Sub-Machine Guns

The MP5 and SD5 are the classic weapons of the SAS’s anti-terrorist unit for use specifically in CQB (for example the Iranian Embassy Siege), the MP5k is a PDW (personal defence weapon), this is the weapon that they will use when on diplomatic protection duty, because it packs a punch but can be concealed in a shoulder harness.

There are regular upgrades to these guns; at the time of writing the MP5 has a 10 and 40 series.

The P90 is also rapidly becoming a popular weapon, it’s unlikely to replace the MP5 but will certainly be in the SAS’ arsenal.


Heckler & Koch MP5SD5

Calibre: 9mmx19
Ammunition Feed: Staggered magazines; 15- or 30-round capacity
Cyclic rate: 900 RPM
Sight Radius: 10.25 inches
Weight: with empty magazine 6.14 pounds
Barrel length: 5.50 inches
Overall length: 14.50/23.75 inches
Width: 1.96 inches Height 8.26 inches (209.8mm)

For specialised applications requiring fully realised sound and flash suppression, several MP5SD models are available. The removable sound suppresser is integrated into the weapon’s design and conforms to the normal length and profile of a conventional, un-suppressed submachine gun. The MP5SD uses an integral aluminium or optional wet technology stainless steel sound suppresser. It does not require use of subsonic ammunition for effective sound reduction like most conventional sound suppressed submachine guns.

Common throughout each weapon group has the ability to use many interchangeable assembly groups and components. These provide the ability to train personnel within one weapon group and have them competent with the entire weapon system.

Accessory claw-lock scope mount and telescopic sight. HK scope mounts attach to rifles and submachine guns without tools at special points that ensure 100% return to zero. HK scope mounts do not interfere with the use of the weapon’s iron sights.

How would one describe what a SD sounds like being fired?  Many gun rags that are available over the counter describe them as being so silent that only the bolt opening and closing is audible.  That is pure pabulum.  Sound suppressed firearms are relatively loud, but suppressed .22 pistols and rifles are very quiet.  Most can be fired without hearing protection, but the key to what the suppresser does, in layman’s terms, is to make a gunshot sound like something other than a gunshot.  This is an accurate description: They do not sound like gunshots.  More like a pneumatic staple gun.  As sound suppression systems go, the SD is one of the more quiet available.

The Handgrip on the H&K Submachine guns can be changed so that when lightly squeezed the fixed spotlight on the


Heckler & Koch MP5

Calibre: 10mm Auto
Operation: Recoil operated, delayed roller-locked bolt system
Ammunition Feed: Straight, translucent, synthetic magazine; 30-round capacity
Modes of fire: Semi-automatic, 3-round burst, and full-automatic
Mechanical sights: Rotary aperture rear sight adjustable for windage and elevation; Hooded post front sight
Optical sights: Any telescopic sight or aiming device compatible with HK claw-lock mounts; HK PULSE BEAM laser aimers mounted on cocking tube
Weight: with A2 (fixed) stock: 5.88 pounds (2.67 kg)
Weight: with A3 (collapsible) stock: 6.23 pounds (2.85 kg)
Overall length: with A2 stock: 26.77 inches (680mm)
Overall length: with A3 stock extended: 25.98 inches (660mm)
Sight radius: 13.38 inches (340mm)
Width: 1.96 inches (50mm)
Height: 8.26 inches (210mm)

Standard features: Bolt hold-open catch, ambidextrous trigger group & sling attachment points, and translucent synthetic magazines
Optional features: Tritium sights (front & rear), semi-automatic fire only, 2-round burst, 3-round burst, and fully automatic fire trigger groups

MP5 submachine gun
Heckler & Koch MP5 submachine guns employ the same delayed blowback operated roller-locked bolt system found in the famous HK G3 Automatic Rifle. All the elements of HK excellence; reliability, ease of handling, simple maintenance, and safety are highlighted on the MP5. Firing from the closed-bolt position during all modes of fire makes MP5 submachine guns extremely accurate and controllable.
Used by military and law enforcement units in more than fifty nations, the MP5 is firmly established as the world’s premier submachine gun. Over 120 variants of the HK MP5 submachine gun are available to address the widest range of tactical requirements. A selection of optional trigger groups allow for single fire only, full automatic, 2-round, and 3-round burst options. The weapon’s unique modular design and a variety of optional buttstock’s, forearms, sight mounts, and other accessories gives the MP5 extraordinary flexibility to meet most any mission requirement.
The MP5SF (single fire) carbine is a semiautomatic only variant of the MP5 fitted with a trigger group that prevents full automatic firing. The Single Fire (SF) trigger group can be replaced with other MP5 trigger groups to allow burst and full automatic firing.
The MP5 Single Fire is an ideal squad car carbine. It is an excellent supplement or replacement for a police shotgun. It has less recoil, greater range, and more ammunition capacity than a shotgun and is especially suitable for small stature officers.
Developed especially for one of America’s most elite special operations units, the MP5 “Navy” model comes standard with an ambidextrous trigger group, threaded barrel and extendable buttstock. Operationally tested and proven, this configuration represents the essence of the modern submachine gun [and is the one likely to be in operation with the SAS.]


Heckler & Koch MP5K-PDW
(Personal Defence Weapon)

Calibre: 9x19mm (9mm Parabellum)
Operation: Recoil operated, delayed roller-locked bolt system
Ammunition Feed: Curved magazines; 15- or 30-round capacity
Modes of fire: Semi-automatic and full-automatic (optional 2- or 3-round burst)
Mechanical sights: Rotary aperture rear sight adjustable for windage and elevation; Hooded post front sight
Optical sights: Any telescopic sight or aiming device compatible with HK claw-lock mounts; HK PULSE BEAM laser aimers mounted on cocking tube.
Weight: 4.4 pounds (2.09 kg)
Overall length: 13.75 inches (349mm)
Width: 1.96 inches (71mm)
Height: 8.26 inches (210mm)


The MP5K is the ultimate close quarters weapon. At 4.4 pounds and less than 13 inches long, the MP5K is easily concealed and carried. All MP5Ks can be fitted with an optional folding buttstock. The MP5K can also be fired from inside a specially designed briefcase.

The MP5K-PDW is a compact submachine gun designed for vehicle operators, air crew members, security details, and others who require a small, but powerful weapon. While comparable in performance to full size MP5s, the size and weight of the MP5K-PDW make this weapon the ideal choice where a rifle or full-sized submachine gun is unmanageable and a handgun is a poor compromise. With its sturdy folding buttstock and threaded barrel the MP5K-PDW is an exceptionally flexible weapon.



Calibre: 5.7 x 28mm SS190
Rate of fire: 900rnds/min
Magazine capacity: 50rnds
Effective Range: 200 metres
Weight: 2.54kg; 3kg with 50rnd loaded magazine
Overall length: 500mm
Barrel length: 263mm

I have heard from a gun expert that the SAS are known to have been looking for alternatives to the MP5. They have recently finished testing the P90 looks like it may be adopted by them but I doubt if it replaced the MP5.