US Army’s New Magazine A FAILURE? USMC Test of Enhanced Performance Magazine Shows It Performed Worse Than Predecessor, PMAG

    The EPM (left) alongside the older tan, green, and black follower 30 round USGI magazines.

    The US Army’s newest magazine for the M16 and M4, the Enhanced Performance Magazine (EPM), failed a recent USMC test of rifle magazines, according to a recent Marine Corps SYSCOM document released by National Review. The report shows the EPM coming in last in the tests, with a mean rounds between failures (MRBF) figure below the baseline 600 in almost every subtest. In contrast, the magazine from Vendor A – which TFB has confirmed was the Magpul PMag Gen M3, recently adopted by the United States Marine Corps – was the best performer in every subtest. You can see the results of the test in the slides embedded below:

    It should be noted that although these tests do not reflect well on the EPM, there are some potential mitigating factors to be aware of. First, it is evidently that at least some of the rifles and carbines tested had some performance issues unrelated to the magazines themselves. At least three of the weapons experienced light primer strikes, at least one weapon had problems with its trigger not resetting, and several weapons experienced stuck cases – all malfunctions that have nothing to do with the magazines themselves. Having said that, even adjusted for these malfunctions, the PMag still performed the best out of all the magazines tested.

    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]


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