M203 Replacement Ordered

On SoldierGeek: Army buys 18,000 new M320 Grenade Launchers

The Army announced today that it has awarded a $38.5M contract to German arms manufacturer Heckler & Koch for the production of 18,000 40mm M320A1 Grenade Launchers. The M320 is the replacement for the venerable M203 grenade launcher, first fielded as an experimental system during the Vietnam War, and novel because it was the only technology spun out of the Special Purpose Individual Weapon (SPIW) flechette-grenade launcher program to go into production.

Read the rest.

Here’s a shot of it mounted on a carbine:

XM320 grenade launcher on M4 carbine

XM320 grenade launcher on M4 carbine

And also see HK USA’s site on the XM320.

Murdoc’s guess is that the fact that the similarity between the designation M320 and the M203 is going to lead to all sorts of typos.


  1. The typos had begun 4 months ago but the M320 designation has sunk in with my unit. Some of our grenadiers still prefer the M203 because it seems to be easier to use and handles better versus the M320 mounted. Not like they have a choice…

  2. Yeah, whoever decided to use M320 as the designation was pretty dumb. Normally the next designation available in the range allocated for a type of system is assigned, but we can request different numbers when it makes sense. When we were trying to get a new .45 caliber pistol we managed to get XM45 set aside for the designation, but sadly that effort fell apart.

  3. M320: Too cumbersome and complex……….

    Cut the stock off an M-79 and get a modified sling.

    Use the KISS theory!

    OH, I’m up against the Defense Department……Well they can KISS my ass.

    1. It works, it’s been on offer for at least the last six years, it has greater employment flexibility, but if it confuses you …


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