On August 17, the vice president of marketing and operations for Beretta Defense Technologies, Gabriele de Plano, wrote a letter to The Washington Post. He wanted to address some issues that the paper had reported earlier about the Beretta M9.
In his letter, Plano strongly suggested that the US Army should upgrade the current M9 rather than paying for the development of a newly designed weapon which is being called the Modular Handgun System, or MHS.
On the surface, the MHS plan sounds simple: replace the Army’s current inventory of over 200,000 outdated M9 pistols, as well as several thousand M11 9mm pistols, with a single pistol that offers increased reliability, accuracy, lethality, and durability.
For some time now, the Army has said that the current M9 has problems with its reliability factor. Beretta disagrees and continues to stand behind the model, conceding, however, that certain changes can be made to the weapon to provide better combat operation. Beretta says its testing comes out with an average reliability for M9 at 17,500 rounds without a stoppage; reliability/durability for the weapon’s slide is more than 35,000 rounds.
The M9 has been with the Pentagon arsenal since 1985. The pistol has been produced in the US since 1987, manufactured in Accokeek, Maryland. Beretta has delivered more than 600,000 M9 pistols, and more will be delivered over time under a new 5-year contract, which is a separate deal.
For its part, Beretta maintains that the newly upgraded model meets most of the Army’s requirements. According to a Beretta press release, the improvements include a “thin grip with a removable, modular wrap-around grip, MIL-STD-1913 accessory rail, removable front and rear tritium sights, extended and threaded barrel for suppressor use, 17-round sand resistant magazine, and numerous improved small components to increase durability and ergonomics, all in an earth tone finish.”
Plano says the the new M9A3 will likely cost less than the current M9. With budget cuts being considered by the DoD, the upgrade only makes sense in both cost savings as well as time savings.
Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.
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