The CZ 805 BREN, formerly known as Project 805, is a Czech assault rifle that acts as the service rifle of the Czech Republic, replacing the vz 58.
Originally introduced in 2006, the CZ 805 was a potential candidate for replacing the aging vz 58 assault rifle used by the Czech Military at the time; the CZ 805 actually ended up replacing the vz 58 in 2010 as the Czech Republic's service rifle. It is now competing to be the next service rifle in the Slovakian Military, coincidentally also replacing the vz 58 in said military. Project 805 was originally the designation for a series of AK-patterned assault rifles which would later become known as the ČZ 2000, also known as the Lada S. Due to some complications, the Lada would not be used and after CZ took over the company producing the Lada, the Lada was then offered solely for export.
In 2005, however, Project 805 was restarted and CZ drew up new plans for their upcoming Project 805 rifle. Two prototypes were built: the "A" models, which were chambered for mid-powered rounds like 5.56 NATO, and the "B" models which were chambered for full-powered rifle rounds like 7.62 NATO. The rifle was presented in 2006 to the Czech Military's Chief of the General Staff, but the weapon still was not ordered. CZ later showed the weapon publicly for the next three years at various fairs to publicize their new assault rifle; it wouldn't be until 2009 before the Czech Military would release a tender for a new military service rifle. For that competition, CZ decided to submit a carbine and full-length models chambered in 5.56 NATO and two other prototypes of the same lengths as the 5.56 NATO versions, albeit chambered for 7.62×39mm; the 7.62 prototypes were later abandoned and just the 5.56 NATO prototypes were submitted.
Twenty seven weapons participated in said competition, though through various selections, the number of weapons in the competition was reduced to just two. The tender's two finalists were the CZ 805 and the FN SCAR-L; the CZ 805 won very narrowly due to an emphasis on a domestic design. In May 2010, the Czech Army requested CZ to make a few more refinements before the weapon could be considered operational. A newer variant of the CZ 805 was introduced by CZ in 2015, the CZ 806 BREN 2, a modernized version of the CZ 805, with various improvements implemented into the design as per feedback from soldiers.
The CZ 805 is a gas-operated rifle with an adjustable gas regulator. It has a locked breech and a rotating bolt. The charging handle on the weapon can be attached on both sides of the receiver, which makes the weapon somewhat ambidextrous; the later CZ 806 BREN 2 is fully ambidextrous. The CZ 805 has a four-position fire selector switch; safe, semi-automatic, 2-round burst and fully-automatic. The CZ 806, on the other hand, has a three-position selector switch, with the 2-round burst setting of the CZ 805 removed on the CZ 806.
- CZ 805 BREN A1
- CZ 805 BREN A2
- CZ 805 BREN S1
Semi-automatic civilian variant.
- CZ 806 BREN 2
Completely unrelated to the BREN A2, the BREN 2 is a modernized version of the already modern CZ 805, with various refinements to the design made through feedback from various army personnel using the CZ 805.