Bushmaster ACR, Modern Assault Rifle

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Bushmaster ACR or Magpul Masada
The Bushmaster Adaptive Combat Rifle (ACR) is the production name for an updated version of the Masada Adaptive Combat Weapon System. In late January 2008, Bushmaster entered into a licensing agreement with Magpul whereby Bushmaster would take over production, future development and sales of the Masada. It is a patent pending self-loading rifle platform designed by Magpul Industries of Erie, Colorado. The rifle was initially developed over a period of four months, completely independent of government funding. Prototypes were displayed at the 2007 SHOT Show in Orlando, Florida. Originally scheduled for release in the second quarter of 2008, Bushmaster announced on May 16, 2008, that the consumer release would be delayed until Q1 2009, due to a focus on military projects.

Bushmaster ACROn November 18, 2008, Bushmaster released a statement saying, "The ACR is being redesigned to be a superior offering to compete for the next generation US Army infantry carbine and subcompact weapon requirement and will be available to select customers in 2009". Bushmaster Adaptive Combat Rifle (ACR) was one of the weapons displayed to U.S. Army officials during an invitation-only Industry Day on November 13, 2008. The goal of the Industry Day was to review current carbine technology prior to writing formal requirements for a future replacement for the M4 Carbine.



Bushmaster Adaptive Combat Rifle
Type Automatic rifle
Place of origin United States
Production history
Designer Richard Fitzpatrick, Mike Mayberry, Drake Clark, Brian Nakayama, et al.
Designed 2006-2007
Manufacturer Remington Arms
Specifications
Weight 3 kg (6.7 lbs; 16-inch barrel)
Barrel length 266-508 mm (10.5 to 20 in)

Cartridge 5.56x45mm NATO, 6.5 mm Grendel, 6.8 mm Remington SPC, 7.62x39mm M43
Action Gas-operated, rotating bolt
Rate of fire 650-700 RPM
Muzzle velocity 792-990 m/s (2600-3250 ft/s)
Effective range 300-600 m (328-656 yd), depending on configuration
Feed system 30-round detachable box (5.56 variant) magazine, staggered-column magazine (STANAG compatible)
Sights Rear: none included (Picatinny rail); front: integral flip-up, adjustable post
Bushmaster ACR Design

The original Magpul Masada design represents an amalgamation of several recent rifle designs, incorporating what is considered by its designers to be the best features of each in a single, lightweight, modular rifle platform. Design features from the Armalite AR-18 (short-stroke gas system), the FN SCAR (upper receiver, charging handle location), the Heckler & Koch G36/XM8 (liberal use of polymer components), the M16/AR15 (trigger pack), and the M16 (barrel, fire control group) are clearly prevalent. The rifle also includes several features developed by Magpul, such as a quick-change barrel/trunnion system, adjustable gas regulator, non-reciprocating charging handle, and storage compartments located in the stock and grip. Just prior to the deal with Bushmaster, Magpul made additional changes to their design—the most obvious of these is the relocation of the ambidextrous operating handle to a forward position (somewhat similar to the Heckler & Koch G3 and Heckler & Koch MP5 series of weapons). Experts from Magpul Industries have on several occasions mentioned that depending on the barrel length of the weapon, the rate of fire is estimated to be in the range of 600-800 rpm (this is an estimate; specifics have not yet been verified).

Bushmaster Adaptive Combat Rifle (ACR) Firearms, with the help of Remington Arms (a sister company in the Freedom Group, Inc portfolio that includes Bushmaster, Remington, Marlin, and DPMS Panther Arms brands) has also made some design changes based on extensive environmental and functional testing specifically to meet the emerging requirements of the US military in both the carbine and subcompact weapon versions of the ACR family. It is expected that the rifle will be offered to military customers in 5.56mm NATO, 6.8mm Remington SPC, and 6.5 Grendel with the same lower and the user just having to switch out the barrel, bolt face, and magazine to change calibers. It is also expected that the ACR will have barrel length options of 10.5″, 14.5″, 16″ (commercial), and 18″. The official name of the rifle for military use will be called the Remington ACR.

The magazine conceived for the 5.56 mm version of the ACR rifle is called the PMag, a high-impact, 30-round polymer magazine claimed by Magpul to be significantly more resistant to wear, shock, and harsh environments than other counterparts on the market. The PMag is STANAG 4179-compatible, as it will readily fit any STANAG magazine firearm, including the M16 rifle family. The Bushmaster ACR's modular construction even allows the user to fire the 7.62x39mm round with an alternate barrel.

Bushmaster ACR Availability

Bushmaster Adaptive Combat Rifle (ACR) is currently slated to be available in third-quarter 2009 for military and government customers and fourth-quarter 2009 for a small amount of commercial customers. The ACR will be available in greater quantity (tens of thousands) in the commercial marketplace in 2010. It is anticipated that the rifle will have suggested retail price starting at $1,200 with semi-automatic versions available to the commercial market, and selective-fire versions available for military and law enforcement under the Remington name. As of October 2009, Bushmaster has announced that several consumer versions of the ACR would be available in the first half of 2010.


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