SIG MMG 338 Program Series

USMC Small Arms Update – 2019

The Marine Corps is well under way with the Small Arms modernization initiatives announced last year.

USMC photo by Sgt. Aaron Henson

The biggest improvement for the Marine Infantryman isn’t a weapon, but it will make him much more effective. The Marines are moving very quickly to field the Squad Binocular Night Vision Goggle, with contract award mid-July.

The H&K produced M27 is being fielded to Marine Rifle Squads along with the M38 Designated Marksman variant.

The M320A1 40mm grenade launcher replaces the M203 and will be used in the stand alone mode.

Limited numbers of the Mk 13 Mod 7, sniper rifle have been brought over from SOCOM. The Marines consider this 300 WinMag Rifle as a bridge between the long serving M40 family and the Advanced Sniper Rifle in 7.62mm, 300 and 348 Norma Mag coming in the early 20s.

They are at the initial stages of replacing SMAW-D with the 84mm M3E1 Carl Gustaf. An interesting aside, the Marines are also making a T/O change. They will go from 8 to 4 TOW launchers per Battalion and increase from 8 to 12 Javelins.

Yes, that’s an M110A1 you see. The Marine Corps long ago signed up for the program, but there has been little indication of how many they plan to buy or how they will use them.

This is a slide indicating what the future holds for Marine Corps Small Arms. Some of these we have already seen draft requirements for, like the Squad Common Optic which is a variable power (6/8x). The SCO will go on every M27 currently being fielded to Marine Rifle Platoons. Expect a full Request for Proposals 1st quarter of 20.

The Marine Corps plans to suppress all of its M27s and eventually, its belt fed machine guns.

Army has lead on Next Gen weapons and the Marines are working with SOCOM to refine the Lightweight Medium Machine Gun requirement.

“Success is not found in contracts awarded…Success is found in confirmed kills”


20 Responses to “USMC Small Arms Update – 2019”

  1. Neil says:

    ‘USMC Small Arms Modernization’ is an oxymoron…

  2. Pro Patria says:

    Did they mention the M-500 Mission Enhancement Kits ?

  3. tangloppen says:

    who cares about the rifle, that INOD is waaay more interesting.

    good stuff for the marines!

  4. Ton E says:

    So the M38 isn’t an interim program?

  5. Ton E says:

    Areas where the industry can help cont:

    Sourcing a steady supply stream of spare parts for the M27s.

  6. Will says:

    Is anyone else disturbed by the fact that most of the new weapons entering military service are from foreign companies? I realize much of the weapon is produced in the US, but why are US companies not able to produce a competitive product? If the world ever plunged into a world war again, I’m bravely concerned that the US won’t have the industrial capacity or the know how to produce enough materiel to win a war.

    • Ton E says:

      Good question the USMC convinced everyone the M27 was just a SAW replacement until they revealed it wasn’t.

    • SSD says:

      OK, he just said that you realize that they are made here, but then claim you’re concerned we won’t have the industrial capacity?

    • Tom says:

      What’s disgraceful is the fact that they adopted a new service rifle without an open competition. That’s not only damaging to the industry as a whole but to the end user as well since they ended up with an outdated, bloated and overpriced rifle.

    • Chuck Covington says:

      You say “foreign companies” but that’s not entirely correct across the whole arms spectrum. SIG SAUER INC. (M17, M18, LMG-M, TANGO6, etc.), for instance, is not the same as SIG SAUER GmbH. SIG SAUER is its own manufacturing entity, it’s not an importer. It is a US company based in New Hampshire, employing American workers and building ALL of their product line here. Nothing is coming in from SIG SAUER GmbH, the German parent company. So if you are worried that our money is going overseas or we’ll be cut off from product if there is a major conflagration, stop being concerned because most of what the USMC requires is being made domestically.

      • Tom says:

        You have to ask yourself who owns the parent company, I don’t know for a fact but I believe they are foreign individuals/entities. So technically the money is going overseas.

        • SSD says:

          By money, I take you mean profits? Well, that’s an easy fix. Just buy one of them. Then, the money will stay here in America.

        • Chuck Covington says:

          The parent company is German. How much money goes from here to there I dunno. Plenty of non-weapons related companies do it all the time. It’s just part of regular commerce and I’m not bothered by it. What I do know is that SIG SAUER INC is an American company incorporated in America, employing Americans and manufacturing almost everything in America. What this means to me is if there is some big Charlie Foxtrot in the world and our supplies of “stuff” from overseas are cut off SIG SAUER INC will still be producing here.

  7. Darren Mellors says:

    Looks like an HK catalog.

    • 4077 Something says:

      The SIG M18 is in there! I love my P320/M17, it’s a really great pistol. If it’s anything close to what the actual issue gun is like then I’m happy to see the Corps going with them.

      • Ton E says:

        Despite SIG screwing the pooch on the the P320 initially the issued gun is actually a good pistol. I honestly can’t wait when the AF completes the transition to the M18 as well.