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AM-17 compact assault rifle (Russia)

The AM-17 compact assault rifle is a new weapon, developed by the “Kalashnikov” Concern. First shown as a prototype in 2017, it is intended to fullfil the role of a Personal Defense Weapon for aircraft pilots, vehiсle crews and other military peronnel. It also can be used as a compact CQB or concealed carry rifle for Special Operations, VIP protection and Law Enforcement. If adopted, it can replace obsolescent AKS-74U rifle, which is long out of production in Russia. As of moment of latest update (October of 2021), the AM-17 rifle is undergoing official trials with the Russian Military.


5.45mm AM-17 compact assault rifle
5.45mm AM-17 compact assault rifle


5.45mm AM-17 compact assault rifle
5.45mm AM-17 compact assault rifle


The AM-17 rifle traces its roots to the MA experimental compact assault rifle, developed by famous Soviet small arms designer E.Dragunov, author of the SVD sniper rifle. AM-17 shares same basic layout with an iverted U-shaped upper receiver, polymer lower receiver, and basic features of gas operated action. However, the new AM-17 uses much more modern polymers in its construction, and offers improved ergonomics with ambidestrous controls. While preparing the basic 5.45mm AM-17 compact assault rifle for official trials, engineers at Kalashnikov concern also built a complete family of new-generation assult rifles, all based on the same Dragunov-designed features. This family now includes compact versions in all three major intermediate calibers (5.45x39mm, 7.62x39mm and 5.56x45mm NATO), an integrally suppressed AMB-17 rifle in 9x39mm, and, last but not least, a full-size AM-17M rifle with 41-cm barrel.


7.62x39mm AM-17 compact assault rifle
7.62x39mm AM-17 compact assault rifle, experimental model


5.45mm AM-17M assault rifle
5.45mm AM-17M assault rifle, the newest “full-size” version, experimental model


The AM-17M rifle is especially interesting as it offers a serious alternative to the latest generation of Kalashnikov assault rifles such as AK-200 and AK-12. With the barrel of same lenght, the AM-17M is said to be about 0.5 kg lighter than the AK-12, has better ergonomics, and offers a more stable integral Picatinny rail for use with all types of modern optics. So for now the main question is if AM-17 and its descendants can pass most demanding reliability tests, required by Russian army for rifles it uses. If it succeeds, the entire family of Dragunov-based assault rifles can evolve into a sort of the “Russian SCAR” system.


5.45mm AM-17M assault rifle
5.45mm AM-17M assault rifle with stock folded


The AM-17 compact assault rifle has a compact upper receiver made from polymer (with steel reinforcements), with integrated Picatinny rail on the top. Lower receiver along with magazine housing and pistol grip is also made from polymer and connected to the upper via two captive cross-pins.

This weapon employs a gas operated action with short stroke gas piston and rotary bolt locking with three radial lugs on the bolt head.
Manual safety/fire selector levers are ambidextrous, and the rifle can fire in single shotsand full automatic. Bolt chargin handle reciprocates with the bolt carrier, and can be installed on either side of the gun, depending on thr user preferences. AM-17 rifle is equipped with a side-folding and adjustable (telescoping) shoulder stock. Stock folds to the right and does not interfere with firing operations.

A quick-detachable tactical sound suppressor can be installed on the muzzle. The AM-17 rifle is fed from standard AK74 compatible magazines. Versions in other calibers use magazines from AK101 in 5.56mm or from AKM or AK-103 in 7.62x39mm.


Specification Value
Full text name AM-17 compact assault rifle (Russia)
Caliber cartridge 5.45x39 7N6 7N10 7N22 7N24
Action type select-fire
Trigger type sa
Overall length, mm 750
Length, folded, mm 490
Weight empty, kg 2,5
Magazine capacity, rounds 30
Cyclic rate of fire, rounds/min 700-850