LWRC Shows Off the SMG-45


Everyone and their brother is making an MP5 replacement these days. SIG SAUER has the MPX, AAC has the Honey Badger, and now LWRC is throwing their own special sauce onto something they are calling the SMG-45. The compact submachine gun uses almost 100% ambidextrous controls (the non-reciprocating charging handle is still left side only for now), existing UMP magazines, and a nifty piston delayed operating system to cycle the gun. There’s also a folding stock to make it even more compact. As for civilian availability . . .


This thing wasn’t even supposed to be here — an errant Instagram photo leaked the gun’s existence to the world, and so LWRC has decided to just bring the thing along rather than get a billion questions about it. The gun we see here went from a prototype to a firing gun in less than 3 months, but there’s still a long road ahead.

Military availability shortly, civilian semi-auto version as soon as they have a free second to themselves. So, probably a few years.


  1. avatar Jeremy S says:

    Looks slick! I dig the size, sleek lines, tubing for the stock, and the color. Plus what appear to be standard AR-15 trigger parts, pistol grip, safety, etc…

    1. avatar Stinkeye says:

      These kinds of guns are not normally my cup of tea, but this one looks pretty great. Not a fan of putting my fingers right by the muzzle to grab the charging handle, though. That seems like a poor design choice.

      1. avatar Jeremy S says:

        Still a zip code away compared to the ZiP .22 haha

      2. avatar DBM says:

        Did you see the story of the guy who put a cheap airsoft verticle grip on a Kel-Tec shotgun? Appearently he mounted it too far forward and rapid fired the shotgun. The plastic bolt on the grip failed when he racked a round into the chamber and his hand went in front of the barrel. He pulled the trigger before he realized where his hand was. Then he sued KelTex:-)


  2. avatar Hambone says:

    I want it!

  3. avatar PeterK says:

    Coooool. I was thinking someone should use a piston delayed system in a rifle/carbine after reading about it in those pistols.

  4. avatar Ross says:


  5. avatar Chris says:

    If we can still SBR by the time this comes out I’ll get it

    1. avatar Phil COV says:

      Just put a Sig brace… yeah.

  6. avatar JasonM says:

    As all should know by now I’m not a big fan of ebr’s, especially the AR. But if the laws were right and I could walk into a Wal Mart(watching out for fat ninja wannabe super heros) and buy one of these I’d be tempted.

    With semi, 3 round burst and FA and a 30 round mag it would be a dandy of a house gun. I think I’d want 9mm for mine. Simplify supply. I don’t currently own a .45acp.

    1. avatar uncommon_sense says:

      This was a jwm(me) comment. Why did it post under Jasonm?

    2. avatar uncommon_sense says:

      Dandy of a house gun is an understatement!

      Why go with 9mm though? The much larger diameter and weight of .45 ACP is definitely a superior man-stopper to 9mm. The only reason people historically shied away from .45 ACP was that most pistols were limited to 8 rounds and, more importantly, the recoil was significantly greater than 9mm. The added weight of this carbine and the fact that it is a carbine, however, negates any recoil concerns. And it should be able to easily accommodate 30 round magazines.

      1. avatar int19h says:

        From performance perspective, because .45 ACP ballistics sucks compared to 9mm on longer distances – slow to begin with, and fat bullet with poor BC, equals “rainbow trajectory”.

        From money perspective, because 9mm still costs less, and more people have double-stacked 9mm guns already to pair with this.

        1. avatar Mark N. says:

          Must have one heck of a big house if you are worried about the “rainbow trajectory.” I like 9s, don’t get me wrong, but for a gun like this, it is .45 ALL THE WAY!

          This is a very cool piece, and I would love to have one. Maybe I will get one of my kids to buy one in a state where it is legal (meaning not California where SBRs are strictly verboten) so I can come and shoot it when I go visit the (future) grandkids.

        2. avatar int19h says:

          For CQB this obviously doesn’t matter. But, honestly, up close, and with modern hollow points, I doubt you’ll be seeing that much of a difference between 9mm and .45 in terms of effectiveness, either.

  7. avatar FedUp says:

    If there are no DOD orders for it, military availability is zilch.
    I bet they’ll be selling to civilians as soon as salable quantities are produced.
    Non law enforcement civilians will have to wait for a semi auto version, or fedgov to start obeying the Constitution, or heck to freeze over…

  8. avatar Steve Truffer says:

    Robert, the name switchybit is still going on.

  9. avatar Fred says:

    I’d like to see that in a 16″ full rail.
    A ump carbine would be nice, but they won’t let us have anything fun down here.

  10. avatar ActuallyNo says:

    Don’t forget the new CZ Scorpion… which I’m really looking forward to your guys’s review of by the way

  11. avatar Disthunder says:

    SBR would be the way to go, but with a 16 inch barrel, that thing would sound (and probably recoil) like a 22.
    Then there’s the ol LWRC price tag…if it comes in somehow, someway around 1500, I would be game.

  12. avatar aweds says:

    SBR + suppressor. Yes, please!

    1. avatar Chris M says:

      ^This. Another item to add to my list of NFA wants. I would definitely put a can on this sucker and use it to defend hearth and home. It is the perfect CQB weapon for me. And 45 is already subsonic, so even more win. Not to mention that all my handguns are in .45, same ammo pool.

  13. avatar BDub says:

    Why do you guys insist on showing me things I cant have!?

  14. avatar Harrison Jones says:

    I like it and it looks sexy as hell!

    But UMP mags cost a TON and that’s a hard pill to swallow. I don’t want to pay $1000 for 10 mags. Hopefully when they bring it to the civilian market magpul will step up or they will make a version that accepts Glock 45 cal mags and Magpul will make a 30rd 45 Glock mag!!!

  15. avatar Mark Lee says:

    Don’t forget the outstanding Beretta ARX160. Ambidextrous everything (including the charging handle), 20-second barrel change (with optional suppressor!) and available as a pistol, SBR, carbine and DM configurations, switchable with a barrel & foregrip replacement. One of these options should be a suppressed barrel assembly – all of their delayed-piston systems & rifling are calibrated for the barrel used.

  16. avatar Bryce says:

    For the love of god, repeal the Hughes Amendment. I WANT ONE

  17. avatar Vitor says:

    I wasnt even sure if the .45 had enough pressure to go piston, guess it does. The rate of fire must be low, what is a good thing.

  18. avatar VTMasters19D says:

    Any updates on this?

    1. avatar Mike says:

      Sadly, no new news has been released.

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