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Haenel MK556

Modular Assault Weapon

Germany | 2020

"The Haenel MK556 was initially selected as a replacement for the G36 for Germany - this selection late revoked."

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 04/23/2022 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.

The MK556 is a military market AR-style assault weapon manufactured by C.G. Haenel of Germany and based on the company's earlier law enforcement-minded CR223 product (introduced in 2017). Base qualities include selective-fire modes (semi- and full-automatic fire, a finger-grooved ergonomic pistol grip, and perforated heat-dissipating forend. More modern features are Picatinny rail sections over the frame (full length) and under the forend, full optics support, and an M4-style adjustable shoulder stock. The rifle comes in four distinct barrel lengths: 10.5", 12.5", 14.5", and 16".

The series was introduced by Haenel in 2020.

The action is of gas-operation (short-stroke piston with rotating bolt) and the weapon feeds from 30-round STANAG spring-loaded hard magazines in 5.56x45mm NATO. A 100-round detachable Beta C-Mag can also be used for the fire support role. Rate-of-fire reaches 900 rounds-per-minute. The charging handle is the AR-style pull-back located at the upper rear of the frame.

The buttstock can be adjusted to six positions for operator customizability. A horizontally-slotted flash hider is set over the muzzle to control recoil and limit muzzle flash. The forend sports a tool-less removal feature and had a pair of NAR and KeyMod rails for the mounting of tactical accessories such as night-vision optics, magnifiers, laser aimers, and flashlights. The safety mechanism consists of a firing pin safety and controls are ambidextrous. The back-up iron sights are foldable and can be retained alongside the mounted tactical accessories fitted.

The MK553 was the final selection of the German Armed Forces in September of 2020 to succeed an aging like of G36 assault rifles (detailed elsewhere on this site). However, issues related to the rifle's procurement, as well as charges of patent infringement, led to the selection being withdrawn in March of 2021. The selection of the G36's replacement has now fallen to long-time German arms supplier Heckler & Koch.

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September 2020 - The MK556 has been officially selected by the German Armed Forces as the direct successor of the storied G36 assault rifle.

March 2021 - The German Federal Ministry of Defence has excluded the MK556 design from further participation in the G36 replacement program due to possible patent infringements on the part of the Haenel design.

Performance specifications presented assume optimal operating conditions for the Haenel MK556. Information presented is strictly for general reference and should not be misconstrued as useful for hardware restoration or operation.
The physical qualities of the Haenel MK556. Information presented is strictly for general reference and should not be misconstrued as useful for hardware restoration or operation.
923 mm
36.34 in
O/A Length
408 mm
16.06 in
Barrel Length
7.94 lb
3.60 kg
Gas-Operated; Short-Stroke Piston; Selective-Fire.
30-round detachable box magazine.
Supported Optics; Back-Up, Optional Iron Front and Rear.
Notable series variants as part of the Haenel MK556 Modular Assault Weapon family line.
MK556 - Base Series Designation.
Global customers who have evaluated and/or operated the Haenel MK556. Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national small arms listing.

Contractor(s): C.G. Haenel GmbH - Germany
National flag of modern Germany National flag of Poland

[ Germany (police); Poland (police) ]
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Image of the Haenel MK556
Image from official Haenel marketing materials.

Developments of similar form-and-function, or related, to the Haenel MK556 Modular Assault Weapon.
Going Further...
The Haenel MK556 Modular Assault Weapon appears in the following collections:
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