Wilson Combat has been making several top of the line AR-15 variants for awhile now. They aren’t afraid to embrace unusual concepts that some would say are forward thinking, and others would dismiss as too oddball or unproven. Their 7.62×40 WT caliber grapples in seemingly hopeless direct competition with the .300 AAC Blackout. Their Recon SR, with a 14.7 inch barrel and permanently attached suppressor mount, is advertised as the shortest possible suppressed AR15 that is still a Title 1 (non-short barreled rifle) firearm. All of the Wilson guns are top quality builds with no expense spared and no corners cut. Bargain hunters looking to get a “good enough” rifle for a song and a dance are advised to look elsewhere.
It should come as no surprise then, that Wilson is offering an upgrade package to their existing rifle packages, in the form of billet upper and lower receivers beautifully anodized in green or brown. If you just want a billet upper receiver, add a $200 premium. $400 gets you a matched billet upper/lower set. Carved from solid hunks of 7076-T6 aerospace aluminum, the receivers incorporate all sorts of trick features like EDM cut flared magwells and undersized bolt raceways. One feature they don’t have is a forward assist– Wilson Combat has decided that it’s nothing but a discredited liability in this day and age.
Normally, I would shrug at a $400 premium for fancy receivers on an AR. What’s the point, when most of us can’t shoot well enough to take advantage of any functionality difference between billet and standard receivers? But in this case, “why” turns to “why not?” When you are already melting your credit card on a Wilson Combat rifle featuring the latest, trickest, state of the art concepts executed using the best materials and workmanship money can buy, why skimp on a potential upgrade to critical components? These firearms are so advanced that they are starting to stretch the definition of what AR-15 type rifles are– they have moved so far from the Colt M16A1 of 40 years ago that they are really the children of Eugene Stoner’s design.
If you’re buying a new Ferrari, go ahead and get those optional wheels and tires. If you’re buying a Wilson Combat AR-15, go billet aerospace aluminum. You’ll have one of the best rifles of any type that any amount of money can buy.