The United States Marine Corps has issued a notice that it plans to purchase more than 50,000 from Heckler & Koch.

In February, Marine Corps Systems Command (MARCORSYSCOM) issued a request for information (RFI), seeking companies capable of manufacturing the 5.56mm NATO M27 Infantry Automatic Rifle, designed by German manufacturer Heckler & Koch and based on H&K's HK416 rifle. Based on internal evaluations, the Marine Corps had determined that it wanted to expand use of the M27 within its rifle squads.

Although several companies who manufacture 416 clones answered the RFI, MARCORSYSCOM evaluated those submissions, and determined that only H&K was capable of producing the weapon the Corps has adopted as the M27, SoldierSystems.net reports.

H&K has also won the French Army’s rifle program with the 416 and has developed and is now offering the 433 for the German Bundeswehr’s G36 replacement. In addition, the company is competing in the U.S. Army's testing of a 7.62mm infantry rifle.

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