Lithgow Arms USA Importing Thales Aus. EF88/F90 as “Atrax” Rifle [NRA 2016]

    Big news at the National Rifle Association Annual Meeting 2016, importer Lithgow Arms USA will be bringing the EF88/F90 improved bullpup assault rifle to the USA. The F90 is a variant of the Steyr AUG developed for the Australian Defence Force to replace the F88 (their designation for the AUG) bullpup rifle.

    While I did not catch the Lithgow Arms booth at the show (much to my dismay!) I caught up with the company over the telephone and via email. Also, Larry Vickers, who did visit the booth, graciously allowed me to use his photographs of the select-fire F90s that Lithgow Arms brought to the show:

    13256061_10156928720075416_7426466635069438056_n 13260181_10156928720675416_5102419498173793120_n 13239481_10156928720670416_2494752145871267202_n 13263662_10156928720620416_8667843286221257915_n 13240780_10156928720500416_7938523670470246992_n 13244868_10156928720505416_4618929040281938686_n 13266049_10156928720470416_511622273990980072_n 13254860_10156928720510416_117053552121571833_o 13230152_10156928720185416_5495447006284545219_n

    Thanks to Larry Vickers for all of these photos.

    Thales/Lithgow advertises the F90’s improvements versus the AUG as reduced weight (3.25kg vs. 3.60kg), improved trigger pull, improved removable barrel mechanism integrated with the optics rail, compatibility with a new grenade launcher, and an improved ambidextrous ejection pattern facilitated by a shell deflector.

    The Lithgow Arms Atrax is just the latest in a renaissance of bullpup rifles on the American civilian market. Demand for a shorter weapon – driven in large part by the increasing popularity of suppressors – that is unregulated by the NFA has led to a resurgence in popularity of this concept that had almost died out on the military market.

    Lithgow Arms representatives said that the rifle has been submitted to the ATF for review, and they hope sales can begin by the 2017 SHOT Show. The rifle will retail for around $2,000.

    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. He can be reached via email at [email protected]