Since 2018 the Baikal MP-155 semiautomatic shotgun is available in the “Profi” grade. The difference from the standard model amounts to a) Ceracote-coated receiver, and b) hand-checkered walnut stock and fore-end. Everything else is your regular MP-155, and even the plastic-tipped fore-end, as far as I know, is now standard for all wood-stocked MP-155.
So far the “Profi” grade comes only in 12 gauge, with 760 mm (30″) barrel and 76 mm chamber. The regular grade guns are available with walnut or plastic stock, in 12 gauge with 760 or 710 mm (28″) barrels, and 20 gauge with 710 and 610 mm (24″) barrels. The 20 gauge MP-155 also comes with a “Lancaster” oval bore, that is effectively a rifle, for slug shooting.
To say the Russian public loved the “Profi” grade would be an overstatement. A number of experts immediately offered criticism, pointing out, for instance, that hand-checkering is not perfectly executed. Doubts also exist as to the durability of the Ceracote coating. One gun guru writes that he found a drop of Ceracote on the barrel, tried it with a penknife, and the Ceracote fell right off. Honestly, that doesn’t sound too convincing to me: you can’t judge adhesion to specially treated alloy surface by how well the coating sticks to untreated steel surface. On the other hand, the fact that excess Ceracote did end up on the barrel doesn’t sound too encouraging.
Anyway, just about any coating will be an improvement over the regular black thing they cover the receivers with, so in general the application of Ceracote technology is to be welcomed. The real question is, does it justify the price increase?
The MSRP for the “Trophy” grade Baikal MP-155 is, at the time of writing, 46,190 Rubles (roughly $699), and cheapest regular grade gun goes for 30,690 Rubles (roughly $465). The most affordable 12-gauge gun with walnut stock is listed at 32,200 rubles (roughly $489).
Would you pay almost half again for hand checkering and Ceracote finish on the receiver?