Hello and welcome back to another edition of The Rimfire Report! This ongoing series is all bout the rimfire firearm world and its various arms, ammunition, and practices. This week we’re talking about the recently released H&K .22LR MP5 pistol and rifle. Both of the new guns are something that customers have been wishing to see from the German arms manufacturer and now they have it albeit not directly from H&K but under license through Umarex. H&K sent us a pair of guns to test out and review and today I’ll share with you my experiences with both the pistol and rifle variants to give you a solid idea of if you might want to pick up one of these new .22LR MP5 guns since they should now be showing up on gun store shelves and online.
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The Rimfire Report: H&K .22LR MP5 Pistol and Rifle Review
While many of you will be familiar with other .22LR MP5 pistols and rifles, H&K and Umarex are the latest to give the concept a whirl and I was very eager to get my hands on these guns as soon as they were announced. One popular option in previous years for those who wanted an MP5 style rimfire gun was basically the oft unreliable GSG5 rifle. This is a rifle that I’ve had a good amount of personal experience with and in my experience it’s not the most reliable gun out there and doesn’t particularly do so well in terms of longevity and aftermarket parts compatibility. I set out to do my testing in the hopes that Umarex would do a better job at the task.
Coming in at a price of $479 MSRP and featuring $35 25-round magazines, as James Reeves put it this “isn’t a very H&K like price.” However, this pricing comes at a cost as much of the gun is made from plastic and the upper receiver is made from zinc with a decent finish on it giving it the same H&K MP5 look that we all know and love. The rifle variant is fairly hefty weighing in at right around 7 pounds and most of this weight I think is taken up by the obnoxiously huge and heavy barrel shroud which looks like a suppressor. Before we get on with my range experiences and tinkering with the pistol and rifle variants, we’ll list out the specifications as they appear on the HK USA website and in the included manual.
- Caliber: 22LR
- Overall Length: 26.4 – 32.3 Inches
- Width: 2.3 Inches
- Height: 11 Inches
- Barrel Length: 16.1 Inches
- Weight: 7-Pounds
- Action: Blowback
- Trigger: Single Action Only
- Last Round Bolt Hold Open: Yes
- Magazines: 25/10
Some of the other important features to note here are the use of genuine H&K parts (as far as I can tell) for the fore-end of the pistol variant, and the inclusion of genuine H&K diopter rear drum sight. Fans of H&K will note that this is in stark contrast to the SP5 pistols which were released with rear-notched sights which was a point of contention for many. I’m glad that H&K/Umarex decided to go with the traditional diopter sights for both the rifle and pistol variants of the .22LR MP5. It is also worth noting that the pistol variant of the MP5 features a tri-lug adapter and is also threaded 1/2×28 for mounting a suppressor to it.
Range and Accessory Testing
I have had both the rifle and the pistol for a while now and I had the opportunity to test out the rifle variant of the .22LR MP5 during a steel challenge competition. For the competition I made use of a Midwest Industries C-Clamp mount to attach an EOTech XPS2 (I did this since the 25-round magazines would have already put me in the open class). I ran into a bit of a snag here as I discovered that while the .22LR MP5 is nearly identical to the standard MP5, they are different enough to cause you headaches while trying to mount an optics rail on the gun. I inadvertently over-torqued and stripped out two of my attachment screws despite using the manufacturer’s specified torque settings. It seems to me that the dimensions of the lugs for attaching the C-Clamp rail are slightly larger than on a genuine MP5 – if you’re going to attach one of these, be prepared for some frustration and don’t use the manufacturer’s torque specs as you will likely run into the same issues as me.
Both the rifle and the pistol functioned flawlessly and I can be doubly sure of this because I received the same pistol and rifle that James Reeves had previously reviewed and he is notorious for never cleaning or lubing his guns. Following his methods, I didn’t clean or lube either of these guns before taking them to any of my range sessions and they worked just fine. While the TFB crew was at Bridle Iron South in Texas, Hop, Nick C, Will P, and I were able to test out both the pistol and the rifle using a variety of ammunition. It was during this time that Nick C discovered that the pistol variant was able to mount aftermarket fore-ends like the SureFire forend light. In total, both guns have probably seen a combined total of over 1,500 rounds of various .22LR ammunition fired through them and I didn’t see a single malfunction that wasn’t related to the ammunition itself.
We attempted to see if you could mount an SB Tactical collapsing brace to the pistol variant and we had some limited success. As you’ll see in the picture below, the brace does fit on the tail end of the pistol but not quite enough to allow the pin to go through all the way. There were also issues with getting the brace to collapse. I suspect that with some modification you could easily make the brace fit perfectly on the pistol and this would make for a handy (and heavy) backpacking gun.
As both a rimfire and MP5 enthusiast, I like what H&K and Umarex have done with the new .22LR MP5 pistol and rifle. They don’t suffer from the same problems as other rimfire MP5 replicas and although they do have some pretty glaring parts compatibility issues, I think most people would be willing to overlook that if they really love the MP5 platform. While the last round bolt hold open isn’t exactly MP5 manual of arms accurate, it is a feature that sadly a lot of .22LR firearms don’t have, and it’s almost curious to me as to why H&K or Umarex decided to add this feature in. However, as a final thought, if you’re looking for an MP5 for not MP5 prices and that won’t cost you an arm and a leg to shoot, I think you should for sure pick up the .22LR MP5. For a sub-$500 plinking gun, it can be a lot of fun and you’ll also look cool doing it – right down to the HK slap.