Kalashnikov Concern recently released a new English language video regarding their PL-15K compact pistol, MP-444 pistol, AM-17 and AMB-17 compact assault rifles, and SVCh semiautomatic sniper rifle. By way of a walkthrough from Kalashnikov Concern technical consultant Vladimir Onokoy, the video offers English speakers an important look at the technical features of the new weapons, which were until now something of a mystery to those on this side of the language barrier. The video is embedded below, followed by a written summary:
The AM-17 and AMB-17 are described in the video as compact assault rifles in 5.45x39mm and 9x39mm. Onokoy makes special mention of the new 5.45mm Kalashnikov Concern windowed polymer magazines, and states that the AMB-17 is intended as a modern option for Russian units utilizing the 9x39mm caliber, to replace their VSS Vintorez, AS Val, SR-3/SR-3M Vikhr, 9A-91, and VSK-94 weapons.
The SVCh (“Ess Vee Chyah”, formerly SVK) is offered in 7.62x54mmR (with SVD magazine) and .308 Winchester/7.62x51mm NATO (with .308 Tigr magazine), and in two barrel lengths – 16 inch and 20 inch – although this could change as the rifle develops into a production model. Onokoy advertises the SVCh as being capable of holding 1 MOA with a 10 shot group. The rifle is advertised as weighing less than 4 kilograms, which is directly comparable to a similarly configured FN SCAR 17. The SVCh is designed as both a designated marksman rifle to replace the SVD, as well as a “battle rifle” for those customers who want a standard large caliber weapon, Onokoy said in the video.
Both firearms are based on the 1975 Dragunov MA compact assault rifle, designed as part of the competition that eventually produced the AKS-74U “Krinkov”. The AM/AMB-17 and SVCh are both short stroke piston designs, like their parent MA compact assault rifle.
The PL-15K is based on Kalashnikov Concern’s Lebedev PL-15 pistol, but in the same size class as the Glock 19. It has a 14 round magazine and an aluminum frame. A Kalashnikov employee told TFB that they were very impressed with the PL-15’s trigger, and that the designer Lebedev was himself a sport pistol shooter with high standards as to what a trigger needed to be. According to the employee, the PL-15 boasts a short, light, smooth trigger with a good reset. In the video, Vladimir Onokoy also mentions the new MP-444, which is a brand new pistol with a polymer frame. The details of its design are not yet finalized, although it is known that it is based on the previous Bagira (Bagheera, from Rudyard Kipling’s anthology The Jungle Book) project
Kalashnikov Concern is still playing it close to the chest about their new weapons, but it’s at least nice to have confirmation of some of the details that until now we could only speculate on.