Winchester Repeating Arms is continuing to expand their Super X Pump or SXP series of shotguns for 2015 with two new Defender models fitting for personal protection and law enforcement. They’re adding two versions, a standard model and a Marine edition built to withstand the elements.
The new Ultimate Defender and Ultimate Marine Defender are ready to go with a complete compliment of defensive shotgun features like rifle-style ghost ring sights, a drilled and tapped receiver with a pre-installed rail for red dots and other shotgun optics, sling swivel studs on the stock and magazine cap and a standoff extended Invector-Plus door-breaching choke tube.
Both are chambered for 3-inch 12-gauge shot shells, have 18-inch black chrome-lined barrels and chambers and lightweight alloy aluminum receivers. They have polymer composite stocks and forends with a matte black finish on the Ultimate Defender. The Marine version is two-tone with a hard chrome finish on the barrel and magazine tube.
The new Ultimate models extend the Defender series to six shotguns, combining the improved sights and rails of the Extreme Defender series with the traditional stocks of the original Defender models. The Extreme Defender series uses pistol grip stocks which add to the cost, and also aren’t for everybody, especially when it comes to pump shotguns, where the recoil can be hard on the wrists.
At 7.5 pounds each, with 5-round magazines, these are compact, maneuverable shotguns ideal for home protection or duty. Like other SXP shotguns, they use Winchester’s inertia-assisted action which unlocks automatically with each shot. This reduces the likelihood of short-shucking the action and promotes extraction, ultimately improving on the pump action’s time-tested reliability.
Additionally they have .742-inch back-bored barrels to provide a good seal around the shot wad for higher muzzle velocities without constricting the bore too quickly, minimizing pellet deformation to promote tighter shot patterning.
These are affordable shotguns priced at $499 for the Ultimate Defender and just $539 for the Marine Ultimate Defender, a tiny price premium for the added chrome finish. That of course is suggested pricing and both should retail in the mid $400 range.