Last Spring, the U.S. Army announced they would be buying a small quantity (~350) of Sub Compact Weapons, ultra-compact 9mm SMGs for use by the special teams tasked with protecting high-value officers and dignitaries. The first decent sub-gun contract by the Pentagon this century, there were lots of bragging rights on the line and 10 different companies both foreign and domestic threw their hats in the ring, with Swiss-based B&T coming out the winner with their downright tiny APC9K.
Well, the USAF just jumped on the same train last month, ordering a smaller quantity, likely for similar uses.
After all, could you blame them?
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The Swiss firm of Brugger & Thomet a few years ago coughed up a neat little SMG termed the Advanced Police Carbine, or APC. Nominally a pistol-caliber burp gun that can top 1,080 rounds-per-minute the company beat out a Baker’s Dozen of big-name gun makers last year with a shortened version, the APC9K, to win an Army contract to replace the HK MP5K in use with Personal Security Details guarding key command staff like SACEUR and UNC/CFC/USFK.
The HK MP5K, perfect for close protection, but an aging design that takes proprietary mags. (Photo: U.S. Army)
The new B&T APC9K is trim and, importantly, can take Sig P320 mags– which are used by the Army’s new M17/M18 pistols.
I got to handle one lately.
The APC9K, in what is dubbed a PRO series, is a semi-auto and is seeing some success on the law enforcement market for specialized services, such as when suppressed in the hands of an entry team in a meth lab.
Miami Beach just selected the B&T APC9K PRO this month. More on that in my column at Guns.com.
Earlier this year, Brugger & Thomet won the Army’s Sub Compact Weapon contract to supply up to 1,000 very short SMGs to DOD for use by security details. The gun had to be ambidextrous, very compact — under 15-inches overall with some sort of provision for a stock — and light. For reference, the very short HK MP5K, with no allowance for a stock, is 12.9-inches.
The winner: B&T’s APC9K, which has a 13.6-inch overall length with the stock fully collapsed. Further, the receiver can be made in a variant that accepts Sig P320 pattern mags, and keep in mind the Army just adopted that pistol as the M17/M18.
The B&T APC9K will almost fit in the palm of your hand– if you have really big hands. (Photos: Chris Eger/Guns.com)
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Swiss gun maker B&T had a very short Trident Arms-marked APC9K-SD model on hand at SHOT Show earlier this year that looked like a contender for the Army’s Sub Compact Weapon program, a move to buy up to 1,000 handy room brooms to replace aging HK MP5s used by personal security details.
This thing. Of note, everyone else that has written about B&T’s SCW entry is using pictures of a different gun, because they didn’t take this one. (Photo: Chris Eger)
It turns out to have been at the head of the pack, minus the integral suppressor.
More in my column at Guns.com