Steyr Mannlicher

Infobox Company
company_name = Steyr Mannlicher GmbH & Co KG
company_
company_type = Public
foundation = 1864 [http://www.steyr-mannlicher.com]
location = Steyr, Austria
key_people = Josef Werndl, founder
industry = Defense
products = Firearms, weapons
num_employees = ~ (2004)
homepage = [http://www.steyr-mannlicher.com www.steyr-mannlicher.com]
The Austrian firm Steyr-Mannlicher is a firearms manufacturer based in the city of Steyr. Originally a part of the Steyr-Daimler-Puch manufacturing conglomerate, it became independent when the conglomerate was broken in 1990.

History

The city of Steyr, Austria has been known for forging weapons since the 14th century. Thousands of muskets, pistols, and carbines were produced annually in the mid 17th century for the Imperial Army.

After his father's death, 24 year old Josef Werndl took over his family's weapons factory. On April 16th, 1864, Josef Werndl founded the "Josef und Franz Werndl & Comp. Waffenfabrik und Sägemühle in Oberletten" (Josef and Franz Werndl & Partners Weapons Factory and Sawmill in Oberletten), from which later emerged the "Österreichische Waffenfabriksgesellschaft" (OEWG, Austrian Arms-Manufacturing Company), and subsequently the Steyr Werke AG and Steyr-Daimler-Puch AG, of which STEYR MANNLICHER was a part.

First applied in 1890, the Mannlicher pistol model 1905, and the Steyr pistol M.1912 became milestones in auto-loading pistols technology. At the beginning of World War I, with more than 15,000 employees, production output was 4,000 weapons per day. After the end of World War I, weapons production in Steyr was all but entirely prohibited, and in 1918, the company faced bankruptcy. To survive, the company converted their machinery to produce cars. World War II provided a brief revival in weapons production.

During the 1950's the famous Mannlicher-Schönauer full stock rifle experienced a renaissance. Simultaneously, The re-emergence of the Austrian Armed Forces in the Second Republic was the base for a new start of military weapons production.

In the 1970's, Steyr opened up new dimensions in military weapons development with a new assault rifle in bullpup design. The StG 77 extensively utilized synthetic materials, and an integrated fixed optic. The export version became the AUG – “Armee Universal Gewehr” (Universal Army Assault Rifle).

Controversy

Steyr made international headlines when it sold 800 HS .50 long range sniper rifles to Iran in 2005, for the National Iranian Police Organisation to use against drug smugglers.

There was a large amount of concern in the United States, UK, and to a lesser extent, countries like Denmark, that the rifles would find their way into Iraq and be used against the New Iraqi Army or Coalition forces. Nevertheless, the sale was approved by the Austrian government. Forty-five days later, the first of several American soldiers was killed by, ostensibly, one of the exported weapons, and a number of the rifles were recovered in raids on Iraqi insurgents.Harding, T. [http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2007/02/13/wiran13.xml "Iraqi insurgents using Austrian rifles from Iran"] , "The Telegraph", February 13, 2007]

On their website, Steyr Mannlicher offered a [http://www.steyr-mannlicher.com/index.php?id=248&L=1 corporate response] to these allegations, claiming that no hard proof, in the form of serial numbers, has yet been offered to confirm that the weapons that killed American soldiers were indeed from the eight hundred exported to Iran.

The statement also pointed out that since the international license for the HS .50 is expired, the weapons in Iraq could be knockoffs from other manufacturers.

Also during late 2007, a propaganda video released by a Shia insurgent group in Iraq showed an insurgent firing a Steyr AUG(not HS .50) against US troops http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=e47_1196460475

The U.S. Central Command announced late 2007 that no Austrian rifle had been found or seized in Iraq as reported by the Austrian journal "Wiener Zeitung"Mathé, Alexander U. [http://www.wienerzeitung.at/DesktopDefault.aspx?TabID=3856&Alias=wzo&cob=277367 "Doch keine Austro-Waffen im Irak"] (German), [http://www.wienerzeitung.at Wiener Zeitung] , march 29, 2007] on March 29.

Well known products

*Steyr AUG Assault rifle
*Steyr Scout general purpose rifle based on Jeff Cooper's scout rifle concept
*Steyr SSG 69 sniper rifle
*Steyr HS .50 sniper rifle
*Steyr ACR experimental assault rifle
*Steyr MPi 69 and Steyr MPi 81 submachine guns
*Steyr TMP submachine gun
*Steyr GB pistol
*Steyr M Series Pistols
*Steyr IWS 2000 15.2mm anti-materiel rifle

Historical products include products such as the Steyr Mannlicher M1901 pistol and M1895 bolt-action rifle.

ee also

*Steyr Sportwaffen GmbH

References

External links

* [http://www.steyr-mannlicher.com Steyr-Mannlicher] corporate website
* [http://www.steyrarms.com Steyr Arms Inc. - "USA Subsidiary of Steyr-Mannlicher"]


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