Gratuitous Gun Pic: Manurhin MR 73 (.357 Mag)

Mentioned in Comments by Reader Motoguzzi on my Difficult Choices post on .357 Mag revolvers, and also in email from Longtime Reader Martin K.:

Please allow me a few questions: do you have any experience with the MR 73 revolver from the MANURHIN factory? Have you ever shot one? If yes, what is your opinion on this model?

Okay, I have to make a HUGE admission of guilt right up front.  Because ‘Murka is the fountain of Fevolverdom (Sam Colt, Horace Wesson etc.), I’ve always looked upon European revolver offerings with something of a pitying smile — one exception being the non-Euro British Webley revolvers, of course.  The source of my condescension can be seen in the Austrian Rast & Gasser Mod 1898:

…which has to be the ugliest revolver ever made.

And indeed, I’ve always known about Manurhin guns in general, but tended to dismiss them because, well, my American chauvinism coupled with the fact that one doesn’t see them that often Over Here — my logic being that if they were any good, there’d be a market for them in the U.S., but there isn’t.

Also, the older Manurhin guns were nothing special to write home about:

HOWEVER, as I delved more into these guns (prompted, it should be said, by Martin’s question and the fact that I respect Reader Motoguzzi’s opinion of guns), I came across this little article:

Interest in the historic Manurhin MR73 has increased since Beretta announced its plans to import several models to the US—and for good reason.  It’s called the “best revolver in the world,” designed to endure several dozens of shots per day, every day, for the lifespan of the gun. As the first official GIGN revolver, it has never been officially retired after nearly fifty years of service.

Wait, what?  How did I miss that last little snippet?  (See above for reasons.)

And then the pictures:

And if that weren’t enough to make my trigger finger itch and my wallet tremble, there’s a stainless steel version, the MR88 SX Inox:

Are you kidding me?

And of all that weren’t enough, Gun Jesus Ian McCollum loves it.

I WANT ONE — that stainless Inox.  Annnnnd it displaces the S&W 686 in my top three .357 revolver list.  It’s going to be spendy, but I can always sell a couple guns of lesser quality, right?

Finally, to Manurhin-Chapuis:  je suis désolé, messieurs.


  1. Respectfully, amigo, every revolver (and pistol, for that matter) chambered in .357 Magnum is “designed to endure several dozens of shots per day, every day, for the lifespan of the gun”. Of course, that lifespan is, um, variable…

    I agree, though, that the Manurhin is one of the things the French got right. Brigit packing a brace of them would be quite a picture.

  2. This will, of course, be a present for your son, right? But you’ll have to check it first, right? Repeatedly and thoroughly, right?

  3. MSRP of about $3300. Ouch. I haven’t priced good revolvers lately so I guess that I shouldn’t have been surprised to see the bottom of the line Smith 686 listed for over a thousand bucks and the new Colt Python at fifteen hundred. This old fart paid $375 for a 4″ 686 duty revolver in 1990 and thought that he’d spent a lot of money. I still have the pistol and its high on my personal “do not sell” list if only for sentimental reasons. I recall that we had a discussion a few weeks ago about the pleasure of a thing lasting long after the price is forgotten. The principle seems to be pretty good for hardware but I’ve heard guys say that it doesn’t work quite as well in the trophy wife department. The pleasure is long gone and they’re still paying a high price.

    1. Yup. I’ve noticed that the plastic guns are going for $600-ish, but a gun with a frame of honest steel goes to $1K as a floor…unless it’s made in the Third World.

      1. In which case the “Honest” part of “frame of honest steel” is suspect.
        And in terms of Third World, I include Communist China in the herd.
        I forget if it was in Gunthing or maybe its predecessor, someone said that with the Chinese gradually slipping the quality yet maintaining the price was a longtime character flaw to be vigilant for.

  4. I have a S&W Model 65-2 with a 4″barrel in stainless that I paid under $400 some time back. If i wanted a high dollar 357 I would get a Colt Python.

  5. A) How in the hell did this miss your encyclopedic knowledge of small arms?

    B) Why the hell did you post this and give me an uber expensive revolver I don’t need, but which is giving me a slight chubby and which I will be dreaming about for many nights? Dammit!

    The follow on video to yours about the technicals of this revolver is good, as well.

    That video explained some of my amazement when I heard “French” revolver. It was designed by a German.


  6. >>”designed to endure several dozens of shots per day, every day, for the lifespan of the gun”

    LOL. Whole several dozens, you say? And when it finally gives up the ghost, the customer service rep will make a tsssking moue of regret: “We’re very sorry sir, but after so many daily dozens of daily rounds, the gun’s lifespan is regrettably complete.”

    Meanwhile, your pedestrian off the shelf guns of quality construction (Sigarms, S&W, and even…ick…Glock…) are good for many, many tens of thousands of rounds, shot hundreds at a time over three hour range sessions. Of course, at today’s prices, no one can really afford to shoot that much anymore.

  7. Ok. But for that price, why not get a Ruger Redhawk (8 rnd cylinder) and then throw an extra thousand for custom work, then still have another thousand plus for ammo?

    Guaranteed that Ruger will stand up to any other revolver in terms of strength and longevity.

    Of course, if you got da money, get whatever you want. I guess I’ve just reached a point where a nice condition 10 yr old truck is more appealing that a new Porsche, cause practicality and old geezer syndrome.

  8. Oooooo. That’s a pretty Mademoiselle. Like all things beautiful tho, I’m betting she is pricey.

    1. They are considered to be the best revolvers made. The Manurhin is slightly behind them, but still dazzlingly good.

  9. The new Pythons are of interest…but an MR73 beats it easily. There’s a reason GIGN uses them – they can make the thread-the-needle head shot with an MR73.

    Which is one of the reasons why I’m going back to work after retiring.

  10. Aside from Webley or Enfield revolvers, I don’t have any interest in any revolver from Europe. too often they’re hideous or ridiculously expensive.

    The 686 is a solid revolver that will give years of service. More money might get some improvement to quality and looks but at some point that return on cost is going to become minimal.

    I’d love to find a 4″ barreled model 29 and a Model 29 Classic DX as well as a Model 29 Silhoulette (sp?) model. But in order to make .44 calibers really sing I would have to reload for the caliber and possibly even cast my own boollets.


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