Firearms / Assault rifles / AR 70

AR 70

General Facts

  • TYPE
    Assault rifle

  • ORIGIN
    Italy

  • NICKNAMES
    AR 70/223

  • DESIGNED
    1968 - 1972

  • DESIGNER
    Beretta

  • PRODUCTION
    1972 - early 1990’s

  • PRODUCERS
    Italy - Beretta

  • QUANTITY
    Unknown

  • UNIT COST
    Unknown

  • CHARACTERISTICS
    Cheap to manufacture
    Reliability issues

Introduction

The AR 70/223 is an assault rifle of Italian origin. It is the result of the SG-530 prototype that was jointly developed by Beretta and SIG. At the time of production it was one of the first rifles to use the 5.56x45mm round after it was employed in the US M16. The AR 70/223 was produced in limited numbers, but paved the way for the more successful AR 70/90.

Design

The AR 70/223 looks very similar to the SG-530 prototype. The AR 70/223 has a conventional assault rifle layout. The stock, forearm and pistol grip are made out of plastics and the rest of the weapon out of metal. The AR 70/223 uses a forward locking bolt system requiring only few parts to be made out of high quality steel.

Firepower

The AR 70/223 is a select-fire weapon that fires the older 5.56x45mm M193 round from 30 round STANAG magazines. The cyclic rate of fire of 650 rounds per minute is modest. The effective range is claimed to be 400 meters.

Users

The AR 70/223 saw only limited service with the Italian armed forces. It was exported to several nations, but had a limited service life due to limited ruggedness.

Variants

AR 70

The AR 70 is a full size rifle of the AR 70/223 family. It is fitted with a fixed plastic stock. The SC 70 is similar to the AR 70 but differs in having a foldable plastic stock. The SCS 70 is the carbine version of the SC 70. It has a shorter barrel and is unable to fire rifle grenades. The AR 70/84 is a light support weapon derived from the AR 70. It is based on the earlier AR 70/78 prototype which also featured a quick change barrel. The AR 70/84 features a heavier barrel, large metal forearm, a bipod and recontoured stock with shoulder plate. It uses standard 30 round STANAG magazines and is unique as the ability to fire rifle grenades is retained.

TypeAssault rifle
Caliber5.56x45mm M193
Magazine30 round box
OperationGas operated, rotating bolt
Fire selector0-1-F
Rate of fire650 rpm
Barrel length450 mm
Rifling4 grooves, 304 mm right hand twist
Muzzle velocity950 m/s
StockFixed
Length955 mm
Width?
Height?
Weight3.8 kg empty
SightsIron sights, 507 mm sight radius
Remarks-
TypeAssault rifle
Caliber5.56x45mm M193
Magazine30 round box
OperationGas operated, rotating bolt
Fire selector0-1-F
Rate of fire650 rpm
Barrel length450 mm
Rifling4 grooves, 304 mm right hand twist
Muzzle velocity950 m/s
StockFoldable
Length960 mm / 736 mm
Width?
Height?
Weight3.85 kg empty
SightsIron sights, 507 mm sight radius
Remarks-
TypeAssault rifle
Caliber5.56x45mm M193
Magazine30 round box
OperationGas operated, rotating bolt
Fire selector0-1-F
Rate of fire650 rpm
Barrel length320 mm
Rifling4 grooves, 304 mm right hand twist
Muzzle velocity885 m/s
StockFoldable
Length820 mm / 596 mm
Width?
Height?
Weight3.7 kg empty
SightsIron sights, 455 mm sight radius
Remarks-

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