The Heckler & Koch HK32KA1 carbine was designed for the military market that revolved around the firing of the Soviet 7.62x39mm M1943 "short" cartridge - most notably any Soviet-supported or satellite state at the time. The cartridge was the same one fielded en masse with the ubiquitous AK-47 assault rifle and, as such, it only seemed commercially sound to field an HK system that utilized the same type of ammunition. The short-barrel version was to be a close encounter assault weapon featuring a retractable butt stock and, additionally, the carbine was designed to make use of a 20, 30 or 40-round detachable magazine.
Developed in the early 1960's in an effort to make a splash and - it was hoped - turn a profit in those markets, the HK32KA1 was, in fact, limited to demonstration production models when it was deemed that the market demand was not viable. As such, the HK32 family series of 7.62x39mm chambered automatic rifles was dropped from the HK line.