Not long ago I started to see Ruger-branded air rifles showing up on the market. They looked good, and Ruger has a fantastic reputation for quality and value, so I figured these deserved a closer look. One thing that puzzled me was the price- how could Ruger produce a quality air rifle for only $109.95?
The answer is that they can’t. The guns are actually Ruger-labeled imports brought in by Umarex, a German company who source guns from a number of countries. That led me to try and figure out where they’re actually having these guns made. The two logical sources are Spain and China of whom produce lower-cost guns, and at the price point I’d lean towards China as the source. Still, the Chinese made some pretty decent guns these days, and having Ruger distribute the guns means high quality and good service, right?
Well… maybe. Ruger doesn’t distribute the guns. What they’ve done is license Umarex to use the Ruger name on guns it imports and sells. Now Umarex is a good company and distributes many high quality guns, and the user reports say these guns are pretty good. That still does leave one question: Why pay a premium for the Ruger name on a gun that Ruger has nothing to do with?