The Daewoo Precision Industries K2 is an assault rifle of the Republic of Korea Armed Forces, manufactured by Daewoo Precision Industries. It is a shoulder-fired, gas-operated, selective-fire assault rifle that feeds from a 20 or 30 round magazine and is chambered for 5.56 NATO. The Daewoo Precision Industries K2 was adopted as the primary service rifle and carbine (K1) by the Republic of Korea (ROK) Army in 1987 to replace their M-16A1’s, they were originally made by the South Korean chaebol Daewoo Industries’s subsidiary Daewoo Precision Industries, Ltd. After the Daewoo chaebol was broken up because of political scandal and financial difficulties, parts of it were bought by S&T Holdings. The new company S&T Daewoo took over production of small arms for the ROK Army.
The K2 uses a tough polymer for the forearm, pistol-grip and side-foldable buttstock. Externally similar in appearance to the AR18, its bolt carrier group is derived from the American M16 rifle, but only some of the parts are interchangeable. The gas operating system is derived from the AK-47, and is consequently different than that of the M16. The K2 uses the same magazine, fire control group, and bolt as the M16; the bolt carrier does not interchange with the M16. The barrel rifling has 6 grooves, 1-in-7.3 right hand twist. The K2, as well as the K1 carbine, can be equipped with the Daewoo K201, an undercarried 40mm grenade launcher patterned after the American M203.
K1 carbine and K2 rifle
While the K1/K1A carbine is commonly regarded as a carbine version of the K2, it is better to consider the K1 a separate carbine because:
- The K1 was developed earlier than the K2.
- The K1 uses direct impingement gas system, while the K2 uses a long stroke gas piston system.
- The K1 has a 1-in-12 rifling twist for KM193 (5.56 mm) rounds, while the K2 has a 1-in-7.3 rifling twist for both the KM193 (5.56 mm) rounds and the K100 (5.56 mm) green tip, full metal jacket rounds.
- The K1 was originally developed as a sub-machine gun, not as an assault carbine.