Looking Back at SHOT 2014’s Hits: Where Are They Now?
Matt Korovesis 01.15.15
In the lead up to SHOT Show 2015, I decided to look back at some of the guns and gear that made the news at last year’s show and see how they’ve fared. Some have sunk, some have seen success, and some are still works-in-progress.
1. Glock 42
Glock answered fans’ prayers last year when they finally unveiled a subcompact, single-stack model. However, instead of chambering it in 9x19mm as hoped, it was a .380 ACP piece.
By most accounts, the Glock 42 is an awesome gun. It just seems strange to many that Glock has continued to refrain from throwing its hat into the subcompact, single-stack 9x19mm ring. Glock’s new models for 2015 were allegedly leaked last week, and a single-stack nine is still absent.
2. Desert Tech MDR
Utah-based Desert Tech is famous for their bullpup bolt-action rifles. At last year’s show, they showed off their semiautomatic, multi-caliber Micro Dynamic Rifle (MDR) to the public for the first time. At a press conference, company reps stated they were aiming for a mid-2015 release. At a media event in December 2014, Desert Tech seemed to indicate that a 2015 release date might still be feasible. In any case, excitement and enthusiasm for the new carbine continues to grow. The company seems to have stepped back from providing a firm price just yet, but it’s likely to be in the mid-$2,000 range.
3. Sig Sauer P320
Sig’s modular, striker-fired P320 series of pistols was also shown off at SHOT 2014. Several positive reviews followed, including Dugan Ashely’s definitive video evaluation. The P320’s strength lies in the fact that the pistol’s stainless steel inner frame is the “official” serialized gun/part, allowing the user to swap barrels and grip modules at will. Along with the Glock 42, the P320 appears to have been a pretty big hit.
4. Kel-Tec RDB
Kel-Tec is well-known for its innovative designs, extensive use of polymer, and sometimes spotty quality control. Those first two attributes are readily observable in the RDB, a 5.56x45mm rifle that utilizes a short-stroke gas piston and a unique method of ejection. Spent casings are ejected downward via a port located behind the magazine well.
Kel-Tec originally planned on releasing the RDB in late 2014, but production versions of the compact firearm have yet to hit the market. The rifle was present at the 2014 Bullpup Convention in September, but that was its last high-profile appearance. We’ll be sure to follow up with Kel-Tec on the status of the RDB next week.
5. Remington R51
By all accounts, the 9x19mm Remington R51 pistol looked to be a winner. A reimagining of the company’s Model 51 that was introduced in the early twentieth century, the R51 seemed to be a serious contender in the subcompact market. Its all-steel construction would appeal to traditionalists, while its 9x19mm +P chambering would entice the modern carry crowd. Unfortunately, the production models suffered from a number of serious issues that eventually led to a recall in all but name.
Remington apparently plans on re-releasing the R51, though precisely when is unclear.
6. Sig Sauer MPX
Sig’s foray into the PDW/oversized pistol market was to take the form of the MPX. The MPX combines the fire controls of an AR with the best attributes of pistol-caliber carbines. However, one of the full-length MPX variants sporting a unique-looking muzzle device ran into approval issues with the ATF. That appears to have delayed the introduction of the gun as a whole. We’ll be following up with Sig about plans for the MPX in 2015.
Keep up with us next week as we hit the show floor to learn what the industry has in store for us in 2015!