UPDATE 6/18/18: The Army announced Friday that it has expanded the scope of the test and that it added three more sumachine guns that are in the running for the new contract: the Angstadt Arms’ UDP-9, the Heckler & Koch UMP9, and the Noveske Sub Compact Weapon.
We reported last month that the U.S. Army is looking for a submachine gun for the first time in a long time.
Now, this story from tactical-life.com reveals the top contenders for the RFI issued in May for a new “Sub Compact Weapon.” The Army recently announced it intends to award a sole source contract to 10 different manufacturers for commercially available off-the-shelf firearms.
According to the Army, a “Sub Compact Weapon” is a “highly concealable” system that can “engage threats with a high volume of lethal and accurate fire at close range with minimal collateral damage.” The RFI also reveals the gun must be a select-fire 9mm firearm with a MIL-STD-1913 accessory rail.
So, here are the contenders getting a sole source contract and the amount of the contract. The anticipated award date is July 2018.
Awardee: Lewis Machine & Tool Company for MARS-L9 Compact Suppressed Weapon
Awardee: PTR Industries, Inc. for PTR 9CS Sub Compact Weapon
Awardee: Noveske for Sub Compact Weapon
And if you’re wondering exactly why the Army wants a submachine gun for the first time since WWII, here’s the official explanation:
“The acquisition of the SCW is essential in meeting the agency’s requirement to support Product Manager, Individual Weapons mission to assess commercially available off-the-shelf (COTS) SCWs in order to fill a capability gap in lethality and concealability. The SCW are being procured for further evaluation and testing. This evaluation will help to inform current capabilities for the Capability Production Document for the Maneuver Support Center of Excellence. Currently, Personal Security Detail (PSD) military personnel utilize pistols and rifles, however, there is an operational need for additional concealability and lethality. Failure to provide the selected SCW for assessment and evaluation will leave PSD military personnel with a capability gap which can result in increased war fighter casualties and jeopardize the success of the U.S. mission.”