Sweden’s foremost defence prime Saab has finalised details of a potential deal with the Polish Armed Forces – originally announced on 4 March 2024 – for Carl Gustaf M4 systems.

The Central European republic, already well on its way to becoming Europe’s most formidable military, has procured an undisclosed number of Carl Gustaf M4 man-portable, anti-armour weapon systems at a cost of Skr13bn ($1.2bn).

Always eager to learn lessons when it comes to outmatching Russia’s mechanised vehicles in Ukraine – 11,679 have been destroyed according to estimates from the open-source research group Oryx – the Polish Army have found M4 systems to be an ideal solution against such platforms.

Mainly, Carl Gustaf M4s are used to destroy armoured tanks with add-on armour protection, neutralise landing craft and bunkers, clear obstacles and engage enemies in buildings.

Worldwide, more than 40 countries are supplied with the weapon systems.

The M4 version is a lightweight, flexible design incorporating titanium-made components and improved carbon fibre wrapping. The recoilless rifle offers enhanced agility and tactical flexibility, allowing military forces to engage multiple tactical targets.

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It has a length of less than 1,000 millimetres and weighs less than seven kilogrammes, making it easy to carry. A gunner and a loader typically operate the system.

Cost estimate of Carl Gustaf sales and value

This latest contract is worth a considerable value when put in perspective. Given that Saab’s Carl Gustaf sales were just over $500m in 2023, this billion-dollar deal reflects the Polish Government’s enduring commitment to mobilisation and military readiness.

Although Saab has not released the exact number of systems to be delivered to Poland under this enormous deal, a sense of the value and scale of the delivery to come may be made based on the UK’s procurement of the same systems in March 2023.

Back then, the country purchased 56 systems along with ammunition and training for £4.6m ($5.7m), which places an approximate value of £80m, or $101,785 per unit.