Latest Firearms News and Updates

101st Airborne First to Officially Field NGSW

On March 25 the first shipment of Next Generation Squad Weapons (NGSW) was accepted by the 1st Battalion, 506th Infantry Regiment of the 101st Airborne Division. The unit, stationed in Fort Campbell, KY, begins training with the 6.8mm-chambered XM7 rifle and XM250 automatic rifles this month.

When fully fielded, the firearms will replace the M4 and Squad Automatic Weapon, respectively, and become the primary small arms for U.S. Army troops whose primary duties include close combat. The rifles will also go to select units of the U.S. Marine Corps. The aging fleet of legacy arms will remain in the hands of support-related servicemen and women.

“The NGSW fielding is a culmination of a comprehensive and rigorous process of design, testing and feedback, all of which were led by soldiers,” COL Jason Bohannon, who leads Program Executive Office Soldier’s lethality project, told Stars and Stripes. “As a result, the Army is delivering on its promise to deliver to soldiers the highest quality, most capable small-caliber weapons and ammunition.”

SIG Sauer was awarded the contract to manufacture both firearms in April of 2022. Value of the 10-year agreement came in at $20.4 million.

“The U.S. Army is taking a bold step toward command of the 21st century battlefield and SIG Sauer is immensely proud to be the selected provider for this historic revolution in infantry weapons,” Ron Cohen, president and CEO of SIG Sauer, said at the time. “The fielding of the SIG Sauer Next Generation Squad Weapons System will forever change the dynamic of military engagement for America’s warfighters with American innovation and manufacturing.”

The 6.8mm ammunition to feed the cutting-edge system will soon be coming out of the U.S. Army’s famed Lake City Army Ammunition Plant (LCAAP) in volumes sufficient to supply the military, thanks to a construction contract signed earlier last month with Winchester ammunition. The new facility will handle each step in production and represents the first major manufacturing upgrade at LCAAP in decades.

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