A commenter in my most popular XM8 post gives me the heads up the the 10th Mountain Division tried out the new rifle this week.
Soldiers with the Tenth Mountain Division got to try out the new weaponry this week. The sleek, bullet-shaped profile gives the X-M-8 a futuristic look.
That’s part of the design. As one Army official says, soldiers like to have a cool-looking weapon.
I’m thinking that the coolness factor isn’t all that important. No word on what the 10th thought. About the weapon or the coolness.
UPDATE: Came across this pic of soldiers testing the XM8. It’s NOT the 10th Mountain Division. I found it in a February National Defense Magazine article. One weapon appears to be the sharpshooter variant with the longer the barrel. It doesn’t have a bipod so it’s probably not the automatic weapon variant. The guy firing from a keeling position has the baseline carbine variant and an attached XM320 side-loading 40mm grenade launcher.
UPDATE 2: A commenter notes that the article calls the XM8 a variation of the M16. Hadn’t even noticed that terminology. As regular readers of MO know very well, the XM8 is NOT a variation or modification of the M16. It is a totally new weapon based on the Heckler-Koch G36.
All in all, between the confusion about the XM8’s lineage and the focus almost completely on the weapon’s appearance, I’d say this isn’t the most informative article on the XM8 to appear. Nice to know that the 10th Mountain tried them out, though.