A Marine fires an M27 Infantry Automatic Rifle during a squad-sized, live-fire range at Camp Lejeune, N.C., March 29, 2017. The Marines engaged targets from unknown distances with the IAR and M240B medium machine gun. The Marines are with 1st Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment.
Lance Cpl. Corey A. Ridgway, a Marine with Battalion Landing Team, 2nd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, fires the M27 Infantry Automatic Rifle from the kneeling position at Camp Hansen, Okinawa, Japan, Dec. 17, 2016. As the Marine Corps’ only continuously forward-deployed unit, the 31st MEU air-ground-logistics team provides a flexible force, ready to perform a wide range of military operations, from limited combat to humanitarian assistance operations, through the Indo-Asia Pacific region.
Pfc. Nathan Murdock, rifleman, 3rd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, fires his M27 Infantry Automatic Rifle at a target during the Designated Marksman Course’s culminating event at Range 113, Jan. 28, 2016.
Marines with Battalion Landing Team, 2nd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, sight-in with M27 Infantry Automatic Rifles at Camp Hansen, Okinawa, Japan, Dec. 16, 2016. As the Marine Corps’ only continuously forward-deployed unit, the 31st MEU air-ground-logistics team provides a flexible force, ready to perform a wide range of military operations, from limited combat to humanitarian assistance operations, through the Indo-Asia Pacific region.
Heckler and Koch Defense, HK’s US-based subsidiary that handles military and law enforcement sales, has been awarded a contract to supply the U.S. Marine Corps with additional M27 IAR (Infantry Automatic Rifle) systems.
According to the full announcement, the contract is a five-year, firm-fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract worth up to $29,427,750. The deal calls for as many as 15,000 M27 IAR systems and parts to be delivered by April 30, 2023. 70 percent of work on the systems will be performed in Oberndorf, Germany. The remaining 30 percent of the job is set to be done in Columbus, Ga. and Ashburn, Va.
The M27 IAR is based on the HK416. Chambered in 5.56×45mm NATO, it features a 16.5-inch barrel and uses a gas-operated, short-stroke piston system. It was first fielded back in 2010 as the service sought to replace the M249 SAW. However, officials eventually decided both weapons were needed. Thus, the M27 is being phased in to replace the M4.
In February 2017, the USMC issued a notice of intent to sole source up to 50,814 M27 IAR systems from HK. More recently, the service began fielding the M27 IAR paired with Leupold’s TS-30A2 Mark 4 MR/T riflescope. The combination of the two is known as the M38 SDMR (Squad Designated Marksman Rifle). A Corps spokesman said the service is on track to fully field the M38 SDMR by Sept. 2018.
See some of the M27 IAR specs below, via the USMC’s Squad Weapons B2E2657 Student Handout:
M27 IAR Specs
- Caliber: 5.56x45mm
- Operating System: Pusher rod gas system, closed bolt
- Barrel Twist: 1 in 7 right-hand twist
- Trigger Pull: 5.5 – 9.5 lbs
- Muzzle Velocity: 2,887 fps
- Fire Selector: Safe, Semi, and Auto
- Weight: 9 lbs 13.5 oz (loaded and sling)
- Barrel Length: 16.5 inches
- Length: Extended. 37.44 inches. Collapsed. 33.66 inches
Rates of Fire
- Cyclic Rate of Fire: 700-900 rpm
- Sustained Rate of Fire: 36 rpm at 95 degrees Fahrenheit
- Point Target: 550m
- Area Target: 700m
- Maximum Range: 3,938 yds
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