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Anti-Personnel/Anti-Véhicule, 40mm
APAV 40.svg
Type rifle grenade
Place of origin France
Service history
Used by French Army
Production history
Designed 1956
Weight 405 grams[1]
Length 352 mm[1]
Diameter 40 mm[1]

Filling hexogen-tolite
Filling weight 80 grams

The APAV 40 ("Anti-Personnel/Anti-Véhicule, 40mm") is a 40 mm anti-personnel rifle grenade used by the French Army.


The APAV 40 is a dual purpose, anti-personnel (AP) and anti-vehicle (AV), 40 mm rifle-grenade. It has a mass of 405 grams,[1] and a tail with stabilizing fins. Explosion is triggered by an impact fuse.

Two version of the APAV 40 exist:

  • the older F1 model which must be fired with a blank (ballistite) cartridge
  • the current F2 model which uses a bullet-trap that allows using live rounds


Alidade sight system of the FAMAS for direct fire of the APAV40

To launch, first place the APAV40 F2 over the muzzle of a FAMAS or any NATO rifle with a STANAG muzzle device. Second, point the rifle at the target. Third, fire the rifle. The impact of the bullet striking the bullet-trap and the expanding gases will launch and arm the grenade. The grenade will explode on impact. In its antipersonnel capacity, the APAV 40 is used in indirect fire. The APAV 40 has a lethal radius of 12 metres and its shrapnel is dangerous up to 100 metres away.[1] In its anti-vehicle capacity, the APAV 40 is used in direct fire. Under an optimal angle, the APAV 40 is capable of piercing 100mm of armour.[1] The FAMAS provides an alidade sight for launching the grenade from 75 or 100 metres. The FAMAS can also be inclined/angled by 45°, to allow fire from 170 to 320 metres, with 20-metre increments; or by 74°, to allow fire from 60 to 170 metres, with 10-metre increments. French rifle grenades are notorious for having extremely strong recoil, so strong that one who does not properly brace themselves will literally fall over.

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