The Browning Automatic Rifle (commonly known as the BAR; properly pronounced "bee ay are") is a family of automatic rifles (or machine rifles) and light machine guns used by the United States and other countries during the 20th century.
It was designed in 1917 by the weapons designer John Browning, primarily as a replacement for, and improvement on, the French-made Chauchat and Hotchkiss M1909. The BAR was originally intended as a light automatic rifle, but spent much of its career in various guises used as in the light machine gun role with a bipod. The original version was and remains the lightest service machine gun to fire the .30-06 Springfield cartridge, though the limited capacity of its standard 20-round magazine tended to hamper its utility as a light machine gun. This gun was also used widely by gangsters from the 1920's and 1930's. Though not as publicized and mythologized as the Tommy gun, it was a far deadlier weapon because of its high-powered .30-06 rifle cartridge, especially against vehicles and body armor.