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Smith and Wesson has been leaning into their more creative side in the last few years. The bullpup M&P 12, the M&P 5.7, and of course now the M&P FPC. Some, including KelTec, have pointed out that their interesting new weapons have more than a little in common with some of KelTec’s designs. The FPC, which isn’t just the acronym for an effective gun rights org, is a Folding Pistol Carbine. The FPC has seen plenty of comparisons to the SUB 2000 for obvious reasons.

The FPC is a pistol caliber carbine chambered in…you guessed it…9mm and uses S&W’s M&P pistol series magazines. While the KelTec folds in half front to rear, the FPC folds to the side. Both methods have their pros and cons, but that’s another article altogether. Smith & Wesson doesn’t hold back when it comes to the FPC.

The FPC In the Box

In its simple cardboard box, you get the rifle and a very nice carry bag. It’s great, very plain, devoid of telltale signs of MOLLE, S&W logos, or anything else that would give the bag away as something that’s toting a gun.

Inside the bag are various internal pockets to accommodate all manner of goodies. A set of tie-downs allows you to secure the gun so it’s not bopping about as you carry it.

Smith & Wesson M&P FPC Folding Pistol Carbine
The FPC’s very innocuous, unobtrusive carry bag (Travis Pike for TTAG)

S&W packs three magazines with the gun. We get a 17-round magazine and two 23-round magazines. Each mag comes with a small gap filler. S&W designed the grip of the FPC to accommodate fifteen-round M&P compact magazines. This allows you to use the widest array of M&P magazines without having a very stubby grip.

Smith & Wesson M&P FPC Folding Pistol Carbine
The case has lots of pouches and a set of tie-downs that can be moved around. (Travis Pike for TTAG)

The FPC itself is fairly feature-filled. The barrel is threaded with a 1/2×28 thread pitch for suppressors and muzzle devices. A polymer M-LOK rail gives you plenty of accessory space.

Ammunition for this and all TTAG reviews is sponsored by Ammo To Go. You can support TTAG by shopping at Ammo To Go for ammunition and more.

The FPC folds to the left side, so that section of rail is somewhat useful. However, the Pic rail across the top gives you plenty of room for optics without compromising the gun’s ability to fold, unlike the SUB 2000. Smith & Wesson doesn’t include sights with the gun, so you’ll need to choose and optic.

Smith & Wesson M&P FPC Folding Pistol Carbine
Mounting optics isn’t tough with this folding carbine (Travis Pike for TTAG)

The stock has two slots to hold two extra magazines, so the M&P FPC can fold, sit in its bag, and offer you 63 rounds of ammo on board. That’s a lot of ammo capacity to carry on the gun. It adds plenty of weight, but hey, hit the gym if that’s too much.

Ergonomics 

Smith & Wesson made good use of the M&P grip and overall pistol design. The gun comes with backstraps that make it easy to adapt it to your hand size. It’s just like their famed handgun, for better or worse. What makes things a little more complicated is that a rifle doesn’t handle like a handgun. The magazine release is a bit tough to reach with your thumb. You’ll want to turn the gun inward to reach it, but it’s a rifle, so that means breaking your firing grip.

Smith & Wesson M&P FPC Folding Pistol Carbine
The pistol-like controls are a bit odd on a rifle. (Travis Pike for TTAG)

The bolt release is identical to the M&P pistol slide release. That means it’s small and tough to reach with a firing grip. It’s a much better idea to use it as a slide lock rather than a release. It’s ambidextrous, but the right side bolt release is in the ejection port, so I don’t suggest trying to thumb it downward. The rifle incorporates a larger cross-bolt safety that falls right where your trigger finger sits when indexed.

Smith & Wesson M&P FPC Folding Pistol Carbine
This massive lever allows you to fold the rifle in half. (Travis Pike for TTAG)

The charging handle sits behind the receiver. It’s an ambidextrous design that’s easy to grip and use. It’s nonreciprocating as well, which is a nice touch. The charging handle protrusion on the left side is what locks the rail in place when the M&P FPC folds. At the rear end, the stock isn’t minimalist. It’s big, supportive, and provides a nice cheek weld.

Smith & Wesson M&P FPC Folding Pistol Carbine
That beefy stock is nice against the cheek (Travis Pike for TTAG)

On the right side is a big lever that allows the stock to fold. The gun can’t fold with a round loaded. The charging handle can’t move when the gun’s folded, so you can’t try to charge the gun when it’s in its folded configuration.

Into Action

The Smith & Wesson M&P FPC moves from folded into action in a split second. Grip one end, pull, and lock it into place. It couldn’t be much simpler than that. It’s also quick and easy to fold and stow it.

Like a lot of pistol caliber carbines, the FPC uses a simple straight blowback action. Its tubular stock area reminds me of the classic Sten gun and to be fair, it’s not much different than a Sten.

Smith & Wesson M&P FPC Folding Pistol Carbine
The FPC operates on a basic straight blowback system. (Travis Pike for TTAG)

While these lightweight, blowback-operated guns tend to have a rather violent recoil impulse for the calibers they use, the FPC offers you a surprisingly smooth recoil impulse. It’s not as light as something like the radial delayed CMMG guns or the roller delayed blowback operated MP5. Still, it was surprising light to me. It’s less violent than most AR9s and certainly smoother than the SUB 2000.

I installed a simple Bushnell TRS-25 red dot to the M&P FPC with an AR height riser and a Streamlight ProTac. That forms a very simple but very useable home defense setup. With the TRS-25 zeroed, the gun proved itself to be surprisingly accurate. I shot supported groups at 50 yards, and groups came out at just under an inch. That makes it a little less than a 2 MOA gun. Not bad at all for a 9mm carbine.

Smith & Wesson M&P FPC Folding Pistol Carbine
This three-round group was fired while zeroing the red dot and it’s just a hair under an inch. (Travis Pike for TTAG)

Money Meets Noise

The M&P FPC’s trigger is very much like an M&P Generation 2, right down to the trigger dingus. It’s got very little takeup, and then there’s the wall which is stiff and requires a sure press before the bang. It’s actually quite nice for a PCC.

That makes achieving accurate shots easier, and throwing fast shots downrange won’t be hard either. The combination of low recoil and a good trigger make turning money into noise quick, addictive and fun.

Smith & Wesson M&P FPC Folding Pistol Carbine
The M-LOK rail provides plenty of mounting space, and allows you to easily mount optics (Travis Pike for TTAG)

Like the rest of the M&P series, the gun is boringly reliable. I couldn’t get the FPC to malfunction. You can feed it a variety of ammo types and weights, and it won’t slow down, jam, fail to fire, fail to extract, or have any failures at all.

Smith & Wesson M&P FPC Folding Pistol Carbine
The gun folds to be easily carried in a small bag (Travis Pike for TTAG)

My only real complaints with the FPC are ergonomic ones. Reloading is slow due to the clumsy magazine release. An extended mag release would go a long way to make reloading much easier. Reloading from the stock is also a little clumsy at first. The device that holds the magazines is placed under the stock, and the release on the right releases the magazine on the left. A little practice will go a long way.

Home Defense Appeal

The FPC’s magazine-in-grip design keeps the rifle very short. At only 30⅜ inches unfolded, the FPC is shorter than most other long guns. Short is nice in a home defense scenario where your house suddenly seems a lot smaller. Little guns are easier to maneuver, and a rifle offers a more stable option than a handgun. In that realm, the FPC really shines.

Smith & Wesson M&P FPC Folding Pistol Carbine
The stock is designed to hold two extra magazines. (Travis Pike for TTAG)

The FPC might not be the most original idea, but Smith & Wesson has one of the most refined folding carbines on the market. Competition is always a good thing when it comes to the world of firearms. The KelTec SUB 2000 is a great gun, but the FPC offers you a more refined option.

Specifications: Smith & Wesson M&P FPC

Caliber 9mm
Capacity 17 to 23
Barrel Length 16.25
Overall Length 30.4 inches (Unfolded) 16.375 inches (Folded)
Weight 5.03 pounds
MSRP $659 (about $599 retail)

Ratings (Out of Five Stars)

Accuracy * * * *
The S&W FPC is very accurate for a 9mm carbine. Within the range of the 9mm round, it’s capable of punching one ragged hole into a target at 50 yards.

Reliability * * * * *
Not a single issue. It doesn’t have any problems with either good and questionable ammo. The little FPC is as reliable as its cousins, the M&P 2.0 pistols.

Ergonomics * * *
The charging handle and safety are great, but the magazine release is a real hassle. The stock doesn’t offer any adjustments and adding a sling isn’t easy.

Overall * * * *
Smith & Wesson has a winner with the FPC. It’s super-fun to shoot, folds for easy storage, and conceals well in the provided bag. The price isn’t bad, and the generous bag and magazines are a huge benefit. Pop a red dot on it , and you’re good to go.

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46 COMMENTS

  1. I think this will make a good companion to those carrying the handgun. They addressed a few issues the Keltec has.

    • “I think this will make a good companion to those carrying the handgun.”

      Why Glock refuses to do one of these I will never know, because they would sell a fuck-ton of the damned things.

      And, what’s up with the optic so high? It seems to me the light would be better placed on the bottom or right side of the rail…

      • Roni Mectek and similar may have provided enough product research to show they wouldn’t make enough to be worth the investment maybe. Dunno I love the idea in general but I do recognize it’s a niche that is utterly crippled by the NFA.

      • It has to, just like an AR and for the same reason: you can’t have any drop in the stock because the bolt recoils through it, so most people can’t get low enough to see a low-mount sight.

        • “…you can’t have any drop in the stock because the bolt recoils through it, so most people can’t get low enough to see a low-mount sight.”

          Ah, thanks!

        • I shot a buddy’s Sub2000 for the first time the other day. It was his first time too with the gun he inherited. We both found that we had problems positioning our faces low enough to use the stock sights without getting our earmuffs knocked slightly out of place every few shots. At the loud indoor range, this was a real nuisance. I told him he should get a high mounted optic for that reason.

      • The light is placed where your thumb operates it. I run all mine there.
        The high mount on the optic? I dunno
        Some folks like them. I’m not a fan but it ain’t mine
        Glock admin is unfortunately resistive to change and has been a long time.

  2. I like that it side-folds; I always thought the SUB-2K would be better that way.

    Given that they began from a clean slate, I think they could have improved it by using a larger-diameter bolt / receiver.

  3. ‘Hit the gym’. Arrogant asshole. The appeal to a lightweight pistol caliber carbine is that it gives the disabled or elderly an option other than just a handgun.

    • One day I hope full auto 32acp/30 super carry/25acp become standard options for the elderly and disabled in lightweight short barreled rifle format. Till then whole lot of arrogant assholes that are far worse writing shitty laws.

      • Either ACP would be perfect in a MAC (without substantial mods, SC would still have the same issues as 9Para).

        • Yeah blowback goes out the window for light recoiling with that pressure but I would hope the lessened weight of the projectile would help………somewhat with that. Not enough experience with the other actions to know how light they can come out in such a setup as what little experience I had with a MP5 was familiarization fire and “stand here and look like you will hose down everyone if they approach”

        • It should (a little), but the most popular SC loads are meant to replicate Para ballistics. Even with the light ones, you still have the problem of fitting enough bolt mass and enough free recoil travel in the little receiver.

        • Gotcha so about the only “improvement” with that idea would be a redesign of 32acp to remove the semi rim to boost capacity and reduce user error when loading……………..while removing a established cartridge that actually has usage and support.

        • IMHO, yes. I don’t dislike SC, and will probably try it if someone chambers a barrel for one of my pistols, but (as your final sentence implies) ubiquity is a huge advantage unto itself.

          Now you’ve got me thinking, though. I don’t know if you remember our earlier discussion on the possibility of a hot centerfire smallbore for SMGs and PDWs. Now I’m wondering whether it might be possible – using light/fast loads like Underwood’s or Grizzly’s 9mm, .357SIG, and 10mm – to get that kind of performance from .30SC.

        • I would imagine pressure would still be a major factor but lets see what lehigh has for low end on .311 ……………looks like 50 grain extreme cavitators are in stock. Never got to test those (or any 32 acp) on the kevlar or ballistic fiberglass I had but would be approx 1/3 less mass vs acp and 1/2 of sc than what I typically see. Underwood has a bit of 32 acp 55g +p at 1055 and 327 fed mag 95g at 1500. Hard to guess where a 50g out of a super carry would end up but I would guess it could beat 1600 well within safe (potentially underloaded) pressures. Wonder if we could get underwood to sell a loading manual for a lot of their offerings by component combinations at general safe levels even if they kept what they sold as the premium industry secret loadings out of it.

        • I agree. I think 50gr in SC could probably replicate 9mm Civil Defense ballistics; pressure and piston effect should cancel out just like in the 115gr loads.

          Since it seems like you share my assessment of Underwood (great, but unlikely to share their “secret sauce”) what would you want them to include in their manual?

          I’m sorry I took so long to respond. Yesterday was my long awaited field trip for proof-of-concept testing on my delaying / quasi-locking setup (a hybrid of existing ideas) on the MAC. No luck on a few of the peripheral ideas, but the main concept exceeded expectations. Light recoil, low ROF (enough for my unpracticed finger to pull doubles and even a few singles!), small / reasonably close pile of ejected casings; consistently fed wide-mouth hollow points. Not bad for what started as basically an 80s Hi-Point! So basically negating what I wrote above about the limitations of the design; should work just fine with .30SC (given mag mods, etc.).

        • Mostly just a minimum to typical “warm” loads for standard powders (guessing they play with blends of existing) with the typical variety of bullets they use re underwood. Lehigh has some published but underwood does have an impressive variety, now what is this about rejiggering a MACed out Hi-Point using some form of semi delayed lock?

        • Ah, thanks, that makes sense!

          It was a MAC (technically an SWD); I just compared it to a Hi-Point because the concept is similar. I combined a few extant delaying ideas in a way I haven’t seen anyone use before. It didn’t blow up, showed clear evidence that the design’s effects had worked as intended, and seemed to offer improved performance as noted in my previous comment. I’m sorry for being vague (open format).

          I’ve got more homework to do; I think my next step is to chamber a barrel in .22TCM9R with hopes of creating, in essence, “the MP7 we have at home”😉

      • Have you priced .32 ACP ammo? Yeech.

        (Yeah, yeah, I know, once standard it will get cheaper…)

        • Lol yup between that and 357 SIG are 90% of the reasons I have been stocking small pistol primers.

        • Yeah, it’s hilarious when people claim .30SC will be cheaper than 9×19 once it becomes popular “because it uses less brass, lead, and powder”, when that is also true of the three pocket ACPs (which are 100+ years old and still cost twice as much). It would have to actually surpass or replace 9 in popularity / economy of scale to do that.

    • Interesting design. I had a Keltec sub2000 1st gen. A big meh from me. No interest in this especially living in ILL annoy…not insulted about the “hit the gym” crack. I just reserve curled 135×9 with a thumbless grip good form. 69 years old. Beat that ANYONE😀

    • I’d hit Gym but he is 6 foot four and full of muscles.
      Plus he out weighs me by 235lbs.
      Get Gym down to around 5lbs and game on.

        • Ever tried vegamite? It’s like a hyper-concentrated salt spread…

        • Is there anything you won’t whine about, jeff? From ammo prices to sodium content… sheesh.

          Notice S&W solved the optic problem Keltec created?

    • “Arrogant asshole.” What a dickhead keyboard prick, JWM! I sure hope you don’t use the same worthless knee-jerk language in person. The author was saying the gun offered a capacity of over 60 rounds, and if you wanted to carry those rounds on board, you’ll naturally have the corresponding weight increase. Truly, there would be no other option. A simple humorous line, lost on JWM, who apparently is looking for the slightest reason to become internet-offended. What a shitty-languaged, small-brained, half-whit, name-calling, prick! You sound like every woke bitchy college student I meet.

      By the way, nice review, Travis.

  4. To bring it into action it needs to be unfolded which makes it a full size rifle. So where is the “small” size advantage in home defense?

    • It’s a semi-bullpup because the magazine is behind the trigger, not in front of the trigger. This makes the overall length of the rifle quite short, even when unfolded.

  5. Shorter than some shotguns and most rifles with a magazine in front of the grip while having a starting weight in the 5s? With that said yes lot of potential for a SBR conversion.

  6. I’ve had one for a while, really like it. It is considerably unbalanced with 2 loaded mags in the stock, though. Neat feature, but not terribly useful.

  7. I think this has the Keltec beat in every way but cost. And maybe mags if you need Glock sticks.

    However, with the rebate Keltec is offering, 100 bucks, you can get one as low as 250 after the cash back. That’s less than the hi point carbine.

  8. Starting to question the content on here. The reviewer has trouble using the actual mag release? Not the mess that is the buttstock mag holder garbage. You’re talking about The M&P pistol mag release that shooters have been competing with for 15 years? You have trouble dropping magazines with one of the industry standard mag releases that has been in circulation for 15 years and is the chosen competition firearm of many USPSA shooters? Hey you know a con I found in the new Subaru WRX? It has a gas pedal. And I have to press it to
    Go forward.

    • Well it turns out when you put a pistol mag release on a rifle it changes the ergonomics of the platform believe it or not. it’s more akin to putting the steering wheel from your Subaru into a plane and expecting it to work the same.

  9. My cousin bought one of the first ones and I have handled it. I found it to be heavy and terribly balanced. I see no advantage to this over a standard AR.

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