Kevin ZP98 (usually just Kevin) is a sub-compact semi-automatic pistol manufactured in the Czech Republic. It is manufactured and sold in the United States by Magnum Research as the Micro Desert Eagle (ME380)
The pistol was developed at the end of the 1990s by weapon designer Antonín Zendl for the company Zbrojovka Vsetín - Indet (ZVI, originally established in Vsetín in 1937 as a part of Zbrojovka Brno). In January 2013 ZVI almost closed its ammunitions production facilities in Slavicin and laid off most of the workers. However the ammo production of ZVI in Slavicin is still active.
ZVI Inc. is still manufacturer and producer of pistol KEVIN in calibers 9 mm Browning and 9 mm Makarov. This pistol is also in production as gas pistol. ZVI Inc is traditional manufacturer of medium calibre weapons & ammo and other products for special usage, as well as products for the military aviation. The production plant of ZVI is still placed in Vsetin and still running production.
The Kevin is a small self-loading pistol designed for short-distance fire up to 15 m, primarily as the secondary (concealed) weapon for law enforcement officers and for protection of the citizenry. Its frame is made of a high-strength aluminium alloy, the barrel and slide of steel, the grips are from reinforced rubber compound. The pistol has a dynamic breech, DAO trigger mechanism, and fixed sight. It doesn't use any safety lever and has a patented blowback system with gas retardation to control recoil forces.
|Caliber||9 mm Browning (.380 ACP), later also 9mm Makarov variant|
|Total length||116 mm|
|Barrel length||57 mm (21⁄4“)|
|Height||95 mm (33⁄4“)|
|Width||23 mm (less than 1“)|
|Empty weight||400 g (14.1 oz.)|
|Magazine capacity||6 rounds (8 rounds magazine for training is available, 9mm Browning only)|
|Trigger||Double-action only (DAO)|
|Grips||Black plastic or walnut wood|
Kevin became rather popular among the Czech citizens for everyday concealed carry. The right to sell the pistol in the US was given to Magnum Research, the slightly modified pistol is manufactured and assembled there under the name Micro Desert Eagle (since 2008). For the Eastern Europe markets Kevin was modified to use 9mm Makarov cartridge (2007, model ZP06 or Kevin M). Also 9mm P.A.K. (blank and tear gas) model (name: ZVI Night Hawk) was developed in 2003, and 9mm P.A.Rubber (non-lethal rubber projectile) variant (name: ZVI Wasp-R) was developed in 2008.
- "ZVI Vsetín closed down. Army started to buy ammunition elsewhere" (in Czech). MF Dnes. 2013-01-05. Retrieved 2014-03-10.
- Czech Rep. ZVI ammo plant plans to shut down