Ground Warfare

FN Herstal Unveils Upgraded Evolys Light Machine Gun (LMG)

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FN Herstal Unveils Upgraded Evolys Light Machine Gun (LMG)

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FN Herstal Unveils Upgraded Evolys Light Machine Gun (LMG)
FN Herstal Unveils Upgraded Evolys Light Machine Gun (LMG)

The FN EVOLYS® (chambered in 5.56x45mm or 7.62x51mm calibre) ultralight machine gun has been given some modified features based on feedback from in-depth testing by potential customers during their own evaluation. FN Herstal recently unveiled this new member of its illustrious family of machine guns. It joins the FN® M2HB-QCB .50 (12.7x99mm NATO) calibre heavy machine gun, the FN MAG® 7.62 NATO calibre medium/general purpose machine gun, and the FN MINIMI® 5.56 and 7.62mm NATO calibre light machine guns. Standardized by dozens of armed forces including many NATO members and allies, they have totally dominated the NATO calibre machine gun market for decades. The FN EVOLYS® with these new features will be displayed on the FN Herstal’s booth at Eurosatory 2024 to be held in Paris from 17 to 21 June.

The FN EVOLYS® is for mobile infantry or SF units, designed to bridge the gap between the rifle and the light machine gun. It has been undergoing trials with several armed forces, who appreciated its greatly reduced weight, ease of handling, long one-piece top rail allowing in-line mounting of optics, its reliability, and above all the intensive firepower of a belt-fed weapon. Feedback identified two features that users suggested should be modified – and FN Herstal has incorporated them:

  • A M4 type buttstock with ergonomics familiar to many users, with adjustable length (6 positions) and adaptable cheek piece (2 heights).
  • The optional bipod has been given stronger aluminium legs and a reinforced attachment interface providing a more stable and robust support.
 Evolys Light Machine Gun (LMG). (Photo by FN Herstal)
Evolys Light Machine Gun (LMG). (Photo by FN Herstal)

The EVOLYS was designed from the ground up for use in urban warfare, which has become more common, and which holds specific requirements. It is select fire, with the option between semi-automatic and fully automatic fire modes. The EVOLYS uses a lateral feed mechanism with the belt at a 45° angle, and it is fully ambidextrous, with all its controls accessible on both its sides, and it can be loaded with one hand. The EVOLYS was constructed using 3D printing and polymers, which help to reduce its weight. At 5.5 kilograms (12 lb), the EVOLYS is up to 30% lighter than competing machine guns such as the FN Minimi. The EVOLYS is chambered for 5.56×45mm and 7.62×51mm, with 6.5mm Creedmoor and .260 Remington variants in development for potential use by special forces.

The FN EVOLYS ultralight machine gun fires like a machine gun, and handles like an assault rifle. The ambidextrous fire selector has a semi-auto position to engage point targets as with a rifle while the full auto position allows suppressive fire as with a machine gun. The hydraulic buffer gives a steady rate of fire and reduces recoil. The FN EVOLYS was designed from the start to fire intensively with a sound suppressor and therefore showed no reduction in performance when fitted with a suppressor, no excessive fouling, and no debris projected towards the user, even for left-handers. The latest-generation materials and technologies used on the FN EVOLYS, combined with FN Herstal’s longstanding expertise and innovative spirit, ensure that the reduction of weight has not compromised the vital factors of reliability, user safety and long life of parts.

 Evolys Light Machine Gun (LMG). (Photo by FN Herstal)
Evolys Light Machine Gun (LMG). (Photo by FN Herstal)

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