Sunday, December 12, 2010
The XM2010 Sniper Weapon System is a reconfigured M24 chambered in .300 Winchester Magnum. Both rifles are based on the Remington 700.
In September 2010 the United States Army’s Joint Munitions and Lethality Contracting Center awarded Remington a Firm Fixed Price Indefinite Delivery/Indefinite Quantity contract (W15QKN-10-R-0403) for the upgrade of up to 3,600 M24 Sniper Weapon Systems currently fielded to the Army pending type classification as the M24E1 Enhanced Sniper Rifle (ESR) later classified as the XM2010. The major configuration change for this system is the conversion from 7.62x51mm NATO to .300 Winchester Magnum ammunition exploiting the M24’s magnum length bolt action to provide additional precision engagement capability and range.
Army snipers are training with the new XM2010 Enhanced Sniper Rifle at an undisclosed facility in Arkansas and according to the Remington Arms Company and the Department of Defense U.S. soldiers will have it in their hands shortly after the first of the year.
The new XM2010 Sniper Rifle is accurate at a distance of nearly 4,000 feet, which is a quarter of a mile farther any sniper weapon that U.S. troops have now.
Maximum range of the M24, which has long been the preferred sniper weapon for civilian SWAT teams and in-the-field military snipers, is 2,625 feet.
The added distance is important because insurgents have been shooting down from ridges and mountaintops where gravity helps their bullets travel farther and beyond the range of Army snipers.
Lately, insurgent terrorists in Afghanistan have proven they are no longer afraid to take the fight to the troops. In the past, mined roads were their weapon of choice. Recently there has been a sea-change in that tactic with serious consequences to NATO/U.S. forces.
The M24E1/XM2010 is considered a "total conversion upgrade", by which the barrel, stock, magazines, muzzlebrake, suppressor, and even the optics will be changed.
Besides the rechambering and rebarreling with a 24", 1-in-10" twist rate hammer-forged barrel the main reconfiguration changes compared to 7.62x51mm NATO-chambered M24 rifles are:
* a new chassis (stock) assembly, which maximizes the amount of physical adjustments for the sniper to provide a better user customized fit. The chassis has a folding buttstock that shortens the system for easier transport and better concealment during movement and accommodates the mounting of accessories via removable Mil Std 1913 Picatinny Rails.
* 5-round detachable box magazine.
* quick-attachable/detachable Advanced Armament Corp. sound suppressor with muzzle brake.
* Leupold Mark 4 6.5-20x50mm ER/T M5 Front Focal variable power telescopic sight featuring a 34mm tube diameter, first focal plane Horus Vision grid system range estimation reticle and Bullet Drop Compensation.
* advanced corrosion resistant coatings throughout the system.
According to Remington Arms each rifle is tested to meet (and typically exceeds) the requirement to fire ≤ 1 MOA (less than a 2-inch shot group at 200 yards) before being released for fielding.
Over 600 U.S.-led soldiers have been killed in Afghanistan since the beginning of the year.
Within a few weeks U.S. led forces will counter that approach with the XM2010.