French Armed Forces Select The Benelli Supernova Shotgun

Doug E
by Doug E
Image credit: French Army Facebook Page. Benelli Supernova selected by the French Armed Forces

Beretta Defense recently announced that the whole Armed Forces of France have adopted the Benelli Supernova 12 guage shotgun in several configurations, making the Supernova the standard issue shotgun of the French military. Benelli will have a seven-year contract to produce the Supernova shotguns, with a contracted cost of €4,500,000. The convertible Benelli M3 (capable of both pump-action and semi-auto) shotgun is already in use in special French Army units, but the Benelli Supernova had to go through its own testing process, which was reportedly “severe,” but undisclosed at this time. Christophe Bannier, Director of military and law enforcement sales for Beretta Defense is quoted below.

Military Weapon Contracts @ TFB

We are pleased to announce that the Ministry of the Armed Forces/SIMMT has officially notified us today of a contract for the supply of Benelli Supernova Tactical cal. 12 shotguns, for a period of 7 years, with a maximum value of 4.500.000 €.

The Benelli Supernova Tactical, after very severe evaluation tests from which it emerged as the winner, becomes the standard shotgun of the entire French armed forces, in 3 different versions, 18.5″ Tactical , 14″ Tactical and 28″ Anti-drone.

The contract also includes the supply of accessories, tactical VIS/IR flashlights, shotshell holders, multipoint tactical slings, etc… This is a great success for Humbert, Benelli and
Beretta Defense Technologies.

Image credit: Benelli Defense

The 18.5 and 14-inch configurations are quite common barrel lengths, while the 28-inch barrel for anti-drone work is seen less frequently as some militaries are fielding electronic jamming “rifles,” which have much greater range than conventional firearms. There was no further mention as to how many of each length model of the Supernova shotguns the French Armed Forces have settled on. The Benelli Supernova has an interesting feature in that it has a magazine cut off button on the underside of the handguard, that when depressed while working the action, stops ammunition from feeding from the magazine. This feature allows for a quick switch to different types of loads.

Check Prices on Benelli Supernova Shotguns

What do you think about the French Armed Forces’ choice of the Benelli Supernova shotgun? If you own one yourself, please tell us how your experience has been in the comment section.

We are committed to finding, researching, and recommending the best products. We earn commissions from purchases you make using the retail links in our product reviews. Learn more about how this works.
Doug E
Doug E

Doug has been a firearms enthusiast since age 16 after getting to shoot with a friend. Since then he's taken many others out to the range for their first time. He is a husband, father, grandfather, police officer, outdoorsman, artist and a student of history. Doug has been a TFB reader from the start and is happy to be a contributor of content. Doug can be reached at battleshipgrey61 AT, or battleshipgrey61 on Instagram.

More by Doug E

Join the conversation
3 of 56 comments
  • Gunsandrockets Gunsandrockets on Jun 12, 2022

    So France now uses an Austrian pistol, an Italian shotgun, a Belgian GPMG, and a German assault-rifle.

    How cosmopolitan!

    The ghosts of the pre-WW1 French military-industrial complex must be wailing in disgust. Of course it was that French inclination towards autarky and government monopolization of the firearms industry which left France in today's position, unable to supply themselves with modern domestic firearms because the domestic industrial-base had withered and died.

    • Mazryonh Mazryonh on Jun 12, 2022

      @gunsandrockets I believe it's spelled "autarky," FYI. It's kind of hard to believe that the French Military-Industrial Complex used to be so self-sufficient, but its time has already come and gone.

  • Mazryonh Mazryonh on Jun 12, 2022

    One feature that appears to be missing from the Benelli Supernova shotgun in a military context is a bayonet lug. No version of the Benelli Supernova I'm aware of has a bayonet lug (unlike, say, the Mossberg 590A1), and given the typical anti-personnel uses of a combat shotgun (close- to mid-range), coupled with the cumbersome reload time necessitated by its tube magazine, I would think that the French armed forces would have asked for a version of this shotgun with a bayonet lug to keep their bases covered (because a jam/misfire, or similar malfunction, or just plain running out of ammo in the tube magazine at CQB range, a combat shotgun's optimal "working environment," would leave the user vulnerable until resolved, while at least a bayonet fixed beforehand gives the user another option against an opponent at very close range).

    Maybe Mossberg didn't make a big enough sweetheart deal for the French armed forces when it counted?