PEO Soldier announced yesterday it is aggressively working on an improvement program for the venerable M24 7.62mm sniper rifle.
According to PEO for Soldier weapons Col. Doug Tamilio, the service is taking "some" of its Remington-made M24s and converting them to .300 Win Mag shooters -- which Tamilio says will increase the rifles range beyond its current 800 meters. They're also going to replace the forward stock with a new one that incorporates picatinny rails, replace the current 10x scope with an adjustable one up to 25x that "when we adjust it from 3 power to 25, the reticle inside changes with that" and make the rear stock adjustable for length and cheek weld (so no more foam and duct tape customizations, Joe).
Snipers will also get more shots with the improved M24 since PEO is asking industry to increase the current five shot internal magazine with an external one that holds up to 10 rounds. The improved rifle will also have a flash hider/suppressor that comes standard "so we're going to give them the ability to be harder to detect when they fire the weapon."
Midway through this month, industry respondents are supposed to submit their hardware for the M24 upgrade to PEO for evaluation during the spring for an eventual downselect in the summer.
"And I will start fielding these to our snipers in theater this fall," Tamilio said. "That's pretty aggressive schedule and we are on track to do that."
I know there's been a lot of talk around the 300 Win Mag vs 308 around sniper circles. The Win Mag has a range "on a good day" of 1200 meters but some shooters complain of its abusive recoil that could lead to shooter flinch. The 308 is said to be less abusive but may not reach out to the same distances that the 300 does. I've never shot either, so I have no first hand knowledge, but that's what I hear.