Ruger’s SR-556 has been a staple AR platform rifle across the globe. It’s also not the cheapest out there. So in hopes of capturing a larger part of the AR segment, they’ve finally gotten around to producing a more wallet-friendly rifle.
It’s the Ruger SR-556E. The E is for Elephant in the Room, which is, what do you lose with the economy version of the SR-556E?
In truth, not much. It still has the Ruger standard mid-length forearm with rail mounts, but only without bottom and side rails, sold separately. It still uses the same two-stage, four-position gas piston system, for all your varied load-pressure needs, but it doesn’t have sights.
The handgrip is no longer Hogue but generic A2, although the buttstock is the same, which was always generic M4.
The only visible, functional change is that the bolt is no longer chrome. The barrel still is. It’s also threaded and a generic-looking flash hider is screwed on.
So what’s the same, after the hard-anodized barrel and receivers, the nickel-Teflon coated transfer bar, and the Magpul Pmag magazine? (Only one included.)
Well, everything, really. It’s a 16″ barreled 5.56 NATO-shooting semi-automatic, 7-1/3lb lead delivery system of love. Only this Ruger looks like it will sell for less than a thousand bucks, even if the MSRP is about $1369.00 bones.
Not so much less than a grand that it won’t set you back that much once you buy some irons, but hey, it’s still quite the discount.