January 5, 2011

Gun Tests Magazine Selects Smith & Wesson M&P 15-22 as 2010 “Best in Class” Rifle

(GunReports.com) — Gun Tests Magazine has named the Smith & Wesson M&P 15-22 22 LR as the publication’s “Best in Class” Rifle for 2010.

The AR-style rimfire joins an S&W wheelgun, a 380 pistol from CZ USA, and a Browning BPS pump shotgun as the magazine’s “Best in Class” 2010 honorees.

More specifically, the “Best in Class” rifle for 2010 was the Smith & Wesson M&P 15-22 No. 811030 22 LR, $569. It was originally reviewed in the February 2010 issue of Gun Tests.


The AR-style rimfire joins an S&W wheelgun, a 380 pistol from CZ USA, and a Browning BPS pump shotgun as the magazine’s “Best in Class” 2010 honorees.

“All the Best guns are A or A+ choices,” said Gun Tests Publisher Timothy H. Cole, referring to the magazine’s Report Card scoring system, which ranks guns from A+ down to a failing grade of F. Cole said only about 20% of all guns tested by the magazine get a “buy it” grade of A or B.

Gun Tests Editor Todd Woodard said, “What we liked best about this carbine was that it offered a cheap day of shooting with a rimfire as close to an AR-15 as we could get. The M&P 15-22 was light enough, and thanks to its adjustable stock, ideal for small shooters.”

Other excerpts from the story included:

  • “No other semiautomatic rifle or carbine breaks down as easily as an AR-15, and the M&P 15-22 was field-stripped in exactly the same manner.”
  • “From the 25-yard line, the Smith & Wesson M&P 15-22 equaled the Ruger SR-22 when firing two of our three test rounds.”
  • “The first time one sees the Smith & Wesson M&P 15-22 the reaction might sound like this: "What kind of magazine is that?" The see-through relief and load assist lugs are a dead giveaway. But from the left-hand side of the carbine, there is little else that would lead you to believe it was anything but a patrol carbine with A2 sights and Picatinny rails on all four sides of the handguard.”

Cole said, “Gun Tests doesn’t accept advertising, so consumers can have confidence that our Best in Class picks are the results of head-to-head evaluations by our teams--and not influenced by anything else.”

For more information on Gun Tests magazine, log on to www.Gun-Tests.com.

Comments (5)

Like my friend Gaviota, I have been reluctant to shell out $500.00 for a .22 LR rifle, so, instead, I shelled out $1000.00 for the S&W M&P 15 (I know, there must be some sort of logic there). It is a real sweetheart to handle and fire, but now.....like Gaviota.....I am considering buying one of those "tactical .22s" so I can fire more ammo for less money..... Go figure.....

Posted by: canovack | January 6, 2011 3:20 PM    Report this comment

I am disappointed that in your test of the S&W M&P 15-22, you failed to match it up against the "Colt" Tactical AR-15 in .22 produced through UMAREX and originally manufactured by Walther. To me, both rifles are clearly more evenly matched in design allegiance to the AR-15, and would have benefited your readers better in a head-to-head comparison. I will look after I complete this comment,(my computer will not multi-task), but have you actually even looked at the UMAREX Colt AR-15 22?

Posted by: TW3 | January 6, 2011 2:16 PM    Report this comment

I borrowed and shot one of these @ the range recently. A very accurate, sweet shooting .22 rifle. I am mostly a handgunner but I'm strongly considering buying one of these little beauties.

Posted by: CHARLES S | January 6, 2011 1:48 PM    Report this comment

I bought the Ruger SR-22 due to the KNOWN reliability of the Ruger 10/22 action and availability of parts. The SR-22 will also accept many AR accessories due to the incorporation of the Nordic chassis.

Posted by: tankjas556 | January 6, 2011 1:03 PM    Report this comment

I almost bought one of these last August, but I choked at paying over $500 for a .22 rimfire. The other factor was that the M&P 15-22 lower is not a generic AR-15 lower. It's completely proprietary and will not interchange with any other gun. So, instead I bought a factory target Ruger 10/22 with a much better stock, trigger, and price than the S&W.

If I ever come into money, though, I might just go back and get a M&P 15-22 just to say that I'm a complete hypocrite with a "tactical" .22.

Gaviota

Posted by: Lee W | January 5, 2011 9:01 PM    Report this comment

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