This is intended for people interested in the subject of military guns and their ammunition, with emphasis on automatic weapons.
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Does Haenel/Caracal Group still somehow related to the HK or are they both completely different company?
Very surprised they beat out the HK416.
While not perfect, the 416 is at this point a proven platform with a number of happy users, and per Emeric, has a superb barrel with a long service life.
The MK556 beat out the new Heckler & Koch HK433 which was developed specifically for this tender after the German government told H&K that their existing HK416 (adopted by the German Kommando Spezialkräfte or, Special Forces) was too expensive.
Interestingly enough, Haenel part of the Merkel Group, which is under Tawazun Holding (United Arab Emirates) (Caracal). So the Bundeswehr is essentially getting a lower cost HK416.
From the comments:
There were two engineers that after the HK416 went to Sig to produce the 516 with lessons learned from the 416. After that, they were hired by Caracal to make the penultimate piston carbine- the 816 as well as the facility that they’re manufactured in.
--> MK556 reportedly based on Caracal C816, overview begins 3:40
The Caracal CAR 816 shares lineage to the Heckler & Koch HK416. The principal firearms engineers for the CAR 816 were Robert Hirt and Chris Sirois. Hirt was instrumental in the development of the HK416. Following his time with H&K, Hirt was recruited by SIG Sauer to work with then SIG engineer Chris Sirois on an improved version of the HK416: the SIG Sauer SIG516. Hirt and Siriois were then recruited by Caracal to develop a rifle that was superior to both the HK416 and SIG516. From this, the CAR 816 was created.
Manufactured locally under Licence by C. G. Haenel
The designers hopped around.
That's a replaceable cam stop yes. I don't know if the Haenel has it but those guns were designed by the same people
I think Haenel MK556 is indeed has that replacable cam recess thingy, judging by this image. You can see a bolted metal piece on the left side of the upper, though it appears to be smaller than the one on the MCX,.
Seems like that's what that is yep.
I think it should be made clear that the "Haenel" of today has absolutely nothing in common with the old "C.G. Haenel" company beyond buying the rights, from whom ever, to use the name.
Yes that is true its just a resurrected brand.
So the Bundeswehr is essentially getting a lower cost HK416.
Perhaps just as importantly, they're getting a HK416 that doesn't have a H&K logo on the receiver. I think that there were some politics involved in this selection.