Winchester made some news recently, providing more evidence the U.S. military remains committed to moving to the 6.8mm cartridge. A new 6.8 Next Gen Tracer Ammo study contract will bring $9 million to Winchester Ammunition. It further cements Winchester’s position as the leading manufacturer of small caliber ammunition to the U.S. military.
6.8 Next Gen Tracer Ammo Study
The study will take place at the Lake City Army Ammunition Plant (LCAAP) in Independence, Missouri. The facility comprises the only government-owned, contractor-operated small caliber ammunition production factory in the country. The study will attempt to design and create tracer ammo to support the growing Next Generation Squad Weapon (NGSW) program.
“Winchester is very excited to begin executing this critical 6.8mm NGSW trace ammunition study at the Lake City Army Ammunition Plant,” said Brett Flaugher, President of Winchester. “With the goal of improving soldier capability, this groundbreaking work will utilize new tracer technology to create robust production processes and enable the transition of prototype trace technology into fielded NGSW tracer ammunition. This NGSW tracer ammunition produced at Lake City will equip the future American Warfighter and help maintain the safety and defense of our nation.”
So we’re viewing this one as more tea leaves being read. With SIG’s rifles leading the way, the Army appears solidly committed to pursuing the NGSW path. It promises increased lethality and performance, all built around a bigger cartridge, the 6.8mm cartridge. We have reported heavily on the NGSW program, including the switch to 6.8mm. Though rumored for seemingly decades, it appears the Army–and with it, likely the entire U.S. military–might finally ditch the 5.56mm cartridge for good. Time will tell.
About Lake City
The Lake City Plan began production in 1941. It produces small-caliber military ammunition for both training and combat purposes. The plant covers nearly 4,000 acres, serving as a national test center for ammunition performance and weapons firing. For more info, visit winchestermilitary.com.