Difference between m&p 15 and m&p 15 Sport 2

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difference between mp 15 and mp 15 sport 2

Both m&p 15 and m&p 15 sport-II are semi-automatic rifles manufactured by Smith and Wesson. When you hear the name Smith and Wesson, you know that they have been here for a very long time and offer nothing but reliability. The m&p series of AR-15 by Smith and Wesson are sporting rifles that are ideal for multiple purposes. Their versatility is something people would want. You can use them for recreational activities, sports, and professional shooting. 

Also, people consider m&p15 rifles ideal for beginners. The thought behind this is that they are easy to use and also easy to accessorize. For example, if we talk about the M&P15 sport rifle, the sights are always on in most of them. The new user does not need to worry about sighting in the gun. 

Now we know that all the versions of m&p15 are reliable, easy to use, and loved by shooters. The next thing is to compare the original m&p15 and the 2016 model m&p 15 sport 2. This article is going to do just that. M&P15 is one of the most sought-after firearms of Smith and Wesson. The company launched it in 2006, and both police and civilians use it. There is also m&p15-22, which is another version of Smith Wesson m p15. The m&p 15 Sport II is the 2016 model of the m&p 15 range. 

Smith Wesson m p15 vs. m&p 15 Sport 2

The Price Factor

In 2016, Smith and Wesson introduced the m&p 15 sport II. In comparison to the original m&p 15, the Sport II is very affordable. The MSRP rate of the original m&p 15 is $1269, while you can get a sport II for as low as MSRP $752. This difference in the rate urges users to buy it. Also, many are debating the price difference and the reason behind such a price cut.

The addition of dust cover and forward assist

The forward assist and dust cover are the new additions in the m&p 15 sport II version. Both of these were absent in the original m&p 15, and there was a lot of cry about it as well. But let’s discuss how much of a difference do these two upgrades make? The forward assist mechanism works to prevent the rifle from malfunctioning. However, some would argue that due to the advancements in the m&p 15, it no longer needs a forward assist to avoid malfunction. When it comes to dust cover, many people believe that the application of the m&p sport II is some backyard shooting, and the dust cover is not a problem unless you are shooting in a place with extreme weather conditions.

Also Read: How to clean Smith and Wesson m&p 15

So, the importance of dust cover varies according to the situation.

The difference in the twist rate

The twist rate difference is probably the most debated issue when comparing m&p 15 and m&p Sport II. The original m&p 15 has a 1 in 7″ barrel twist. In comparison to this, the m&p Sport 2 has a 1 in 9″ barrel twist. Now let’s understand the difference between the two. The thing with barrel twist is that the shorter it is, the better its accuracy with heavier ammunition, such as bullets with 50 to 77 grain. The 1 in 9″ barrel twist of the m&p 15 Sport II has created controversy about its accuracy. You can test the Sport II rifle yourself and check how much it makes a difference for you. One can safely say that a 1 in 7″ twist is preferable. Still, the 1 in 9″ barrel twist is also sufficient. 

Chrome lined vs. Armornite Barrel finishing

The original m&p 15 has chrome-lined barrel finishing, whereas the m&p 15 Sport II has an armornite finish. Some shooters believe that the chrome-lined finishing is more reliable and resists corrosion. Others also argue that it doesn’t make much of a difference. The chrome-lined barrel finishing is also why m&p 15 is priced higher than s&w m&p 15 sport ii.

The Heat Shield

The front handguards of the m&p 15 are heat shielded, whereas the heat shield is absent in the s&w m&p 15 sport ii. Let us discuss if that is a big issue or not? Most of the time, it will not be a problem because most people owning a Sport II will not use it consecutively to get to a point where the handguard becomes highly heated. More so, the handguard is carbine length, so most people’s hands will slide up and touch the front post assembly. The front post assembly is going to get very hot. To avoid getting uncomfortable with that, you will need to use tactical shooting gloves. 

Milled vs. not milled

The original m&p 15 has a barrel milled into M4 contours. In contrast, the m&p 15 Sport II does not have a milled barrel. 

Rear sight

The m&p 15 has a carry handle rear metal sight, whereas the Sport II has a polymer Magpul sight. 

Trigger guard

The m&p 15 has a standard, pinned trigger guard, and Sport ii has an integral guard.

How to choose?

Both m&p 15 and m&p 15 Sport ii are high-quality rifles. What you want to pick depends on your personal preference. Smith and Wesson have made many changes with sport II to make it more affordable. So, if the price is a consideration for you, then s&w m&p 15 sport ii is your choice. Also, Sport II is easy to accessorize; you can add the Scope for m&p 15 sport 2 to increase its efficiency.

However, if you are particular about finishing or barrel twists, you can go for m&p 15.


The m&p 15 and m&p 15 Sport II have a lot of differences. It would not be wrong to say that many changes have been made in the Sport II rifle to make it more affordable for consumers. The sport ii has a mil-spec rifling. Also, it has the armornite finishing rather than the chrome-lined finishing of the m&p 15. The changed barrel twist rate of the sport II is 1 in 9″, while the original m&p 15 has a barrel twist rate of 1 in 7″. Also, the m&p Sport II lacks the heat shield on its front handguard. 


What is the difference between the M&P 15 and the M&P 15 Sport?

Sport II has an armornite finish, whereas m&p 15 has a chrome-lined finish. The barrel twist rate of the m&p 15 is 1 in 7,” and that of the Sport ii is 1 in 9″. S&W has added the forward assist and dust cover to the sport II.

Is the M&P 15 Sport 2 an AR-15?

The m&p 15 sport 2 is an entry-level AR-15. It is chambered in 5.56/.223 and uses an M16/M4-style magazine. 

Is the m&p Sport II good?

Smith and Wesson m&p 15 Sport II is good quality and a simple-to-use gun. Most importantly, it is budget-friendly. There have been some minor changes in the Sport 2 made to cut on the price. If you overlook those little details, you will be satisfied with the Smith and Wesson Sport II. 

What does m&p stand for?

M&p stands for military and police. But the rifle is primarily made for the consumer market and mainly used by civilians.

Where are Smith and Wesson made?

Smith and Wesson’s manufacturers are in Springfield, Massachusetts. 

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Hannah Anderson is a gun enthusiast. She developed a knack for guns and ammunition when as a teenager she started accompanying her grandfather to his hunting ventures. Now, she shares her passion and immense knowledge on the subject with the readers.

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