The AK as sporting rifle

The AK became immense popular among sports shooters. World wide many civilian shooters enjoy shooting their AK on shooting ranges every day. This is not only the case in the United States but also in many other countries. Despite that the European small arms possession is more bureaucratic the AK is also rather popular in several European countries. The question arises "why is it that the AK is so popular as a sports shooting weapon". When judging from general comments on the AK like "the AK is not accurate" the weapon would not be suitable for target shooting. But, the weapon is accurate. Perhaps one of the first reasons to get one was that the AK has an appealing appearance understanding it has an irrevocable relationship with the Cold War. Apparently the looks of the AK - like the almost symbolic typical curved magazine - is what attracts. Moreover holding an AK in your hands is having a piece of living evidence of the Cold War. Apart from that emotional motivation the weapon itself seems to meet the requirements that are also the requirements of sports shooters like reliability, simplicity, cheap and easy to maintain.