MAB Model D pistol
|MAB Model D, Type I|
|Place of origin||France|
|Used by||French military and police
German forces occupying France during World War II
German police after World War II
VietCong forces during US Vietnam War
|Wars||World War II
French Indochina war
Algerian War of Independence
|Manufacturer||Manufacture d'Armes de Bayonne|
|No. built||over 200,000|
|Variants||Types I and II|
|Barrel length||101 mm|
|Caliber||7.65×17mm Browning SR (.32 ACP)
|Muzzle velocity||213 m/s (699 ft/s) for .32 ACP|
|Feed system||9-round box magazine (.32 ACP)
7 rounds for .380 ACP
It was developed with the smaller "MAB C", also made in .32 and .380 ACP, and with which it has many parts in common. Some later examples marked "MAB C" are actually a combination of a MAB C "slide" and barrel with a MAB D frame; these are officially an "extended grip" MAB C but usually called a "MAB C/D", although are not so marked. The MAB C was primarily a civilian "pocket pistol", while the larger MAB D was intended for police and military use.
The MAB D was used by the French Army and military police before and after World War II. After German forces occupied France, the MAB D was adopted for use by the Wehrmacht (German army) during World War II; these pistols typically have German acceptance marks stamped into the metal. (As with other weapons, it is not uncommon to find forged German acceptance marks on MAB Ds being sold, including incorrect acceptance marks, incorrect placement, and marks on Type II MABs not manufactured until after World War II.)
Following World War II, the MAB D was used by the French military in Indochina. In France, it was used by various French governmental agencies, including the French local police, the Gendarmerie (military police and also civilian countryside police), the customs department, the National Forests Office, and the Banque de France. MAB Ds are now only used as surplus pistols for the French police, who primarily used revolvers before 2000. As with other French firearms, MAB Ds were also used by the military and police of the Kingdom of Morocco, a French protectorate. In the years after World War II, German police forces also used the MAB D.
There were two MAB D versions, usually called the Type I and Type II. The Type I MAB D was made 1933–1945 and used an external muzzle bushing release latch in front of the trigger guard; the Type II used an internal "bayonet" type release requiring pushing in and turning the muzzle bushing. The MAB factory changed from the Type I to Type II production in June 1945.
The MAB D pictured with this article is a Type I. The barrel release latch can be seen near the front of the frame in front of the trigger guard, as well as the Type I muzzle bushing.
- Medlin, Eugene and Jean Huon. French Service Handguns 1858–2004. St Louis, MO: Tommy Gun Publications, 2004.
- Buffaloe, Ed. A Brief History of MAB, http://unblinkingeye.com/Guns/MABHist/mabhist.html