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Britain’s Army has been upgrading its weapons. More than £5 million were spent on the upgrading of the SA80 rifle to give it enhanced accuracy, improved camouflage and a more comfortable grip along with a lighter weight. So far, 5,000 weapons have been upgraded to A3 standard out of a total of around 200,000 SA80 variants in military service.

The rifle’s manufacturer Heckler and Koch Great Britain said the SA80 A3’s improved precision would help allay fears of enemy troops advancing to within dangerous ranges on the battlefield.

The SA80 was originally conceived in the 1980s but has had continual problems with jamming and not firing. However, the new improved model has earned praise from military chiefs.

A spokesman for Heckler and Koch Great Britain said: “We have a more accurate, more lethal weapon than almost anyone else out there.”

Improvements include a one-piece sight rail which enables accessories such as thermal imagers to be added without moving the existing sight.

Additionally, the housing of the barrel is separate to the hand guard, thereby inducing less vibration aimed at contributing to a more accurate shot.

Special welding has also compensated for the very small torque reaction induced by a round as it spins down the barrel after firing, according to

According to the Army, the user feedback had been positive, with further improvements to weapons and equipment planned.