Saab‘s combat proven Carl-Gustaf man-portable weapon system has been selected to be a programme of record (POR) within the US Army.
The selection will make the shoulder fired weapon system, which served as a key component of the US Special Operations Forces for more than twenty years, a standard issue to the Army’s Light Infantry units.
Known as the M3 multi-role anti-armour anti-tank weapon system (MAAWS) or ranger antitank weapons system (RAWS) in the US military’s service, the Carl-Gustaf is expected to provide the army with a capability that units using other disposable shoulder fired munitions currently lack.
Saab North America president Jonas Hjelm said, "The Carl-Gustaf has repeatedly proven itself in the world’s most demanding environments as a versatile, powerful tool for the infantry soldier."
Manufactured by Saab Bofors Dynamics, the Carl-Gustaf is an 84mm reusable, shoulder-fired, multi-role recoilless rifle, designed to help troops effectively engaged with enemy rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs) and machine gun attacks from ranges of 900m and beyond.
Operated by a two-man crew, the weapon can be fired from standing, kneeling, sitting or inclined positions, and also supports the gunnery and combat training objectives by offering sub-calibre trainers, full-calibre practice rounds and simulators.
Carl-Gustaf initially entered service with Swedish military in 1948, and is currently in use with the armed forces of the Australia, Belgium, Canada, India, Germany, and Malaysia, the US and UK.
Saab is currently making advances to the Carl-Gustaf ammunition family with the recent release of the new 655 confined space (CS) high explosive anti-tank (HEAT) round, which is claimed to enable soldiers to safely employ the weapon in confined spaces, minimising the hazardous effects of traditional shoulder fired munitions.
Image: US soldiers learn to use a Carl Gustav 84mm recoilless rifle during a certification class at Fort Bragg in North Carolina, US. Photo: courtesy of Sgt. Michael J. MacLeod.