I was disappointed last year when an ARX160 or a semiauto variant wasn’t on display. Hype had been that it was coming soon. This year the rifles rested atop a folding table, with the wind blowing the tablecloth over them; ignored wile the crowd was magnetized to the company’s pistols. Assuming I got lucky and didn’t have to wait, I approached the table.
The rep. handed me a loaded magazine. The mags are deceiving, they are the same color as GI aluminum’s, but are steel and made by Beretta. These are the type used by the Italian military, I was told.
The first handling experience was grip, with my torn shoulder I’m not comfortable extending my weak arm out straight and often use a more SMG type hold. The handguard looks as though it would be uncomfortable for this, but gave me little notice. The cheeckweld is thin but petite shooters, following me in line, had more of a problem than I did. The bolt release is manipulated with the trigger finger, and is stiff like the Bushmaster ACR’s similar arrangement, but with a lot less material to push on. I imagine with practice it would be of little concern, but required noticeably more force than the the Robinson XCR-L. The small magazine release button was a similar situation, ambidextrous but small, but I can’t see it being difficult unless I was in heavily insulated winter gloves.
The recoil was felt slightly more than firing a direct impingement carbine. The trigger reset was sure and otherwise what I’d expect from an average military type rifle trigger, this isn’t national match. The target was easy to engage but the range was more suited for handguns.
I asked on the availability, and was pleasantly surprised to hear the ARX100 is currently being manufactured here in the USA with an expected ship date of April. With an MSRP just under $2000, I will reserve further closer evaluation before jumping on this purchase. Different barrel assemblies may be the deciding factor there, with many quick change systems now on the market, with few change-to barrels available for most competing systems.