KRISS introduced the new Vector Gen II at SHOT Show this year. Chambered in the very popular 9mm cartridge, and designed to use Glock magazines, the new Gen II Vector is the next step in one of the most innovative firearms to enter the market in recent history. There are several options for the KRISS Vector Gen II, ranging from a pistol to carbine.
The Vector Gen II 9mm sub-machine gun is LE/MIL restricted, having full-auto and 2-round burst select fire options. With select fire capabilities, and a very compact platform, the Vector Gen II could spark a whole new interest in law enforcement SWAT Teams as an Entry Team “sub-gun”, especially since the Vector II is pre-designed to be far more modular than the Heckler & Koch MP-5 that was the darling of tactical teams for decades.
KRISS Vector Gen II
Despite several outstanding striker-fired pistols coming onto the market in recent years, like the Smith & Wesson M&P and Heckler & Koch VP-9, Glock still owns the largest portion of the American law enforcement market. Having a sub-gun that can shoot the same magazines as the officer’s sidearm is incredibly advantageous for departments and officers.
Changing between .45 ACP and 9mm calibers can be done in seconds, without any tools. KRISS offers barrel and lower receivers options for those who already have the original Vector and don’t want to buy a completely new firearm. The KRISS Vector Gen II comes with a Defiance KRISS stock providing several adjustment to overall length and length of trigger pull. KRISS offers the Vector Gen II in California, New Jersey, and Massachusetts compliant models.
Additional standard equipment on the KRISS Vector Gen II are Magpul front and rear flip-up sights (BUIS), full length Picatinny top rail, lower Picatinny accessory rail, and a single Glock magazine. The Picatinny rails offer a wealth of options for forward grips, lights, lasers, and advanced optics.
Oh, and if you’re not big on .45 ACP or 9mm just wait a little bit longer as KRISS has already announced additional Vector Gen II models in .357 SIG, .40 S&W, and the impressive 10mm.
Kriss Vector Gen II Features
- Patented Kriss Super V Recoil Mitigation System
- Tool-less caliber interchangeability
- Glock magazine compatible
- Full length MIL-STD 1913 Picatinny top rail
- MIL-STD 1913 Picatinny bottom rail
- MIL-STD 1913 Picatinny side accessory rail (optional)
- Low-profile folding sights
- Smooth pivoting trigger with audible and tactile reset
- Ambidextrous short throw safety lever
- 4-pin tool-less disassembly
- Charging handle/brass check function.
Shooting the KRISS Vector Gen II 9mm
At SHOT Show this year I was able to put some rounds down range through the new Vector Gen II 9mm. KRISS was offering several different models from pistol to carbine to shoot, but I chose the sub-machine gun so I could compare the same firing modes as I had with the original Vector in .45 ACP.
Shooting on semi-auto mode the Vector Gen II feels nice, and accuracy was very good. Recoil was not very noticeable, thanks to the Super V System. Switching to burst mode started to see a little more recoil from the snappier 9mm over the .45 ACP, but accuracy was still fairly easily maintained.
However, on full auto mode the 9mm Vector Gen II required significantly more energy to maintain a proper shooting platform and to control the tendency for the muzzle to rise. Despite the Super V System, the faster 9mm begins to defeat the recoil management’s ability to keep recoil down. If you’ve ever fired an MP-5 on full auto then you know how challenging it can be to maintain accuracy and avoid muzzle rise. The KRISS Vector Gen II in 9mm is not quite as difficult to control as the MP-5, but if you believe the Super V System will make shooting on full auto simple you’ll be in for a surprise.
Kriss Vector Gen II Carbine Specifications
- Operating System: Closed bolt, delayed-blowback patented KSV System
- Fire Mode: Semi-auto
- Caliber: 9×19 mm
- Overall Length: Extended – 38.5 inches, Collapsed – 35.25 inches
- Overall Height: 6.8 inches
- Barrel Length: 16 inches (Carbine)
- Weight: 7.8 pounds (unloaded)
- Frame Material: Advanced Metal Components, Advanced Polymer Composite
- Magazine Options: G17 (17) rounds, G17 (33) rounds
- MSRP: $1499.00 (black Carbine); $1579.00 (colored Carbines)
- Pistols to CRB Enhanced (9mm): $1349.00 to $1699.00
- Enhanced Barrel Shroud: $129.00.
KRISS Vector Gen II SMG Specifications
- Overall Length: Extended – 24.0 inches, Folded – 15.5 inches
- Barrel Length: 5.5 inches
- Weight: 6.4 pounds (unloaded)
- Fire Mode: Semi-auto, 2-round burst, full-auto
- Restricted: Law enforcement and Military only
Original KRISS Vector .45 ACP
When KRISS launched the original Vector in 2009, many observers marveled at the new firearm designed with a remarkably innovative KRISS Super V System (KSVS) recoil management system that actually diverts the recoil downward instead of the traditional straight back method. The original Vector was chambered in .45 ACP, adding to the mystique since most pistol-chambered carbines have been designed for the more popular 9mm.
Despite all of the popularity the original Vector received, there was a quick demand for a 9mm version. KRISS representatives were careful to fuel the desire without positively confirming that option would come. Part of the selling point of the original Vector was the incredible recoil management of the stouter .45 ACP. Having shot the original Vector at SHOT Show, I can attest that firing semi-auto felt equal to or even lighter than an AR-15. Moving to burst and full-auto, I was able to hold on a standard 12″x12″ steel plate at 15 yards with no problem at all.
With full-auto and burst capabilities on the LE/MIL restricted version, the Kriss Vector in .45 ACP was sometimes referred to as the “Tommy Gun” of the 21st Century. The Kriss Vector was definitely one of the most talked about new firearms of the SHOT Show, with popularity stretching well into the next couple of years through professional publications and reviews alike.
The KRISS Vector and Vector Gen II are remarkably innovative firearms providing several interesting and valid options for both patrol rifle and SWAT Team entry firearms. The ability to use the same Glock magazines as the officer’s sidearm is an incredible feature and a force multiplier in the event the long gun runs dry.
KRISS has achieved success with the original Vector in .45 ACP. The new Vector Gen II in 9mm could spark a new interest for a “sub-gun”, and the improvements to 9mm ammunition may make that option even more viable. With the ever-present budgetary concerns, switching to relatively cheap 9mm ammunition could be a win-win for some agencies.
Despite the advantages of cheaper ammunition, Glock magazine interchangeability, and a lot of modular options, in my opinion police departments should be cautious to transition solely to a 9mm carbine. This is true for both patrol officers and SWAT operators. Having rifle caliber long guns in both the patrol rifle and SWAT team function is incredibly important, especially when longer distance shots are required, or defeating intermediate barriers is a must.