NRA Gun Of The Week: Smith & Wesson M&P12

posted on February 18, 2022

Folks turn to shotguns for a variety of tasks, whether it be for sporting use, hunting or home defense, and it is the latter purpose that engineers at Smith & Wesson focused on with the M&P12. Though this pump-action has a chamber capable of accepting 3-inch magnum shells, Smith & Wesson engineered the shotgun with the ability to use a broad range of 12-gauge shotshells while providing a feature-rich design for discerning shotgunners.

Man wearing black shirt hat earmuffs shooting black shotgun range indoors white walls remote camera

By placing the action as far rearward as possible, engineers were able to reduce the gun’s overall length to 27.8 inches, which is quite compact considering a 19” chrome-moly steel barrel is included. The M&P12 provides two magazine tubes, for a standard capacity of 14 rounds. Operators will have the ability to prioritize magazine tubes thanks to a crossbolt selector, allowing them to swap between different loads for different applications. Controls on the M&P12 are fully bilateral, too.

The M&P12’s bullpup configuration is a boon for tactical applications, allowing its user to keep the body in a closed-in, boxer-type stance, which is a benefit in close-quarter defensive situations. It is important to note that the M&P12 ejects shells downward between the fire controls and the shooter’s shoulder. On the range, our testers thought shooting the M&P12 was a fun experience, though mastering its manual of arms will require a read through the owner’s manual and some dry practice sessions.

right-side view black smith & wesson M&P12 bullpup shotgun 12 gauge pump-action gun metal plastic

Feature-rich, compact and capable, Smith & Wesson’s M&P12 shotgun delivers impressive capacity while providing supreme versatility in its 12 gauge chambering. The addition of the company's M&P pistol grip allows for user customization. Picatinny rail up top and M-Lok slots on along the barrel shroud combine to provide mounting solutions for accessories. We did find that the gun became fairly comfortable to use with practice, and its compact design and easy-to-cycle action improves the close-quarters shooting experience.

Watch the range video above to see Smith & Wesson’s M&P12 in use.

S&W M&P12 Specifications
Manufacturer: Smith & Wesson Inc.
Chambering: 3”; 12 gauge
Action Type: pump-action bullpup shotgun
Barrel: 19”
Magazine: two, seven-round tubular
Stock: black synthetic, fixed
Grip: M&P-style, interchangeable inserts
Overall Length: 27.8”
Weight: 8 lbs., 5 ozs.
MSRP: $1,185


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