June 2013

UTAS-15 Pump: We’d Wait On It

This Turkish import went through our hard-edged testing and came out the other side in one piece. But we have worries.

You may not have heard of this company, UTAS (pronounced YOO-tash), a Turkish firm that specializes in firearms design, engineering and OEM manufacturing. UTAS has had its designs voted “Gun of the Year” by the NRA’s American Rifleman magazine in 2006 and in 2007. One product from UTAS is the UTS-15 tactical shotgun, a 12-gauge pump-action shotgun with two 7-round alternately feeding or selectable magazine tubes.

We recently tested a UTS-15 as a follow-up to our November 2012 test of high-capacity shotguns, the Akdal Arms MKA 1919 3-inch 12 Gauge, $799; the Kel-Tec KSG 3-inch 12 Gauge, $1075; the Saiga IZ-107 12 Gauge, $640; and a Red Jacket Saiga RTS-SBS-12 Short-Barrel 12 Gauge, $1939. Of that quartet, we preferred the Saiga and the KSG.

While we were standing in the shop at Tactical Firearms in Katy, Texas (TacticalFirearms.us) waiting to pick up our UTS-15 for testing, the range staff was going on and on about how the gun looked like a weapon from a sci-fi movie. They weren’t kidding; if you have seen the movie Starship Troopers, this gun resembles the Morita battlerifle that the Mobile Infantry used to kill Bugs. But according to UTAS, the shotgun doesn’t hail from outer space. The UTS-15 is just a bullpup pumpgun created from the ground up using fiber-reinforced polymers for 85 percent of the parts. In particular, the receiver is completely molded from polymer.

Numerous gun celebrities on the internet have reviewed this shotgun and had no luck with it. FPSRussia went through three UTS guns while shooting his video because he actually broke three different parts. Would our unit be plagued with the same problems as some of the other early-model bullpup shotguns reviewed back in November? Or would it be Gun Tests approved right out of the box? Here’s what happened:

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