NSSF: AR-15/AK numbers top 16 million
By Chris Eger
Numbers from the NSSF point to the likelihood that 16 million modern sporting rifles were produced between 1990 and 2016, a period that included the decade-long federal assault weapon ban. (Photo: Chris Eger)
The trade group for the firearms industry says that AR-15-style rifles and their competitors are among the most common in the country.
Figures researched by the National Shooting Sports Foundation show that just over 16 million semi-auto rifles such as AR-15s and AKs have been produced or imported into the country since 1990. Combing through figures from federal regulators and verifying the break out against companies who make selected semi-auto rifles with detachable magazines, termed modern sporting rifles by the industry, the group says guns like the AR and AK are white hot with consumers.
“Modern sporting rifles remain the most commonly purchased rifle by Americans today,” Lawrence G. Keane, NSSF senior vice president, told Guns.com.
Keane explained the guns are popular in large part due to the inherent modularity of such platforms, which provide the ability to customize them to fit the individual owner and the wide variety of needs they can fulfill. “They are offered a wide variety of calibers and the design of the firearm allows beginners to