In Fiction Edit
MAT 1949 is taller than most of the elementary school students besides HK53. She has shoulder length brownish hair and wears a grape pin in her hair.
MAT 49 is very competitive against MP5 for the spot of the leader of the submachine gun class...even if she has no plan to accomplish this.
MAT 49 is usually followed around by Hotchkiss and MAS 1948 ,this is more than likely a reference to the fact that she beat both of these guns for the French Army contract in 1949. Even though they both see her as somewhat incompetent, as seen when she ran for student council, they still stick around her through all of her schemes.
MAT 49 is also always wanting to show that the SMG class can take on the Assault rifle class to prove they are still viable and useful on the battlefield. This stems from most of the SMGs being replaced by assault rifles, herself included as she was replaced by FAMAS.
She is very persistent, even when losing to MP5 whether in the student council elections or in a accuracy competition. She is always ready to bounce back and show everyone that she is the material for the leader of the SMG class.
In Real Life Edit
The MAT1949 was adopted in 1949 to replace the MAS-38 which was the standard French Army sub-machine gun at the time. This was because the MAS-38 used the 7.65mm Longue and most of the new SMGs were switching to the 9x19 parabellum round.
The MAT1949, which was proposed by Tulle, was in competition with Châtellerault, Saint-Étienne, and Hotchkiss (which presented the Hotchkiss Universal as their contender). The MAT1949 ended up winning the French military contract.
Once the contract was awarded they were produced in mass and used by the French Army, French Foreign Legion, French Airborne, and their colonial forces. This SMG saw action in conflicts ranging from the First Indochina War all the way to the Rhodesian Bush war. Notably, when North Vietnamese troops captured the MAT1949 after French forces left the region, they would convert these weapons to fire the 7.62x25mm Tokarev that the Soviet Union and the People's Republic of China were supplying them in large quantities . These conversions are distinguishable from the original MAT1949 by having a longer barrel and an increase in fire rate from 600 rounds per minute to 900 RPM.
Overall the MAT1949 was really well received by the troops who used it. They considered the weapon to be rugged, reliable, and compact while still possessing the firepower and simplicity that made it a great arm to have for Airborne and vehicle based troops.
Ultimately, even with its wide usage and high favor by not only the military but the Gendarmerie Nationale (French National Police) and it's high volume of production, the MAT1949 would be phased out with the introduction of the FAMAS by Saint-Étienne in 1979.
The MAT1949 took a number of design hints from the M3 Grease gun, in that it was an open bolt gun with a wire stock that was extremely simple. The key differences between this two being the folding magazine well and the square receiver instead of the round one found on the Grease Gun.
When field stripped The MAT 1949 broken down into six parts: lower receiver, bolt , barrel/upper receiver, magazine, charging handle, and recoil spring/guide rod. This made it simple to maintain for the soldiers that carried it. Each of these parts what heavy and rugged. This simplicity and heaviness to each part gave the gun extreme reliability, which contributed to the admiration of the troops using it.
For compactness the MAT 1949 could have the magazine well folded up towards the barrel and locked in place with a catch that would attach to a ring underneath the barrel shroud. The wire stock could also be pushed in and locked into place thereby greatly reducing the amount of space that the MAT 1949 took up.
Compared to other SMGs of the era the MAT 1949 was much safer gun to use. The grip safety impeded the bolt from moving forward of the trigger group and feeding a round into the chamber unless the safety was fully depressed. Another key safety feature was the fact that the bolt face is forward of the rest of the bolt by almost 20mm. This combined with two ventilation ports near the chamber meant that if a round was fired out of battery instead of gas blowing back toward the shooter it would instead blow out of the ventilation ports.
There are no current MAT 1949 importers or manufactures with either parts kits or fully manufactured firearms. There are a number of parts kits and kit built MAT 1949 that came to the states but they must be bought second hand either from a private seller or getting lucky at a gun store/pawn shop. The reason they are hard to find is when France ended the MAT 1949 service they either exported them as military aid or destroyed them.
- French Army
- French Foreign Legion
- Gendarmerie Nationale
- North Vietnamese Army [converted them to 7.62 Tokarev]
- Algerian FLN/MNA/PCA [7.62 versions sent by Vietnam]
Nations that received them as French military aid:
- Cote d'Ivoire