbine as a general issue weapon, honestly.

          • Major Tom

            .30 Carbine had some serious ballistics flaws to it and I’m not referring to the meme of Chinese body armor overcoats in 1951.

          • valorius

            It’s more powerful than 7.62 tok or 9mm or the .45 ACP fired from all the subguns that made up a huge % of a squads firepower in WWII. I think most of it’s ballistic problems are/were probably just wives tales.

            It was light, compact, handy, and relatively easily controllable in full auto fire. Some redesigned 30rd magazines would’ve been a good idea, of course.
            Seems to me it would’ve been fine as a place holder til we designed a real assault rifle of our own.

            Of course, we’ll never know.

          • Major Tom

            Nah the ballistics issues are the thing’s a rainbow shooter beyond 300 yards. Even 7.62 Soviet from the AK shoots flatter than that! (And even at 300 yards, there’s still some significant elevation relative to full power rifles.)

          • valorius

            It’s definitely far from ideal, there’s no arguing that.

          • Kivaari

            Remember the USAF was using the M2 carbine and wanted a replacement, and bought the AR15. The .30 carbines are fun and handy little guns, but they were seriously under powered for any distance.

          • valorius

            An M1 carbine is about 1000 ft lb at the muzzle isnt it? They seem like they’d be credible to about 300 meters. I’m not saying it was a great option so much as i’m saying the M14 program was a waste of time and money, and an outright denial of the changing landscape of modern warfare.

            Give the choice of lugging around an M14 and an M2 carbine, assuming equal optics and good mags for the M2, i’d probably choose the M2 over the M14 for almost everything that doesnt involve long range ridge to ridge fighting. For that type of stuff, see A-stan, i’d definitely prefer the M14.

          • Kivaari

            Lack of optics will always leave the carbine behind.

          • valorius

            Not much of anything had optics back then.

          • Major Tom

            The M3 Carbine (an M2 dressed up) had an early night vision scope that worked to about 100 meters. It was a weapon most despised by the Chinese and North Koreans who often tried night attacks at short range only to be foiled by NV scope-wielding American GI’s standing watch. .

          • valorius

            You mean their frozen coats and warrior spirit didnt simply shrug those little .30 cal slugs off? 😀

          • Major Tom

            They despised it because the M3 guard would light their position up with a few rounds and thus alerting the machine gunners who would rip them to shreds once the spotlights landed on em shortly after.

          • Anon. E Maus

            You could *reach* to 300 meters with an M1 Carbine, but it has poor effect at these distances, and the gun itself really doesn’t have good enough accuracy for this to be useful.

            Looking at the M2 Carbine and the M14 Battle Rifle, I would sooner want to pick the AC556

          • valorius

            Poor effect meaning it will shoot a hole clean through you, and probably still has the same energy as a 9mm para? I agree the M1 carbine is not in it’s element at 300, but there are plenty of people online that shoot them that far and hit targets consistently.

          • Bad Penguin

            Many years ago I shot a yearling spiked Buck at 100 yards though the heart with an M-1 Carbine. Took me hours to find it and ended up having to shoot it 3 more times at a range of 15 yards to kill it. I got rid of the rifle soon afterwards.

          • BeoBear

            A buck shot through the heart with a .22LR wouldn’t still be alive 3 hours later. Might run a fair distance before keeling over dead just because that’s their nature but would be dead as a hammer after that short burst. Chances are the location where it was hit first was near the heart causing a prolonged death by minor bleeding. Fortunately you found it and put it out of the it’s misery. Not bagging on you, it happens. but it’s just impossible for a heart shot deer to still be pumping blood 3 hours later especially with a .30 cal bullet.

            The M1 carbine’s .30 caliber bullet (assuming it’s not a FMJ, which would still work, just not as well) is an excellent short range deer caliber and humans as well.

          • Bad Penguin

            It went straight through the lower part of the heart, FMJ. I checked out the heart when I gutted it.

          • Anon. E Maus

            It can have twice the power of any of those cartridges, but that doesn’t make up for it’s short effective range, you really are setting yourself up at a disadvantage when your enemies will have 7.62x39mm rifles reaching twice as far as you can.

          • valorius

            Yeah, right. Most 7.62x39mm rifles are pretty well useless outside about 150 meters.

          • Bad Penguin

            An uncle of mine was a Marine in the Korean war and he loved His Thompson just complained of the weight. He was one of 2 people in his company that survived a battle and he credited it to his Thompson.

          • Rick D

            Myth. Most of that was based on poor marksmanship.

          • Major Tom

            Did you not read? I was NOT referring to the meme of Chinese overcoat body armor!

          • Rick D

            Nope, I’m stupid…Make you feel better ?

          • Anon. E Maus

            .357 Magnum would also be a subpar infantry fighting cartridge.
            Good up close, but only up close.

          • Rick D

            At distance yes. But the same can be said of any pistol caliber carbine

          • Anon. E Maus

            The M1 and M2 Carbine at beast reaches out to 150ft with reliability, which is MUCH too short for an infantry combat rifle, you need to be able to reach at least twice that.

            The .30 Carbine cartridge is more of a PDW/Subgun kind of cartridge than an infantry rifle cartridge.

          • valorius

            7.62x39mm is highly challenged outside 150m in actual combat conditions.

          • mosinman

            whats wrong with the AR-10?

          • Kivaari

            Heavy recoil. Poor in FA.

          • mosinman

            Like most .308 battle rifles then

          • Major Tom

            It might be the worst of the bunch though. Lighter weight weapon plus high rate of fire with no real recoil mitigating mechanism equals much worse than even the squirrelly M14.

          • mosinman

            it never seemed like FA in a .308 rifle was a good idea anyways and almost everyone dropped that setting on .308 battlerifles

          • Major Tom

            The thing with .308 battle rifles was under US doctrine at least, FA was emergencies and large numbers of enemies only. Ya know, the dreaded “Oh sh*t!” moments. Especially at close range.

            Any other situation was to use Semi. You weren’t supposed to use an M14 or G3 or FAL or AR-10 as a spray and pray submachinegun.

          • CavScout

            It has a recoil mitigating mechanism. It’s called a buffer and recoil spring.

          • Anon. E Maus

            The AR-10 really has way lighter recoil and easier FA control than the FAL or M14.

          • Kivaari

            Not true.

          • Kivaari

            Not according to those that have shot it. See the report here on TFB.

          • Dave Buck

            As somebody who shot the FAL (well the C1A1 actually) for many years, I can tell you that the FAL has a greater felt recoil than many other designs. The reason why is obvious if you do the force diagrams. Just think about it: the operating rod strikes the top of the breech block carrier, the breech block moves up to unlock, then the recoil is channeled downwards by the recoil spring (which is mounted at an angle). The whole system is designed to rear up and beat you in the face. Reliable it certainly is. Comfortable to shoot, it certainly is not.

          • Kivaari

            I had an FN-FAL and enjoyed it. It was OK for a semi-auto.

          • CavScout

            Wrong, as Danish ones don’t count. Those are the worst.

          • Bad Penguin

            I’ve shot both the AR10 and a M-14 and anyone that says the 10 has more recoil that a 14 is an unmitigated idiot. The AR-10 has the same recoil system as the M-16. The SCAR17 does have way less recoil than any of them.

          • Kivaari

            See the report on TFB. This covers REAL AR10s, not the M110 semi-auto.

          • Bad Penguin

            Oh so you are referring to the rifle made almost 60 years ago as compared to a modern version. Thats a silly argument. There is a company that makes an AR pattern .338 Lapua rifle in full auto and the vid shows him dumping a full 10 round mag standing up unsupported and he stays on target.

          • Bad Penguin

            Heavy recoil? Thats a new one.

          • Kivaari

            Check out the TFB.com/ar10 report.

          • Kivaari

            Heavy compared to the M16 and AKM.

          • CavScout

            Haha, dummy. The FAL was so bad in FA that the Brits chose to omit it it from theirs. None are good, but the G3 is probably the worst.

          • Kivaari

            You did notice I agreed the recoil was high enough that it wasn’t suitable for FA use. Or I guess you didn’t notice that. When I wrote “Heavy recoil. Poor in FA.”

          • CavScout

            The AR-10 is what’s getting chosen for a .308 designated marksman rifle. Not the FAL.

          • HKfan

            While the FAL may be a little heavy and bulky by 2017 standards. Two things it did exceptionally well was its reliability and its accuracy. Of all the rifles I can think of, the G3 would be the only one that can rival it.

      • Brett baker

        Yep, complete with we didn’t have problems, we showed our fighting spirit” stories:) more disturbing though, is this OICW 2: The adoption?

      • Mikial

        Define “folks.” The AR platform works well and once the issues surrounding to propellant mixture and poor maintenance were corrected it has had a stellar record. But . . . I will admit that there were times I would have liked a little more oomph than the 5.56 was providing.

  • James Kachman

    Really, really hoping this is a sign of adopting a 7.62×51 DMR or IAR equivalent, not a general transition to 7.62×51. That seems like it’d be a major mistake.

    • iksnilol

      Why a 7.62×51 DMR? It won’t outrange a 5.56 dmr by much if anything.

      Better get a 6.5 DMR.

      • James Kachman

        Oh, if the Army wants to put a 6.5 (CT?) DMR into play, that’d be great. I presumed 7.62×51 because that’s what Milley said the round was developed in, and due to the immense logistical inertia behind 7.62 NATO.

  • DW

    Didn’t the Army already do that in the indivudual carbine program and decided against it and many other competitors?

    • forrest1985

      Yeah but they haven’t had a programme for at least….oh say 5 mins

  • JSIII

    We really need to get over our ego driven thing in the US on having the main combat rifle be a US design. We accepted foreign replacements for the M60 because we had nothing good in the pipeline, maybe it is time to do the same for our rifles. IMO the Marines and Army should have a massive shoot off to narrow the field. Invite Poland, Germany, Israeli, pretty much anyone who has an existing design. Let the polish BERYL rifles shoot it off with the Tavors and then narrow it down to 2-4 designs, from there you do a massive testing regime over the course of a year and bam.

    • Get over it fanbois

      Don’t forget the Harrier, Stryker, LAV-25, M9, M32, Sig 320, M1014, M320, AT4 and the M3 MAAWS. The defense industry hasn’t made anything good since the 1980’s. So the Pentagon has no choice but to outsource weapons development or buy off the shelf.

      • ARCNA442

        Yeah, remember the F-22, SM-3, Predator, Reaper, SDB, Griffin, LAWS, THAAD, FBCB2, and NIFC-CA. We haven’t built anything new at all in the last 30 years let alone totally revolutionized how wars are fought.

  • Max Müller

    Why even worry about level 4 penetration? You won’t get it (yet) with any kind of weapon that would allow the soldiers to carry as much ammo as they would need in the combat we have seen in the last years. Yes, something a bit more powerfull with the same weight would be cool, like a 6 or 6.5mm caseless/cased telescopic. But that’s not off the shelf.
    But even that wouldn’t come close to smash level 4. And why should it? Do those politicians still think we would have a real ground troop war with russia? Even if we wouldn’t go nuclear somewhere along the line, it would still be fought with carrier strike groups, missiles and fighter jets as well as computers before any ground troops would come close to russian foot soldiers.
    Asymetric warefare against non-conventional forces seems to be the deal of the 21st century. Gotta have a lot of ammo for your light weight, compact weapon to do well in urban warefare where you barely see your enemy but can’t call in airstrikes because of civilians.
    Getting something like a 308+ battlerifle with long and heavy barrels and little ammo while upgrading to level 5 body armor because level 4 isn’t save enough isn’t exactly helpfull. Just add a little bit more firepower, ammo, protection and you won’t be able to walk anymore so you get a engine for it and you end up with an abrams tank instead of a infantry man.

    • toms

      That is not true. There are limited amount of rounds that are .22x size and penetrate body armor. Problem is limited range of penetration especially from 14.5″ barrels.

    • Kivaari

      Mechanized infantry would be engaged from the onset of war. The anti-tank role will be needed instantly.

  • cwp

    Considering the epidemic of orthopedic injuries the Army is already suffering through, I would expect them to be a little leery about adopting a heavier rifle unless the advantage it offers over the M4 is *really* impressive. (And maybe it is, at least as far as they’re concerned. I’m not denying the possibility.)

    I know, I know. “It’s only a pound and a third!” “Kids these days are a bunch of nancies who need to harden the f*ck up!” “I marched all the way from Caen to Berlin carrying a Garand, a Thompson, *and* a BAR!”

    • Audie Bakerson

      No 1911? Amateur!

      • Major Tom

        Junior enlisted man.

    • forrest1985

      Yup, just what the infantry want. A big heavy rifle

      • valorius

        I do submit that the infantry wants an actual rifle.

        • iksnilol

          I thought you got out of the infantry a decade or two ago ?

          • valorius

            Go on a infantry forum and you will find that current troops are not very fond of being regularly outranged by the Taliban in Afghanistan.

            When were you in the infantry?

          • iksnilol

            Call in airstrike or arty, problem solved.

          • valorius

            Ever sat around waiting for an airstrike while you were getting shot at? I hear it’s unpleasant.

          • James Kachman

            Plus, how are you going to call in an airstrike if you don’t know where the bad guys are? You have to find them them and fix them to kill them, and that requires foot patrols. Dismounted infantry moving amongst the people have always been the best counter to insurgencies.

          • valorius

            Sadly they’re the best targets too.

          • Joshua

            When it’s harassing who cares.

          • valorius

            Everyone being shot at cares.

          • Joshua

            I’ve been shot at lots. Harassing fire is just that. Harassing.

            It’s really not a huge deal.

          • valorius

            Until it hits you.

          • Joshua

            Your issue here is you do not have the combat experience to understand the differences.

            Harassing fire is mostly psychological. They’ll burn through 800+ rounds and you may have one round crack nearby overhead, but that one round is the outlier, the lone wolf, the so called flyer….but it’s enough to make soldiers take cover because their brain goes into fight or flight.

          • valorius

            Why do you think i don’t have combat experience?

            What’s more, ive seen you tube videos of US troops in a-stan freaking out and screaming “Im hit” after getting pelted with some small rock fragments from a near miss.

          • mosinman

            the million dollar solution to a 10 cent question

          • Kivaari

            There aren’t supposed to be many of our troops engaged in ground pounding. Deaths due to gun fire are counted on one hand in the last year.

          • valorius

            There’s been very little activity off base in the way of patrols, etc for the past few years. Obama had all but shut the war down by the end of his term.

            When our forces were going out into the field looking for trouble our casualties were obviously a lot higher. To the tune of 12,309 wounded and 2,396 dead. 1403 dead were by way of IED.
            Source: icasualties dot org/EF

          • Kivaari

            It would be good to see the break down of the non-IED casualties showing how many were a result of artillery fire (rockets, mortars included).

          • valorius

            I didn’t do a comprehensive enough search to find that data. Feel up to it?

          • Kivaari

            I’ll try. No results may result!

          • valorius

            Good luck 😀

          • Joshua

            It hovers around 8-10% of casualties since the start of the Iraq/Afghanistan war have been from hostile small arms.

          • Kivaari

            That makes sense.

          • iksnilol

            Never, I stayed in school and make more with the added benefit of my cute tushie being completely unshot.

            But yeah, good luck outranging a DSHK with any 5.56 or 7.62×51.

          • valorius

            I served and managed to do alright in life. As you know i’m typing this from a nice perch in the mountains of beautiful Hawaii 🙂

            The Afghans don’t only use DSHKs. They’re using dragunovs and even old bolt action rifles like the lee enfield- all with longer range than an M4. Like this one, seized in Eastern Ghazni province:

            https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/45950581d6f9251b508d0efda588fe8a1448f05ca53ed20b588c0146fdc463b6.jpg

          • Dave

            PKM I hear

          • Joshua

            And their fire is innefective and nothing more than harassing fire.

          • valorius

            I’ll explain that to the dead guys who came home in a box.

          • Joshua

            The majority of small arms deaths took place in Iraq where the majority of those ranges were sub 400M.

            Practically no soldiers are dieing to the SVD and DSHK chilling 1500M away.

          • valorius

            Majority. If you’re the guy that got hit by harassing fire at 1000 m (i agree 1500m is not much concern), that “practically no” means very little, wouldn’t you agree?

            I’m more concerned with the 600ish or so meter range that Afghan riflemen are shooting at our guys at with old large caliber bolt action rifles. Get hit by a .303 at 600 meters and it will definitely ruin your day. A lee enfield is certainly capable of hitting man sized targets at that range if you got a good- or lucky- rifleman at the trigger.

          • Joshua

            Again, you don’t have the combat experience to discuss what you are attempting to.

            In the big picture one soldier out of 500,000+ being hit by that one flyer out of 800+ rounds is statistically insignificant.

            The M4A1 is more than capable at 600M.

          • valorius

            Again, why do you think i dont have combat experience? Honestly, even beyond my military service, i grew up in a city that is many, many times more dangeorus than anywhere youve ever been in Afghanistan.

            And sure it is. On a range, maybe.

          • Joshua

            I’ve been in more places that Afghanistan just fyi.

            And your ability to not understand harassing fire is psychological is why I question the amount of your combat experience.

          • Robert Kalani Foxworthy

            You cite Iraq battlefield stats. Afganistan is a whole Different battlefield. ​every unit has slightly different experience. Even in same battlefield environment.

          • Joshua

            Think about this.

            If you let me have 10 guys.

            7 with M4A1s, 2 with M240s, and 1 with a M110.

            Let me get into position on the high ground with those 240s in tripods.

            It wouldn’t be harassing fire that I unleashed on the unsuspecting targets.

            All of them would be dead long before they could react.

          • valorius

            Why would you be in position on the high ground if you’re on patrol or landing in an LZ? What’s more, after your squad opens up, the enemy is going to scatter. You’re not going to be killing them instantly unless they’re in totally open terrain or you’re at extremely close range.

            Stop talking nonsense.

          • Joshua

            It’s called an example.

            I switched the roles.

            I put a small number of US soldiers into the position the enemy usually is, and put them out on patrol like we usually are.

            The outcomes would be vastly different. I could guarantee we would kill every single one of them who went out on patrol before any could react.

            That’s the difference with harassing fire. You make a lot of noise, waste a lot of ammo, and if you get truly lucky you may hit someone.

          • valorius

            I guarantee you if you pinned them down and called air and arty you’d probably get 80% of them after an hour or two, unless, again, they’re in open terrain with no cover. If there’s cover and it’s not flat ground it’s not exactly a feat to crawl the hell out of there on your belly.

            If it was easy as you’re making it sound, the war would’ve been over a long, long time ago.

          • Joshua

            I wouldn’t need those things.

            The issue is we never have the high ground, we’re never the ones starting the engagements and ambushing the patrols.

            We are always the ones reacting to fire. Always the ones waiting to be fired upon, then having to locate where it comes from, yet despite all this they still aren’t killing us.

          • valorius

            They’ve had some pretty brilliant successes considering the disparity of forces (over-running the USMC air base and destroying several harriers on the ground is probably the most notable), but for the most part they can’t press any advantage or they get rekt by air and arty- from all i’ve read. Pretty much the same as the situation in Iraq and even going back to the Gulf War.

            The afghans always win in the end because they just outlast the invader. Whether it was Alexander, the Mongols, the British, or the Russians. In the end, they’ll outlast us too.

          • Joshua

            Of course they will. Afghanistan is to big with to small of a population to ever be ruled like a republic.

            That said usually they over run bases with small numbers of soldiers, by using large numbers of insurgents.

            Take Keating for an example, it was 350:60, and they had the high ground.

            Numbers can often times be the best weapon around.

            Especially when those large numbers don’t care to die.

          • valorius

            “Quantity has a quality all it’s own.”

          • Joshua

            That’s the quote. I was drawing a blank.

          • Robert Kalani Foxworthy

            Alexander didn’t loose Afganistan. He died in India.

          • valorius

            Do the greeks still own Afghanistan? 😉

          • Patrick ONeil

            Lightening isn’t targeted, but just by chance it still manages to kill people now and again.

          • iksnilol

            Only way a .303 will outrange a M4 is by volley fire.

          • valorius

            Um, ok.

          • justin casillas

            I was in Kunar and Kamdesh in 09-10 I never felt outranged. When there was a dshk planted in the rocks somewhere it was scary but nobody actually got hit. Mostly we would park behind cover and call for fire and that was that.

          • valorius

            So the USMC wanted the “more accurate at range than a SAW” M27 for what exactly?

          • justin casillas

            I want a rifle more accurate at range too, I would also like the issue boots to be made by redwing, I really think the body armor could be lighter and that Rolex would make an excellent issue watch. Also I think Uncle Sam should give me a pony and care about my feelings. My point is that just because the military asks for something doesn’t indicate a clear and present tactical need. I’m sure if there was a weapon that could fill every role on the battlefield and only weighed 4lbs, never suffered malfunctions, and was accurate to 7 miles, it would probably get adopted. Despite being more than a soldier truly needs. Another factor is that with burocratic entities you always have to ask for a million to get fifty bucks. Btw I got shot at with a Czech made Persian Mauser over there once.

          • valorius

            Actually, i suspect that 4lb weapon you described would NEVER get adopted. 😉

            Thanks for your service dude.

          • Robert Kalani Foxworthy

            Incorrect. .303 is the basis of .308 but with slightly different bullet dia.

          • iksnilol

            And how short range do you think 5.56 has? And do you think those Enfields are even close to MOA?

          • Baggy270

            Wrong the .300 Savage was the parent cartridge for the .308

      • Yeah, it seems sensible to maybe give PFC Beefmeat McThunderblast a big heavy rifle for the times you need one and give everyone else in the squad a lightweight assault rifle they can easily carry all day.

    • PK

      All of the people saying it’s not a big deal to add just a little more weight… they have no idea how much the rest of a loadout weighs. What’s the average infantry carrying, these days? 120lbs extra, or so?

      • valorius

        It sucks (truly), but the difference in barrel length in issuing an actual rifle could easily be mitigated by going back to an A1 profile pencil barrel.

        • Kivaari

          The A1 profile is great. I built 3 rifles using the pencil barrel and find them quite capable.

          • mosinman

            no no no , you’re doing it wrong, you need a 12.5 in bull barrel made by HK to fight a real war

          • Kivaari

            I have an 11.5″ pencil barrel on my SBR.

        • int19h

          Or we could go back to A1 in a carbine, and use further weight savings that result to carry more ammo.

          • valorius

            Me personally i would prefer the enhanced performance of a longer barrel first, and the weight savings of a pencil barrel second. I carried an 8lb M16A2 and would choose that over an M4 without hesitation (An A4 with the carrying handle ass’y back in the armory to save a few ounces would be even better).

            5.56mm is about velocity. 20″ gives a lot more of it, and all the benefits that brings with it.

            I’m totally fine with a short carbine for vehicle crewmen, REMFs, officers, mortarmen, commandos. I just think infantry forces should carry an actual rifle because of the increased performance.

      • Joshua

        I weigh on average 310lbs when I have all my stuff.

        Try humping 310lbs up a mountain with thin air.

        • valorius

          That’s why you make the big bucks. Our total load for an M16A2 loadout full up with ammo, grenades, a claymore, a belt for the M60, etc, in the cold war days was probably about 110lbs or so.

          PS- thanks for your service.

    • Patrick ONeil

      Maybe it’s a backdoor way to weed women or of combat positions. Living a light M4 is no problem. Firing the M4 is no problem…virtually no recoil. Now replace with a 7.62 rifle – the added weight and recoil will make it harder on the women than the men.

  • anon

    “We need something to penetrate body armor cause 5.56 ap doesn’t exist. This is why we’re going with the m27. The german space magic makes the 5.56 round fired from it 90% more killy”

    • No one

      Superior Teutonic Engineering wins again!

      “We want to modernize our force of M4A1s based off the AR-15, so we’re looking at an AR-15 with an SSP that costs 3 times as much because of the brand name.”

      • mosinman

        its so advanced it was designed around requirements for 2006

    • valorius

      M995 doesn’t exist.

      • iksnilol

        40mm belt feds don’t exist either.

        • Joshua

          Neither does M993.

  • forrest1985

    Just my 2 pence, but I don’t see what’s wrong with Upgrading the short falls of the M4? M4 is a very decent weapon system and with some off shelf upgrades could be even better. Focus on CT/ lighter ammo before trying to re-invent wheel. Hk416 is a very expensive system for what it is. LWRC seems a decent option and LMT just won a few major contracts overseas didn’t they?

    • valorius

      If you upgraded the shortfalls of the M4 you’d end up with an M16A5. Just saying. 😉

      • iksnilol

        Just it’d be hella shorter with a 14.5 inch barrel.

        • valorius

          Then it would just be an M4.

    • n0truscotsman

      The M4 should have been upgraded a long time ago, a collaborative effort between the Army and Marine Corps.

      • Joshua

        No thanks, that got us the M16A2 designed for prone target shooting.

        • n0truscotsman

          The Marine Corps will be more limited in their demands than they were when the M16A2 was adopted. The result will be an upgraded M4 which they will be forced to embrace anyways, kind of like they already are now.

          Frankly, at this point, Im ready for the next SECDEF to go nuclear on them and force the M4, Chinooks, Blackhawks, and multicam upon them. One could dream.

    • elephantrider

      Too late. The USMC is already onto stage two or three of their ‘backdoor’ process of issuing heavy ass DMR carbines service wide

  • LazyReader

    Or for less money we could upgrade the M4 with a short stroke piston and a more durable barrel.

    • CommonSense23

      Why would we add a short stroke piston?

      • Uniform223

        Because it’s a piston! It doesn’t need to be cleaned and is more reliable! Hurr-durr-durr!

      • Dr. Longfellow Buchenrad

        Because we want a lighter and more reliable gun…

        Oh wait…

        • Joshua

          Pistons aren’t more reliable.

          USASOC did a huge massive test on this.

          • int19h

            Pistons aren’t more reliable if you slap one on top of the AR action, which is not designed for a piston.

            A dedicated piston gun built from bottom up, with bolt carrier etc designed accordingly (e.g. riding on rails, like AK and everything else that is sane does) is a whole different kettle of fish.

          • Joshua

            You under estimate the amount of various firearms USASOC have tested.

            So far none of the piston driven guns Haven proven to be superior in 5.56.

          • int19h

            USA is not the only one testing guns, you know. For some mysterious reason, other countries don’t rush to adopt DI because it’s more reliable or some such. In fact, the total number of new DI platforms developed in the past several decades is zero. This despite the fact that all the relevant patents have expired a long time ago.

          • Joshua

            Most EU countries also limit their entrants to EU companies only.

            Besides that, what other countries do doesn’t effect me. What their testing shows to get to their decisions doesn’t matter.

            What matters is the testing I’ve seen and been apart of and that testing is what leads to my comments.
            When I say pistons have shown no improvement, I say this based off testing I have been privy to conducted by CRANE.

            I’ve also seen a comparison of CRANEs maintenance schedule for both the M4A1 Block II and the 416.

            For EU made guns the 416A5 is easily the cream of the crop. I won’t deny this.

            Compared to a M4A1 with a RIS II and a SSF, the only improvement is a slightly better barrel.

          • neckbone

            Give us some examples of models tested and the round count they lasted then please.

          • Joshua

            No can do broheem. I can only tell things that are not classified.

            Most of what you seek requires clearance to view.

            I can tell you that in testing the Mk-16 publicly averaged 14,000 rounds bolt and 13,000 rounds barrel life.

            And I can tell you the M4A1 averages 13,000 rounds bolt life and 7,000-10,000 rounds barrel life.

            Outside of that I can’t discuss the exact numbers on other guns tested, a lot of which haven’t ever been publicly known.

            However I can verify the post from last week had numbers very close to what I’ve seen listed for the 2 guns discussed(why the M27 is not the gun for Marine corps) I believe was the title of the article.

          • Uniform223

            Ever see someone mortar an AK?

            During a test the US Army found that the m4a1 was considered the most reliable in terms of class 3 stoppages/malfunctions. All other carbines/rifles used in that test were dedicated piston designed platforms.

          • Dr. Longfellow Buchenrad

            And they definitely arent lighter

            My comment was thick with sarcasm

    • Kivaari

      Didn’t field trials show the piston guns failing sooner than the DI guns?

    • valorius

      Why? Just to make it heavier?

      • iksnilol

        Yet you want a longer barrel (and if it isn’t made thicker it will negatively affect precision).

        • valorius

          As the guys at InRangeTV just showed, a 18″ barreled high quality DI AR-15 can be assembled that weighs just 5.2lbs.

          An M4 carbine with 14.5″ barrel weighs 6.4lbs.

          • iksnilol

            you dodged my question.

            Longer pencil barrel is less precise than a shorter, thicker barrel.

            You do realize folks shoot more than 3-5 rounds in a fight?

          • valorius

            Like in Vietnam, when all our M16s had pencil barrels?

            Oh.

          • iksnilol

            Like in Vietnam, when 58k of you died?

            ‘Cause that worked out great, now did it?

          • valorius

            58k died because the M16 had a pencil barrel? Is that also why we lost over 6,000 aircraft too?

          • mosinman

            obviously…. we’re just too stupid to grasp his advanced reasoning

          • valorius

            Apparently.

          • iksnilol

            No, just saying that the way you did stuff back then wasn’t the best way to do things. This is sorta evidenced by tactics and equipment changing (and death toll sinking).

          • valorius

            The M16A1 with pencil barrel was in service well into the late 90s with various reserve units.

          • iksnilol

            I assumed the US military did more from the Vietnam war to the 90’s than just have a pencil barrel.

          • valorius

            My point was that the pencil barrel had nothing to do with US losses in vietnam, or reduced losses since.

          • mosinman

            this deserves a facepalm

          • Kivaari

            How many million PAVN and VC were killed?

          • It’s always baffled me that anyone could possibly think the US “lost the Vietnam War”; we may have burned a lot of blood and treasure on it, but it had a negligible effect on our economy and 58k dead and 2million+ wounded military personnel is a shockingly low number for a shooting war that lasted over a decade. By comparison, I’ve seen numbers that go as high as five million Vietnamese combatants and civilians killed, the economies of both Vietnams were left in ruins, and it took the united Vietnam nearly thirty years to get back to the same level of standard of living and international trade it had before the war. The fact is, Vietnam lost the American War.

          • Kivaari

            Well put.

          • iksnilol

            Probably hella more.

            My point was what we are doing now might be stupid for someone stuck in the 60-70’s but it is actually better than what one did back then.

          • Dude– Memorial Day was yesterday, pull it out and tie a knot in it, man.

          • valorius

            Faxon “gunner profile” (slightly heavier than a pencil) 20″ barrel – 1.5lbs
            M4 profile 14.5″ barrel- 1.75lbs

          • iksnilol

            Again, ignore the weight and think about multiple shot performance.

            What would a 10 or 20 round group from either barrel look like (considering same ammo)?

        • Kivaari

          Just go to a 16″ mid-length upper with a lightweight profile barrel. When you add all the gear to it it becomes heavy enough to be stable when shooting. And the bayonet still fits.

          • iksnilol

            I was thinking more in regards to the barrel whipping during repeated firing.

  • MNOR

    This comment-section is going to be reaaly quiet, like no comments at all…..

    Shitstorm in 3,2,1…

  • USMC03Vet

    Everybody panic. Time to sell off all AR15’s and 5.56 ammo!

  • valorius

    M993 and M995 will defeat any known or projected SAPI plate around. And has been able to do so for over 20 years.

  • valorius

    If the army is truly interested in an improved rifle, i’d direct them to the AR-15 that the guys over at InRangeTV just built from parts last month. 18″ barrel…5.2 lbs. Only change i’d make is going to a shorter handguard so a bayonet lug can be fitted, but beyond that– very impressive.

    • iksnilol

      What about length and sustaining fire? Their barrel looked awfully skinny.

      • Joshua

        CHF, SOCOM profile M4A1 barrel with a DD RIS II.

        Problem solved.

        • iksnilol

          But that’s “too short” since we all know that only a 20 inch barrel is useful at distance.

    • Frankly, not very impressed with that gun.

      • valorius

        Can’t please everyone. Give me an 18″ 5.2lb rifle of a 14″ 6.5lb carbine any day.

  • n0truscotsman
  • Uniform223

    Simple solution to all of this.

    Keep the m855a1 as standard use but in a shtf conflict with an adversary that can field level IV body armor, issue dedicated AP rounds like m995.

    Contract COTS parts/upgrades for the M4A1 or piggy back off of USASOC’s new URC program. Drop the H&K’s CSASS bid/entry and procure thr M110K2 kits.

    Simple and cost effective. No reason to spend 3k on something that current m4a1s can already do or buy a new platform that has little to commonality with platforms already in use.

    • Brett baker

      Too much common sense. And since we’ve apparently developed a marine-proof optic, can’t we train to shoot around the plate?

    • Joshua

      That won’t give those sweet kick back and retirement gigs.

  • They should take a hard look at how much the HK416 costs and how few of its components are compatible with standard AR assemblies and accessories.

    It seems to me that if suppression (within 500-600yds) is your primary goal, 5.56 makes more sense than a battle rifle caliber, since you can carry a heck of a lot more of it without hiring an ammo sherpa.

  • mechamaster

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/1c390030679dd5b075f8577dc9b54e1049c4b89c42f5a6fc20aa7c2649abd7e0.png

    Maybe they should considered Colt C901 again.
    The basic design is 7,62x51mm, but it can be adapted into 5,56 althrought it’s a bit heavier.
    And maybe opening the new way to the next general-Purpose Caliber concept.

  • Risto Kantonen

    Based on what i’ve seen in the past, it seems to me that the U.S. Armed Forces have an annoying tendency to start far too many programmes without proper planning prior to starting said programmes, and then the programmes are aborted before completion. This wastes a lot of resources and money. Planning is key to the success of any project, and the larger and more complex a given project is, the more impact planning has on the outcome of the project.

    You have a metric tonne of very high level technical competence in the U.S., use the scientific method and let those that are qualified to evaluate a given matter manage the projects.

  • Halder

    Why are our soldiers operating out of artillery support range? Lack of funding or is there some legitimate tactical reason?

  • To me, members of the U.S. military, ESPECIALLY the leadership, should take a look at the think-tank Combatreform and take some hints from them (combatreform. org/21stcenturyrifle. htm combatreform. org/lightmachineguns. htm)

  • Sean

    It is time to name the HK416 as the next service rifle of all US armed forced. Just like the P320, we have to update our military’s armament in these crazy times. No other AR-15 rifle offers what a 416 does as far as reliability, accuracy, quality, and refinement.

    France just adopted the 416 to replace the FAMAS and they are very pleased. Germany is due for a new service rifle G36 replacement and they are considering the 416 as well as HK’s new 433.

    The SCAR is a fabulous platform and it is hands down in the top 4 military/combat rifles but I also get the AR-15 platform bias since it is relatively lightweight, easier to train with, and just so common/familiar.

    Hope we go with the 416 or even the 433.

  • Dolphy

    But that a 50-year-old design has been superseded by something everybody but Nats would have thought so by now .

  • Those M4s can easily be converted over to .300 blackout with minimal cost. This should give them to extra bit of punch they’re looking for.

    • elephantrider

      300 Blackout is pointless, unless you are shooting sub-sonic suppressed.

  • Rogertc1

    Looks like a AR clone to me.

  • Anon. E Maus

    Boy, what a complete goddamn sidegrade that would be.
    Trading one 5.56mm rifle for another.

    The USMC “replacing” the SAW with the IAR isn’t smart either.

  • uisconfruzed

    Tungsten cored 6mm or 6.5 Grendel?
    Speed + mass is needed to penetrate armor & they’d be a much lighter load to carry than 7.62 x 51.

    • Form Factor

      Way to simple and efficient…

      They rather want 7.62×51 with verry few rounds to carry, no fire superority, stupidly bad trajectory and wind drift aswell as supersonic range…

    • ArjunaKunti

      Tungsten cored military bullets will never be adopted in wide range due to cost reasons…

      The optimum cartridge is something like the Chinese 5.8×42 DBP88 “heavy round”. It has an effective range of 800 metres (875 yd) and can penetrate 3 mm steel plates at a distance of 1,000 metres (1,094 yd). It is reported to have very good accuracy at 600 metres (656 yd).

      It is also quite cheap due to the steel case and steel cored bullet. Basically a “budget” MK262 with armor piercing capabilities.

  • Bad Penguin

    Soldiers will abuse the 416 and reliability will go down. I’m not an M4 fanboy but the 416 is a lot more expensive of an old design. I am a fan of piston rifles as they run cleaner and stay on target for faster follow up shots.

    • Form Factor

      Piston Rifles stay a bit cleaner yes. But “say on target” …? It de facto has more recoil and also barrel warping.

      • Bad Penguin

        I’ve got 2 by different makers and both are better than any military rifle or m4 gas impingement variant I’ve ever shot. “Bit cleaner” I put 300 rounds down range in one day and the rifle was so clean I almost didnt clean it.

  • GR Arnold

    And if the H&K rifle is anything like their pistols it will have one of the longest trigger pulls in the entire damn industry. Whatever they choose, they better build it 100% in the USA.

  • Eric B.

    I think our NATO allies (IF we still have any after the Trump administration) will want an intermediate cartridge in the 6.8 to 6.5 range of bullets.

    • Reality

      6.5 aka 6.7mm requires freaking unlogical 2927 to 3333Joule. Weight and Recoil becomes stupidly high, it also reduces mag capacity.

      Between 6 to 6.5 is a much better area for a ton of reasons.

      • Eric B.

        “Reality”,
        I have a Steyr AUG in 5.56 and a Ruger Precision Rifle in 6.5 Creedmoor. The 6.5 CM easily outshoots the 5.56 NATO round in terms of trajectory, range and energy.

        The 6.5 Creedmoor has relatively mild recoil which is low enough to permit me to stay on target and see hits/misses. That’s not easily done with a 7.62 NATO/.308 Winchester. Further, the 6.5 CM has far better ballistics and is less affected by wind than the 7.62 NATO due to its much greater BC.

  • midnitelamp

    author of cartridges of the world says if 30 carbine had been loaded to normal pressure velocity would increase by 400fps.

  • Richard Lutz

    “our 5.56 doesn’t penetrate Russian body armor”

    It would seem the US Army needs to adopt the 7.62x51mm chambered HK417 and SLAP rounds for it that use sub-caliber tungsten bullets.

  • Guido FL

    The 5.56 was a mistake from day one. Anyone think a 55 or 62 grain .223 bullet is a battle rifle caliber ? The .223 was developed for varmints like prairie dogs, etc. but adapted because the ammo was light enabling a higher round count load out.

  • adverse4

    We could lose a war by the time the military decides anything. Actually, the US Military has not won much of anything lately.