AK-47 To Be Upgraded
February 28, 2012 by UPI - United Press International, Inc.
IZHEVSK, Russia, Feb. 28 (UPI) — Russia’s AK-47, the world’s most popular assault rifle, is to receive an upgrade.
The Russian Federation’s Izhmash Machine Building Plant factory in Udmurtia, which manufactures the AK-47, announced that the new version, designated the AK-12 is under development, The Guardian newspaper reported Tuesday.
Among the changes, the AK-12 can be operated with one hand. The designers also decided to install safety switches on both sides of the rifle rather than on the just right-hand side.
“One of the features that is specific to the new Kalashnikov rifle is its modular nature,” said Izhmash spokeswoman Elena Filatova. “It is designed as a base model which can serve as a basis for making about 20 different modifications of weapons which could be used for both civil and military purposes and with different caliber bullets.”
The AK-12 automatic rifle will undergo formal tests toward the end of the year.
The AK-47 was introduced into the Soviet army in 1947. Since then more than 75 million AK-47s have been manufactured.