MPAR 556 Pistol

MasterPiece Arms announced the addition of an AR-type pistol to the company lineup. The new MPAR 556 pistol is not-surprisingly based on the company’s MPAR 556 rifle. It is chambered for the 5.56 NATO cartridge and will also fire the .223 Remington.

The pistol retains many of the same features found on the rifle version of the gun.

For example, the MPAR 556 pistol uses a self-regulating, short stroke piston system. This means that the pistol version of this gun does not have a buffer tube sticking out of the back of the gun, which is typical with many AR-type pistols. It also means, in theory, that the gun will run cooler and cleaner than a direct gas impingement system.

masterpiece arms 556 pistol

Although the gun is shown with folding sights, none come with the gun. The upper has a Picatinny rail for mounting an optic or iron sights (or both.) There is a rail on the bottom of the handguard. Shooters can also place rails on both sides of the handguard.

An angled fore grip comes standard on the pistol. It looks like a Magpul AFG, but I have not confirmed that. Some people will suggest that this makes the gun an AOW for the purposes of the National Firearms Act.

However, according to MasterPiece Arms, they have an ATF opinion letter on file stating that the pistol is not an AOW. I don’t know if the angle of the grip makes some difference in the ATF opinion. This would not be the first time the ATF has done something weird when applying a bad law.

The barrel is 11″ long. A twist rate is not given for the pistol, but the MPAR 556 rifle uses a 1:9″ twist. I do not know if there is a change for the pistol or if it is the same as the rifle.

MPA 556 handgun

The barrel is threaded for the addition of a sound suppressor or flash suppressor. This is a “no-brainer” for MPA since they started selling their own line of sound suppressors. There is no mention of a flash suppressor coming with the gun.

A 30-round magazine comes with the gun, and I suspect that most/all AR-15/M-4 magazines will work with the MPAR 556 pistol. The MSRP is $899.99.

I expect that we will see this gun at the SHOT Show in January. I’ll try to get more photos for everyone, along with any other information you might want.

MPAR 556 Gen II Pistol

Less than a year after the introduction of the original MPAR 556 handgun, the company rolled out an updated version of the gun that included a Gen II moniker.

MPAR556 Gen2

Visually, the gun had a few new design tweaks (see the photo above.) However, it was definitely a part of the original product line. The company was not entirely clear about the changes made to the pistol.

Pricing did go up.

MPAR556 Gen II Specifications

Caliber5.56 NATO (.223 Rem)
Barrel Length11.0″
Magazine Capacity30
Magazines Included1
Finishesblack, burnt bronze, FDE, tungsten

The End of the Road

We’re a few years down the road since the Gen 2 guns. MPA rebranded itself and offers a line of products that bear little resemblance to what it made at the time the MPAR 556 pistol was introduced.

It looks like MPA no longer makes the MPAR 556 rifle or pistol. In fact, it appears the company is no longer making any pistol or rifle beyond bolt action designs.

Last Update: June 26, 2022

By Richard Johnson

Richard Johnson is a gun writer, amateur historian and - most importantly - a dad. He's done a lot of silly things in his life, but quitting police work to follow his passion of writing about guns was one of the smartest things he ever did. He founded this site and continues to manage its operation.

12 replies on “MPAR 556 Pistol”

Ummm… Why is he holding that AFG like a VFG? Wouldn’t that negate the ATF letter if they are advertising the pistol as having a VFG?

I agree Glenn. I don’t think the shooter had any clue of how to use the AFG, but what he did sure made it look like a no-no for ATF.

How accurate are AR pistols? I can’t imagine they are terribly accurate, but I could be very wrong.

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