Above: Josh Froelich shooting his JP Enterprises GMR-15.
Pistol caliber carbines. Unless you’ve been living under the world’s heaviest rock for the last couple years, you’ve seen the rise in popularity, followed by the explosion in production, of these fun little guns. With so many out there however, it can be hard to choose. Read on to see five of the most popular pistol caliber carbines (PCC) on the USPSA circuit. (Guns are listed in order of popularity at the 2017 USPSA PCC Nationals, as reported by FrontSight magazine’s 2018 Annual issue.)
1) The JP Enterprises GMR-15 9mm Carbine far and away takes the cake for most preferred USPSA PCC. A whopping 36 percent of shooters were using the JP factory carbine at the 2017 PCC Nationals. With a flared magwell in a billet lower, the option of a dual-charging upper ($600 upgrade), and 3 MOA accuracy out to 100 yards, JP Enterprises was really not messing around with this one. With that aforementioned $600 upgrade, you get not only the dual charging upper, you also get the 9mm Silent Captured Spring, meaning the system cycles with virtually no recoil. Accepting standard G17 magazines, the GMR-15 will set you back at least $1,699 for a complete carbine, or $895 for the upper assembly. Check it out in all its available configurations at www.jprifles.com
2) Coming from yet another standard-bearer in the field, the SIG MPX Carbine is a 16-inch barreled version of SIG’s revolutionary MPX. Featuring fully ambidextrous controls, a short stoke gas piston that allows all weights and brands of 9mm to be run without any gas adjustment, and a full length Picatinny rail―the MPX is a true contender’s tool. The only downside? The $2,016 MPX does not accept Glock mags, meaning you’ll be shelling out some extra dough on proprietary magazines. As far as downsides go though, that’s not a bad one! Get a rundown on the MPX Carbine at www.sigsauer.com
3) There’s no way around it; in a world full of AR-style variants, the unique CZ Scorpion EVO 3 S1 Carbine is a neat looking divergence. The 16.2-inch barrel just clears NFA regulations, thanks to your choice of a muzzle brake or a faux suppressor built specifically for CZ by SilencerCo. Both are removable, by the way, in case one should ever decide to convert the firearm to an SBR for use with an actual suppressor. The stock is folding and adjustable, while the forend is covered in M-LOK for maximum utility of space. Low profile adjustable sights, a top Picatinny rail, ambidextrous controls, a non-reciprocating charging handle, and adjustable trigger reach all add to this 9mm’s desirability, while the $1,049 MSRP makes it the cheapest gun on this list. See it at cz-usa.com
4) Few names synonymize precision, reliability, and value like Wilson Combat. Their AR9 carbine is no exception. With match grade accuracy from a 16-inch fluted or unfluted barrel, and a two-stage Wilson Tactical Trigger Unit, the Wilson Combat AR9 defines match-from-the-box quality. The coolest feature? You can order the AR9 customized to accept either Glock or Beretta magazines, thus adding a layer of personalization to better integrate the carbine into your particular system. The gun retails at $1,995 for the non-fluted model, or $2,095 for the fluted version. Check it out at www.wilsoncombat.com
5) Rounding out our list in fifth position is the Mk9 T, from CMMG. This is, in the best possible way, a standard AR-15 chambered in 9mm, and thus the perfect rifle for those who prefer to do their own customization. Coming with a nitrided 4140 CrMo M4 profile barrel, single-stage trigger, free floating handguard that can be upgraded to M-LOK for $25, and the option of 11 different Cerakote finishes―the Mk9 T is the perfect platform for just $1,149.95. Learn more at www.cmmginc.com