So you have decided to buy your first AR 15, but with all the options available, you are not sure where to start. Well, you are not alone. The sheer number of AR 15 products available in the market can overwhelm even the best of us.
This is especially if you are on a tight budget and are looking to spend less than $1000 on a rifle. And this is the primary reason we decided to compile a list of the best ar 15 under 1000 on the market.
On our list are five AR 15 rifles you can pick up for less than a thousand bucks. Top on our list is the Ruger AR 556 MPR. It is one of the more recent additions to the AR 15 market. It has excellent features for a modern rifle.
Coming in at number two is the Armalite M-15 Light Tactical. This rifle is lightweight and accurate. And so are the other options on our list, so you may want to go through all of them.
Reviews of the Best AR 15 Under 1000 Dollars
RUGER - AR-556 MPR 350 LEGEND
- 16.38-inch chrome-moly steel barrel
- Two-stage trigger
- 4.5-pound trigger pull
- 15-inch free-floated handguard
- Muzzle brake
- A 7075-T6 aluminum upper receiver
The Ruger MPR 350 Legend is one of the most recent additions to Rugger’s AR-556 gun series. It is chambered with the .357 round and comes at a great price. Also, it packs in plenty of features.
This rifle comes with a standard 16.38-inch barrel and a 15-inch free-floated handguard. The latter comes with M-LOK attachment points. The free-floated handguard is excellent for accuracy, and its slim profile helps with ergonomics.
When it comes to the trigger, it is a two-stage trigger with a pull of 4.5 pounds. One great thing about this trigger is the full-length hammer spring. This guarantees consistent primer ignition.
The rifle will serve you well for a long time thanks to its durable chrome-moly steel barrel and aluminum upper receiver. You can also attach most standard accessories onto the upper receiver of this rifle.
- The rifle has a collapsible stock
- It is offered at a relatively affordable price tag
- The two-stage trigger helps with accuracy
- The aluminum upper receiver is hard coat anodized for durability
- The synthetic stock is lightweight and ergonomic for easy handling
- The handguard is non-railed
- Is not easy to fit attachments to it
This is an excellent weapon for anyone looking for a semi-automatic rifle chambered with the .375 projectile. Its price tag also means that it can be a great first time purchase. It is one of the best ar 15 rifles for under $1000 from Ruger.
Armalite M-15 Light Tactical Carbine Semi-Auto Rifle
- 16-inch full-contour barrel
- 10-inch tactical handguard
- Six positions collapsible stock
- Single-stage trigger
- 32-inch overall length
- 7.56 pounds weight
Armalite is a company that is synonymous with the AR 15 platform. Thus it shouldn’t come as a surprise that our list includes an Armalite offering as well. The M-15 Light tactical carbine rifle stays true to its name.
Weighing about 7 pounds, it is a genuinely lightweight semi-automatic rifle. But the first thing that grabbed our attention was the rail system. It allows for the addition of accessories such as a scope without the need for a Picatinny rail.
This is great as it helps keep the gun lightweight. Everything on this gun functions as it should. The trigger pull is nice and smooth, while the magazine release has no stickiness to it. And the same can be said about the safety level.
Being a light tactical rifle, the recoil on this model is mild. And one thing we loved was the A2 flash hider. If you are at the range, this is a feature you will love as it saves your shooting buddies from the head-splitting loud bang of a muzzle brake.
- Comes with a flash hider that does a great job of masking the muzzle flash
- Compared to other rifles the clanging sound produced when fired is low
- This rifle is quite lightweight
- With its rail system, you can easily install a AR 15 scope
- Is very well constructed
- The M4 buttstock on this model is a bit uncomfortable
- Compared to other options it is a bit pricey
The best thing about this rifle is how customizable it is. You can add accessories easy on this model. Its close resemblance to the more popular M4 Carbine is not bad either.
BROWNELLS - BRN-601® RIFLE 5.56MM 20IN GREEN
- 20 rounds magazine
- 40-inch length
- 20-inch barrel
- Polymer stock
- 6.5 pounds trigger pull
- 6 pounds in weight
If you are feeling a bit nostalgic, then the Brownells BRN-601 is a rifle that is sure to bring a smile on your face. It has a retro design that is reminiscent of the 1960s. But don’t let its design fool you as it is a capable weapon.
Upon picking it up for the first time, we loved how lightweight it was. Weighing around 6 pounds, there is nothing retro about its weight. But the bright olive color of the rifle is retro and pays homage to the original USAF contract rifle.
At the mid-section of the gun, you will notice the slab-sided lower receiver without a magazine fence. The original M16 were known for dropping the magazine unintentionally. On this replica, though, it would take a pretty hard hit to the mag release button to drop it.
The upper receiver is a replica of the original. There is the triangle-shaped charging handle as well as the chrome-plated bolt carrier group. There are no forward assist serrations here.
- Weighing 6 pounds the rifle is quite lightweight
- The olive green color gives it a nice retro look
- The magazine release button is firm and will not release the magazine unintentionally
- Comes with a 20 round magazine
- The rifle is an almost exact replica of the original
- Is a bit pricey compared to other similar rifles
- The front takedown pin is not captive
This is a rifle that will take you back. Brownells designed it to be an almost replica of the M16 used in the 1960s. However, it has some modern tweaks that improve on the legendary rifle.
AERO PRECISION - AC-15 5.56X45MM NATO 16" MID-LENGTH RIFLE
- 16-inch chrome vanadium barrel
- M4 collapsible stock
- A2 pistol grip
- Mid-length handguard
- 32-inch overall length
- Removable magazine
Is the AC -15 mid-length rifle from Aero Precision the most accurate ar 15 under 1000? We decided to put it to the test on the range to find out.
As with the other rifles on the list, this is a budget option. One of the best things about it is that it comes ready to use out of the box. The upper receiver sports an A2 front sight that is pretty handy.
There isn’t a rear sight included, though. The stock is a standard M4 collapsible stock, while the pistol grip is also standard. These two combine to create an ergonomic profile.
The barrel is a 16 inch 1:7 twist made from chrome vanadium. To make it durable, it has a QPQ corrosion-resistant finish. The mid-guard handguard is heat resistant.
- The rifle is lightweight thanks to its aluminum construction
- It comes ready to use out of the box
- The 16-inch barrel has a corrosion-resistant finish
- Features a standard a2 pistol grip and collapsible stock
- Comes with a standard AR-15 mil-spec buffer kit
- Does not come with a magazine included
- Only front sights available no rear sight
This is a pretty affordable rifle. It is also made from high-quality materials and designed to perform excellently. It is one of the best ar 15 for under 1000.
Factors To Keep In Mind Before Selecting AR 15 Under 1000 Bucks
When you decide to buy your first AR 15 for less than 1000, there are some things you should consider. These are;
The barrel and the bolt carrier can best be described as a rifle’s heart. AR 15 rifles come with all kinds of barrels. As a first time buyer, you want something with a 16 to 20-inch long barrel. As for the construction, a 4150 ORD steel construction is ideal.
A 16-inch barrel is excellent for all-round shooting, while a 20-inch barrel is also great, it adds some weight to the overall rifle.
This is another critical component to consider. Ideally, a twist-rate of 1-8 is ideal. However, some models in this price segment offer a twist rate of 1-9. The latter will work fine for shooting 55 grain to 62-grain ammo.
Rifles come with handguards of varying types. The most common handguards in ar 15 of below 1000 are plastic handguards. These are usually cheaper, lighter, and durable. In our opinion, they are more comfortable due to their shape being ergonomic.
Free floated vs. non-free floated rails
For rifles priced under 1000, we recommend free-floated rails. They offer more real-estate for the attachment of accessories. Also, they do not interfere with the barrel during firing. This provides an accuracy boost that is small but noticeable.
When it comes to triggers, there is no one who serves all. Everyone has their preferred trigger. In the under 1000 market, you will get rifles with either a two-stage or one-stage trigger. Some people prefer the two-stage trigger configuration.
However, if you are a beginner, a one-stage trigger may be a better choice.
The AR 15 is a fantastic rifle and is considered by many to be the quintessential American rifle. And any one of the four reviewed above would make a great first time purchase. Ultimately though the best ar 15 under 1000 will depend on your needs and shooting style.