This is an advanced weapon based on the Model 92 but with several additional features which place it in the “machine pistol” category. It has been adopted by Italian Special Forces and security police, and interest has been expressed in several other countries.
Basically, the pistol is similar to the Beretta Model 92 in that it uses a dropping-block locked breech. The principal visible change is the use of a longer barrel which protrudes in front of the slide and has a prominent muzzle brake; there is also a folding front grip, hinged to the frame so that it lies beneath the frame front when not in use or can be folded down to act as a grip for the left (or disengaged) hand. This proves to be more practical than one might think, giving a steadier hold than the more common two-handed butt grip.
In addition, there is a light metal folding stock unit which can be clipped to the bottom of the butt, and which then converts the pistol into something approaching a light carbine. Finally, the magazine has been lengthened to hold 20 rounds, so that it extends below the bottom of the butt. For those preferring a more elegant shape, the normal Beretta Model 92 15-shot magazine can be used.
The reason for all these changes is that under the right but-plate is a three-round burst controller. The frame-mounted safety catch offers three positions: safe, single shot and 3-round burst; placing the catch in this last position permits the firing of three rapid shots for one pressure on the trigger, the cyclic rate of fire being about 110 rounds per minute.
This is low by machine pistol standards and therefore there is less disturbance of the aim; moreover the forward hand grip and shoulder stock, used either separately or together, and the damping effect of the muzzle break, allow the firer firm control of the weapon, and high-speed photography shows that there is relatively little “climb” during the firing of a burst.
Beretta Model 93R
Armi Beretta SpA, I-25063, Gardone Val Trompia, Italy
Locked breech, double-action, semi-automatic with burst-fire facility.