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US Army Selects Sig Sauer P320

Replacement for Beretta M9 Across the Service

The US Army announced on 19 January that the Modular Handgun System (MHS) programme has been won by a full-size pistol based on the SIG Sauer P320. The contract to manufacture the next service pistol is valued at $580 million: the Army is to buy 280,000 plus some 7,000 sub-compact variants. The other services participating in the programme are likely to procure an additional 212,000.

Competing for the contract were Beretta (the incumbent since 1985 with the M9 9mm), FN Herstal, and Glock, which submitted the Glock 17 and 19 for consideration. The Army downselected Sig and Glock in December.

The announcement does not confirm which calibre version of the P320 is to be procured. The weapon is currently chambered for 9mm, .357SIG and .40SGW. The Army adopted the 9mm NATO round with the M9 in 1985, but part of the original intent of MHS was to procure a more potent round. However, indications are that the Army has selected the 9mm round once more.

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