Not long ago we did a video review of the Wilson Combat AR9G 9mm Carbine. Since James had a few feeding problems I wanted to test this carbine myself. I contacted Wilson and requested they send me the same carbine we previously tested. Not to call into question James results but having shot a good number of Wilson guns I couldn’t fathom them shipping out a gun with problems.
When the rifle arrived it was dry which was good since I intended to make it that way and use lubes I’m familiar with. Lubes have a great deal to do with any guns function and I’m sure we all agree with that. I lubed the rifle with Wilson Combat Universal gun oil. On the small rails of the bolt carrier I use TW25 in a small amount.I hand cycled the action which felt very smooth. This rifle is blowback operated in 9mm.
Looking the rifle over it is very well made with snug tolerances between upper and lower as well as all of the other parts of the rifle having to do with function. This model uses Glock 9mm magazines. Wilson included the same mags James used and added a few more for me to test. These mags were of various capacities. The AR9 can be ordered to accommodate Glock, Beretta and S&W M&P magazines. You just need to specify when ordering.
The carbine weighs just over 5 pounds making it a pleasure to handle and carry for long periods. The purpose of the AR9 is primarily competition and home defense. They can be ordered in pistol or SBR configuration, as well as the carbine, tested. The pictured soft case is included with the Wilson logo seen in the photos.
From Wilson Combat:
Not simply a converted AR-15, the Wilson Combat AR9 has been specifically designed for superior reliability and maximum accuracy, while retaining the familiar handling and controls of the AR platform. Wilson Combat engineers have designed three unique AR9 lower receivers with last-round bolt hold open that are compatible with the most popular 9mm service pistol magazines from GlockⓇ, BerettaⓇ and S&WⓇ. These new billet-machined aluminum receiver models also accept standard AR accessories like furniture, triggers, charging handles, buttstocks and optics, and incorporate an integral trigger guard and flared magwell for fast reloading. The Wilson Combat AR9 closed-bolt blowback operating system is soft shooting and reliable with a wide variety of 9mm loads and exhibits flawless feeding with all common pistol bullet shapes, including hollowpoint and +P tactical ammunition. The AR9 bolt hold open ensures reliable lockback on empty with your pistol’s factory magazines. The AR9 proprietary bolt carrier group with heavy-duty claw extractor and plunger ejector is tuned for exceptional reliability. The AR9 is also an optimized suppressor host with minimal gas blowback and enhanced accuracy over other designs. Wilson Combat carbon steel match-grade button-rifled 1-10” twist 9mm barrels ensure that the AR9 meets our stringent quality and accuracy requirements.
AR9G Note: Because of wide variability in factory ammunition and many generations of GlockⓇ pistol magazines we recommend the use of ETS brand GlockⓇ magazines or the latest generation factory GlockⓇ magazines and extra power magazine springs for optimum reliability in the AR9G model.
BILLet-AR 7075 Aluminum Flat-Top Upper and Lower Receiver
Threaded Muzzle (5/8 x 24) with Q-COMP Flash Hider
Wilson Combat® T.R.I.M. Rail
Wilson Combat / BCM Starburst Gunfighter Grip
Wilson Combat TTU (Tactical Trigger Unit) Two Stage, 4.5# (TR-TTU-H2) only.
Mil-Spec Hard Anodize Finish on Upper / Lower Receivers
Use of Commonly Available Service Mags
Positive Lock Back on Empty Magazine
Standard AR Furniture/Sight Compatibility
Proprietary Bolt and Barrel for Excellent Feed Reliability with Common Bullet Profiles
Quiet Suppressor Host
Over the course of several weeks I made a good number of trips to the range firing a total of 800 rounds of various loads ranging from 115 grn to 147 grain. Regular ball ammo, as well as +P defense loads, were also fired. A great deal of the ammo used is from our sponsor Aquila who supplied 124 grn. ball ammo.
During the course of the 800 rounds fired I had one malfunction which turned out to be an older Hornady round which when examined showed the bullet backed up a good deal into the case. It functioned with 100% reliability otherwise. I did try to make it malfunction by mixing various rounds in the magazine but that had no effect on reliability. The Glock mags also fall free when empty.
For the carbines intended purpose most accuracy shooting was done from 50 yards using a backpack as a rest. The 147 grn loads were the most accurate grouping right at one inch at 50 yards if I did my part. I actually expected the 124 grain loads to be the most accurate so I was a bit surprised. No problem with that I found the load it likes the best. Most shooting was done with my Leupold 1-4 scope.
Shooting this carbine was just plain fun. With the 5 pound weight, it was so easy to move from target to target. Of course, this weight makes it very easy to hold very steady when shooting at greater distances. For home defense, the pistol version with the Shockwave Blade – Pistol Forearm Support would be a good choice.
In summary, I have to say I was never really sold on an AR in a pistol caliber.I’d also never shot one much at all. It just goes to show you that you need to shoot a gun before deciding you don’t care for it or it’s usefulness. That said I found myself really enjoying this 9mm carbine. I can see now how it would be useful as a home defense gun as well as competition and well just plain inexpensive, reliable fun on a weekend range trip. With the quality of this carbine, it’s one you can hand down to a son or daughter.
The MSRP of all models is $1995.00 which does include the Wilson gun case.
Many thanks to our ammo sponsor Aquila Ammunition for supplying ammo for this review.