TTAG Commentator SFC Jose A. Garcia offered the following analysis under the post Gun Review: Beretta 92A1 (Civilian M9A1):
“I’d like to reply to Mr. Carpenter and anyone else out there that might be hazarding a guess as to what the next US Military sidearm will be. I doubt very much that the Army and the Marines will adopt any other pistol besides the M9 or M9A1 for a very long time (20 years or so). My reasoning is this . . .
The search for such an item may well be underway, but *read the operational requirements very closely.* The US Army operational requirements specifically say (key words) *increased lethality.* Which is code speak meaning that the US Army at least is after something that will offer a significant leap ahead in terminal ballistic performance.
That being the case, and with the dramatic terminal ballistic performance improvement that the M855A1 offers (over M855 or other 5.56 ammo), I think the next “side arm” will not be a side arm at all. I think the US Army is after the H&K MP7, *BUT* with upgrades to its ammo that will copy the technology of the M855A1 round. I’m not going to get into that, just know it works.
Such a weapon firing that type of ammo will offer the increased lethality (better terminal ballistics) that the US Army is after, as well as inherently better accuracy at all ranges, and increased magazine capacity. The MP7 has also got some combat time under its belt with US forces already.
My bet is the future will see the military using fewer pistol all together. Those combat support and combat service and support, tankers, MP’s, command staff, etc., folks carrying pistols now-a-days will be carrying the MP7 or similar such weapon in the future.
Striker fire pistols are nice, but the Army is looking for leap ahead technology that a pistol just isn’t going to provide.”