Top 20 Next-Gen Piston-Driven ARs

These 20 piston-driven ARs are bred to run cooler and cleaner in harsh extremes!

Adams Arms COR Ultra Lite

SWMP Jan 2015 top Piston-Driven ARs Adams Arms COR Ultra Lite

Adams Arms COR Ultra Lite

The COR Ultra Lite rifle from Adams Arms features a 16.5-inch barrel with a 1-in-7-inch twist rate and a VDI Jet Comp. It uses a low-mass bolt carrier and comes standard with a Magpul MOE stock and pistol grip. The handguard is a Samson free-floating rail system. Diamondhead D-45 sights are an optional upgrade, as are Kryptek finishes.

For more information, visit


Adams Arms .308 Patrol

SWMP Jan 2015 top Piston-Driven ARs Adams Arms .308 Patrol

Adams Arms .308 Patrol

New to the Adams Arms line is the .308 Patrol Series of short-stroke piston rifles. With more than 50 percent of the rifle reciprocal with standard AR-15 parts and accessories, the compact and lightweight heavy hitter gives shooters a powerful and easily upgradable 7.62mm NATO carbine. An Enhanced Patrol variant features Magpul MOE handguards, a Magpul K2 grip and an enhanced SOPMOD-style buttstock.

For more information, visit


Barrett REC7 Gen II

SWMP Jan 2015 top Piston-Driven ARs Barrett REC7 Gen II

Barrett REC7 Gen II

For a compact rifle in 5.56mm NATO or 6.8 SPC, it is tough to beat the Barrett REC7 Gen II, which is available with either a 9.25- or 16-inch barrel. The 5.56mm barrels have a 1-in-7-inch twist rate, while 6.8 SPC barrels have a 1-in-10-inch twist rate. The REC7 Gen II comes with a KeyMod handguard, a Magpul MOE stock and an oversized triggerguard. The rifle can be ordered with a black, grey, OD green or Flat Dark Earth Cerakote finish.

For more information, visit or call 615-896-2938.


Colt LE6940P

SWMP Jan 2015 top Piston-Driven ARs Colt LE6940P

Colt LE6940P

Long associated with the AR platform, it should be no surprise that Colt offers a piston-operated rifle. Called the LE6940P, the rifle is chambered in 5.56mm NATO and uses all standard AR-15 magazines. The LE6940P come with a 16.1-inch barrel, folding backup sights and an adjustable buttstock. A quad-rail handguard also comes standard.

For more information, visit or call 800-962-2658.


Heckler & Koch MR556A1

SWMP Jan 2015 top Piston-Driven ARs Heckler & Koch MR556A1

Heckler & Koch MR556A1

Using a piston operating system derived from the combat-proven HK416, the Heckler & Koch MR556A1 is one of the top options in piston rifles today. The MR556A1 uses a heavy-contour, 16.5-inch barrel with a 1-in-7-inch twist rate and a non-chromed bore for maximum accuracy. A free-floating quad-rail is standard on the MR556A1.

For more information, visit or call 706-568-1906.

Load Comments
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  • Outlaw

    Wow this is a poorly written article, it looks like you guys cut and pasted product descriptions from manufacturers’ websites. How about some real insight into these…and at least mentioning that the PWS rifles are long stroke pistons, far superior to short stroke conversion systems out there.

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  • Don

    You must not have read the article, LWRC has several models mentioned.

  • Mike

    Well that’s disappointing, I was pretty sure i was going to see LWRC in this article.

  • BBQ

    The top piston boom stick in the USA is not listed LWRC. WTF??? Though this article did mention a lot of the inferior products out there. Way to go Tac-Life!

  • Joseph A. Clark

    I’m looking to get the Stag 8L, seeing how I’m a left handed shooter……you can also put a standard right-hand upper on the lower, too….

  • Havok

    It’s nice that Adams Arms made the list 4 times. Seeing as Huldra Arms are all manufactured by Adams Arms.

  • Ty

    Really LWRC inc is not on this list

    • Ty