Ground Warfare

German Special Forces Embrace HK437 Submachine Gun with Advanced Suppression Technology

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German Special Forces Embrace HK437 Submachine Gun with Advanced Suppression Technology

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Heckler & Koch HK437 Modular Submachine Gun
Heckler & Koch HK437 Modular Submachine Gun

The German Armed Forces (Bundeswehr) has commissioned Heckler & Koch, the renowned firearms specialist from the Black Forest, to manufacture and deliver a specially designed suppressed weapon for their elite forces. Hartpunkt reported that the submachine gun based on the HK437 platform and chambered in .300 Blackout (7.62 x 35 mm), will be introduced into the Bundeswehr under the designation G39. Reliable sources indicate that the contract was awarded in mid-February 2024. Initiated in the fall of 2022, the procurement project aimed to replace the suppressed variant of the MP5, widely used by special forces and reconnaissance units, with a more modern and high-performance firearm.

The solicitation called for a weapon, along with accessories and ammunition (soft-core, subsonic, and supersonic), capable of engaging soft and protected targets at distances up to 200 meters. The specifications demanded a semi-automatic rifle, “over the beach” capable, with a maximum total weight of 3,300 grams when equipped with a sound or signature suppressor, handguard, mechanical sights, adjustable shoulder stock, and an empty, inserted magazine. The initial phase will see 176 basic sets of the suppressed special forces weapon issued to qualified units. A total of 988 sets are required for full deployment, as indicated by the Federal Office for Equipment, Information Technology, and Use of the Bundeswehr.

Heckler & Koch HK437 Modular Submachine Gun
Heckler & Koch HK437 Modular Submachine Gun. (Photo by Heckler & Koch)

The Heckler & Koch HK433 is a modular submachine gun chambered for 5.56×45mm which combines features of the G36 and the HK416 families of assault rifles. The HK433 was designed by Heckler & Koch to be familiar to operators with experience using the Heckler & Koch G36 and HK416 platforms. It is equipped with a modified HK433 bolt and a dedicated magazine tailored for .300 Blackout ammunition. Operating on indirect gas impingement system, the 9″-barreled HK437 weighs 3,140 grams and boasts a collapsible shoulder stock. The overall length, without a suppressor, ranges from 537 mm (stock collapsed) to 795 mm (stock extended). In its G39 configuration, the HK437 sports a 9″ barrel and is showcased by Heckler & Koch at Enforce Tac with an A-TEC suppressor.

The partnership between Oberndorfer and the Norwegian signature reduction specialist A-TEC, established in 2022, aims to collaborate on the development and distribution of their respective product portfolios. Signature reduction devices, commonly known as suppressors, play a crucial role in dampening both the gunshot noise and muzzle flash during firearm use. This not only reduces the risk of hearing damage for users but also facilitates communication in combat situations and complicates the enemy’s ability to detect the shooter. The effective deployment of the weapon requires precise coordination of its components to avoid malfunctions and meet demanding precision requirements.

Heckler & Koch HK437 Modular Submachine Gun
Heckler & Koch HK437 Modular Submachine Gun. (Photo by Heckler & Koch)

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