Austro-Hungarian Rifle Trials 1914-15

After the turn of the Century the Steyr factory started to turn out new designs with more effective modern cartridges for export purposes. These rifles included the 6.5mm Greek Mannlicher-Schönauer M1903, the 7mm Serbian Mauser M1910 and the 7mm Chilean and Mexican Mausers. During rifle testings at Steyr they found various advantages over the Monarchy's then currently used M95 rifles, including better ballistics with the new cartridges. Early in 1914 the Viennese Technisches Militärisches Komitee was researching for a modern cartridge with a new rifle for the Monarchy.

Only a trial quantities of these rifles had been made. The trials were cancelled and the projects were abandoned due to WW1, and the Mannlicher M95 production was restarted. A number of M1912 Mauser rifles and other weapons waiting delivery to Chile, Colombia, Mexico and elsewhere were sequestered and issued to Austro-Hungarian troops.
Note: Great Britain was also looking at replacing their .303 SMLE rifles with 7mm Mauser type Pattern-13 rifle, but did not proceed because of the start of WW1.

Four known rifle variants were entered eventually for the Austrian trials:
1. A Mauser M1914 designated Gew.98 Mauser in an M.95 stock, in 8x50r caliber, for more information see below
2. A Mauser M1914 designated copy of the M1912 Mexican Mauser, in 7x57mm caliber
3. A Mannlicher 14.M designated straight pull Mannlicher, in 7x57mm caliber
4. A Mauser M1915 designated Mauser Mannlicher-Schönauer hybrid rifle, in 7.92x57mm caliber

Mauser Model 1914 Infantry Trials Rifle
8mm Infanterie-Repetier-Gewehr M1914

Made by Österreichische Waffenfabriks-Gesellschaft, Steyr, 1914
Caliber: 8x50mm rimmed
Integral charger-loaded box magazine, 5 rounds
Turning-bolt action, locked by rotating lugs on the bolt head into the receiver
1275mm [50.2"] overall, 4.00kg [8.8 lbs]
780mm [30.7"] barrel, 4-groove rifling, RH, concentric
Leaf sight graduated to 2000 meters
Muzzle velocity 620 m/sec with M1893 ball ammunition
M1895 Knife Bayonet

The Infanterie-Repetier-Gewehr M1914 was a standard Gew 1898-type Mauser chambered for the Austro-Hungarian standard M1893 rimmed 8x50mm cartridge. The Austrian-style stock had a sharply pointed pistol grip. The barrel band and nose cap was similar to the Mannlicher M95's.