German Army Picks Heckler & Koch’s HK416A8 as New Assault Rifle

The German Army has selected Heckler & Koch’s HK416A8 as its new assault rifle.

The decision was made amid a long-running saga between the German defense firm and its sole competitor for the program, C.G. Haenel.

In 2020, C.G. Haenel was contracted to deliver more than 120,000 of its MK556 rifles for 250 million euros ($265.7 million).

However, Heckler & Koch exercised its right to protest the decision, claiming that there were some patent infringements with the competitor’s weapon.

After undergoing a thorough review, Germany decided to lift its earlier decision and excluded C.G. Haenel from the program.

Heckler & Koch has now been cleared to produce 118,718 assault rifles for the German Army for 209 million euros ($222 million).

The weapons, which will serve as the successor to the G36, are expected to arrive in 2024.

HK416 Assault Rifle

Originally developed in 2004 for special units, the Heckler & Koch HK416 is a gas-operated assault rifle in the 5.56 x 45-millimeter NATO caliber.

Its design is based on the AR-15 class and uses a proprietary short-stroke, gas piston system.

The weapon features a user-friendly lower receiver for optimized magazine compatibility and improved durability during operations.

One of its unique features is the “winter trigger guard,” which makes it easier to use by operators with gloves and cold weather clothing.

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