Accuracy International will supply 580 rifles with day telescopic sights for snipers across the services, which will fire a larger calibre bullet than the existing weapon.
The rifle is being supplied as part of a broader Sniper System Improvement (SSI) programme to give UK snipers more power, precision and stealth than ever before. All-weather advanced day and night sights will mean snipers can operate round the clock in difficult conditions, and laser technology will allow distant targets to be accurately located.
Baroness Taylor, minister for defence equipment and support said: ‘In response to feedback from operations we are investing in new sniper equipment. The first contract is for the new longer range rifle and day sight, and we expect to start taking deliveries of this kit early next year.’
Training units will familiarise themselves with the weapon and how it works with other parts of the sniper system. The rifle is due to be ready for operational use next spring.
Other elements of the Sniper System Improvement programme include night sights, spotting scopes, laser range finders and tripods, and will be sourced from a variety of suppliers taking the total procurement value to over £11m.