Kalashnikov to Begin Production of PL-15 in 2019

Matthew Moss
by Matthew Moss
Lebedev PL-15 (Kalashnikov Media)

Kalashnikov Concern has announced that production of their 9x19mm PL-15 pistol has been given the green light. The Russian Military sees the pistol as promising, however, they have not yet expressed public interest. The Russian Military currently uses the Makarov and the newer, also Kalashnikov Concern-designed, MP-443 Grach.

Back in March, we reported that Kalashnikov was tooling up for production of the PL-15 as part of the company’s $88 million investment plan. There is reportedly strong Russian military interest in Dmitri Lebedev’s design, with the Russian Army interested in replacing the venerable 9×18mm Makarov, which is still predominantly the Army’s issue side arm, with the full size PL-15. On the 14th September, Kalashnikov released a statement announcing that they intend to begin production of the PL-15 next year.

Here’s Kalashnikov Concern’s statement in full (machine translated):

Concern “Kalashnikov” will launch a serial production of the Lebedev pistol (PL-15) in 2019. This was reported by the managing director of IMZ Alexander Gvozdik.

“The serial production will be in 2019, this is absolutely accurate. All equipment is on the way, “he said.

Gvozdik also added that the product will be manufactured using new technologies. “It will meet the consumer properties as the main customer on the subject of small arms fire, as well as the direction of civilian small arms,” ​​he said.

PL-15K Lebedev (Kalashnikov Concern)

It is likely that the shorter PL-15K compact pistol, unveiled at the ARMY 2017 exposition, will also go into production at the same time. The slightly smaller and lighter PL-15K weighs 1.6 lbs and is 7.1 inches long compared to the full size pistol’s 8.1 inches and has a 14 round magazine.

Kalashnikov Media have put together a video looking at both of their pistols the PL-15 and the MP-443 and a video on the PL-15K here. For an inside look at the history of the PL-15’s development, check out this piece by our very own Vlad.


Matthew Moss
Matthew Moss

Managing Editor: TheFirearmBlog.com & Overt Defense.com. Matt is a British historian specialising in small arms development and military history. He has written several books and for a variety of publications in both the US and UK. Matt is also runs The Armourer's Bench, a video series on historically significant small arms. Here on TFB he covers product and current military small arms news. Reach Matt at: matt@thefirearmblog.com

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  • GeneralJed GeneralJed on Sep 22, 2018

    The reason that the U.S. military has such a variety of always improving excellent weapons to choose from is that the demand from the civilian market supplies the need for competitiveness and capital for constant improvement. If that were to disappear because of gun control, we would have slow improvements just like any other state controlled firearm enterprise. Of course, the liberals pretend to not see this.

  • Jpcmt Jpcmt on Sep 23, 2018

    so, so sad I'll never see one here because of our dumbass government and its sanctions. and no, i don't care about ukraine or nato. just wants me the pl15...wanted it when it was the pl14. at least i can see larry vickers video shooting it. and no, the arsenal POS is nothing like it.