New from IWA: Astra MG556 5.56 Semi-Auto Rifle

    We love our readers. No really, we do. You send us lots of great stuff from all the tradeshows around the world. One of your eagle-eyed kin spotted the upcoming Astra MG556 5.56 semi-auto rifle. Externally very similar to the M249 SAW or FN MiniMi, the Astra is a closed-bolt weapon that feeds from the magazine port only.


    Features include a heavy-chromed 1/7 twist barrel, using a gas piston, rotating bolt operation. The stock folds to the side and the weapon comes equipped with a bipod.

    Unfortunately, the machine-gun look-alike is only a gun. The MG556 is semi-automatic only.

    Retail is expected around 4,900 Euros. No word on expected release date other than “Coming 2016”. Rest assured we’re keen to follow the weapon until its launch.

    Thanks Enrico for the tip and photos!

    Earlier today we received an email from the CEO of Astra with some additional information. As he said he would like to provide additional information for our readers. We appreciate his providing this information.

    First of all, i know that a machine gun not beltfed and closed bolt looks castrated, but in the 95% of European countries is forbidden, for this reason we decided to make a universal model for commercial market of our military version.
    To make the semiauto version we have completely redesigned the system, that now works similar to an AR. As you write is a semiauto rifle with a MG look.
    The stock is not foldable, is fixed (like the original Minimi) since there is a buffer and buffer spring inside.
    The MRSP of commercial version is 4.500 EUR, +/- $5.000.
    The delivery is planned before Christmas. There will be also a version in .222 Remington for Spanish market.
    In Swiss commercial market will be also available the standard version, full auto, open bolt, beltfed. That will be delivered with 3 barrels. Will be exactly the same version that we are selling on MLE market, with both barrel length options, 18.3″ and 13.7″. But the price is not yet established.

    The Astra products (StG4, MG556 and SL203), in European commercial market, will be distributed through our representative Prima Armi in Italy.

    Nathan S

    One of TFB’s resident Jarheads, Nathan now works within the firearms industry. A consecutive Marine rifle and pistol expert, he enjoys local 3-gun, NFA, gunsmithing, MSR’s, & high-speed gear. Nathan has traveled to over 30 countries working with US DoD & foreign MoDs.

    The above post is my opinion and does not reflect the views of any company or organization.