Gun Review: Zenith Firearms Z-5K

zenith firearms z-5k


There are a few “holy grail” firearms that most gun enthusiasts long to hold in their hands. One such gun is the MP5, which is usually too far out of the average shooter's price range to even consider. There are other options available to you, however, should you desire to own one. One such option is the Zenith Firearms Z-5K, built by MKE and sold in the USA by Zenith.
As you well know, for reasons that we aren't going to discuss here, the original MP5 is very hard to come by in America, and when you can find one, it's gonna cost you a small fortune. This is where Zenith Firearms comes into the picture with their imported Z-5 series.


Explaining why a sling works so well to shoot an MP5 style gun.

Imagine the opportunity to buy a real (semi-automatic) MP5 that was made on authentic mil-spec German equipment in Turkey and imported by a company based out of Virginia. Oh, and you can have it for a lot less than an original would cost.
In other words, while this beauty doesn't say HK or MP5 anywhere on it, it is a licensed production copy made on HK equipment. The folks over at Zenith claimed that this is not one of the many cheaply made clones available on the market.
zenith firearms z-5k

Shooting the Z-5K

I would soon find out…
I always put my test firearms through the ringer. I get them hot and dirty to the point of no return, just to see how they'd handle the punishment.
What can I say? This thing runs better than Usain Bolt in the 100 yard dash, and was an absolute blast at the range. In fact, I don't want to give it back. But, then again, this is one of my coveted firearms, too, which doesn't exactly make it easy to act like Disney's Frozen princess, Elsa and, “let it go”.
zenith z-5k


I've got over 1,000 rounds of ammo through this thing so far without a single malfunction to report. And let's face it, the most important aspect to owning any firearm is performance. I took the dirtiest, steel cased TulAmmo that I could find to get it nice and dirty—and boy did that bargain ammo muck up the inside of the otherwise pristine weapon. I began to alternate between steel and brass cased ammo after a while just to see how it would do.
Again, not a single malfunction. But, then again, what else would you expect from German engineering?
Roller Lock Delayed Blowback Bolt

Bolt and recoil spring

Finally, HPR sent me some of their Hyper Clean 124 grain jacketed hollow points to do an ammo review on. That review is in the works, but I couldn't resist not sending at least some of them down range with the Z-5K, and they, as expected, performed flawlessly.
Zenith Firearms Z-5K
The construction of the firearm is tight without any excessive wobble, and the trigger on this roller lock, delayed blowback firearm wasn't the most gritty one I've ever pulled on. I didn't really know what to expect the first time I fired the Z-5K, but I was actually able to shoot it from multiple different stances, to include the isosceles and with/without the sling.
Zenith Firearms Z-5K disassembled


I do want to caution you, however, that with the “K” model, you do need to be aware of thumb placement because there is no barrel extension past the foregrip. In other words, if you're not careful, you could literally shoot your thumb off. I was able to combat this just by simply gripping the magazine, which also helps mag swaps happen faster since my hand is already there. Though, if I were being honest, it did take a conscious effort on my part to make sure that my hand was safe with each squeeze of the trigger.
Zenith Firearms Z-5K Muzzle

Notice the lack of a flash hider/muzzle brake.

The only complaint that I do have, is that the included sling was incredibly short for my extra large stature, and was only able to put it around my neck. I must say, though, that the already light recoil felt from the 9mm round and 4.5 pound firearm was reduced to almost nothing when I utilized the sling to put forward pressure on the weapon when firing. This helps to keep the muzzle on target to allow for some seriously fast shooting.

9 Mill

Speaking of the target, I brought the Z-5K out to 15 and 25 yards and devastated my paper enemy with absolute ease. The functional rear drum sight makes it easy to adjust for elevation. I can only assume that even a novice can look like a distinguished shooter as they repeatedly punch out the bullseye with the 4.6 inch barrel.
Zenith Firearms Z-5K Sights


But, if you're against using iron sights, there is a rail for you to install an optic, should you require further assistance hitting your target.
The 9mm Z-5 models come with all of the accessories you'll need to get going, to include a hard case, three 30 round magazines, sling, cleaning gear, extra take-down pins and a 5 year warranty.
Zenith Firearms Z-5K in case

Z-5K in its own hard case with 3 mags.

All of that, plus the weapon itself, demands the MSRP of $1750 for the Z-5K (MP5K licensed production model). Of course, the street price could be a few dollars lower than that, once more gun shops begin to sell them.
Zenith Firearms has brought a legend back to America in the form of a super reliable, accurate and affordable MP5 licensed production called the Z-5. There are multiple models to choose from in 9mm, and even an option for a 5.56 chambered pistol. While it is only a semi-automatic, with no last round bolt hold open, it is a blast to shoot and is sure to bring a smile to your face.

Barrel Length

Check out the video portion of my review, here:

Does this firearm get my stamp of approval? Yes it does. Would I buy it? Heck, I'm already saving for one.
If you liked this gun review, you'll love this next one:
Definitive Arms 9mm AK

7 Responses to :
Gun Review: Zenith Firearms Z-5K

  1. Manfred Harriman says:

    My friend owns a gunshop. He took one of these (unfired) in on a trade. The previous owner recieved it on a trade from another shop for some work he did for them, decided it was too big and traded it on two compact 9mms. My friend let me have this little gem for $1100.00. I took it to the range today along with 200 rounds of PriviPartisan ammo.
    Needless to say, when I was done shooting I was grinning from ear to ear. I’ve always wanted either one of these or a semiauto UZI clone in 9mm. The Z5 is lighter and easier to maintain. I am happy with my choice. Hell, even my wife likes it.

    1. Joshua Gillem says:

      That’s a great price! Good job.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *