The Smith & Wesson Assault Shotgun, or AS for short, is a series of prototype automatic shotguns.
The AS was an entrant into the U.S. Army's Close Assault Weapon System program in the 1980s. It was meant as a competitor to the Heckler & Koch HK CAWS. The AS was not successful and by 1985, Smith & Wesson decided to stop shotgun manufacturing entirely as they felt that it was not a profitable venture for them at least.
The AS had a layout similar to that of the M16 rifle, or any AR-15-patterned rifle in general, to help assault rifle users with familiarization. It also uses a short recoil mechanism. Ammunition is fed into the weapon by a 10-round magazine.
The AS could fire standard 12 gauge buckshot shells or specially-made 12 gauge fléchette shells.
The AS had 3 variants; the AS-1, AS-2 and AS-3.
The AS-1 was semi-automatic only.
The AS-2 could fire in three-round bursts, as well as in semi-automatic fire.
The AS-3 could fire in three-round bursts, as well as in fully automatic fire.