IWI is modifying the Tavor assault rifle to address reliability issues encountered during the initial operations with the Givati brigade. Some of the rifles failed when exposed to the fine dust of the Israeli Negev. These issues were immediately addressed by the manufacturer, which has introduced some 20 changes to the fielded weapons. The first batch of modified rifles is being returned to service, offering improved reliability under tough field conditions.
“The Tavor actually benefit from this experience, as the quick reaction enabled us to improve the performance and reliability under tough battlefield conditions” IWI marketing manager Mark Shachar told defense Update. According to IDF Magazine Bamachane, the fixes introduced include improved cocking handle, redesigned magazine loading port, and improved sealing for the ejection port, eliminating the buildup of dust inside the weapon. These changes are expected to be included in all serial production Tavors. Few weeks ago Jane’s Defense Weekly reported about problems encountered with the Tavor in India. However, IWI informed Defense Update that contrary to this report, the Indian Tavors are being delivered as planned, and the entire delivery of 3070 rifles is nearing completion.
The evolution of the new Israeli assault rifle was paved with hurdles, facing opposition from within the ministry of Defense and Army, which favored the US M-4, which could be imported from the USA using more available Foreign Military Sales funding. Despite this opposition, Tavor was highly praised by combat troops participating in a competitive evaluation against the M-4, paving the way for its induction into IDF service.