After cutting ties with Turkish MP-5 clone maker MKE, Virginia-based Zenith Firearms announced this week that their American-made roller-locked design will hit the market later this year. 

Zenith's first all in-house gun model, the ZF-5, will retain the "iconic submachine gun profile" of the MP-5 series but offer numerous improvements over what has been on the market in the past, boasting improved serviceability and access to replacement parts and accessories-- which can be tough to find for roller locks. 

“Since the start of this project, our goal was to build a ‘better than the original’ firearm,” said Kutlay Kaya, Zenith's CEO. “Our team of more than 50 engineers, roller-delayed platform experts, and manufacturing specialists have meticulously revamped the model. We will be offering a completely U.S.-made, Zenith manufactured firearm with superior quality attained through modernization, precise tolerances, improved coatings, and a cold hammer-forged barrel.”

While no imagery was released of the new and improved ZF-5, Zenith detailed the model will ship with a Picatinny optics rail, three magazines, and a host of extras including a sling, cleaning kit, and carry case. 

“You can expect to receive all of this with a lower price tag than the competition,” said Kaya.

Zenith had been a partner with the Turkish Mechanical and Chemical Industry Corporation, best known as MKE, going back to 2011, and long imported MKE’s MP-5 clones to the U.S. consumer market. However, the two partners had a messy breakup last December that saw each go their separate ways. 

As for MKE, they have found a new friend in Century Arms, who is already busy importing the re-branded Turkish guns as the Century AP5 series. At least three versions of the gun will be joining Century's catalog: a full-sized model, an AP5-P midsize version, and a more concealable AP5-M variant that approximates an MP5K. 


Century Arms AP5 or AP-5 on a table top with Red Army Standard ammo and a shirt that says,
We caught up with the Century AP5 earlier this year at the inaugural Shooting Sports Showcase in Talladega, Alabama. (Photo: Chris Eger/


Meanwhile, HK has been busy trying to reclaim the MP5 fanbase from the assorted clones with their German-made SP5 series, which was released in 2020 to much fanfare

More on that bad boy, below. 



revolver barrel loading graphic