German Government Halts Orders of H&K G36 Rifles Over Accuracy Concerns
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It looks like H&K’s rifle reputation is taking a bit of a hit today as it’s being reported that the German government has halted orders of the firearms manufacturer’s G36 rifle, citing accuracy concerns in combat conditions.
According to Defense News,
German troops in Afghanistan in recent years voiced concerns over the G36 automatic rifle made by Heckler & Koch, saying it became inaccurate when its barrel heated up in prolonged firefights.
The military initially blamed the use of unsuitable munitions, but the government auditing body the Bundesrechnungshof has now ordered a new investigation, reported the Bild am Sonntag newspaper.
“It is important to avoid that the defense ministry invests up to €34 million ($46 million) in a rifle that may not meet the requirements of the troops,” the court was quoted as saying by the newspaper.
Apparently, the issue is that the G36 is experiencing a wandering POI after barrel heats up. This is pretty common in most rifles, but usually we’re only talking about an inch or maybe two at combat distances. However, according to one report (based on Google Translate’s translation), the rifle is incapable of engaging targets at 200 meters after the barrel is subject to sustained fire.
It would be my guess that a retrofit of a heavier barrel will likely alleviate these issues and will probably be the most likely course of action as Germany has already spent tens of millions of dollars adopting the H&K platform.
This also doesn’t bode well for H&K’s acquisition of the American military as clients, something the manufacturer has been attempting to do for quite some time.