M9A3-b

In what has to be a big blow to Beretta, military.com is reporting, “U.S. Army weapons officials will not evaluate an improved version of the service’s Cold War-era 9mm pistol, choosing instead to search for a more modern soldier sidearm. In early December, Beretta USA, the maker of the U.S. military’s M9 pistol for 30 years, submitted its modernized M9A3 as a possible alternative to the Army’s Modular Handgun System program — an effort to replace the M9 with a more powerful, state-of-the-art pistol.” It seems the M9’s reliability and slide-mounted safety were primary factors in the decision. Just what the new handgun will look like is yet to be determined. “The move clears the way for the Army to release a pending request for proposal that will launch the MHS competition. … If successful, it would result in the Defense Department buying nearly 500,000 new pistols during a period of significant defense-spending reductions.” . . .

Apparently, the Army had already decided they didn’t want to stick with the decades-old Beretta platform.

“Obviously, they didn’t take a whole lot of time on this,” said Gabriele De Plano, vice president of military marketing and sales for Beretta USA, reacting to the news of the Army’s pre-Christmas decision after the M9A3’s December 10 unveiling.

Army officials “didn’t ask a single question; didn’t ask for a single sample” for evaluation, De Plano said.

Ouch. Any bets as to what the winning pistol will be…and who will produce it?

 

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164 Responses to Army Ditches Beretta M9A3 for New Design

    • Specs are so tight on Sigs, I’m not sure they’d pass the dirt and mud test. That issue would HAVE to be addressed.

        • US Coast Guard, US Navy Special Warfare, US Navy Aviation, US Navy NCSI, US Air Force OSI, US Army Criminal Investigation, US Secret Service, US Federal Air Marshals, US Dept. of Homeland Security, US Dept. of State, US Drug Enforcement Agency, US Federal Bureau of Investigations, plus a handful of smaller federal agencies including Veterans Affairs Police and US Postal Service, along with many police departments, including the Texas Rangers.

        • But all but the coast guard do NOT make them the only handgun available. Many use Glocks as well Most police prefer the Glock over the SIG every time.

      • Sig P226 passed the US Army’s test in 1985 with flying colors. Beretta’s 92FS won on the basis of overall lower cost of the contract even though the individual pistols were a bit, not much, more expensive than the P226, but you have to account for maintenance and replacement parts. Sig’s replacement parts were more expensive and it ballooned the final costs. There has been speculation that the Pentagon is considering the 45ACP again but not the 1911 platform, your guess is as good as anyone else’s. In military contracts, the lowest bidder wins even if it just by one dollar unless politics influences the final outcome (it always does in one form or another) regardless of the final costs. I own both the Beretta and the Sig and I prefer the Sig even though I like the Beretta; the Sig is more ergonomic and has a much better trigger making it easier to shoot accurately out of the box. With the 92FS more practice is required, specially in mastering the hard trigger but it still an accurate though more clumsy pistol.

        • You might want to read more of the M9 trials. There was a lot more than replacement parts blowing up the cost. A lot of controversy over leaked prices, not fair parts requirements.

        • Bzzt wrong.

          There is a lot of myth surrounded the M9 trails because it was before the days of the internet and source documents being commonly available to people. Personally I’ve actually read the GAO report on the trails the resulted in the selection of the M9.

          Sig actually failed the mud test, and the Beretta passed. And if it weren’t for the fact the fact that they needed two competitors for the bidding stage, Sig wouldn’t have passed to the next stage. Ultimately there were two rounds of bidding and the overall cost of the Beretta entry won.

      • If the S.A.S. and other SF groups have been using the SIG P226s for many years and currently use the 226 MK23 as standard , it has a pretty good provenance. Using a cheapened Berreta 92 always seemed an odd choice, but I guess quantity not quality is needed for the scale you guys work on (there a not even 500,000 service personal in the British military!).

    • The army is limited to using FMJ in their service weapons unlike police in US so they may be considering either going back to 45 possibly in 45+p or any anything else that has decent ballistics in FMJ

      • Even the .45 doesn’t have good ballistics in hardball, no pistol round does. And the rules of limiting itself to hardball are not as set as people think.

        • Flat nose ball seems to be a significant improvement on the typical round nose ball. Hornady developed flat nosed ball rounds in .45 and 9mm. I thought the services liked them, but they didn’t seem to go anywhere at that time. I know among others, the Marine special ops guys have bought updated 1911s. I think they are happy with them.

        • The Marsoc guys are actually pretty unhappy with the 1911. It’s a old outdated design, there is a reason that CAG dropped it for Glocks.

        • Sorry to disappoint everyone, but I just got some inside information on this. Caution: SPOILER ALERT!

          The Army has officially chosen the Glock 20 with a new Guncrafter Industries conversion to their new 1.55 caliber round! (M15532A1) It is non-expanding but due to the large diameter, it produces a large wound channel. It is going to be launching a Flat Nose 1,900 grain bullet at 535 FPS. Standard magazines hold 3, but there is an optional extended mag that holds 5 (even the extended mag will by NY compliant)! Due to the large grip, Glock is supposed to be releasing a Gen 5 SSOLF (Super Short Overtly Large Frame), but that probably won’t take place until after the first 100,000 Phase I delivery happens.

          They were going to choose the Desert Eagle, but the performance of this new weapon just made sense. I’m not really authorized to share this, so please don’t tell anyone!

        • Sorry seans, but I’m calling BS some stuff here. First off, it was the Asymmetrical Warfare Unit that ditched the 1911 for Glocks; to that effect, you don’t know WHY they ditched it. For anyone of us short of working with the SF themselves to say exactly why they made the switch is ridiculous. I’m not saying it isn’t possible, but you — nor I — don’t have the experience or authority to say exactly why they went to the Glock, or if that’s even the only sidearm they’re using.

          Secondly, don’t use the performance of one type of 1911 to gauge the reliability of the DOZENS of 1911s that exist of varying brands and build quality. Still, I’m curious to see your citations that MARSOC are unhappy with the M45.

        • Cozmolyne, I have attended a school with Marsoc and worked with them on multiple training exercises. The guys who wanted .45s wanted the MK24. And yes it was CAG who dropped the 1911, they went to a Glock 40(they were already using .40 cal 1911s), but last I dealt with them they had guys carrying Glocks in 9mm. And doesn’t matter how reliable they get, they still have two universal flaws compared to modern weapons. One the grip safety, and limited ammo capacity. CAG took over 50% casualties one year in Iraq and had multiple instances of wounded operators having to transition to pistol and either not being able to reload or not being able to use there pistol due to the 1911s idiosyncrasies. While at roughly the same time there was a couple high profile pistol uses in the other SOF units where either highly wounded men were able to use there pistol effectively due to lack of grip safety and over 2.5 times magazine capacity.

        • seans, while i agree that coz is dead wrong on most of the stuff he’s said, the two flaws of the 1911 are easily overcome. it’s not that hard to disable the grip safety and STI makes a very solid double stack 1911. for what i hear, some STI tacticals were deployed with some SF units. weather or not they were successful, i don’t know.

        • STI does NOT make a reliable double-stack 1911. CAG was using STIs. And they used them for a very, very short period of time. Because the magazines are as reliable as… something really unreliable. I’unno, a politician.

        • I was in a position supporting joint sservice SMUs where I can verify much of what seans been saying, though I’m not able to verify his conclusions… Doesn’t mean he’s wrong, I just can’t back up the ‘why’ they transitioned, though his claim makes a lot of sense and his details are true.

          1) CAG did generally adopt Glocks, with many other SMU/secret squirrel army support element following suit… as they do. As of my last deployment, SF ODA/ODB teams were carrying them.

          2) CAG was working an unparalleled nightly op tempo for a couple of years in OIF, and they took an unusual number of casualties early in this almost industrialized targeting campaign, there were injuries, and I could see one-handed secondary manipulation being an issue, though I’ve no facts supporting it.

          3) I’m writing this because it’s a good opportunity to pick nits about our consumer gun culture. There’s a lot of people that think the black ops guy have these huge ass FNP-45 with red dot, light, silencer or the humungous HK USP Mark 23 (or even the marginally more slithe USP Tactical that was requested by SOCOM when they realized the Mk. 23 was heavy garbage.)

          All across the tiers and the services, the group to the unit to the activity, these guys and girls use regular pistols as backups. Sure there might be a silenced P226 very rarely, but its just a Glock or a Sig with night sights, just like regular folk might get if they weren’t spending twice as much on something that makes them feel closer to greatness because a model looked operator in a color magazine ad for HK…

          (Actually Force Recon and MARSOC might be an exception to the plain jane pistol rule, as The Corps often is, and that’s cool for them. Shooter’s preference or tradition or pride or whatever with custom their 45s, I don’t know, but generally spec ops carry near-base reliable tools.

          Pistols are sooo back up. Hell, depending on the mission, ARs are backup and air cover is the primary weapon system. The difference in a combat pistol is in the combat and not the pistol. Weight is only never critical if you’re not a SWAT team hitching a ride to a contained situation or a dude at the range, and all our service members are better served by something light, quick, and effective than some of the heavy and cumbersome recommendations in the thread.

    • Beretta leaves Maryland over it’s crazy gun laws, upsetting then Govenor and presidential hopeful Martin O’Malley. The administration retaliates. This /might/ be about a better gun, but is probably about crony capitalism.

    • See the SiG lovers are slobbering. Dont get your hopes up. Beretta can still win remember the Army said no one month and changed there minds the next. Unless we goto a new caliber a new pistol and accessories will be too expensive in the end to goto. Overall this posting is rumor Mr. Cox heard not a official statement, so this could be a false rumor. Over all MHS is another ICC and SIG lovers like SCAR lovers slobber and cry all they time on ever rumor about the program and so more crap and drool from them will spew on any gun/military site. In the end SCAR lost and budget cost and NATO commitment may KILL the stupid idea of MHS. In the end we may end up again like the M-4A1 with the M-9A3, get over it.

      SIGs suck!

    • Some DOJ and other departments are using the 357 SIG round. Don’t know anything other than a report that they’ve purchased millions of rounds of ammo.

  1. “U.S. Army weapons officials will not evaluate an improved version of the service’s Cold War-era 9mm pistol, choosing instead to search for a more modern soldier sidearm. ”

    Translation: “A modification of existing firearms won’t get any Colonels, Generals, and Senators promoted. As such, minimum consideration for a new DoD pistol contract is at least four strip club media events per entrant, with the requirement of job additions and/or green energy media taglines for concerned Congressmen.”

    • Sounds a bit silly given that one of the primary selling point of Glocks is the light weight. Toss that out out and you’re stuck with a sub-par pistol at best.

      • The Glock 17 weighs 26oz unloaded, exactly the same as an alloy frame 1911 commander. While an alloy framed Glock is a stupid idea for a myriad of reasons, weight likely wouldn’t be one of them. I’d be ok with an M&P winning, I like them.

        • polymer frames, including glocks, chip if they are knocked around a lot. Al alloy glock frames don’t weight much more than the polymer frame.

      • Are you SURE they don’t want a “fancy pistol” with all the features you mentioned? Because if you actually knew about the MHS, you would know that those features (Threaded barrel, non-reflective coating, picatinny rail) are actually REQUIREMENTS! As well, there are some legitimate complaints about the 92’s base design… Namely, the slide-mounted safety (Why is that even a thing?), the way parts wear over time, and the fact that the grip doesn’t fit well for those with small hands.

        • This one does address the grip. It uses their slim Vertec frame. My Elite IA is built off of the same platform, and compared to my Elite II, it is super comfy! I take a lot of first-time shooters to the range on it. The new Wilson one has my interest (I do have a thing for the Beretta pistols, even with their deficiencies such as the slide-mount safety), but I don’t know why they didn’t make it with the Vertec frame with Brigadier slide (like my Elite IA).

          So, in reality, it brings it down to one true deficiency, the slide-mount safety. I still wouldn’t mind one of these when it comes to civilian market.

        • Considering that the military are forced to use FMJ they may consider 40S&W, 45ACP or 10MM. They could choose 45ACP+p for a faster bullet.

  2. Who knows. Typically for close quarters, I’d weigh in for an HK in .45ACP having a higher round cap than the 1911. But that might not work for the light weight limp wristed types working their way into front line units.

    It’ll probably end up being a 9MM, though…for the lightweights, and commonality.

    So…who knows.

    • Agreed. I don’t know why that is either, .45 really does not have much recoil out of a standard framed hand gun. Even smaller built people can handle it, and if they can’t, maybe they shouldnt be in the military. The APFT (at least the old one) requires you to be able to do 42 push ups in 2 minuets. If you can do that, you can handle a little recoil. Maybe we really need to look at who we’re filling our military with.

        • I agree with Another Robert on this.

          My Airborne class was the last one that had a pre-school PT test because not enough females and officers were even making it into the school.

          The military has diversity quotas for special schools and that in my mind is just ridiculous.

        • Damn straight it’s an all volunteer force, and if you don’t make the cut, you don’t get in. At least that’s how it used to be, or should be. The military should be the last place where everyone get a participation trophy. Everyone should be able to do the bare minimum PT standard man or woman. Same standard. The fact that women are allowed to have a lower PT standard should actually anger women. If you can’t do 42 push ups in a row, then how are you gonna haul a 200 pound or more, 6 ft tall man covered in body armor and ammo out of a burning Humvee and carry him to safety? The military IS NOT for everyone. People are going into combat, not a highshcool soccer match.

        • Laugh…I actually refrained from pointing out (with a bit of sarcasm) that the Army does not YET require 42 push ups in 2 *minuets*; but didn’t want to give the current pansy PC administration ideas.

      • That’s only for males. For females, the bare minimum is less than half of that. No to say there aren’t females who can’t meet or exceed the male standards, but from my ten years in the military, I can count the numbers on one hand.

        • Women & The Military.

          Though the current Muslim-in-Cheat has done his best to gut the US military of the finest warriors and has drastically destroyed most of our nuclear weapons stockpile…. This is all being done for a reason. His “team” only has a year left to finish his plan of utter destruction of the FORMERLY Great United States of America.

          I have served with several womenz in my 17 years in. BUT… That was the RARE exception. If the womenz must be on the front lines, there is truly one of them that I would not mind serving with:

          Michelle “Check out my Big Muscles” Hussein O’Bummerstan. She is massive. Plus, if you separated her from her live-in-“advisor”, Valerie Mohammed Abdullahad Hussein Jarrett, She’d be in such a rage, Michelle (aka “Mike” before the “TRANSITION”) would be one mean threat to the enemy!

          This husband and wife (or husband & husband // or wife & wife ???) radicals have done so much damage to the country I have been proud to call home ever since we came here from Cuba back in the late 70’s, I wonder if it can ever be undone…?? My folks taught me to treasure the freedoms permitted me in our new homeland when I was just a young child. Apparently when you come from Kenya, these values are not imparted to you by your “parents”.

          When my son enlists in just 2 short years, he will be lucky to be issued a Daisy BB gun to use. My parents must be rolling over in their graves — All of that sacrifice and the USA will be just like the country they fled. (Fidel and Raoooooool-de-fool are training our dictator on their methods of tyranny and we will soon be emptying out Gitmo and paying the Castros “reparations” and — the worst part — permitting the currently incarcerated terrorist residents to flee to live on Welfare & Food Stamps in the USA while using their new ObamaPhones.

    • The dual recoil springs and heavy slide in the USP 45 seem to soak up the recoil pretty well IMO. I think the bigger issue would be the massive grip size. I’ve heard people complain about the grip size of the 92fs and the USP isn’t much better(if any).

      People with small hands have had trouble “coming to grips” with my USP45.

    • Always love hearing people complain about how 9mm is for weaklings? Why is 9mm the preferred weapon of SOF in pistol caliber?

    • “One problem has to do with the M9’s slide-mounted safety. During malfunction drills, the shooter often engages the lever-style safety by accident, Army weapons officials say.” Text corrected above.

      • That makes sense. I usually charge my 92fs using the front scallops for that reason but it doesn’t work if your hands are sweaty and it probably wouldn’t work the best for clearing a jam because your hand would probably block the ejecting case. That is if I ever had a malfunction. Which brings us to the other part of the statement about reliability. I thought the only problems they ever had with reliability were due to the second rate aftermarket parkerized magazines and only then when they encountered the talc powder sand in Afghanistan. Personally I never had an issue disengaging the safety but it is much easier to just use the safety levers to rack the slide than the serrations.

  3. Just a concept I know, but from the picture it doesn’t look all that different from what the USMC is already using.

    If the Army really wants a new design, what made Beretta think a few tweaks and a paint job would garner any interest?

    Note – I have nothing against the Beretta 92 design and rather like it to be honest. Just think this appears to be a bad pitch.

      • Somehow they seem to have missed addressing the huge pink elephant in the room they call a “safety”.

        The slide mounted, wrong way, “oops” safety is BY FAR the largest complaint I hear from people about the 92.

        • The Taurus version of the 92 has a frame mounted safety. It makes me wonder if Taurus has Beretta by the short and curlys over it… patent wise. Something like, “Neener neener! We improved your design and now you can’t do the same thing! Neener neener!”

        • Patents apparently only last 20 years, if Taurus had one on the PT92 its likely expired already unless they changed it a little and refiled. Beretta probably just doesn’t want to admit its wrong at this point, same as HK and weird mag releases.

        • @ Timmy! and B,

          The reason the Taurus 92 copies have a frame mounted safety is because they are copies of Beretta’s original design. The original Beretta 92 had a frame mounted safety. The newer 92F and FS that the M9 is based upon switched to the slide mounted safety.

          So Beretta doesn’t need to worry about Taurus patents to use the frame mounted safety – Beretta had it first.

  4. I’m thinking M&P myself. DOD bought a ton of Sigma’s to deliver to the iraqi’s defense forces, so I bet they are already buttered up for that. Plus they get to sell it as an American made product, Smith is already tooled up to add a safety if they demand one.

    • Just saw your post. I was also going to suggest an FN and shocked nobody else did. I think they are definitely a high probability. FNH already supplies a large number of weapons to the military (M16, M240, M246, M2, M3, and just got the M4 contract this past year). They already competed in SOCOOM with their .45. I think this is realistically a high contender!

  5. Enough of those strip-club “events” and maybe they’ll bring back the 1911 and give the contract to Cabot… Seriously, I’m just wondering–metal or plastic?

  6. Oh hey look, the government wasting more money looking for a new toy.

    There’s nothing wrong with the M9 that can’t be fixed if they want it to be. Tired of the safety they originally required? Then switch to decocker only. Tired of the 9mm? You really want to tell me they can’t switch to the 96, or even make a 45 version?

  7. We can’t even begin to guess what will win because they said the RFP isn’t even released. So we don’t even know what they are looking for.

  8. It’s certainly going to be interesting to see who wins. Since it is a gun that will be for the masses (the masses being personnel who don’t shoot or practice a whole lot) I would be surprised if it is any standard type M&P or Glock type striker fired weapon. I would find it hard to believe that they would get a weapon without an external safety or a decocking mechanism since it will need to be designed for the lowest common denominator, not the operator type person.
    Another factor is will there be pressure to “save” an American company? Smith, Colt, Remington are on the ropes (mostly due to mismanagement) and that could be a factor especially when it comes to a high value contract such as this one. So, like I said, it will be interesting to see who wins and what they come up with and who wins.

    • “… for the masses (the masses being personnel who don’t shoot or practice a whole lot) … it will need to be designed for the lowest common denominator…”

      You mean, like police officers?

      • maybe the eventual winner will have a modular dog whistle option for police depts. Then they won’t have to chase them to shoot them

    • Manual safeties and decocking is far more complicated for the lowest common denominator than point and shoot.

      All these levers and switches just serve to confuse and complicate.

      If you want to shoot it point and squeeze. If you dont want to shoot it dont point and dont squeeze.

      Adding in an extra step or switch or lever isnt going to make a moron any safer and isnt going to make it any easier to train with.

      • If flicking a lever is too complicated for someone, that person should stay as far away from anything military as humanly possible… However, I also feel that adding a manual safety is partly a CYA maneuver, and partly for the moments when a person who is holding a gun for the first time muzzle-checks you with a finger on the trigger…

  9. I’d bet it will be a Glock brand Glock. I’m not a fan of Glocks because(to me) they feel soulless and void of any style even when compared to XD’s, USP’s and M&P’s for some reason but even I have to admit(grudgingly) that they work and work well.

    Anybody know how they’d hold up in mud or sand?

  10. Well color me surprised.

    Either way this whole thing (if it actually follows through) is to be won by either S&W or FN

    Both the M&P & FNS fill all the requirements and both companies both are currently greasing the pockets of the military.

  11. Because we are a ‘corporatocracy’, not a real capitalistic democracy, I suspect we will bail out Colt with a fat handgun deal. Sig or S&W should get it but they don’t have the hooks in the system like Colt does, or had.

  12. The m&p should not have won if it did. It doesn’t meet the stated endurance or modular aspects of the competition

    • “The m&p should not have won if it did. It doesn’t meet the stated endurance or modular aspects of the competition”

      The M&P survived over 63,000 rounds fired and a damn tornado, and both examples were with the weaker older gen models.
      The only pistols more “modular” is the P250 & the P320, the former of which had a horrendous reputation

  13. FN has some great double stack handguns, did they submit the FNX?
    Regardless of who wins it will probably have a more square slide than the M9, frame mounted safety, polymer body and be chambered in 9mm.

  14. This is, what, the third time in the last decade the military has decided to spend shitloads of money to hold trials for a new sidearm? Lots of excitement, lots of playing with things that go bang (hopefully on schedule) and lots of attention.

    And then they’ll stick with the M9 when they realize they can’t afford anything new.

    • It might also have to do with the downsizing of the military coupled with the ensuing glut of spare parts/guns. How is someone supposed to skim their cut if we don’t need to place new parts orders?

    • I love the alloy-frame, steel-slide Taurus PT-92!

      http://www.taurususa.com/product-details.cfm?id=133&category=Pistol

      http://www.taurususa.com/product-details.cfm?id=138&category=Pistol

      It’s built on the updated Beretta tooling that Forjas Taurus purchased from Beretta when Beretta completed its ‘in-country’ manufacturing contract of the ‘old’ Beretta 92 for the Brazilian military.

      It has been updated with a thumb-operated magazine release (over the original ‘butt-mounted’ release) and an innovatively-updated, frame-mounted, thumb-operated decocker/safety.

      Unlike the Beretta, the Taurus can be carried in three methods: chamber loaded, hammer down, safety OFF, chamber loaded, hammer down, safety ON, or “cocked & locked”: ala M1911.

      I carried the adjustable sight version, the PT-99, as a duty weapon for most of my LEO/CLEO career; only switching from Taurus to the Beretta 92FS when I joined the Air Guard Security Police (had to retrain myself to the ‘new’ safety location/operation), as we carried the M9 Beretta on duty.

      Believe me, my Taurus gave me ‘Ø’ problems during my many years of usage. 🙂

      After leaving civilian LE, Taurus introduced the PT-100 in .40 Cal. ‘Short & Wimpy’, so I sold my PT-92 to a fellow LEO, switched to the PT-100, then sold it when I ‘transitioned’ to the Beretta. Still carry it on a daily basis; with a Taurus PT-957 (.357 SiG) as a ‘back-up’.

      I would truly love to see Taurus USA release their version of the 92A3 with the Vertec / 1911-style grip configuration. I would probably switch back from Beretta. 🙂

  15. My thought is they may lean toward SIG as that prior to the Beretta it was a lead in…problem the Army had with SIG was the expense of the magazines.

    I would see them going either Sig 226 or HK USP or P30. Not even sure they are going to be looking at 9mm still. They may go 45, but then that is unlikely because not everyone can handle a 45 accurately or the recoil.

    Glock may be a possibilty, but not sure they are going polymer.

    FN could also be a possibilty as they are doing alot of the military’s “small arms”.

    Colt/Ruger/S&W not too sure of…I believe one of their requirements is going to be a weapon that can handle all sorts of environments, and none of those 3 I see being able to hold up well in the current environments we fight in.

    Just my 2 cents.

  16. The key here is the program name, MODULAR handgun system. Anything restricted to 9mm is out, it wouldn’t be worth the switchover cost. 45 ACP probably doesn’t make sense either, since the entire logistics chain would have to change to accommodate the “new” caliber. What does that leave but a Sig 320 variant? All the DoD has to do is buy a whole bunch of fire control units, and each branch can decide for themselves what caliber and frame size they want. At the end of the day you satisfy everybody’s wish list for a gun that can be made to fit the user’s hands and user role (MP, rifleman, special forces, mounted, etc.) and you only have 1 supply stream. Sounds like a no-brainer to me in terms of long-term costs.

    • How would the entire logistical train have trouble accomadating a round already in the inventory like the .45 but handle a newer caliber?

      • It’s already used, but at nowhere near the levels of 9mm. It’s not a problem, but it will cost money. Plus, there are some branches that will want to stick with 9mm. If the point is to have a modular sidearm, I don’t see what else is out there that can compete.

  17. Soft those of us who like the 90-series of pistols this will likely make it to the private citizen’s market. But Beretta has been releasing 92G’s, Brigadiers, and Vertecs over the past few months and is hinting at 92G-SDs in the next month or two so we’ll be busy trying to hide the new purchases from our wives.

  18. From what I have heard from my uncle who recently retired after 25 yrs as an Army Green Beret is that the Army is looking for a pistol that is multi-caliber capable with an easy swap of a barrel/extractor…Large Caliber Barrel/Extractor (.45 ACP) and small Caliber Barrel/Extractor (.40/9mm).

  19. I have a strong feeling that they want to move back to .45. My guesses are FNX 45, HK45 or an updated 1911.

  20. Of all the things the Army needs to fix, a new handgun of any type should not even be a consideration – waste of time and resources. A pistol of any make or model is nearly useless in combat (except to keep staff officers from having to schlepp a more cumbersome rifle around to the DFAC and such).

    How about investing in a practical & useful PDW like oh, say a P90, MP7 or VBR or something similar that can defeat body armor, is select fire, and really has some ability to be an effective close quarters weapon for those that can’t carry a full size rifle due to mission?

  21. DOD will spend $50mnillion (enough to buy 100000pc off the shelf) on RFQ/test/eval over the next 5yrs and due a “lack of funding” will fail to buy/field a single weapon (see also rifle replacement projects). While blowing billions on “green” fuel, EPA mitigation projects, breast cancer research and normalizing queers/women into combat arms.

  22. Well, if this goes anything like the U.S. Army’s search to replace the aging M4 platform, we’ll be discussing this for the next 15 years.

  23. The Brits bought Glocks to replace their old Hi-Powers in Afghanistan. Since their main use for the pistols was shootouts within the HQs, due to “Green on Blue” attacks, they wanted something that you could yank out of the holster and just start firing. The Glock fits that bill – the only problem is small-handed shooters don’t like the grip size. Even the G26 can be wide for some folks.

  24. If the military is NOT changing calibers, then this is a huge waste of resources. If they are continuing with the 9mm, then Beretta’s offer should be the easy winner. Update the current inventories as needed with an updated but compatible handgun (uses same holsters and magazines).

    • The magazines should work, but many of the holsters will not as most of them are designed for the non-railed M9.

  25. I want in on the speculation.

    The clear choice is the sig 250/320 platforms. They are modular as can be. Easy to disassemble for all maintenance and armorer work. They have the option of a manual safety. Different grip sizes available as well. Plus they are designed to accept multiple calibers.

  26. Well the Army says “more powerful” and “state of the art.” The only way I see them getting a “more powerful” gun is with a different cartridge and state of the art probably means polymer framed.

    HK45 seems like the obvious choice, that or the SIG P250.

  27. If I were in a combat situation and had to rely on a sidearm, I can’t think of a better one than the Glock 20 in 10 mm.

    I consider the likelihood of this happening in the US Military to be pretty much zero.

  28. Hmm…. Perhaps the 10mm might make a big come back. Full power loads will drop a few things and hit hard.

    • As a G20 owner it is the go to platform for the 10mm currently. However, Sig is releasing their version of the 10mm in the 220 platform. Let’s say for the sake of argument the true orig Norma Spec load was used. A 200 grain Truncated at the time, FMJ today at1200 would be difficult and costly in terms of maint and wear. Sig should be a contender in 10mm against Glock.

  29. “Berettas don’t bluff.”

    — Jeffrey Reh, General Counsel for Beretta

    I guess POTUS doesn’t bluff either.

  30. I think the Sig P320 will win due to the modularity and simplicity of design. Easy to use, easy to fix, and easy to change to fit specific missions. I think S&W working with GD is an interesting one to watch also.

  31. I think Sig will be a huge contender for the MHS contract, for one huge reason: they want to leave 9mm, but will never be able to select a non-9mm gun for their next handgun.

    If they go SIG, they can buy 9mm versions from the get-go in different sizes (compact/full/sub) for different units/needs, as well as holsters and other accoutrement.

    Then, when they need to, they will just buy caliber conversion kits for the new caliber they want to use (.45ACP). The Army can then swap out at will and ECP the TDP all on the same serial numbers without impacting holsters/gear/etc.

    The beauty in the Sig design is that the frame for the 9mm is going to be the same size as the 45ACP variant, meaning a P320 in 9mm will fit in the same holster as a 45ACP one.

  32. It’ll be FNH that will supply the new sidearm if I had to bet money. They’re already making almost all of the rifles and heavy machine guns for the US military. They’ll give a good price and then they’ll be the predominant small arms supplier to the armed forces.

  33. “…it would result in the Defense Department buying nearly 500,000 new pistols during a period of significant defense-spending reductions.”

    Yeah, that makes about as much sense as anything else they do.

  34. Sounds like they want a 1911.
    Except they want it in cheap plastic with a spongy trigger and no safety, made by a specific bidder.

    I predict no change happens.

  35. See the SiG lovers are slobbering. Dont get your hopes up. Beretta can still win remember the Army said no one month and changed there minds the next. Unless we goto a new caliber a new pistol and accessories will be too expensive in the end to goto. Overall this posting is rumor Mr. Cox heard not a official statement, so this could be a false rumor. Over all MHS is another ICC and SIG lovers like SCAR lovers slobber and cry all they time on ever rumor about the program and so more crap and drool from them will spew on any gun/military site. In the end SCAR lost and budget cost and NATO commitment may KILL the stupid idea of MHS. In the end we may end up again like the M-4A1 with the M-9A3, get over it.

    SIGs suck!

  36. Back in the 80’s there were two different congressional investigations on why S&W didn’t get the contract. So I would look hard at the M&P series in 45 acp.

    I’d love to see it go to either the Glock 21 or the H&K VP45.

  37. Addon: Like the doomed ICC no other service is helping the Army, the USMC is still getting M-9A1s and so this is a sole Army project and no other service may adopt any pistol the Army does so logistics would be very bad in any joint war theater. Overall this is another attempt to satisfied the tactie coolers in the DOD, there is no real advantage or disadvantage staying with the M-9 or updating them. The Pentagon since the Bush era is very corrupt and wasting billions due to personal relation brass has with weapon firms and companies many competitions start because they General at PEO solder will get a kick back for it, MHS is no exception.

  38. Here we go again, every know-it-all gun expert will give his/ her opinion. They will regurgitate something they read in a blog as fact. I have no idea what will be chosen. I know one thing that is a matter of fact, the contract will go to the lowest bidder.

    • Doubt it. SIG is a weak less accurate wepon besides the S&W M&P and the XDM are both modular anyway.

      Doubt the M-9 will go away. Makes no sense to replace a9mm with another 9mm, unless we goto a new caliber.

    • DITTO SIG P 320…
      MOST DIVERSE CAPABILITY ALONG WITH THE P250
      Simple, fast changeability . the question would be whether it could truly survive
      the qualification testing. I’d like to see its results.

      • Except less accurate. less reliable and by the way, Main winner would be S&W they working with G,D, to win it. SiGs are crap.

        • I just had to say please stfu and stop being a hater fan boy, I bet you think the MK23 is the greatest pistol ever given to man kind too.

  39. 1) with NATO essentially toothless and most wars likely to be in Asia and Africa, I suspect the idea of keeping the 9mm for logistical reasons may be fading.

    2) with more women in combat (or near combat) roles, I suspect a small hands friendly grip size will be preferred to an oversized pistol built around a hi-cap double stacked magazine.

    I predict that the winning pistol will be built around a single stack 45 sized magazine.
    Winner: Glock builds a new pistol built from scratch scaled to operate with a .45, .40 S&W, or 9mm with a simple swap of the magazines, barrel, and recoil spring.

  40. Beretta was contacted on Jan 9 by the US Army contracting officer of the M9 Contract, who informed us that, contrary to what is being reported, no final decision has been made regarding the M9A3 proposal and that her office will inform us of any future developments.

  41. I don’t think there are many people here, albeit there are a few, but for the vast majority of people here weighing in, they keep talking from either their heart, not the mind, or they lack experience and intelligence to even add remotely anything to this conversation. I do not know everything, as for those that often use that quote that they do, usually find themselves needing to learn a lot, but I have spent nearly all of my life following the path of a warrior, and more importantly as a military Historian and someone who wishes with all their heart to eventually work in CT and save lives. So when it comes down to it, and I see someone posting “10mm” as a possibility for the cartridge in this new choice, I laugh out loud to the point of crying.

    Pistols aren’t something you WANT to use in combat unless truly all other available options are off the table, nobody goes into a willing gunfight choosing a pistol over anything else, except in extremely rare conditions that I won’t cover here. I really can’t see from a logistical standpoint where any branch would choose anything BUT 9mm, there’s so many manufactures of that cartridge its not even funny, hell I have over twenty thousand rounds I need to get back to reloading myself, anyway. I believe at this point and time that the military and its related affiliates are going for the same thing that replaced the older generation AR’s,and that is one word “modularity” which is a huge reason they switched to more user customization friendly AR’s. Everybody including the people who are choosing the new sidearm love getting two birds in one stone, or two possible pistol configurations (or more) for the price of only one.

    As for the cartridge itself, I am a huge shooter of both practical and benchrest and a huge fan of reloading as I mentioned earlier, I tweak and make bullets myself, personally I find it a challenge to defeat body armor with given rifles and attempting different loads. Personally there are a lot of problems with the 9mm, anybody I think that has ever attempted to use it to take down a full grown man full of Adrenalin would know why. There are other great choices, personally I use .38 Super for competition and bowling pins with using an automatic. I’ve seen what it can do as far as TKO and its punch, many people here are like many others and confuse its rate of cartridge speed with knock out value. Though there is some relation, people tend to not fully understand it and base the hitting power from only that statistic. There’s a lot of cartridges that I wont mention that I think would be perfect, as you have to remember that we shoot people often, and often we shoot to kill as wounding the man in warfare isn’t what it used to be and tax the enemies effort to make war as it requires more people to take care of him and support the wounded man, instead we are often now faced with simply stopping the enemy from being able to retaliate completely, which usually requires killing him. So we need to stop taking any advice ( I am not sure we still do, but I still see many collegues quote things such as, well this military uses it, it must be good, etc… etc..) and that military also doesn’t shoot at people a lot, so please take advice from the people who DO.

    Also to the moron who complained that all double stack M1911’s don’t work great due to the double stack magazine, please allow me to explain something apparently they don’t understand. A firearm is designed ground up for use with what it comes with, the M1911 was not designed from the beginning to use a double stack magazine, therefore many companies simply stretch the existing design to fit the magazine without re designing the things with which weren’t designed and made to work with a magazine other than what it was originally intended for, so some companies (I heard STI mentioned for making terrible M1911’s due to the magazine being double stacked) and I can tell you that STI does not screw this sorta thing up, though other companies might, as I have heard complaints from others) When you pay more than a grand for an STI such as their high end line which doesn’t always include double stacked models, it works as beautifully as it should.

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