Stoeger Industries offers quality firearms a price that seems too good to be true. Owners know well their long-lasting performance, ability to thrive through challenging field conditions and survive neglect. There’s good reason, too. It’s part of the Benelli USA family of brands, a firm that had a version of its M4 semi-automatic officially adopted by the U.S. Marine Corps in 2000. It’s still fielded to this day.
Maryland-based Stoeger wasn’t a gun manufacturer at first. The company began life as a gun and ammo retailer in 1918, working out of a Fifth Avenue storefront in New York City. Its history is an interesting one that includes firearm-related publishing, but in 1994 Sako Oy—a name renowned for Sako and Tikka rifles—became principal shareholder. Beretta Holding purchased it in 2000 made it part of its Benelli USA operation.
A wealth of shotgun expertise thrives under that corporate umbrella, and the knowledge has paid big dividends in the Stoeger line. The Turkish-made Stoeger M3000 introduced in 2012, for example, uses a variation of the Benelli’s Inertia Driven System of operation that’s built an enviable reputation for reliability. MSRPs for the M3000 today start at only $559. You don’t get all the refinements offered by Benelli or Beretta, but it’s a rare owner that doesn’t insist the performance is nearly identical.
The entire M3000 line is exclusively 12 ga. and the shotguns can run either 2 3/4" or 3" magnum shotshells without need for any adjustment. There are five families of the Intertia Driven semi-automatics available: the M3000 Shotgun (basic), M3000 Compact, M3000 Sporting, M3000 Defense and M3000 Freedom Series Defense. Each come with three choke tubes, a shim kit for adjusting length-of-pull and a red-bar front sight.
There are nine models in the basic line. Barrel lengths include 24", 26" and 28" inches and they are available in satin walnut or synthetic stocks wearing black or a variety of camouflage finishes. MSRPs run from $559 to $649. The Compact model has a 26" barrel, measures 47" overall and tips the scales at a handy 7 lbs. (roughly 0.5 lbs. less than basic models). It will set you back $559. The Sporting comes with a 30" barrel and has an MSRP of $669. Both have black synthetic stocks.
When it comes to the pair of models in each defense line, each has a barrel length of 18.5", the option of a pistol grip and overall length of either 40.25" or 40.75", depending on version. Prices runs from $559 to $669.