General Dynamics announced today that it will partner Smith & Wesson to pursue the US Army's Modular Handgun System (MHS) solicitation to replace the M9 standard Army sidearm.
The strategic partnership's Modular Handgun System will be based on the Smith & Wesson M&P Polymer Pistol platform. Designed with a reinforced polymer chassis, superior ergonomics, ambidextrous controls, and proven safety features, the M&P are used by US and law enforcement agencies worldwide. The M&P's features make it well suited for the MHS requirement by providing side arms that exceed the military's expectations for a future modular handgun in terms of performance, reliability and durability. The M&P pistol has been in production since 2005.
Smith & Wesson President and CEO, James Debney, said, "The strategic partnership between our two companies provides us with a tremendous opportunity to support our military with a state-of-the-art sidearm, namely our M&P pistol. General Dynamics brings us a wealth of experience and resource in federal government contracting and that capability is an ideal match with our knowledge in handgun manufacturing technology. We look forward to working together to pursue this exciting opportunity to support our military."
The Army's draft MHS solicitation identifies design and performance requirements for a new modular handgun system that can be easily adjusted to fit all hand sizes and is optimized for improved gun, ammunition and magazine performance. The Army's stated plan is to commence the competition in January 2015, with delivery of the first new handgun systems in 2017.