Smith & Wesson never does any category half way, and the M&P (Military & Police) line has been a huge hit for the gunmaker. At the core of the line are the S&W M&P15 rifles. which provide an array of configurations to buyers. One of the big values I’ve discovered in the Smith & Wesson line is the M&P15 Sport.
Fit, Finish, and Feel
Smith & Wesson has done a great job avoiding a “me too” AR lineup by using their own forgings and making almost every part in house. The end result of those design updates and in-house manufacturing attention to detail is a tight upper to lower receiver fit and a great, consistent finish across all the rifle parts. The Melonite coating prevents corrosion on the barrel and also provides a really nice finish that makes the rifle look a lot more expensive that it is. Generally quality suffers for value rifles at this gun’s $600 street price, but this is the first “inexpensive” AR I have shot that is not a rattle trap and definitely feels like a more expensive rifle.
The S&W M&P15 Sport has the features of any basic AR-15 plus a few key upgrades minus the rarely used forward assist. Personally, I have yet to have the need for forward assist. If I have a round that does not chamber, I simply re-chamber another round.
The rifle includes a 30-round PMAG magazine, 6-position telescoping stock, chrome-lined gas key and bolt carrier, T-markings on the top picatinny receiver, proper staking of the castle nut and gas key, and adjustable front sight. Also, on the new model you will get a rear folding Magpul MBUS sight. My older version had a detachable fixed rear sight.
One of the more distinctive features of the lower forged receiver is the integrated enlarged winter trigger guard, a nice upgrade.