Fort 221: The Ukrainian Tavor TAR

https://youtu.be/LV6GUQ_bRgc

In 2008, Ukrainian manufacturing conglomerate RPC Fort received a license from IMI to produce a variety of Israeli small arms, including the Tavor TAR and Tavor X95. In Fort’s catalog, these were designated the Fort-221 (TAR) and Fort-224 (X95). A small number were allegedly produced for special forces, the Presidential Guard, and the Ukrainian National Guard – all elements run by the Ministry of the Interior (which also owns RPC Fort). In 2021, all of the IMI licensed products were removed from Fort’s web site. Most likely, the small initial production of guns were simply imported from Israel and remarked, with the intention of building a full production line only when a substantial order was received (which never did happen). Comparing this Fort-221 to a standard IMI TAR, I was unable to find any differences except the markings, which appear to have been converted from Israeli markings.

For more information on the use of Tavors in Ukraine, make sure to check out The Armourer’s Bench video:

Many thanks to the IRCGN (Institut de Recherche Criminelle de la Gendarmerie Nationale) for allowing me access to film this rare rifle for you!

1 Comment

  1. In license agreements it is not ONLY the first batch that has got the plastic parts supplied by the licensee – most German companies supply ALL plastic parts for the licensed guns, to keep tabs on how many guns the licensee manufactured. Actually, the licensee only makes metal parts, and puts them into frames/receivers which have molded “Made in Germany” signs. You could see that in S&W99 (licensed Walther P99 – https://www.regimentwarszawa.pl/pl/p/SmithWesson-SW99-amerykanski-Walther/1387 – the frame says “Frame made in Germany”), also in Polish Walthers P99 (https://myvimu.com/exhibit/54940188-pistolet-walther-p99-fb-radom – and that was one of the reasons P99s are no longer made in Poland), as well as on all HK licensed G36s. Meaning the Saudi ones, which the former German govt coalition allowed the Saudis to throw money away for metal parts manufacturing capability, but then held the export license for plastic parts delivery from Germany, because of the Saudis human rights record. The net result was that Saudis are now wielding AK-203s and probably would think HARD before buying any German license anymore.

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