IWI US Tavor

IWI US Tavor

We were fortunate enough to get some trigger time with the IWI US, Inc. Tavor at SHOT Show’s media day.  Assembled in Harrisburg, PA with a combination of Israeli and US parts for 922r compliance, the Tavor offers US shooters an Isreali bull-pup carbine option.

IWI USA Tavor

IWI USA Tavor

With an initial offering of six different configurations, the Tavor is available with either a 16.5″ or 18″ hammer forged, chrome lined, chrome moly barrel with 6 groove, 1:7″ rifling.  Overall length ranges from 26 1/8″ to 27 5/8″ with a weight range of 7.9 to 8.5 pounds depending on configuration.  The table below lists the various factory configurations and suggested retail price at the time of the writing.  The Tavor operates off of a short stroke piston design.

Item # Description Stock Color Caliber Magazine Capacity Barrel Length Overall Length Weight (lbs.) MSRP
TSB16 TAVOR® SAR, flattop with full Picatinny rail Black 5.56 NATO 30 16½” 26⅛” 7.9 $1,999
TSB18 TAVOR® SAR, flattop with full Picatinny rail & bayonet lug Black 5.56 NATO 30 18″ 27⅝” 8.15 $1,999
TSFD16 TAVOR® SAR, flattop with full Picatinny rail FDE † 5.56 NATO 30 16½” 26⅛” 7.9 $1,999
TSFD18 TAVOR® SAR, flattop with full Picatinny rail & bayonet lug FDE † 5.56 NATO 30 18″ 27⅝” 8.15 $1,999
TSB16L TAVOR® SAR, flattop with full Picatinny rail, LEFT HAND Black 5.56 NATO 30 16½” 26⅛” 7.9 $1,999
TSIDF16 TAVOR® SAR-IDF with Mepro-21 Reflex Sight affixed to barrel Black 5.56 NATO 30 16½” 26⅛” 8.5 $2,599

 

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Close up view of the left side of the stock.  Notice the sling swivel provided by the factory.  The bolt hold open and release lever is protruding from the bottom of the stock, just forward (or left) of the sling swivel.

We asked the IWI US rep which parts were changed out for 922r compliance and were told they would not disclose that information.  We found that a little strange since they are the OEM manufacturer.  In the photo above you can see the Harrisburg, PA location molded into the stock.

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The Tavor in FDE.  Notice how the support side forearm is held in contact with the front edge of the pistol grip.  This helps provide rigidity when firing the rifle.  Note: The operator in the pictures has his face covered because it was 24F and windy!

Prior to firing the rifle, a prior service member of the IDF showed us how to operate the Tavor.  Our sample was in FDE and came equipped with a Mepro-21 Reflex sight.

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The magazine change for the Tavor is exceptionally quick.  Here the operator actuates the magazine release lever located in front of the magazine.

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Once the magazine release is actuated, the magazine is allowed to drop free from the bottom of the rifle.

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A fresh magazine is inserted into the rifle.

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As the magazine is inserted, the shooter’s thumb is rolled around to the rear of the rifle engaging the bolt release, chambering a fresh round.  This is a remarkably fast system.

On the firing line, we found the Tavor handled well;  it had a low recoil impulse as would be expected with a 5.56mm carbine.  The rifle was quite compact and very ergonomic.  The trigger was consistent with a mil-spec style trigger common to these types of rifles.  It wasn’t as spongy as many bull-pups, and provided the shooter with the ability to accurately engage targets.

Firing the rifle standing, kneeling and prone, we were able to consistently drill a head plate at 50-yards.  We both liked the Mepro-21 optic, however we disagreed on the size of the reticle.  One of us felt it was the right size, while the other felt it covered too much of the target.

The reload was interesting.  After two decades of pulling down on AR-15 magazine after inserting it, just slapping the magazine into the rifle and releasing the bolt without pulling back down on the magazine took a little getting used to.

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To field strip the rifle, the butt plate is opened with the tip of a cartridge or pen and the bolt carrier assembly and drive spring can be removed.

Field stripping was quite easily accomplished.  Unlike some rifles on the market, a tool, such as the tip of a cartridge or ball point pen needs to be used to unhinge the butt plate.

The IWI rep told us that they plan on offering 5.45 and 9mm conversion kits for the rifle.  We inquired about the magazine that would be issued with the 9mm and were told it would be a “Colt” style and not a “Uzi” style mag.  Since the Uzi style magazine can be modified to work in the Colt 9mm platform, we assumed that this would be the case here, with the obvious exclusion of a last round hold open.

Overall, we really liked the Tavor and were glad to see it introduced to the US market.  We look forward to getting our hands on a sample for further testing and evaluation.

For more information on the IWI US Tavor follow this link.