DPMS Panther Mark 12 5.56mm

The Mark 12 has been in U.S. military service for…

The Mark 12 has been in U.S. military service for some years, although the DPMS interpretation came at the request for test samples by a U.S. Special Ops unit that demands anonymity. Other manufacturers also submitted candidates, but the DPMS rifles outperformed all other competitors. Due to time constraints, the DPMS test rifles were submitted in semiautomatic only. Whether or not production rifles will be select fire cannot be determined at the time of this writing in Spring 2007. We prefer semiautomatic rifles because they can deliver accurate fire just as well as a select fire rifle— the operative word being “accurate.” Select fire, however, is useful for ambushes and breaking contact with units whose strength is significantly larger than the defending force. For the moment, though, the DPMS Mark 12 which is the subject of this evaluation is identical to the rifles sent to the above unit for evaluation.

Photo by Chris RohlingThe actual history of the Mark 12 goes back to Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom, where earlier versions saw service in U.S. Special Operations Forces, both Army and Navy.

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