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The Russian Instrument Design Bureau (KBP) is developing the KSV heavy sniper system for the Russian Armed Forces. The Russian military is planning to arm the snipers with rifles capable of rendering armored cars and armored personnel carriers.

According to, the heavy sniper rifle is on the 2020 Army Small Arms Development List.

The program is expected to take two to three years. The weapon actually will present a whole system, rather than simply a sniper rifle, because systems with the caliber in excess of 20 mm are small-caliber cannons, rather than small arms under the international weapon classification.

“The company is expected to make the first prototype of the KSV in 2017,” Alexei Sorokin, director of the Central Design and Research Bureau of Sporting and Hunting Weapons (an affiliate of KBP), has told the Izvestia daily paper. He added:”We’re at the most difficult stage of the work now – the development of the round for the new system”.

“We expect to complete the design documentation, start making the KSV and launch the development tests in the course of 2017” Explained Sorokin.

However, the weapon will be pretty large, measuring almost 2 m, and rather heavy, because it will have to offset the hard kick produced by the 23-mm round. Sorokin emphasized the fact that although the KSV’s round could not punch through the thick armor of main battle tanks, one bullet was still enough to render them inefficient.

“Now, the development of sniper rifles with a caliber close to 20 mm is high on the small-arms agenda of many countries,” military expert Alexei Leonkov said. Such rifles are heavier than the standard in-service 12.7-mm systems, he added.