The reigning King (currently King Salman) of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, otherwise known as the “Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques”( خادم الحرمين الشريفين) and his enormous family has numerous lawyers of protection surrounding him due to the numerous threats upon the absolute monarch. One of these layers is known as the Saudi Royal Guard Regiment (لحرس الملكي السعودي). This unit has been profiled numerous times on social media, both in the observance of their protection duties, but also simply as casual encounters with members posting photos of themselves and their mates that eventually end up on Instagram and other social media sites. The guards are unique and identifiable in that their uniforms are black with bright green berets. However, they have been seen wearing the desert digital trousers that the Saudi Royal Army uses as well.
An interesting facet of this group is that it has been seen armed with LWRC UICW (Ultra-Compact Individual Weapon) carbines chambered in 6.8x43mm Remington Special Purpose Cartridge (SPC). The LWRC UICW is distinctly recognizable due to the shortened buffer tube and almost mini-SOPMOD stock. It also has an 8.5-inch barrel, making it very handy for close protection work, and moving in and out of vehicles.
A unique point about the Saudi LWRC UICWs is that they all have the unit’s crest etched in white on the right side of the lower receiver, on the magazine well. Apart from that identifier, these carbines are outfitted with EoTech XPS2 holographic sights, Magpul pistol grips and see through 30 round magazines, Picatinny rail covers, BUIS sights, a folding vertical foregrip, and what appears to be a Vicker’s Tactical (or at least an imitation of one) two-point sling mounted on QD release points. All of the carbines have a select-fire capability. The overwhelming majority are in a black finish with matching furniture, but we do have one example so far of a green stock, with a matching green sling.
We also have this graphic that was created for the carbine as a promotional piece. Notice on the right side of the magazine well how the crest is completely blurred from view. It would appear to be that this crest was actually the Saudi Royal Guard Regiment but blurred for publication.
Very similar to the case of this one as well-
These carbines were a part of a contract with Saudi Arabia, through the U.S. State Department beginning in Feburary 2012 and ending the next year, worth $109 Million. From a statement from the LWRC Facebook page–
In Feb of 2012 LWRCI signed a $109 million dollar 18 month contract with the Government of Saudi Arabia, sanctioned by the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Congress. This is the largest direct commercial to foreign government sale of firearms in the history of the ATF Exports Branch. $109 million dollars of foreign money coming into Maryland to a company that is five years old. In these economic times, this is a story that the Department of Business and Economic Development can be very proud of. New jobs; developing a workforce; and stimulating the economy.
Specifications from Defense Review-
Caliber: 6.8mm SPC
Barrel Length: 8.5″
Weight (unloaded): 6.25lbs (8.5″ barrel)
Length (overall): 24-27.25″ (8.5″ barrel)
Rate of Fire: Semi Auto or Select Fire 700 rpm (+/- 100rpm)
Rifling: 1/10″ RH
Stock/Pistol Grip: LWRCI/Magpul MOE
Sights: LWRCI Folding BUIS Front and Rear
Magazine: Magpul 30 rd. P-Mag
Muzzle Device: LWRCI flash hider 5/8×28 TPI
Colors Available: Black”
This is a Saudi social media channel on Youtube that shows extensive footage of the Royal Guard Regiment during various training demonstrations.
The Magpul 6.8x43mm SPC magazines that are used with the Saudi Royal Guard Regiment were actually developed in close coordination with LWRC. They are readily identifiable by the bright red follower and internal baseplate. You can still purchase them in the United States for $26.97 on Cheaper Than Dirt. From the website-
Magpul PMAG magazines are designed for the LWRC 6.8 pattern AR lower receivers. These magazines were built specifically as a result of a partnership with LWRC and Magpul industries. These magazines feature the new constant curve geometric body, anti-tilt follower and other minor improvements. The polymer magazine reduce overall magazine weight by half without sacrificing durability. Magpul 6.8 magazines are a must have if you own a compatible LWRC rifle chambered in 6.8 SPC.