If I haven’t already lost you at $4,500, I’ll tell you more about the gun. Merkel is one of Germany’s best-known shotguns, famous for their strength, longevity, German engineering, and precise, Teutonic tolerances. The higher-grade guns boast very deep relief and German-style engraving. I have always found them to be handsome guns in a kind of stocky, angular way. Still made in Suhl, in what was East Germany, they are imported to the U.S. by Steyr Arms. The 40E is Merkel’s first new model in about 10 years, and it follows the basic pattern of a Merkel double, with a Greener crossbolt lockup.