Benelli M4

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Benelli M4 Super 90
Benelli m4 2.jpg
The Benelli M4 Super 90
TypeSemi-automatic combat shotgun
Place of originItaly
Service history
In service1999–present
Used bySee Users
WarsWar in Afghanistan
Iraq War
Libyan Civil War
Syrian Civil War
Second Libyan Civil War
Iraqi Civil War
Production history
DesignerBenelli Armi SPA
ManufacturerBenelli Armi SPA
Mass3.82 kg (8.42 lb)
Length889 mm (35.0 in) (stock retracted)
1,010 mm (40 in) (stock extended)
Barrel length470 mm (18.5 in)

ActionGas-operated, rotating bolt
Muzzle velocity408 m/s (1,340 ft/s)
Effective firing range55 yd (50 m; 165 ft)[1]
Maximum firing range164 yd (150 m; 492 ft) for solid slugs
Feed system5+1 (civilian) or 7+1 (Military, LE) tubular magazine (using 2-3/4" shells)
SightsGhost ring, Picatinny rail for optical sights

The Benelli M4 is a semi-automatic shotgun produced by Italian firearm manufacturer Benelli Armi SpA, and the last of the "Benelli Super 90" series of semi-automatic shotguns. The M4 uses a proprietary action design called the "auto-regulating gas-operated" (ARGO) system, which was created specifically for the weapon. The weapon was designed in 1998, and was adopted by the armed forces of Italy, the United States, United Kingdom, among others, and has been used in a variety of conflicts, leading up to the present day.


On May 4, 1998, the United States Army's Armaments Research, Development and Engineering Center (ARDEC) at Picatinny Arsenal, New Jersey issued Solicitation #DAAE30-98-R-0401,[citation needed] requesting submissions for a new 12 gauge semi-automatic combat shotgun for the U.S. military. In response to the request, Benelli Armi SpA of Urbino, Italy designed and built the Benelli M4 Super 90 Combat Shotgun. On August 4, 1998, five samples of the M4 were delivered to Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, and after intense testing, the M4 won the competition. In early 1999, ARDEC awarded the M1014 Joint Service Combat Shotgun contract to Heckler & Koch, U.S. subsidiary for importation of the Benelli M4 Combat Shotgun. The first units (count of 20,000) were delivered to the United States Marine Corps in 1999. During testing, the prototype was named XM1014, but after adoption, the "X" was dropped, and the weapon was officially designated the M1014.[2]


A member of the U.S. Marine Corps fires an M1014 shotgun as part of training in December 2006.
U.S. Marines fire their M1014s and Mossberg 500s.

The M4 was the first gas-operated shotgun produced by Benelli. Its function is designed around an entirely new design called the "auto-regulating gas-operated" (ARGO) system. The short-stroke design uses two self-cleaning stainless steel pistons located just ahead of the chamber to function opposite a rotating bolt, thereby eliminating the need for the complex mechanisms found on other gas-actuated automatics. The ARGO incorporates only four parts: two symmetrical fore-end shrouds containing two small steel pistons that push directly against the bolt.

Additionally, the weapon is self-regulating for use with shotshells of varying lengths and power levels. It can fire 2.75 in (70 mm) and 3 in (76 mm) shells of differing propellant loads without any operator adjustments and in any combination. Low-power rounds, such as less-lethal baton rounds, must be cycled manually.

The sights are military-style ghost ring and are adjustable in the field using only the rim of a shell. The MIL-STD-1913 Picatinny rail on top of the receiver allows use of both conventional optical sights and night-vision devices, while retaining use of the original iron sights.

The modular basis of the shotgun means many of its features can be reconfigured as needed. It allows a user to quickly exchange the various assembly groups (barrel, buttstock, forend, etc.) without the use of additional tools.


Preliminary testing of the M4 suggests a high level of reliability. It can reliably function for at least 25,000 rounds without replacement of any major parts.[2][3] The steel components of the weapon feature a matte black phosphated corrosion resistant finish while the aluminium parts are matte hard-anodized. These finishes reduce the weapon's visibility during night operations.

The weapon requires little maintenance and operates in all climates and weather conditions.[citation needed]

Collapsible buttstock[edit]

The buttstock is collapsible on the M4 Model (designated 11707) and on the M1014.[4][note 1] Collapsing the buttstock shortens the weapon by almost 8 in (200 mm), allowing easier storage and transportation; furthermore, it permits better maneuverability around tight corners and over obstacles. The M4 is also available with both pistol grip and semi-grip fixed stocks, with these also being available for the M1014.[5] The M4 is no longer sold today with the skeleton buttstock (model M11707) to civilians. Benelli only sells the M4 with a fixed pistol grip-style tactical stock in the United States, in Europe, it is possible to buy the collapsible stock version from factory. However, the collapsible buttstock can be purchased.

Rail interface system[edit]

The Picatinny rail built into the top of the shotgun accepts scopes, laser illuminators, night-vision sights and flashlights. Most modern military firearms have similar structures. There are aftermarket accessories such as handguards that incorporate other rail interface systems such as M-LOK.

Benelli Tactical and the M4[edit]

Benelli Tactical is a division of Beretta's Law Enforcement (LE) division. Benelli Tactical manages the sales of all tactical shotguns to law enforcement agencies, government and military entities. The M4 shotgun is sold in three configurations: M4 Entry with a 14 in (360 mm) barrel; M4 with an 18.5 in (470 mm) barrel; and M1014, which is an M4 with the "M1014" nomenclature on it for military usage only. M4 shotguns sold through Benelli Tactical are available with the collapsible buttstock.

Benelli Tactical and Beretta LE have maintained the belief that the collapsible buttstock, while no longer illegal in the United States, is still only to be made available to law enforcement and government agencies. Benelli Tactical/Beretta LE will not sell these stocks to private individuals. Benelli Tactical does sell the stock piece for retrofitting the pistol grip stock for $150. The stock must be direct-shipped from Italy, however it and other aftermarket stocks are commercially available and not restricted by the United States.

Suggested retail price of the civilian version is around $1,899.[2][6] An NFA stamp is required to purchase or own the 14.5" barreled model only since this model is considered to be a Short Barreled Shotgun or SBS. Standard magazine capacity of the civilian version is 5+1, although it is possible to fit 6+1 and two shot extension tubes are sold by Benelli as well as some other companies. 9+1 extension tubes are also available, popular in 3-gun competitions. Some LE models have become available to private individuals on the secondary market.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ While the M1014 was first manufactured before the Federal Assault Weapons Ban expired, it fell outside the ban due to being produced under military contract, and the relevant Technical Manual explicitly describes the buttstock as being telescoping; the M11707 was first manufactured following the expiration of the Assault Weapons Ban and its provisions.


  1. ^ "USMC Weapons". Archived from the original on 2010-04-16. Retrieved 2009-12-26.
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  3. ^ "HK M4 Super 90/XM1014". Archived from the original on August 18, 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-08.
  4. ^ United States Department of the Navy, Headquarters Marine Corps (2000). TM 10698A-10/1 Operator's Manual for Shotgun, Combat 12 Gauge, Semi-automatic M1014 1005-01-472-3147. p. 11.
  5. ^ United States Department of the Navy, Headquarters Marine Corps (2000). TM 10698A-10/1 Operator's Manual for Shotgun, Combat 12 Gauge, Semi-automatic M1014 1005-01-472-3147. p. 10.
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  7. ^ "AusTender: Contract Notice View - CN192892". Retrieved 2013-10-09.
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    Николай Козлевич. Обзор арсенала бойцов СОБРа внутренних войск // SB.BY от 15 июля 2014
  9. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 4 January 2021. Retrieved 11 January 2022.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  10. ^ « Ружье охотничье Benelli М4 Super 90»
    Указ Президента Республики Беларусь № 71 от 13 февраля 2003 года «Об утверждении Положения о порядке ведения и издания Государственного кадастра служебного и гражданского оружия и боеприпасов и Положения о порядке проведения сертификации служебного и гражданского оружия и боеприпасов» (редакция от 10 июля 2015 г.)
  11. ^ "ATI Upgrades for Benelli M4". Archived from the original on 2014-12-19. Retrieved 2015-04-12.
  12. ^ "Garda Resources". 28 November 2012. National Security Ireland. Archived from the original on 21 February 2014. Retrieved 9 February 2014.
  13. ^ Giorgio Beretta Mercoledì, 09 Marzo 2011 (2011-02-27). "L'Italia ha inviato 11mila Beretta semiautomatici al regime di Gheddafi / Notizie / Home" (in Italian). Unimondo. Retrieved 2013-10-09.
  14. ^ Royal Malaysian Customs Academy (2010). "Royal Malaysian Customs Academy: Firing range". Royal Malaysian Customs. Archived from the original on 2019-07-06. Retrieved 2011-08-22.
  15. ^ Dan Alex. "GGK (Grup Gerak Khas) Malaysian Army Special Forces Weapons". Military Factory. Retrieved 2017-01-15.
  16. ^ Dan Alex. "PASKAU Malaysian Special Air Service Weapons". Military Factory. Archived from the original on 2016-05-07. Retrieved 2017-01-15.
  17. ^ Ferreira, Bryan (8 October 2020). "Portuguese Military – Special Operations and Elite Units". Spec Ops Magazine. Archived from the original on 2020-10-14.
  18. ^ " - Specijalna antiteroristička jedinica-SAJ".
  19. ^ "Špeciálne jednotky Slovenskej republiky - zásahová skupina - úrad boja proti organizovanej kriminalite". Archived from the original on 12 March 2010. Retrieved 10 November 2018.
  20. ^ "Vojaški policisti uspešno izvedli taktično vajo z bojnim streljanjem Pest 2010".
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  22. ^ Shotguns Archived August 22, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  23. ^ "Weapons & Demo". Navy SEALs. Archived from the original on 2012-12-31. Retrieved 2013-10-09.
  24. ^ Published on (2009-02-25). "LAPD Approves Benelli M4 Tactical for Individual Officer Purchase". Retrieved 2013-10-09.
  25. ^ C, Luke (26 February 2021). "Cambridge Police Commissioner makes Plans to Reduce Gun Inventory". The Firearm Blog. Archived from the original on 2021-02-27.

External links[edit]