The Taurus ST12 shotgun is a pump action, 12 gauge scattergun being made in Brazil. The Taurus shotgun falls into the tactical arena, not in the sporting category, and is marketed as such. The shotgun is not currently imported into the United States for civilian sales, but it is exported from Brazil for government purchasers.
The ST12 was first shown at the 2011 LAAD (a military arms expo that held in Brazil every two years,) but has yet to be shown by Taurus at the US-based SHOT Show. In its stock configuration, the shotgun is obviously designed to appeal to the military and law enforcement markets.
The Taurus ST12 has a chamber that will take 2 3/4″ and 3″ shells. The full-length tube magazine will take seven shells. Barrel lengths of 18″ and 20″ are available. The barrel has a stand off attachment for breeching duties.
The gun uses a fore end with a Picatinny rail on the bottom. Presumably, one could attach a vertical grip or other device here. There is a short tri-rail attached to the extended magazine tube that would allow a shooter to attach a while light or other device. The front sight is a red fiber optic. While I would prefer ghost ring-style sights, the fiber optic is still an improvement over a brass bead.
The Taurus shotgun’s buttstock uses a M4-style six-position stock with a rubber recoil-reducing pad. The stock can also fold to the left of the gun, which allows a significant reduction in overall length. In some photos, the stock appears to be the ATI tactical shotgun stock they make for the Remington 870. In other photos, the stock is shown from the right side of the gun, concealing the folding point. On those, the pistol grip now has more of a M4 look and the Taurus logo.
A heat shield covers the barrel. The receiver is made of aluminum. The ST12 uses a cross bolt safety like the one used on the Remington 870 line of shotguns.
It is unknown if Taurus has any plans to import the ST12 into the US. If they do, price will certainly be a critical factor for the success of this shotgun. Remington and Mossberg have a pretty tight grip on the tactical pump gun market, and those companies already have reasonably priced offerings.
Taurus would also have to show that this gun has the durability and reliability the other guns have already established. Remington and Mossberg shotguns have populated the patrol cars of tens of thousands of police officers during the past decades. Additionally, both brands have gone to war with the US armed forces. That is a whole lot of ground they would have to cover to get on an equal footing.
Taurus ST12 Specs:
- caliber: 12 gauge
- magazine capacity: seven
- action: pump
- barrel length: 18″, 20″ (20″ shown in photos)
- overall length: 35.8″ – 39.6″ with adjustable stock
- weight: 7 pounds
- safety: cross bolt
- sights: fiber optic front
- material: stock – polymer, receiver – aluminium, barrel – steel
- muzzle device: stand off/breacher-type
There isn’t much audio on this video, but this is the Taurus ST12 in action at the range:
In addition to the adjustable, folding stock, the Taurus shotgun is available with a fixed stock and a pistol grip only.