Mossberg’s MMR Tactical — An American Favorite

Mossberg MMR Tactical AR-15 Rifle

The surging popularity of the AR platform (aka Modern Sporting Rifle) over the last decade caused a flood of new manufacturers in the industry—all with their own AR offerings. Several are already gone, but the Mil-Spec design means the guns still survive and should they need a part, everything is easily available. That’s great news, but there is still something to be said for a product from a quality manufacturer and one that is likely to be around in the future in the event that my purchase would later need warranty servicing or simply to enhance the resale value years from now.

Mossberg MMR Tactical AR-15 Rifle
Mossberg is a name you know you can trust and ensures product support in the future as well as a better resale value in the years to come.

Many felt Mossberg was late to the game when it introduced the MMR line, but it is better to be late to the party than rushing something to market that is poorly planned or designed just to be a “me too.” In designing the MMR Tactical, Mossberg took its time, surveyed the market and selected some of the most desirable features shooters demand. This allowed Mossberg to incorporate custom features into the MMR while holding the price to a manageable level.

As earlier stated, the MMR meets Mil-Spec so it fits the “Lego for adults” label and plays well with aftermarket goodies. The MMR Tactical is chambered in 5.56 NATO (.223 Rem.), and operates via a direct-impingement gas system. The 16.25-inch, free-floating, carbon steel barrel is button rifled, with a 1:9 twist.

The make or break for many when first shooting a new firearm is the trigger. As such, the MMR’s single stage trigger receives a lot of play from the “experts.” At the local gun range. Yeah, I get it. However, the same people are also the ones who are constantly bashing all stock triggers and claiming the first thing they replace on premium ARs is the trigger to the aftermarket of their choice anyway.

Having shot the MMR Tactical on several occasions, I can say it is a standard single stage trigger. No, out of the box it is not the smoothest, but after putting a couple hundred rounds through it, the MMR Tactical settles in and works and feels fine. However, there is a ton of aftermarket options if you later decide you need something more. Unfortunately, the cost of an adjustable trigger—and the liability that goes along with it—was not an option for Mossberg without significantly increasing the price.

Stark SE-1 pistol grip black
The Stark SE-1 grip features a small storage compartment and delivers a slightly different grip angle than competing models.

The MMR Tactical’s accuracy is everything you would expect. It will beat an AK any day and by its design, it is not a benchrest rifle and one should not treat as such. That said, with a decent optic and controlled breathing, it will terrorize prairie dogs out to 300 yards any day of the week.

The MMR Tactical comes standard with a six-position stock, adjustable sights and Stark SE-1 pistol grip. The Stark SE-1 grip features a small storage compartment and delivers a slightly different grip angle than competing models. Therefore, the Stark lowers the traditional feel a tad bit, which makes rapidly entering the trigger guard easier. The downside to the design is it also makes engaging the safety more difficult for those with smaller hands, but not so much as to count it as a deal breaker.

The MMR Tactical has the standard dust cover but no forward assist. The jury is out on that for some. A few military-trained shooters find that to be an issue. After having introduced dozens of shooters to the Modern Sporting Rifle, none have ever used the forward assist to my knowledge—or at least while I was looking over their shoulder. One, an accomplished hunter, even had to ask where it was located and when he was supposed to use it after a safety brief and introduction. In all fairness, it is not a common feature among other types of firearms, so few would ever benefit if it had been included versus the cost.

One of the most impressive features on the MMR Tactical is the aluminum Picatinny quad rail that is receiver mounted. Many designs mount the rails to the barrel. This allows an abundance of furniture and/or hand pressure to potentially effect accuracy. Mossberg’s decision to mount the rails to the receiver eliminates that hazard and allows the free-floating barrel to eek out every bit of accuracy of the design.

The quad rails are however a tad sharp. This is one of those areas where Mossberg saved you a buck that may have been better spent on machining time. At the range and during several different manufacturer testing and preview sessions, I became quite accustomed to sharp quad rails and shoot with them just fine. If it is a problem however, (please leave your man card at the door) you can always touch them up by tossing on some customized handguard covers for a couple extra bucks or tactical shooting gloves.

Free-floating barrel, single-stage trigger and quad rails—how would you dress up your Mossberg MMR Tactical? Share your build with us in the comment section.

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Comments (42)

  1. Have one myself, and absolutely love it. As someone with large hands, the grip is perfect. It shoots incredibly accurately (even better with a POF drop in trigger), and I couldn’t be happier. I paid $670, but mine came without sights, so it has a combination of magpie flip ups, and a Bushnell TRS-25 mini red dot at cowitness height (if you want a red dot, they can be had for $65-100, and are incredibly durable). Great fun, highly recommended. If you’re looking at it as a first AR, there aren’t many better choices!

  2. I checked my man card and it says I can b**** about the rails being sharp I just put a vertical grip and some rail covers. The Mossberg is a fine starter AR and a good toy to play with, this is going to be my test all AR and I’m going to do everything I can to break this rifle. I will let you know how it performed when I do break it.

    1. I have about 3000rds through this rifle now, and no problem yet. But the standard complaints that came with the rifle came true. The trigger sucks and the rail is sharp! But it will put lead on the target every time! Still don’t miss the forward assist. Haven’t broke it yet, and it is shooting great, the accuracy is far above what I expected.

  3. I love this “poor-mans AR”. Got it for $399 at BGS on sale, and continue to be amazed at sub-MOA shots often out to 200-250 yards if I do my part. No doubt the fact it’s free floating quad- rail adds much to the accuracy. Yep-the quad-rail is sharp enough to be aggravating-but cheap rail covers fixed that. The trigger was “OK” but it IS getting better the more I shoot it. Good enough now for me to forget about replacing it. After all-I DID buy it ’cause it was cheap. I prefer a 2-point sling, so did have to buy a rail-mounted sling adaptor. Geeze Mossberg-ya’ could have added one. My only minor complaint is the cheesy adjustable stock. Wiggles like a cheap stripper. I’ll be looking for a used Magpul to replace that. For now, I just shimmed it a little with a little thin brass strip epoxied on the shaft. All in all tho-I really like this rifle.

    1. You paid $399??? I paid $750 plus transfer fee but I really like it. It was my first AR so I kinda jumped into the platform without knowing to much. the accuracy is good I’ve only shot it up to 25 yards and it hits center mass of target.

  4. Thanks Justin. That makes sense.
    I’am just not up to date on all the sling options & needed some
    suggestions on this type rifle.

  5. While you COULD attach a single point sling, thats not the best option. The sling attachment on the collapsible stock is just simply there because the manufacturer (UTG) put it there. To utilize a 2 on the MMR i suggested picking up a rail mounted sling point and putting it on the quad rail of the rifle.

  6. I’m not either, my army buddies all have paracord ones. I set mine up for prairie dogs so i just bought a front sling mount that goes on the rail for a couple dollars off Amazon.

  7. Ref the AR-15 MMR Tactical.
    Why is there no sling attachment on the front
    part of the rifle, but there is one on the stock?

    1. Not up on the one pointers.
      Which one point tac sling would best fit the Mossburg MMR Tac rifle?
      thank you

  8. I own the MMR. My local gun store had them for $529 and i couldnt resist. I changed the stock and grip for Magpul stuff, threw some rail covers on the quad rail, and mounted a Bushnell AR223 3-9×40. It holds Sub MOA groups @ 200 yds consistently. Yes SUB MOA. And that is with cheap TulAmmo. 650 or so rounds documented and not a single malfunction. If youre thinking about picking one up DO IT.

  9. I recently put my MMR through an operator’s course run by a respected training group. Shot close to 700 rounds over a weekend using a Bushnell red dot out to 50 yds. No malfunctions or problems with it, and great fun had by all. I agree the trigger isn’t Timney quality, but it’s better than the the trigger in my Colt AR, and it got smoother after all those rounds. You can’t go wrong buying an MMR.

  10. Been a Mossberg fan for years. Just got my MMR yesterday already put some rounds through it. Dead on accurate with the iron sights and very smooth operation. Everyone at the range was blown away when I told them what I paid for it. Very happy with it!

  11. The Mossberg MMR is my first AR purchase and I couldn’t be happier. Only paid $625 including tax and background chk. Came out of the box optics ready but no sights. All I added was a Bushnell red dot and forward grip (love that it came with quad rail) and gave it it’s first cleaning and lube and put it to work lol. I put 500 rds through it the first day without a single malfunction. Hats off to Mossberg once again, I will own this rifle for a long time! P.S. Forward assist. What’s a forward assist? Lol.

  12. Forward assist….really?!

    There is no need for them- training says “tap, rack, ready/bang”

    While you’re pushing your forward assist, I’ll strip the round out and reassess-

    And if it’s my last bulletin that I eject out….ill club you to death with my $1k paperweight.

    Just saying- this is a great little entry AR- grip to forearm and ya can’t beat a mossberg.

  13. The only problem I have is the accomplished hunter not knowing where the forward assist was or what it is used for . That negates the rest of the article for me .

    1. 17 years in the army and i have never used the forward assist on a military rifle. I’ve never used it on my personal rifle either.

  14. I agree that building your own ar is great. The reason people buy this ar is that it is a great entry level ar15. It is cheaper than even building it.

  15. If your buying an ar without forward assist your making a rookie mistake. The forward assist is your backup for when your bolt doesn’t ride all the way. I’m seriously shocked that any one who knows anything about the ar platform isn’t familiar with it. 499 is a great deal for an ar, but quality will always suffer when quantity is your goal. Save your money and build your own, it will make you that much more familiar with your weapon, and that much more confident in your abilities.

    1. I will worry about a forward assist when I’m going to go lay on my belly in some sandbox and fire 100s of filthy rounds at some made up enemy. Prairie dogs, paper targets and tannerite will not kill me if a round doesn’t chamber right and I’d rather eject the round and take a look to see what happened anyways.
      If you’re using this gun as protection you’re nuts to begin with, if you can’t take care of an attacker with your nightstand pistol or closet shotty then you can call the cops for backup and hunker down.

    2. The rookie mistake here is believing the forward assist is a necessity on the AR platform. In a high speed combat situation it can be handy. But i think i speak for most of us when i say ive never had a hog or paper target pull an AK on me.

  16. I have a Mossberg 715. I am a lady and I find the magazine release lever is kind of hokey and the mag does not release very easy. That is a dig deal for me. I would be dead every time if my life depended on needing to change out mags. I am disappointed.

    1. The 715 is not even remotely close to the same thing as the MMR. If youre entrusting your life to a cheap mossberg .22 auto then i wouldnt expect too long of a life.

  17. I’ve purchased several firearms of different types from CTD and found them to be very reasonable in price, Speedy with Delivery, easy to communicate with on questions and Very reliable in the pieces they sell. As to the use of the Forward assist, I too have never had the occasion to need it’s use. My MMR was priced at $499 with Free Shipping which has been their Standard on all of my other Firearm purchases. I believe their introductory price of $499 may be over or they are currently out of the MMR’s as of 09/14/2014. I look forward to picking mine up this Monday! Ordered 09/09/14 and it was delivered to my FFL on 09/12/2014! Pretty darn good Shipping!

  18. I bought one when they went on sale at ctd last week and ran 100 rounds through it this weekend. The trigger felt fine, it’s no accutrigger but it’s not rough by any means either, I had zero problems shooting 100 yards through a 3x red dot. Hand guards are not sharp at all, I expected them to be so i got some handgaurds the same day but I’ll probably send them back. Forward assist is really only needed for dirty guns in dirty situations, the whole point is to get the shell in when it doesn’t chamber all the way due to a malfunction. Imhop if it didn’t chamber and i miss a prairie dog due to it… Big whoop, the little rat will be there in 3 seconds after i re-chamber.

  19. I own one of these as well, love the gun, had no problems with the trigger. Put a red dot sight on it and love the way it handles. Mossberg is a good name and this is a great gun.

  20. There great most people change triggersbbecause they can’t shoot anyway they were never taught squeeze the trigger. And the forward assist is only needed for three round burst and I only remember using it once when I was in the military so it’s not a big deal.

  21. I also own several Mossberg shotguns. I have never had an issue with any of them! How much does this MMR cost? The article states “manageable level”. I may be getting some friends together to pitch in on an M4 type weapon as a gift for a fellow NCO retiring from the Army.

    1. Right now it’s $499 at cheaper than dirt. They usually don’t charge for shipping on firearms. They are fast as long as you provide the FFL Dealer that you want it delivered to.

    2. Thanks, John! At least I have an idea. I purchased ammo from Cheaper Than Dirt, but never any firearms. The few guns that I was interested in were obtained locally at a slightly higher price. Comparable, considering I skipped the FFL transfer fee and shipping.

    3. Sorry to leave the unvarnished truth, but I bought mine from Cheaper-than-Dirt last week and it was $499 – with free delivery to my FFL dealer and took only two days. $35 transfer fee and I was out the door for $534 with a real nice AR.

  22. I own two moss berg 500s and could not be happier with the weapons, If the mmr or AR15 work as well as the other moss bergs I have handled, I’ll buy one or two of them . and as far as triggers if your any good at all I don’t feel you have to start changing thing as soon as you get it ? I Had a wife like that once, she was never satisfied there are some people like that oh well…

    1. I own a MMR and let me tell you… It is a great AR15. If you like Mossberg you will like the MMR. It is very reliable.

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