It’s turning out to be a banner year for bullpup fans.
The latest bit of news that should buoy the spirits of those who love the compact platform comes from a company well known for its bullpups. Steyr Arms has been churning out its AUG bullpup since 1978 and is now shipping it newest version for the consumer market.
The Austrian-based manufacturer recently released the AUG A3 M1, which Steyr bills as a multi-configurable variant of the rifle.
The most notable development on the M1 is the rail choices on the three new models. High-Rail, Short-Rail and Integrated-Optic models are all now presently available for the .223/5.56 rifle.
Both of the railed models have Picatinny rails, configured to suit shooters optics preferences.
The rail on the Short-Rail model ends at the back of the receiver and is suited for reflex sights or long-eye relief optics. Despite its petite size the rail offers wiggle room with 11 slot positions and is situated .435 over the comb.
The high-rail model is a bit bigger with 16 slots – a feature that is intended to allow a greater variation of optics. The High-Rail extends 2.57-inches back from the receiver and sits .820 over the stock comb. The company boasts the High-Rail is set up for nearly any optic, from a high-magnification scope to a red-dot sight.
The Integrated-Optics model obviously has the least wiggle room when it comes to versatility, given it comes outfitted with a 1.5X or 3X optic. But those who yearn for a earnest facsimile of Steyr’s special operations bullpup – the AUG SF – should be satiated.
The optics are mounted 1.945-over the stock comb, which according to the company should produce a solid cheekweld. The optics themselves also have been refined from earlier versions, with windage and elevations turrets adjustable with a coin or flathead screwdriver.
The AUG A3 M1 boasts an overall length of just 28.15 inches, including its 16-inch heavy barrel, making it at least 8-inches shorter than an M4 carbine with a comparable-length barrel. The rifle boasts a short-stroke gas-piston operation and is outfitted with stainless steel operation and guide rods affixed to the bolt carrier.
The rifle is available with two different stock styles. The standard AUG stock is compatible with AUG magazines. The NATO stock accepts STANAG mags. Each model is sold with a 30-round magazine.
The new AUG A3 M1 is completely produced at Steyr’s new Alabama factory. The Short-Rail and Long-Rail versions have MSRPs of $2,099. The Integrated-Optic model has two price points, $2,499 with the 1.5X scope and $2,599 when outfitted with the 3X scope.