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It was recently announced that the U.S. Marine Corps has picked the Heckler & Koch M27 as its new infantry rifle.
The new rifle is part of a wider overhaul of the Marines’ infantry gear.
In addition to the rifle, the Marine Corps are also getting new communications equipment, body armor, suppressors and night-vision optics.
The Corps began running trials with the M27 in late 2016. In February 2017, the branch released a Request for Information asking various manufacturers about their capacity to produce 11,000 M27s.
In August 2017 the Corps announced its interest in buying more than 50,000 of the new weapons from Heckler & Koch.
The M27 was seen in action in Afghanistan, tested by a few Marines.
According to Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. Robert Neller, the 43cm M27 might not be ideal for mortar crews or Javelin missile operators, it could be issued to engineers and fire-support teams as well as to Marine infantry.
The 5.56-millimeter M27 is based on Heckler & Koch’s HK416. It’s piston-driven and sports a free-floating barrel. Marines reportedly like the M27 for its reliability and accuracy. A marksman’s variant called the M38 boasts a Leupold TS-30A2 Mark 4 MR/T variable-power scope in place of the Marines’ standard ACOG sights.
An M27 reportedly costs around $3,000, according to nationalinterest.org.
“The price for that rifle is comparable to what we paid for the M4s the riflemen currently have,” Chief Warrant Officer 5 Christian P. Wade, 2nd Marine Division Gunner