Re: why benelli
I don;t see it the same way.... I just bought a SBEII a couple of years ago. Here is how I came to purchase it. I wanted a light weight turkey gun first. But I also wanted something for waterfowl and upland game.
So I looked at The browning Gold, Barreta Extrema, and the SBEII. All guns have great reputations, though I have talked to people who have had the browing and baretta jam. The people I know own the SBEII never had problems. Slightly more people I know have the SBEII. I only knew a few that had the browning and baretta. One of them switched over to the SBEII after 2 seasons of waterfowl hunting.
The main factor for me was shouldering the gun. The browning and baretta both felt like I was holding a 2x4 to my shoulder. The SBEII was a way better fit and seemed lighter.
Next came the price, yes the price for the SBEII was slightly more. I think around $130 more. That being said, all the guns are over $1,000 and not cheap. If the price difference is the problem, then maybe you should not be purchasing the gun in the first place as neither of them are cheap. If your spending $1,000 plus dollars, you should buy the gun that fits/feels the best.
In regards to the stocks being plastic, well its a good or bad thing depending on what you are looking for. I was looking for a work horse gun that can take me being hard on it, so in my case the stock is perfect. The gun more the justifies itself in other areas.
In regards to the Stoegers, I never saw/shot one so I can't comment