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The Carl Gustaf recoilless rifle earliest prototype was built in 1946, and it has been used in many countries for more than 70 years through a series of derivative models. This is due to the light weight and low cost of its body and shells. It can also be combined with a variety of shell types, allowing Carl Gustaf the versatility to be used in modern changing battlefields.

The U.S. military named the Gustav recoilless rifle as the "Ranger Anti-tank Weapons System" (RAWS), and the M3 Gustav recoilless rifle prototype displayed for the 1st time in 1991. Shortly after, Bofors introduced the Carl Gustaf M3 version. The improvement on its predecessor was to reduce the weight of the launcher body: The inner lining of the launch barrel, including the rifling, was made of thinner steel. The reinforcing material of the external structure is made of lightweight carbon fiber and epoxy resin, and all parts that do not need strength are made of aluminum alloy or plastic, all of which greatly reduces the weight of the original transmitter by about 6 kg.

In service around the world, the Carl Gustav recoilless rifle have also been continuously developed for new uses, including the US special forces and the British SAS as a tool to deal with bunkers and other combat vehicles , and the German army still retained a certain number of Gustav M2 even after equipping the new Tekken III bazooka as an anti-armor weapon.

In November 2011, the U.S. Army ordered the M3 series for regular troops on the battlefield in Afghanistan to fight against RPG rocket launchers equipped by the enemy and terrorists. The effective range of the RPG rocket launcher is 500-600 meters. Compared with the M3 Carl Gustaf, with the combination of different ammunition types, the effective range can be increased to about 1300 meters. And as an added feature set thru the sue or the proper munitions, it also has the ability of “air bombing” enemies hiding in bunkers from directly above.


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