New Sniper Rifles for Russian Airborne Spetsnaz Units

New Sniper Rifles for Russian Airborne Spetsnaz Units

Marco Vorobiev was a member of the elite Soviet Spetsnaz in Afghanistan in the 1980s. He's a U.S. citizen now and conducts training courses that draw on his special forces training. He'll have a new installment every Wednesday.

Today I would like to continue a series on modern Russian sniping. As I have written before, the Russian Armed Forces have been looking at several new precision sniper rifle from non-domestic sources. Early on, it appeared that British maker Accuracy International was the front runner. After all there are several of the rifles already in service with some of Russia's anti-terrorism units.

However, they were not the only ones to make an appearance on the Russian sniper scene. In fact, during numerous and now traditional local and international sniper competitions, several other foreign sniper rifles could be spotted in the hands of Russian snipers, including Sako and Steyr-Mannlicher.

Interestingly, most were chambered in .300 Win. Mag. or .338 Lapua Mag. But seeing several rifles at the firing range at some contest being wielded by some uber-special purpose unit with deep pockets does not make these rifles a standard issue. Not until now…


The latest news is that Spetsnaz VDV (Airborne Special Operations) has adopted for use and purchased more than 30 Steyr-Mannlicher sniper rifles form the Austrian company. The official statement to this effect was made by the Russian DOD VDV (Airborne Forces) representative Col. Alexander Kucherenko. According to him, Steyr sniper rifles are the first foreign weapon systems that were purchased by the Russian VDV. The very first purchase orders for said weapons were placed at the end of year 2010.


All the necessary personnel have already been trained on the new rifle at the regional training centers, as well as at DOD sniper school. What specific models of Steyr rifles were supplied to the VDV Col. Kucherenko did not specify. Currently, Steyr Mannlicher produces several models of sniper rifles: SSG 04, SSG 08, SSG 69, SSG Elite and HS .50.

Although the model and caliber actually adopted have not been named, it is safe to assume the SSG 04 and SSG 08 in .308 is now the medium-range rifle, along with .300 Win. Mag. chambered rifles as their "Reach out and touch someone" boom stick. Both rifles were on display at recent war games conducted by the VDV.

The first steps are made toward modernization of Russia's Armed Forces. What's to follow, no one knows. But I'll do my best to keep you informed.


Both newly adopted Steyr rifles, chambered for American cartridges, were featured at recent war games conducted by the Russian VDV Reconnaissance Units.

The new Steyr Mannlicher SSG 04 rifle was one of the two models officially adopted by the Russian VDV, beating out models offered by AI and Sako.


The new Steyr rifles will be purchased in two calibers: the .308 (7.62X51 mm NATO) and .300 Win. Mag. (7.62x63 mm), aligning Russia with other major nations.

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

SCCY CPX-4 in .380 ACP

SCCY CPX-4 in .380 ACP

New for 2019 is the SCCY CPX-4, a .380 ACP semi-automatic pistol that extends beyond the existing SCCY CPX-3 line of pistols.

Promo: Firearms News September 2019 – Issue #18! THE BIG MSR HUNTING ISSUE!

Promo: Firearms News September 2019 – Issue #18! THE BIG MSR HUNTING ISSUE!

Pick up a copy at your local magazine stand, Walmart, Barnes & Noble, or major book retailer!

Firearms News Takes a Look at the Aero Precision 7.5-Inch AR Pistol Upper In 5.56

Firearms News Takes a Look at the Aero Precision 7.5-Inch AR Pistol Upper In 5.56

Vincent DeNiro, editor of Firearms News, does some shooting with the Aero Precision Atlas S-One 7.5-Inch AR pistol upper in 5.56.

Hornady Kestrel 5700 Ballistics Weather Meter with Hornady 4DOF

Hornady Kestrel 5700 Ballistics Weather Meter with Hornady 4DOF

The Hornady Kestrel 5700 combines complete onsite environmental measurements with Hornady 4DOF trajectory solutions.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

Governor Northam is calling a special session of the General Assembly on Tuesday, July 9th, to do nothing but pass more gun control! 2nd Amendment

Virginia Governor Northam Declares War on Gun Owners

Virginia Citizens Defense League - July 09, 2019

Governor Northam is calling a special session of the General Assembly on Tuesday, July 9th, to...

No one can restore receptivity to another Trump term with these disaffected gun owners but the president himself. 2nd Amendment

2020 is Trump's to Blow with Gun Owners

David Codrea - July 09, 2019

No one can restore receptivity to another Trump term with these disaffected gun owners but the...

If you want to keep the peace, keep and bear arms. Don't give up your guns. Any other choice would be ridiculous. 2nd Amendment

Is Red Dawn Really Just Ridiculous? If Not, Who Would Citizen Disarmament Help?

David Codrea - May 29, 2019

If you want to keep the peace, keep and bear arms. Don't give up your guns. Any other choice...

Want the “Holy Grail” of AR-15 rifles? Brownells has made that possible with their BRN-Proto retro rifle. Rifles

Brownells BRN-Proto Retro Rifle

Patrick Sweeney - July 02, 2019

Want the “Holy Grail” of AR-15 rifles? Brownells has made that possible with their BRN-Proto...

See More Trending Articles

More Industry

XS Sights RAM Night Sights have received the National Tactical Officers Association's (NTOA) top rating in their Member Tested and Recommended Program. Industry

XS Sights RAM Night Sights Receive Top Rating from National Tactical Officers Association Members

Firearms News Staff - June 03, 2020

XS Sights RAM Night Sights have received the National Tactical Officers Association's (NTOA)...

Hoppe's announced that it has added another new video to its popular “How to Clean” Series. How-To

Hoppe's Debuts 'How to Clean' Video Series

Firearms News Staff - June 22, 2020

Hoppe's announced that it has added another new video to its popular “How to Clean” Series.

The year 1990 was a “black hole” in the firearms industry and the HECKLER & KOCH SENTINEL reflects that. If you weren't in the industry, or not into guns, or not born back then I will give you a little taste of what we were going through. Industry

Heckler & Koch Had A Newspaper 30 Years Ago???

Vincent DeNiro, Editor - May 18, 2020

The year 1990 was a “black hole” in the firearms industry and the HECKLER & KOCH SENTINEL...

Adams Arms announces the launch of VooDoo Innovations, known for their enhanced pistol barrels, slides, coatings and other premium parts, has released its first complete direct impingement firearms. Industry

Adams Arms Announces VooDoo Innovations

Firearms News Staff - June 24, 2020

Adams Arms announces the launch of VooDoo Innovations, known for their enhanced pistol...

See More Industry

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW OUR CURRENT ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get Digital Access.

All Firearms News subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now