Caliber: 5.56x45mm NATO
Action: Gas operated, Rotating bolt
Length: 1008 mm (Stock Extended), 753 mm (Stock Retracted)
Barrel Length: 450 mm
Weight: 3.90 kg
Magazine: 30 rounds box
Rate Of Fire: 650 rounds per minute
The AK 5 Rifle was a license built version of the FN FNC, manufactured in Sweden by Bofors. The ‘AK’ in this case stands for ‘Automatkarbin’, which is essentially Swedish for ‘Assault Rifle’.
Sweden adopted its first 7.62 mm assault rifle in 1963, as the AK 4. It was a locally license-built version of the Heckler & Koch G3 rifle, which served with distinction until the Swedish Government adopted NATO standard 5.56 mm ammunition in 1984.
Extensive trials included weapons like the Israeli Galil (made under license by FFV of Sweden), the German HK 33, the American M16A1 and the Swiss SIG SG-540. The Swedish Army finally selected the Belgian FN FNC as its next standard issue weapon. The basic FN FNC rifle was then modified to suit Swedish requirements. The most notable changes were the omission of 3-round burst mode, an enlarged trigger guard, a thicker forend and an improved, corrosion-resistant finish on all metallic parts. The buttstock and handguards were made longer and more suitable for winter conditions, and the charging handle enlarged for a better grip when using arctic mittens. The special surface treatment is also intended for better protection against the elements.
First deliveries from FN were made to Sweden in 1986, and domestic rifles began to enter service a year later. They were manufactured at Bofors’ Karl Gustaf factories. The modified FNC rifle, adopted as the AK 5, is still in service now with the Swedish Armed Forces.
The AK 5 is manufactured with several variations, including the basic AK 5, the AK 5B which is issued as a squad-level marksman rifle with 4X telescopic sight (British SUSAT L9A1) and cheek-pad on the buttstock. Then there is the AK 5C with Picatinny rail and no open sights. Finally the AK 5D with shortened barrel, integral carrying handle with built-in telescope sight, intended for Commando units and paratroopers. There is also a grenade-launcher variation, fitted with the American M203 40mm grenade launcher, used mostly by Rangers and amphibious forces.
Thanks to Olof “Sgt.” Petersson, of Sweden for the info and pictures.