The US Marine Corps is looking to replace its legacy M40A6 and Mk13 Mod 7 bolt-action sniper rifles with Mk22 Mod 0 from Barrett. The Mk22 was originally selected through a joint effort between Marine Corps Systems Command, Marine Forces Special Operations Command, and the U.S. Army Special Operations Command.
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The Mk22 Mod 0 Advanced Sniper Rifle is a bolt action precision rifle that incorporates a 7-35 power Precision Day Optic and a calibre agnostic flash and sound suppressor. The new 7-35 Precision Day Optic also provides greater magnification and observation capabilities over the currently fielded 5-25 optic used with the M40A6 and Mk13 Mod 7. The rifle uses a 10-round detachable magazine and as a multi-caliber platform can be configured to fire .338 Norma Magnum, .300 NM or 7.62x51mm.
While the Mk22 is heavier than both the M40A6 (chambered in 7.62x51mm) and Mk13 Mod 7 (chambered in .300 Winchester Magnum), the USMC say that the reduction from 4 precision rifles to 3 in inventory along with the rifle’s capabilities mean the move makes sense. “Instead of having to learn multiple weapon systems, we just have one,” said Staff Sgt. Cruz Nuanez, a Scout Sniper Instructor with the Advanced Infantry Training Battalion, School of Infantry-East.
“It’s definitely more efficient,” said Sgt. Christopher Frazier, a Marksmanship Instructor with Scout Sniper Instructor School. “Rather than putting one gun away and getting the next gun out, we can quickly change the barrels, and then we only have to carry ammunition and that extra barrel, not an entire extra gun and extra magazines.”
The Marine Corps Systems Command held an integration assessment range aboard Marine Corps Base Quantico to ensure the new system fits the needs of the Marine Corps snipers. The program office invited instructors from all three Marine Scout Sniper schools and MARSOC, to test the new rifle, optics, suppressors, tripods, and other accessories for the Mk22.
The Mk22 Mod 0 is perhaps better known as Barrett’s MRAD or Multi-Role Adaptive Design. Following the rifle’s selection back in 2020, the US Army issued a contract worth $50 million for the rifle, which it designates the Precision Sniper Rifle, back in April 2021. Barrett announced that they shipped the first of the rifles in October 2021. The USMC expects to begin issuing the rifle during the fiscal year 2023.
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