The U.S. Army Contracting Command on Wednesday announced that two of the country’s biggest M16 makers will compete for slices of a potentially huge military rifle contract. FN America LLC, Columbia, South Carolina (W56HZV-20-D-0024); and Colt’s Manufacturing Co. LLC, West Hartford, Connecticut (W56HZV-20-D-0025), will compete for each order of the $383,311,941 firm-fixed-price contract to provide M16A4 rifles for Foreign Military Sales (Afghanistan, Grenada, Iraq, Lebanon and Nepal). Bids were solicited via the internet with three received. Work locations and funding will be determined with each order, with an estimated completion date of April 28, 2025. U.S. Army Contracting Command, Detroit Arsenal, Michigan, is the contracting activity.
The M16A4 platform is a more vintage platform when compared to the M4, and was developed for the Marine Corps in 1998. Fundamentally an improved M16A2 with a removable carry handle, a Picatinny top rail to allow for optics, and short rails on the handguard for accessories, the M16A4 has a fixed stock and utilizes a 20-inch barrel with a 1-in-7 RH twist rate. It is three-position (safe-semi-burst) select-fire. While the U.S. Army is currently evaluating their Next Generation Squad Weapon (NGSW) to field an advanced new 6.8mm-caliber platform to replace the current M4 Carbine and M249 Squad Automatic Weapon shortly for front-line units,