SHOT 2015 was a big event for fans of the AK. From Magpul’s accessories to the announcement of at least three new US-based Kalashnikov manufacturers, we’ve had a lot to be excited about. In addition to the news from those “big names,” though, a sleeper almost crept by unnoticed. I’m talking about M+M, Inc.’s new M10X rifle.
Colorado-based M+M, Inc. has been offering their own version of the Romanian AKM, called the M10-762, since 2013. The M10-762 is relatively well-known in AK enthusiast circles, and is generally regarded as a quality AKM clone with some welcome accouterments. With the M10X, M+M is moving beyond relatively minor modifications to the AK and completely rethinking the design.
The M10X utilizes the tried and true Kalashnikov long-stroke gas piston and the 7.62x39mm cartridge and sports a standard AK silhouette, but the similarities between Mikhail’s avtomat and the M10X pretty much stop there. The M10X incorporates a fully free-floated nitrided barrel (thanks to a floated joint at the gas block), a monolithic upper receiver, a charging handle that can easily be swapped from right to left (the M10X’s receiver is cut for the handle on both sides), and a hinging lower receiver—the rifle opens up just like an AR. In addition, the action does not utilize a conventional AK recoil spring—that function has been transferred to a piston return spring.
The rifle also features an adjustable gas valve, a full-length Picatinny rail along the top of the receiver that won’t have issues with holding zero like most AK dust cover mounts, and an ambidextrous, AR-style safety selector. Its aluminum handguard has ample attachment points for M-LOK accessories, and the muzzle is topped with an M+M brake. The gun uses standard AK-pattern magazines and features a buffer tube to mount standard AR-pattern collapsible stocks.
Two models of the M10X are planned: the Standard (M10X-762S) and Elite (M10X-762E). The Standard will feature a cast upper receiver and bolt carrier, a nitride and manganese phosphate finish, a Hogue pistol grip, a Phoenix Tech Field Series buttstock, and a Tapco 30-round mag. The Elite uses a machined upper and bolt carrier, has a fully nitrided finish, features a Magpul MOE AK grip and stock (the booth models had a CTR), and comes with a Magpul AK PMAG. The Standard’s MSRP will be $900, while the Elite will run $1,195. California compliant models are also planned. The M10X is fully American-made.
Normally I don’t get very excited about guns like the M10X, but M+M seems to be doing the “reimagining” part of their gun right. They’re keeping the good stuff about the AK in place, but improving certain aspects of the platform in a smart manner—and the end result is not overly expensive. The only change I’m not totally on board with is the use of an AR stock (though I do love AR stocks on AKs in some cases), but I can deal with that. Manually operating the action was silky smooth, something you can’t say about all new production AKs.
M+M has just produced a number of models for internal testing. I hope to test one out myself when they begin distributing media evaluation rifles. In any case, the M10X is a rifle to keep an eye on for any AK fan.
Images by Matt Korovesis