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Assault Rifle / Carbine / DMR [ 2012 ]

The IMBEL IA2 Assault Rifle is intended as a replacement for a bevy of systems in use throughout the Brazilian military inventory.

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 04/10/2022 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site.

The IMBEL IA2 is an all-modern, locally designed, developed, and produced assault rifle originating from Brazil. The series was adopted by the various services of the Brazilian Armed Forces to overtake an aging, mixed collection of the Brazilian IMBEL MD97, Belgian FN FAL, American M16A2, and German HK33 automatic rifles. The MD97 itself was a localized offshoot of the classic Cold War-era FN FAL (detailed elsewhere on this site) and taken into service in 1997 in the intermediate-power 5.56x45mm NATO chambering. The IA2 brings about more modern features as well as design flexibility, leading to a modular, robust assault weapon solution.

The IA2 is currently known in two chamberings, 5.56x45mm NATO and 7.62x51mm NATO, and these form the basis for several rifle types including the base, full-length IA2 rifle, a shortened assault carbine form, a dedicated, compact Close Quarters Battle (CQB) model, a full-length / full-power Battle Rifle model, and a dedicated Sniper / Designated Marksman Rifle (DMR) variant. The rifle, carbine, and CQB models are all chambered in 5.56mm while the Battle and sniper / DMR models support the ubiquitous, full-powered 7.62mm round.

The rifle's general arrangement remains conventional as modern rifles go: At the rear is an adjustable shoulder stock. The pistol grip / trigger unit is slung under the frame in the usual way with the grip given an ergonomic slant. The trigger loop is oversized to take on a gloved hand and the magazine well is positioned just ahead. The charging handle sits to the left side of the body along with fire control functions located within reach of the primary hand's thumb. The firing controls are doubled along the right side, making them ambidextrous, to support both right- and left-handed shooters without modification. The ejection port is positioned along the right side of the frame with an M16-style deflection block being prominent here. The muzzle also has an M16-style multi-slotted appearance to aid in recoil.

Weight of the unloaded weapon is 7.1lb with an overall length reaching 39.1 inches and barrel assembly measuring 17.2 inches long.

The long-running section of Picatinny rail over the receiver and forend allows a plethora of sighting devices - including a broad array of optics, magnifiers, and aimers - to be used. Additionally, shorter sections of rail are located close to the muzzle for additional mounting points - these mounting points useful for laser sights / aimers, tactical flashlights, and even an Under-Barrel Grenade Launcher (UBGL) suppression component. Iron sights are retained for backup purposes.

Internally, the gun relies on the proven gas-operated, rotating-bolt arrangement seen in many other automatic rifles the world over. Rate-of- fire reaches up to 750 rounds-per-minute (model and chambering dependent) and muzzle velocity is rated at 3,000 feet-per-second (again, model and chambering dependent). The rifle feeds from a 30-round STANAG-type magazine when in 5.56mm chambering and the 20-round FN FAL style magazine when in 7.62mm.

The original project that led to the IA2 initially looked to modernize the MD97 design (as the "MD97 Mk.II") but this led to an overall extensive reworking of the entire approach - resulting in a whole new rifle better suited to modern battlefield requirements and abuses. An initial modest order for 1,500 IA2 rifles was placed in 2012 by the Brazilian Army which led to extensive evaluation by multiple Brazilian military elements. The rifle was then cleared for service - leading to the Army securing an order in December 2013 for 20,000 examples, these to be chambered in 5.56x45mm NATO.

A chief operator of this rifle is Brazil's Special Operations Brigade and the system also serves with special paratrooper elements as well as jungle troops and Marines.©MilitaryFactory.com
Note: The above text is EXCLUSIVE to the site www.MilitaryFactory.com. It is the product of many hours of research and work made possible with the help of contributors, veterans, insiders, and topic specialists. If you happen upon this text anywhere else on the internet or in print, please let us know at MilitaryFactory AT gmail DOT com so that we may take appropriate action against the offender / offending site and continue to protect this original work.


Service Year

Brazil national flag graphic


Assault Rifle / Carbine / DMR

Industria de Material Belico do Brasil (IMBEL) - Brazil
(View other Arms-Related Manufacturers)
National flag of Brazil Brazil
(OPERATORS list includes past, present, and future operators when applicable)
Automatic Function
Features a mechanical function to automate the firing action.
Assault Rifle
Modern class of long gun featuring select-fire properties, automatic internal function, and magazine feeding.
Accuracy / Precision
Long-range accuracy / precision capable; suitable for sniping, particularly when equipped with sighting aids.
Special Forces
Qualities of this weapon have shown its value to Special Forces elements requiring a versatile, reliable solution for the rigors of special assignments.
Asymmetric Warfare
Design is highly variable / low-cost based on battlefield requirement and available materials; general use is in urban settings against an organized foe for high casualty count.

Compact nature allows for relatively easy concealment.
Despite its size / weight, the product can be transported by foot infantry.
Internal action allows release of single round per trigger pull, actuating a semi-automatic loading mechanism for successive shots.
Internal action allows release of multiple rounds with a trigger pull in quick succession.
An automatic, or pseudo-automatic, function is built into the system, allowing for repeat firing to be achieved.
Supports mounting of optics (scopes) to aid in accuracy for ranged fire.
Supports 'iron sights' allowing for inherent accuracy in ranged fire.
Design allows for user adjustability of certain components for customization.
Design offers mounting points for external, after-market hardware including laser aimers, flashlights, scopes, and grips.
Ease-of-use coupled with relative simplicity of combined components makes this entry a cost-effective solution for unconventional elements / fighting forces.

Overall Length
993 mm
39.09 in
Barrel Length
440 mm
17.32 in
Empty Wgt
7.05 lb
3.20 kg

Over-Frame Optics, Aimers, and Magnifiers; Backup Iron.


Gas-Operated; Rotating Bolt; Selective-Fire

Rotating Bolt
System utilizes internal mechanism to lock the breech or rear barrel assembly prior to firing.
Gas-operated system is featured, typically involving a gas cylinder and rear-driven piston directing energy to the bolt component.
(Material presented above is for historical and entertainment value and should not be construed as usable for hardware restoration, maintenance, or general operation - always consult official manufacturer sources for such information)


5.56x45mm NATO; 7.62x51mm NATO

Sample Visuals**

Graphical image of a 5.56mm intermediate rifle cartridge
Graphical image of a 7.62x51mm / .308 Winchester rifle cartridge
Rounds / Feed

20- or 30-round detachable box magazine.
Cartridge relative size chart
*May not represent an exhuastive list; calibers are model-specific dependent, always consult official manufacturer sources.
**Graphics not to actual size; not all cartridges may be represented visually; graphics intended for general reference only.
Max Eff.Range
11,800 ft
(3,597 m | 3,933 yd)
Muzzle Velocity
3,000 ft/sec
(914 m/sec)

IA2 - Base Series Designation; base rifle form with 17.7" barrel assembly; 5.56mm chambering.
IA2 Carbine - Shortened assault carbine form with 14.5" barrel; 5.56mm chambering.
IA2 CQB - Compact Close-Quarters Battle variant with 10.3" barrel; 5.56mm chambering.
IA2 Battle Rifle - Full-length rifle form; 7.62mm chambering.
IA2 Sniper / DMR - Designated Marksman Rifle form with 20" barrel; 7.62mm chambering.

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Images Gallery

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Image from the Brazilian Ministry of Defence; Public Release.

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