The firearms industry has produced some highly effective weapons that have gained global popularity. This list highlights the top 10 highest selling weapons that are still in use today, excluding those that are no longer in production. These weapons have played a significant role in military history and civilian markets, including handguns, rifles, and shotguns. Let’s take a closer look at the impressive legacy of these iconic weapons.
10. Smith & Wesson Model 10
This service revolver was produced in the United States. It is a K-frame revolver of worldwide popularity.
The Model 10 is a double-action, six-shot, 38 Special revolver that has been manufactured continuously since 1899. It has been made throughout its lengthy production cycle with barrel lengths of 51 mm, 76 mm, 100 mm, 130 mm, and 150 mm.
It is also reported that 64 mm barrels were produced for special contracts. The type has been manufactured in about 6 million units, making it the most widely used handgun of the 20th century.
9. FN FAL (a French acronym for Fusil Automatique Léger )
This is a battle rifle manufactured by FN Herstal in Belgium under the design of Dieudonné Saive. It was produced from 1953 till the present day.
During the Cold War, the FAL was widely adopted by NATO countries, with the exception of the United States. It’s one of the most popular weapons ever, with over 90 different nations using it. Seven million digits have been built so far. At least four companies throughout the world were making new ones as recently as August 2006.
8. Heckler & Koch G3
Heckler & Koch, a German arms manufacturer, created this select-fire, 7.62mm NATO combat rifle in the 1950s.
It is a selective-fire automatic weapon that employs a roller-delayed blowback operating system. The G3 has been manufactured continuously since 1958. It was used in several military engagements. Throughout the years, the G3’s modular design has been exported to over 70 nations. It is being produced under license in at least 15 nations, bringing the total number of units built to over 7.8 million.
Uzi has been produced by FN Herstal, Israel Military Industries, and other companies throughout its operational life. The Israel Defense Forces’ special forces were originally equipped with this line of open-bolt, blowback-operated submachine guns and machine pistols in 1954.
It is one of the first firearms to feature a telescoping bolt, which enables the magazine to be stored in the pistol grip for a shorter weapon. Over 90 nations have imported the Uzi. A total of more than 10 million numbers have been built to date.
6. Remington Model 870
Remington Arms Company, LLC produces this shotgun with a pump action. It first saw use in the 1950s, and now it is employed by governments and law enforcement agencies all over the world, as well as by private citizens, for target shooting, hunting, and personal protection.
It was seen in combat in the Lebanese Civil War, the Vietnam War, and the Iraq War. The 870 was a commercial success. As of 1983, the 870 was the record for the best-selling shotgun, with three million sold.
To date, a total of more than 11 million numbers have been manufactured.
5. Mossberg 500
This pump action shotgun entered service in 1987 and is still widely used today. At first, the Mossberg 500 was manufactured mainly for use by hunters but quickly found itself in use by law enforcement because of its reliability and low cost.
The M590 was later modified with a thickened barrel, extended magazine, barrel shroud, And bayonet lug. The new model designated the M590A1, became the standard shotgun in the United States military.
By 2021, more than 11 million M500s had been produced, making it the most-produced shotgun of all time.
4. The Lee–Enfield
British armed forces heavily relied on the Enfield, a bolt-action, magazine-fed repeating rifle. The Lee-Enfield is the second-oldest family of bolt-action rifles still in use today.
It is still in use as a regular infantry rifle in various Commonwealth countries’ armed forces, Most notably with the Bangladesh Police, making it the second-longest-serving military bolt-action rifle still in active use. The total production of all Lee–Enfields is estimated at over 17 million rifles.
This pistol is a brand of polymer-framed, short recoil-operated, locked-breech semi-automatic pistols designed and produced in Austria. The weapon entered service with the Austrian military and police in 1982 after excelling in reliability and safety tests.
Glock pistols have the company’s most profitable line of products and are used by police, security, and military personnel in at least 48 different nations.
The Glock 19 was the most popular handgun on GunBroker in 2020. To date, a total of 20 million numbers have been produced.
2. M16/M4/AR-15 and derivatives
The M16 is a family of military rifles adapted from the ArmaLite AR-15 rifle, which entered service in 1964 with the US military. Other armed forces around the world have widely adopted it. The entire worldwide manufacturing of M16 rifles is around 8 million, making it the most-produced 5.56 mm caliber firearm.
The US military has largely replaced the M16 in frontline combat units with a shorter and lighter version, the M4 carbine. The M16/M4/AR-15 and combined derivatives have been produced for over 20 million.
The AK-47 type and its variations continue to be among the world’s most well-known and often used weapons more than seven decades after its introduction.
The model and its variations’ widespread appeal can be attributed to their dependability in challenging environments, inexpensive production costs, widespread availability, and simplicity of use.
The AK has been produced in numerous nations and used by military forces, irregular forces, and insurgencies worldwide. As of the year 2004, “of the approximately 500 million weapons in circulation around the globe, approximately 100 million are members of the Kalashnikov family, with AK-47s accounting for three-quarters of this total.”