New modular 6.5/7.62 mm rifle in the armament of the Serbian Armed Forces
The modular M19 6.5/7.62 mm rifle developed and produced by “Zastava oružje”, is a new rifle in the armament of the Serbian Armed Forces. It is state-of-the-art weapon adaptable to all combat situations, of a simple design, easy to handle and carry on the battlefield, and convenient for action from inside and outside armoured combat vehicles.
Depending on the task and need, the modular M19 rifle can use 7.62 mm or 6.5 mm barrels. This way, potential logistical problems are overcome, considering that the new 6.5 mm bullet is not currently widespread on the world market. It is reliable and capable of efficiently destroying single and group targets at distances of up to 800 m.
Members of the Serbian Armed Forces had the opportunity to test its quality, reliability, precision and ergonomics on training grounds and in shooting ranges.
The 6.5 mm cartridge with standard bullet and brass shell and the cartridge with penetration bullet and brass shell are the products of “Prvi partizan” joint-stock company, Užice. It is a brand new 6.5 mm cartridge which is conceptually based on the 6.5 mm Grendel hunting and sports cartridge, but its structure, ballistic and functional characteristics were adapted to the needs of shooting from semi-automatic and automatic weapons.
In terms of all ballistic parameters and characteristics, weapons using the new 6.5x39 mm cartridge have far better characteristics and firing rate compared to the weapons using the 7.62x39 mm and 5,56x45 mm ammunition. This is achieved through excellent aerodynamic characteristics of the projectile which, with the same initial energy and without increasing the recoil force, allows a smaller drop in the projectile speed, a flatter trajectory and a higher terminal kinetic energy. Thanks to that, a more stable flight of the projectile is achieved at longer firing distances, which automatically increases firing accuracy. At the same time, penetration and lethality parameters are improved at all firing distances. One of the characteristics of the new modular rifle is that a barrel of the appropriate length can be mounted relatively quickly in order to adapt it to the tactical requirements of the use of the rifle, which few armies in the world can boast of.
It is equipped with complex sighting systems – daytime and reflex optical sight, as well as thermal imaging sight which significantly improves effectiveness in night-time action. It can be used at temperatures ranging from -30°C to +50°C.
In line with modern automatic weapon trends, the rifle has an integrated receiver cover and upper chamber lining with a long "Picatinny" rail that receives all types of optoelectronic sights, as well as a rifle bolt knob which allows bolt action with both left and right hands. It also has an easy to handle fire selector switch on the left side of the grip.
These rifles have a folding-telescopic stock with an adjustable cheek rest, the rear grip is ergonomically improved and with the front grip it allows a firmer and more stable grip, especially during burst fire. The magazine holder button has been expanded which makes removing and replacing the magazine easier.
After all the tests, mechanical tests and testing in various meteorological conditions, as well as reliability and durability checks of both calibres, the achieved results are at an extremely high and enviable level. Compared to the world solutions in the field of combat rifles of this category, the modular M19 automatic rifle is much cheaper and has much better ballistic characteristics.
The modular automatic M19 6.5/7.62 mm rifle is one of the numerous weapons used to equip units of the Serbian Armed Forces, which enhances the efficiency and operational capabilities of our units.