SHOT Show 2015 has come and gone, and it’s difficult to even begin to imagine how long it would take to fully catalog the sheer amount of guns, gear, and stuff that’s been introduced to the outdoor world in the past seven days. While there’s a host of interesting optics, accessories, and other pieces of kit unveiled at every SHOT, the firearms are always the main draw. As such, I’ve compiled a list of my top nine picks from the show and provided them below, in no particular order.
1. Savage A17
Many manufacturers have tried to build a reliable and safe semiautomatic firearm in .17 HMR, but very few have succeeded. This year, Savage is throwing their hat into the ring with the A17. It’ll use a delayed blowback method of operation, feed from 10-round rotary mags, and retail for $465. Savage plans on releasing the A17 in March.
I have faith that if any rifle maker can build a .17 HMR semiauto that works properly, it’s Savage. Learn more about the gun here.
2. Galil ACE
The Galil ACE in 7.62x39mm is IWI US’ forthcoming AK-killer. If that phrase set off some Oedipal alarms in your head, then congrats, you know enough about Kalashnikov derivatives to know that the Galil is very much an AK descendant.
If the street price of the ACE rifle in 7.62x39mm holds too close to its MSRP of $1,899, it probably won’t be unseating high-end AKs very soon. However, I found the gun to be a delight to shoot, handle, and just play around with in general. IWI US is aiming for a spring release for the rifle and its pistol variants. Learn more about the Galil and IWI US’ other offerings for 2015 here.
3. SIG Sauer MCX
When I first heard about the MCX, I was skeptical. Ho boy, another expensive notAR that doesn’t do anything ARs don’t, I thought. However, after shooting it, only part of that thought lingers in my mind.
I think that the MCX will make an excellent dedicated 300 BLK carbine. Compared to similar ARs, the MCX is much lighter, runs cleaner, and plays nicer with suppressors. I’d like it more if its proposed MSRP of about $1,800 was a few hundred dollars below that, but that could change with time. In any case, if the MCXs that make their way to the shooting public can live up to what I played with at their media event, I think SIG’s got a winner. Learn more about the MCX here.
4. Everything TrackingPoint
It’s been quite cool to see TrackingPoint’s products evolve over the past couple of SHOT Shows. Their guns have become progressively more affordable (don’t get me wrong, they’re still expensive as heck) and their scopes more compact. At Industry Day this year, I got to shoot a rifle from their new Bolt-Action (BA) series—a BA 300 WM. Though first-shot hits on targets farther than 600 yards out have become almost monotonous with a TrackingPoint gun (kidding), it’s always fascinating to see their system in action.
TrackingPoint continues to be one of the companies all shooting sports enthusiasts and hunters should keep an eye on as they continue to develop their optics and firearms. If you’re interested in buying a Precision-Guided Firearm and can do without a car for a year, the BA 300 WM and BA 308 rifles will retail for around $13,000. The BA 260 can even be had for as low as $7,500. Learn more about TrackingPoint on their site.
5. FN 15 DMR
FNH USA is the first AR manufacturer to integrate M-LOK handguards with mass production rifles. One of their new FN 15s for 2015 is the FN 15 DMR, a sleek rifle-length AR that utilizes an extended (but still minimalist) M-LOK handguard, an 18-inch match-grade barrel, and a Timney Competition Trigger. FNH USA makes some of the best complete ARs available, and the FN 15 DMR is no exception. It’ll sell for $1,899. Learn more about FN’s new products for 2015 here.
6. Purple Bling Coonan .357
It’s a purple Coonan .357. No, it’s not even new. Yes, it’s boss as hell.
7. Palmetto State Armory PSAK-47
Palmetto State Armory (PSA) is one of the largest manufacturers and retailers of commercial ARs and AR parts in the United States. They make an entire line of ARs, from bottom-of-the-barrel budget guns to some pretty impressive premium firearms. The announcement that they’d be making their own all-American AK rifle this year and that it’d be offered at a sub-$700 price point came as a welcome surprise to many. The 7.62x39mm rifles will be fully nitride-coated and PSA hopes to start shipping them within 90 days. Find out more about PSA’s AK here.
The DP-12 from Standard Manufacturing Company is neat new scattergun. It’s pump-action shotgun laid out in a double-barrel, bullpup configuration. The DP-12’s trigger allows for very fast follow-up shots, while its 16-shot capacity means you’ve got a good amount of lead at your disposal. The gun I shot at Industry Day was well-made and functioned without a single hiccup mag tube after mag tube. They’re going to be distributed exclusively through Cheaper Than Dirt! and will sell for $1,395. Learn more about the DP-12 here.
9. PTR-32 Gen 2
The PTR-32 is a gun that you see and just say “Woah.” It’s a G3-/HK91-pattern gun chambered in 7.62x39mm that feeds from standard AK mags. The PTR-32 is a delightful mix of one of the most reliable Western battle rifles ever invented and an affordable, powerful Soviet-designed cartridge. PTR Industries is offering rifle and pistol variations of the PTR-32 for around $1,000, and I hope to test one out very soon. If this East-West mashup works like it should, it’ll make for an awesome carbine that combines the best of both worlds. Read more about the PTR-32 here.
Those are my nine favorites from this year. What’d I miss?
Images by Matt Korovesis