German Army One Step Closer To Procuring HK416A8

    HK416 A8 (Heckler & Koch)

    On 14 December the German government’s Budget and Defense Committees convened and the initial funds for the procurement of the German Army’s next service rifle were granted. This clears the way for the initial procurement of the HK416A8 as the G95A1.

    Germany’s Search For a New Service Rifle @ TFB:

    Our German colleagues at Soldat Und Technik report that Heckler & Koch GmbH, in Obendorf, is set to receive a framework contract worth around 273.3 million euros or $291 million. The German Federal Ministry of Defence has, however, stated in a press release that as a result of the committee meetings and the appropriation of funding “the Bundeswehr can now procure 118,718 new assault rifles for around 209 million euros.”

    The ‘System Sturmgewehr Bundeswehr’ or System Assault Rifle Bundeswehr will reportedly be made up of two variants of the HK416 – the G95A1, likely to have a 16.5 inch barrel, and the G95KA1 carbine variant which will have a 14 inch barrel. As with all rifles in the HK416 family the rifles use a short-stroke gas piston system and a rotating bolt head locking mechanism.

    G95 KSK

    A HK416A5 (designated the G95) – a KSK photograph

    The G95 rifles will replace the Bundeswehr’s G36 rifles. The HK416A7 variant, with a 14.5 inch barrel, is already in use with Germany’s Special Forces Command – the KSK. Externally, it is believed that the G95A1 will have different furniture with a stock with an adjustable cheek rise and a pistol grip angle similar to that of the G36 in line with the requirements of the German Army’s original tender.

    An initial funding request worth 25 million Euros has been green-lit by the Bundestag with a minimum order for 13,929 G95A1s and 3,104 G95KA1s. Further details on when the first guns may be delivered are not yet available. Last year it was stated that the contract for the System Sturmgewehr Bundeswehr would call for delivery of 20,000 rifles per year for five years.

    HK416A8 – G95KA1 (via BMVG)

    In June, we reported that the Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court had dismissed a lawsuit brought by C.G. Haenel, the rifle contract’s former winners, which was holding up procurement of the HK416. Germany’s independent competition authority, the Bundeskartellamt, had previously rejected Haenel’s objections and noted that “a necessary recalculation of the offer price from Haenel had shown that the offer of the company was economically inferior to that of Heckler & Koch.”

    The Bundeswehr have already selected the ELCAN Specter DR 1-4X as the optic which will be paired with the new rifles. They are currently in search of a new under barrel grenade launcher to pair with the new service rifles, with 4,776 units to be purchased initially. We also know from statements made by Thomas Hitschler, Parliamentary State Secretary to the Federal Minister of Defence, in August that most German troops will be issued with five magazines with their rifle while ‘specialized forces’ will receive ten. The Federal Ministry of Defence expects the first rifles to enter service by 2024.

    TFB will continue to monitor the story and update accordingly.

    Matthew Moss

    _________________________________________________________________________ – Managing Editor – Managing Editor

    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. He also runs Historical Firearms, a blog that explores the history, development and use of firearms. Matt is also co-founder of 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: [email protected]