Did the BAR have any impact on modern warfare?

I know that Clyde Barrow swore by them, but did the BAR ever instill terror on the battlefield like it did on Depression-Era law enforcement?

That bad boy (along with the Bren and arguably the German MG-42) showed the world - or at least the United States Army - the value of squad automatic weapons, a role today filled by the M249 SAW once the BAR was retired in the '50s.

I believe that Audie Murphy used one that was mounted to a burning tank destroyer to hold off a German onslaught at Holtzwihr France in 1945.

Some earlier threads on the Browning Automatic Rifle (and misc. other implements of destruction):

That would be

confirmed as the secondary armament of the type of tank destroyer in question.

Right. As badass as the BAR might have been, the Ma Deuce is a much meaner proposition.

The M-2 has been around for a surprisingly long time, with only one significant update to the design (a quick-change barrel).

The BAR felt good in 1918 but was looking rather long in the tooth by 1940; the small magazine and lack of any quick-change barrel precluded its laying down any volume of fire. And once you threw the bipod away, as most people did, it was even more of a spray-and-pray affair. They could have had the ZB26 before the war, which would surely have been readily adaptable to the .30 cartridge. As it was they cobbled together a sort-of LMG in the shape of the not-very-satisfactory M1919A6.

Paratroopers didn’t like it because of the limited mag capacity and no interchangeable barrel. But army squads benefited from it immensely especially during transport and the actual march.

[total side question]
Is this the weapon used by the Viet Cong in the famous helicopter attack on the bridge sequence in Apocalypse Now?
[/total side question]

I seem to recall reading that Clyde Barrow preferred the BAR over the Thompson sub-machine gun because, while the Thompson was perfectly capable of killing the occupants of an automobile, the BAR was capable of killing people hiding behind an automobile. How did the BAR do against light armored military vehicles like say…half-tracks or Japanese light tanks?

I didn’t remember, so I re-watched that scene on YouTube, and it did not look like an M-2 to me. A little research produced the claim that it was a movie-set mock-up of a DShK heavy machine gun.

Edit: the same site has shots of the Browning M2 (HB) for comparison.

Barrows’ personal BAR was sawn-off. I wonder how much of it’s power was lost to this modification. I’ve personally seen that particular BAR in a museum and even in it’s cut down state, the thing is huge. There’s no way little ol’ 5’5" me could have carried a regular BAR.

You’re not going to damage AFVs with rifle-calibre bullets, which they are specifically designed to keep out.

I’d WAG only a few hundred feet per second topping out at a loss of perhaps 500 FPS. The chopped barrel still looks to be about 12 inches or so. The muzzle blast and noise would be INSANE however, which was probably the primary mode of effectiveness. A short blast indoors would be like a flashbang.

Military-grade 150-grain spitzer rounds aren’t really that hot (45,000 psi max) and they can be shot out of a 12-inch barrel. 180-grain hunting loads are a different matter.

How does a seventeen percent difference in load make such a difference?

Not just the weight of the slug but also its shape (longer slug needs shorter twist and longer travel). Then there’s the powder charge. Military propellants burned faster, easily pushing the spitzer round through a short barrel. Hunting rounds would use some slower burning power, requiring a longer barrel.

But going back, I just read that the improved 175-grain .30 m1 ball cartridge came out in 1926, replacing the older 1906 spitzer I was talking about. That greatly improved the 30-06.