The Pentagon decides on a new military handgun

Donald Trump Jr. holding a Sig Sauer MCX…brother Eric, 2nd from right

The US Army has confirmed that its new XM17 handgun is to be a 9 mm Sig Sauer model P320 and the contract allows the government to buy Sig Sauer’s proposed XM1152 Full Metal Jacket (FMJ) and XM1153 Special Purpose (SP) ammunition and training rounds.

The long-running XM17 Modular Handgun System (MHS) contract, intended to replace legacy 9 mm M9 Beretta pistols, was awarded…with a total $580+ million maximum ceiling.

It is understood that Sig Sauer bested bids from Beretta, FN Herstal, and Glock, after Smith & Wesson and partner General Dynamics Ordnance Tactical Systems (GDOTS) had earlier been dropped from the programme. A total of nine bids were submitted, according to a separate Pentagon statement. The US Army declined to reveal the other bids…

The MHS programme, which is expected to reach full-rate production in 2018, could result in buying between 280,000 and 500,000 weapons for the army, navy, air force, marines, and US Special Operations Command. The army has said it wants more than 280,000 handguns…

I’m not commenting, today, on the predictable waste of dollar$ from the Pentagon. This project or any other is subject to the politics of our military-industrial complex – which has little to do with defense or sanity.

I grew up in the “arsenal of America” – in Connecticut. Where mass production was invented as an innovation to produce muskets for the American Revolution. Where firms like Colt, Winchester, Remington and Ruger got their start because of talented, trained and experienced machinists and designers. Natives and immigrants alike.

It was only my generation that ended the lineage of folks from my family who worked on firearms, from assembly lines to talented prototype gunsmiths who spent their lives designing fine guns for peace – or war.

The furor over Beretta’s award years ago will not be matched over Sigg-Sauer getting this juicy contract. Their headquarters is in the US, nowadays – even though they’re a subsidiary of Lüke & Ortmeier Gruppe. And they love their friendship with the Trump family.

7 thoughts on “The Pentagon decides on a new military handgun

  1. The Survival Wire (@SurvivalWire) says:

    This is great news for New Hampshire where Sig is located. They have expanded their manufacturing footprint over the last 5 years and their training academy is growing as well. They are truly making NH great again!
    We just passed Constitutional Carry(No license) required for concealed weapons and we are one of the safest locations in these United States. As a US taxpayer I am happy because the price was low. What would make me even happier would be if the Dept. of Civilian Marksmanship would sell of the current Beretta pistols to the public as a fundraiser. Instead, they will likely be destroyed if history is any guide.
    Congratulation to Sig for winning.

    • gracie says:

      Maybe you’ll get even luckier – and happier – if Trump builds a couple of concentration camps for immigrants in your backyard. Jobs, jobs, jobs.

      • Vecino says:

        A multi-million dollar agreement with a Trump ally has come to light in the context of Mexican debate on internal security. Sig Sauer contributed at least $100,000 to the campaign of the U.S. president, and recently contracted an associate of Vice-President Mike Pence to lobby for increased gun exports to Mexico. See also linked American Friends Service Committee fact sheet on Sig Sauer Arms Exports to Mexico.

        • Trigger happy says:

          “Special Forces pulls new pistols from service after soldier injured in misfire”
          The incident once again sheds an unfavorable light upon the P320, which despite winning the contract to become the US military’s new handgun has been plagued with tales of going off when dropped or in a holster, as has been documented in U.S. court records.
          Part of the Canadian military’s attraction to the SIG P320 is that in 2017, the U.S. military selected the pistol as its standard issue sidearm, redesignating it as the M17 and the M18 (depending on the branch using it).
          However, four months after signing the $580 million US contract, the Pentagon proposed what amounted to an engineering redesign for the guns it was buying.
          The P320 has been the star subject of multiple lawsuits in the North America over the past few years, including at least one class action case. See

  2. Ka-ching says:

    U.S. Army to order prototypes of next-generation squad automatic weapon (Jan 31, 2019) The U.S. Army has released a Prototype Project Opportunity Notice (PPON) for both its the Next Generation Squad Weapon-Rifle (NGSW-R) and the Next Generation Squad Weapon-Automatic Rifle (NGSW-AR), both chambered in the Army’s new specification general purpose 6.8mm round, as it considers replacing the M249 squad automatic weapon and M4/M4A1 carbine. Also noted that the production awards may include 250,000 total weapons systems (NGSW-R, NGSW-AR, or both), 150,000,000 rounds of ammunition, spare parts, tools/gauges/accessories, and engineering support. The value of this follow-on production awards is estimated to be $10M in the first year and estimated $150M per year at the higher production rates.

  3. Update says:

    A decade after Sig Sauer inked a deal to sell up to $306 million worth of pistols to Colombia’s National Police, company CEO Ron Cohen is facing jail time in Germany for making the sale.
    (NPR 2/25/19) German prosecutors accuse Cohen of colluding with Sig Sauer’s sister company in Germany to violate that country’s export rules. Under German law, companies are prohibited from exporting firearms or other weapons to countries in conflict. That includes Colombia, which is slowly emerging from a half-century of armed conflict. …The stakes for Cohen are serious: if convicted, he faces up to five years in prison and millions of dollars in fines. Last week, a German court found arms maker Heckler & Koch guilty of similar export related charges involving a sale of weapons to Mexico. While a former CEO was acquitted, two employees received suspended jail sentences, and the company was ordered to repay $4.2 million.
    The corporate relationship between the German and U.S.-based Sig Sauer companies is also not completely clear. L&O Holding, a conglomerate based in Germany, owns both the German and U.S.-based Sig Sauer companies, as well as a third firm, Swiss Arms.

  4. Ka-ching says:

    (5/25/22) “Last month, the United States Army announced that it had selected Sig Sauer, Inc. to manufacture and deliver the two Next Generation Squad Weapon (NGSW) variations including the M5 rifle and M250 automatic rifle, as well as the 6.8 Common Cartridge Family of Ammunition. The award was made following “a rigorous 27-month prototyping and evaluation effort” that included numerous technical tests.
    The value of the initial delivery order on the contract was $20.4 million for the weapons and ammunition that will undergo testing – while the Army will ultimately acquire at least 107,000 M5 rifles to replace the M4/M4A1 carbine, while it will initially purchase some 13,000 M250 Automatic Rifle to replace the M249 Squad Automatic Weapon (SAW). According to Task & Purpose [link], the value of that contract would be worth around $4.7 billion, but as the M5 and M250 become the standard U.S. military weapons, it will certainly result in far greater profits for the New Hampshire-based Sig Sauer.”

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