Kalashnikov RPK-16 light machine gun (Russia)

Kalashnikov RPK-16 light machine gun.
Photo (c) Kalashnikov Concern.


Shooting the RPK-16 with short barrel




Length, mm

with short barrel: 900 (650 w. stock folded)
with long barrel: 1080 (830 w. stock folded)

Barrel length, mm

370 or 500

Weight w/o magazine and bipod, kg


Rate of fire, rounds per minute


Feed and capacity

Magazine, drum 95 rounds, box 30 or 45 rounds


The 5.45mm Kalashnikov RPK-16 light machine gun is a prototype of the new Squad Automatic weapon proposed by “Kalashnikov” Concern. Based on traditional Kalashnikov layout and design, it has several novel technical and ergonomic features derived from the AK-12 program, as well as some specific “machine gun” upgrades such as detachable barrels that are available in two lengths, long and short. First displayed to the public at Army-2016 expo, as of late 2018 it was submitted for testing by Russian army and some elite law enforcement units. Eventually this gun is intended to replace old 5.45mm RPK-74 light machine guns / squad automatic weapons.

With short barrel, it also can be used as a ‘heavy assault rifle’ for urban operations. In this QCB configuration RPK-16, thanks to its heavy barrel, is capable of very good accuracy in single shots, and also can deliver significant firepower in full automatic mode. 


Kalashnikov RPK-16 light machine gun uses traditional gas operated, long stroke piston action with rotary bolt locking. It fires from closed bolt, in single shots and full auto. It has interchangeable barrels in two configurations. Long barrels are useful for standard military operations, while short barrels are intended for close combat and Special Operations. Barrel replacement requires partial disassebly of the gun and takes about 2 minutes. To further improve versatility of the gun, RPK-16 has several integrated Picatinny rails that can mount variety of sights and accessories, and can be equipped with sound suppressor. Special high capacity drum magazine is being developed for RPK-16 to give its users additional firepower. It can be fitted with folding bipod or other tactical acessories.