A left-handed rifle caught our eye at the Accuracy International booth this year. No longer will left-handed shooters feel left out by the precision bolt gun market. The Accuracy International AT replaced the AE rifles aimed at the LE/Mil market. The AT features quick-change barrels that require no gunsmithing or torque wrenches and can be done in the field. The folding stocks take up minimal room and make cleaning easier.
It’d be way over the top to say we don’t like the Beretta 92/M9, but after years of trying, we never quite settled in with it. It was accurate, reliable and certainly well-made, and we’re defensibly shy, we think, about barking too loudly against the nearly 500-year heritage that backs up every Beretta firearm. Well, that whole business goes out the window after shooting and handling the new 92/M9/A3. Hugely improved grip ergonomics, dovetailed sights and a vastly—mark that word, vastly—improved trigger are just a few of the upgrades we liked. It’s back on our list in a big way.
High-performance handgunners of many stripes are almost certainly familiar with the STI “2011.” Long on the leading edge of the leading edge, the company’s new DVC pistols look like another leap forward to us: Slide lightening cuts control slide dynamics in both directions, and increases the overall cycling rate of the wide-bodied (staggered magazine) design. Titanium nitride finish improves lubricity and wear resistance on the bull barrels. The gun also has great sights, hard chrome, toolless guide rod, great grips, etc.: You get the idea. If you haven’t drooled on one, you should. And soon.
The big news at German scope manufacturer Schmidt & Bender is the 5-45x scope. With a large 56mm objective lens, top-quality glass and high-tech coatings, light transmission is simply incredible. To house all that glass and inner workings, the main tube diameter has been bumped up to 34mm. Like all things that are top shelf, they won’t be cheap—but they will be worth every penny.
New at Boise, Idaho-based Tactical Solutions is a twist on the company’s X-Ring 10-22 rifle. With the popularity of Ruger’s Takedown rifle, TS decided it was time to upgrade its rifle. With the press of a button, the rifle comes apart and easily packs up inside a backpack or small gun case in seconds. Despite being a takedown rifle, accuracy and reliability remain just as good as the standard rifle.
We aren’t obsessed with Walther because we’re Ian Fleming fans. Well, OK, maybe a little. A much more plausible explanation is that the Walther PPQ M2 is such a fine pistol, and it looks to us like they’ve done it again with the discreet carry PPS M2 in either 9mm or .40 S&W. With six-, seven- or eight-round magazine options that extend the trim proportions (five, six or seven in .40) to give a fabulously positive grip, the PPS may also have the best out-of-the box trigger in the class. Look for a review soon.