More on the Saiga-9 Carbine

Saiga-9 carbineThe new Saiga-9 carbine is a civilian version of the Vityaz-SN submachine gun, and was first reported by  Since then, we’ve developed additional information on the new carbine.

The Saiga-9 will be chambered for the 9×19 (aka 9mm Parabellum and 9mm Luger) cartridge.  Standard magazine capacity is only 10 rounds, but I expect that surplus aftermarket, high-capacity magazines would be available.  I presume the abnormally low round count mags is an intentional plan to assist with export/import regulations.  There will be a magazine coupler available for faster reloads.

The styling of the original Vityaz-SN will be maintained, and manufacturer Izhmash claims the carbine will also retain the “reliability and ease of use” of the military weapon.

There is a Picatinny rail on the receiver cover for mounting a range of optics.  Additional Picatinny rails will be on the fore arm for the addition of white lights, lasers and grips.

The buttstock folds to the left side of the receiver for transport and concealment.


This is the Vityaz-SN, the SMG on which the new Saiga-9 is modeled.

Ishmash states that the rifle will be available in two models: one for the domestic (Russian) market and one for export.  The export version will have a “short barrel” and be chambered in 9×19.  No additional information was provided on the domestic model.

It is not known if “short barrel” means a 16″ carbine (probably) or something shorter.  I’m not an expert on the NFA, but I would believe that a true SBR would be difficult to import for sale to the civilian market.  So, until I see otherwise, I’ll assume the gun will have a 16″ barrel.

Ishmash expects the MSRP to be around $950.  That sounds pretty steep, but it is a strong indicator of how far the US dollar has fallen.

Preliminary specs:

  • caliber:  9×19
  • weight (without magazine/accessories):  6.4 pounds
  • length (buttstock folded):  23 inches
  • length (buttstock extended):  31.7 inches
  • magazine capacity:  10 rounds

Note that this Saiga-9 carbine is not the same as the original Saiga-9 carbine that was chambered in 9x53R and designed for hunting.  That rifle was substantially different and bigger.  Needless to say the 9x53R and 9×19 cartridges are not interchangeable. I suspect that my readers will already know that…

I expect to see the Saiga-9 carbines at the 2013 SHOT Show coming up in January.  If they are there, we will have video and photos of them, along with all of the specs.

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About Richard Johnson

Richard Johnson is a gun writer, police trainer and really bad joke teller. Check out his other writing in Combat Handguns, Guns & Weapons for Law Enforcement, on The Firearm Blog and at BlueSheepdog.

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