SIG Sauer Rattler Wins US SOCOM Personal Defense Weapon Contract -The Firearm Blog

Soldier running a RAMP and a SIG Rattler carbine (US Army)

SIG Sauer is set to be awarded a contract to fulfill US Special Operations Command’s requirement for a commercial, off-the-shelf, personal defense weapon (CPDW). A notice of intent from SOCOM to award a five-year Firm Fixed Price (FFP) contract was shared on 19 May. Following on from their recent success with the NGSW program, SIG Sauer’s MCX Rattler has been selected and will be procured in 5.56x45mm and .300 BLK. The contract also includes SIG’s SL suppressors.


Following the ‘notice of intent’ to award the sole-source contract for the Rattlers, there will be a short feedback/comment period, until 26 May, after which the contract will be awarded proper.

SIG Sauer Rattler Wins US SOCOM Personal Defense Weapon Contract

A soldier running SIG Rattler at a 2019 AEWE event (US Army)

We saw the SIG Rattler PDW demonstrated at a US Army Expeditionary Warrior Experiments (AEWE) event back in 2019 in a configuration which might not be too far from what SOCOM have selected. Check out our earlier article on that here.

SOCOM’s program for a PDW has been running since 2017, with numerous weapon tested, the contract notice stated that “Sig Sauer is the only vendor that can fulfill USSOCOM’s need for the Commercial PDW requirement.” Interestingly, the notice also explains that the commercial off-the-shelf nature of the program meant that submissions which were not in production or were not from the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) could not be considered.

Here’s the notice in full:

The Government hereby submits a notice of intent to award the Commercial Personal Defense Weapon (PDW) contract to Sig  Sauer. This IDIQ will provide complete PDW weapons (Sig Rattlers – 5.56mm and .300 Blackout caliber) that includes suppressors (SL series), cleaning kits, magazines, quick barrel change kits and force on force training kits. Furthermore, parts, sustainment, and New Equipment Training will also be part of this IDIQ. The PDW system will allow Operators to have maximum firepower in a concealable weapon.

This IDIQ will be a five-year Firm Fixed Price (FFP) contract. After years of continuous market research, USSOCOM HQ has concluded that Sig Sauer is the only vendor that can fulfill USSOCOM’s need for the Commercial PDW requirement. USSOCOM HQ has been researching and reviewing different systems since 2017. We have meticulously reviewed each system for technical acceptance and whether it fits the commercial definition. Except for Sig Sauer, the vendors did not meet the technical requirements and/or the weapons do not meet the commercial definition. Due to the nature of this particular effort, USSOCOM cannot procure PDWs that are prototypes, under development, not in production, are in limited production or will be in general production in 1-2 years from now (assuming the PDW is not in production or is in limited production).

In addition, due to the programmatic requirements of this effort, we can only award to the Original Equipment Manufacture (OEM); in this case its Sig Sauer.  The OEM (Sig Sauer) must provide New Equipment Training (for both Operators and Engineers/Technicians), Parts Replacement Schedule, sustainment etc… Sig Sauer is the only vendor who can fulfill the programmatic requirements because they are the sole owner the Intellectual Property (IP) and the technical data package of the Sig Sauer Rattler system.

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Matthew Moss

_________________________________________________________________________ – Managing Editor – Managing Editor

Matt is a British historian specialising in small arms development and military history. He has written several books and for a variety of publications in both the US and UK. He also runs Historical Firearms, a blog that explores the history, development and use of firearms. Matt is also co-founder of The Armourer’s Bench, a video series on historically significant small arms.

Here on TFB he covers product and current military small arms news.

Reach Matt at: [email protected]

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