February 02, 2015
By Brad Fitzpatrick
From stubby Scout rifles to .338 Lapuas that fit in your backpack, 2015 looks to be another big year for purpose-built rifles. Several companies like Daniel Defense are offering modern, feature-loaded ARs for specialized pursuits. CMMG, on the other hand, worked to blend the best features of the AR with the AK platform in their aptly-named Mutant rifle, which is modified to accept AK magazines and offers a 7.62x39 version of the AR.
In other news, Colonel Cooper's beloved Scout rifle platform, which consists of a turnbolt rifle with a forward-mounted scope, auxiliary iron sights and a large-capacity box magazine, seems to have caught the attention of several riflemakers simultaneously. At least four companies are offering new Scout rifles or variants of older, existing models.
Traditional rifles such as the Springfield Armory M1A are being dressed up with adjustable chassis that allow the shooter to adjust stock and length of pull with a lightweight, sturdy platform designed for long-range shooting. One barrel company, Bergara, delved into production rifle development, and Mossberg expanded their bolt action rifle lineup significantly with the rollout of dozens of new variations of their push-feed Patriot turnbolt.
It was a busy week in Vegas, but here's a look at some of the best new rifle designs for 2015.
Bergara BPR-17 Tactical Rifle
has a long history of producing high-quality barrels, but as of late the brand has started producing their own rifles based on the newly-designed Bergara Premium action. The company's initial offerings were hunting rifles, but their newest turnbolt has a decidedly tactical slant. Their newest offering is the BPR-17, which is a purpose-built long-range rifle with a long list of standard features like a custom chassis by XLR
, adjustable LOP (11.25 to 14.75 inches) and comb height, a 416 SS Bergara barrel and a Cerakote finish on the barrel and action. The push-feed Bergara PREMIUM action has a fluted bolt body and an oversized bolt knob, and the BPR-17 utilizes detachable box magazines. The trigger break is clean and crisp, and with a 22 inch barrel the BPR-17 weighs in at 9.8 pounds. It's available in both .308 Winchester and 6.5 Creedmoor.
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CMMG Mk 47 Mutant
broke cover just before SHOT
, and it generated considerable buzz on the show floor. CMMG
created specially designed uppers and lowers to accommodate the pressures and dimensions of the 7.62x39 cartridge. The new rifle uses a bolt derived from the AR-10, which is shortened to a length of eight inches yet retains the sturdiness and durability of the AR-10 design. The lower receiver is designed to accept AK magazines and the rifle itself weighs around seven pounds. Adding to an already versatile design, the Mutant features a 16.1 inch barrel with CMMG's RKM Key Mod handguard
so that it's easy to add a variety of accessories to the rifle. The Mutant is available with either an A4 collapsible stock or a MagPul CTR
Buttstock, and the MagPul
versions come with a CMMG SV brake
while the A4 rifle includes an A2 compensator. Rifles are available with either a CMMG single-stage trigger or a Geissele SSA
[imo-slideshow gallery= 110],499.95 to [imo-slideshow gallery= 110],849.95
Daniel Defense DDM4V11 Pro Series Rifle
During the summer of 2014, Daniel Defense
released their V11 rifle
and it was an immediate success, so the company began working on ways to expand the line for 2015. The result is the V11 Pro Series
rifle, which comes ready for competitive shooting. The V11 comes with an 18 inch cold hammer-forged barrel and a rifle-length gas system, a GEN II Muzzle Climb Mitigator to reduce split times, a Geissele SD-3G
competition trigger that is smooth and crisp for improved accuracy, and a Vltor Gunfighter Mod 4
charging handle. The new SLiM Rail
system, the company's first railed fore-end, allows shooters to add a variety of accessories via a KeyMod system to the long (15 inch) rail system. In addition to the new rifle, Daniel Defense has modified a number of accessories such as their flashlight mount and 1 o'clock offset mount to fit on the Slim Rail, so shooters can quickly customize their DDM4V11 to fit their needs and can change out accessories quickly.
[imo-slideshow gallery= 110],849
DRD Tactical KIVAARI Rifle
specializes in 'Brief Case ' takedown rifles in 5.56 and 7.62, but the new KIVAARI
is something totally different. It's a high-end AR-style takedown rifle chambered for the mighty .338 Lapua, and it comes with a specialized case that makes transporting the 14.6 pound KIVAARI rifle easy and efficient. The rifle comes with ambidextrous controls, a Geissele
2-stage trigger, MagPul PRS adjustable stock
, MagPul M-LOK accessory rail system, SilencerCo
QD muzzle brake, and a 24 inch 1:10 twist barrel. The DRD Tactical system allows for easy transport, setup, and quick barrel changes in the field, and the Tactical Tailor Trekker
backpack simplifies transport and setup of the rifle. It is available in nickel boron and hard coat anodized black and promises 1 MOA accuracy. All parts and raw materials are made in the USA.
Mossberg Patriot Night Train Tactical
certainly didn't rest on their laurels for 2015, and the company released a wide variety of new rifle and shotgun products. Their new Patriot
line of bolt guns also includes the new Night Train
version, which shares the same push-feed, dual-opposed lug design with a plunger-type ejector and fluted bolt body found on other Patriot rifles. The Night Train rifles feature the LBA adjustable trigger system, oversized tactical bolt knobs, top-side picatinny rails and box magazines. The Patriot Night Train 2 rifle is available in .308 Winchester and comes with a 22-inch fluted barrel with a removable SilencerCo Saker Trifecta muzzle brake
, bipod, neoprene comb-raising kit with interchangeable insert pads and a 6-24x50 scope. There's also a Night Train 3 version of the rifle that is chambered in .300 Winchester Magnum. The Night Train rifles weigh around 9 pounds with scope and bipod, so they are light enough to be carried in the field and yet provide the accoutrements of a serious long-range rifle.
Rock River Arms LAR-15 IRS Rifles
Rock River Arms
has made their popular LAR-15
line of AR rifles even more versatile with the addition of IRS (Integrated Rifle Sights) models. These guns are based on the LAR platform, which is available in Carbine, Mid-Length, Standard and XL version with barrels ranging from 16 to 18 inches. All LAR-15 IRS rifles come with an RRA Helical Muzzle Brake
, RRA Operator CAR adjustable stock
, and the new RRA IRS handguard with integrated sights. The flat-top design makes mounting optics fast and easy, and the integrated sights fold down flush with the tip line of the rifle for a more streamlined profile and ease of access. All four rifle styles have 1:9 rate twists, and they all come with Winter trigger guards so that the rifle can be easily operated while wearing gloves.
[imo-slideshow gallery= 110],540-[imo-slideshow gallery= 110],620
Ruger Gunsite Composite Scout Rifle
has been producing Scout rifles for several years, but they too brought a new version of the Scout concept to market in 2015. The new Gunsite Composite Scout
rifle has a forward-mounted scope rail, adjustable iron sights, and black composite stock with spacers that allow for 1 ½ inches of LOP adjustment. The rifle comes with Ruger's cold hammer-forged barrel, Mauser-type extractor, and a three-position safety. The large, 10-round metal box magazine offers a large capacity and the release is easy-to-find and is conveniently located behind the box, and additional box magazines are available for purchase. The Gunsite Scout rifle comes with a 16.1 inch barrel that is threaded (Ruger brake included) and the metalwork is available with either a matte stainless or matte black finish. It is chambered in .308 Winchester and weighs just 6 ¼ pounds unscoped. The Ruger offers all the advantages of a traditional Scout rifle like short overall length, high magazine capacity and rapid sight alignment with modern touches like an adjustable composite stock and an an excellent trigger.
[imo-slideshow gallery= 110],1075-[imo-slideshow gallery= 110],139
Savage Model 11 Scout Rifle
The late Colonel Jeff Cooper's idea of a short-barreled, quick-handling bolt gun with a forward-mounted optic, which he called the Scout platform, was a popular design in 2015. Savage Arms
, which has made virtually every form and configuration of turnbolt rifle imaginable, is offering their own Scout version of the Model 11 in .308 with the Accutrigger
, and Accustock bedding system. The new Model 11 Scout also comes with a synthetic stock in Flat Dark Earth that offers adjustments for both length of pull and comb height and features a detachable 10-round box magazine. Like all true Scout rifle, the Savage Model 11 has a one-piece, forward-mounted scope rail and comes with aperture sights for rapid target acquisition. The Model 11 Scout comes with a short barrel and a removable muzzle brake, so it is ready for a suppressor. Designed both as a defensive and hunting rifle, the Savage Scout rifle performs double duty, and it certainly isn't the only Scout rifle to break cover in 2015.
Tikka CTR Compact Stainless
's following up the introduction of their all-new Compact tactical rifle (CTR) with a stainless steel version that is impervious to the elements. The CTR is a versatile rifle that works for a variety of applications, from hunting to target shooting to long-range tactical work. The rifle shares the same two-lug design with other Tikkas and has a small ejection port for maximum stiffness and improved accuracy. The CTR stainless has a detachable 10 round box magazine and comes with a picatinny rail and a free-floated 20 inch barrel with 5/8x24 muzzle cap threads for adding a suppressor. Like other Tikkas the new CTR stainless comes with a crisp, 2-4 pound adjustable trigger and promises 3 shot MOA accuracy. The stock is black synthetic and has a raised comb to help align the eye with the scope. The CTR Stainless is available in .308, as you might expect, but also .260 Remington, which offers something different. It's a great example of how companies are taking existing action designs and crossing over into the growing long range and tactical markets.
slightly over [imo-slideshow gallery= 110],000
Barrett REC7 Gen II Flyweight
Perhaps best known for rifles so heavy they must be mounted to brackets at the SHOT Show to prevent toppling unwary patrons, Barrett
has shown that the company knows how to build very light rifles as well. Case in point: the new Rec 7 Gen II Flyweight
, which is available in both 5.56 and 6.8 SPC and weighs under six pounds. The receiver and lightweight handguard are Cerakoted, and there are a variety of color options available. Barrett gave the Rec 7 Gen II Flyweight a new handguard design, and it offers the flexibility of Key Mod rail adjustments for mounting accessories on the rifle. The piston-driven Rec 7 Gen II offers a gas block that can be removed via a 13/16 inch wrench for cleaning and maintenance. One of the first things you'll notice about the rifle is its lack of a flash suppressor or muzzle brake; instead, Barrett ships the new rifle with a thread protector so you can make any additions to the rifle you deem necessary.
SIG Sauer MCX
The highly versatile MCX
from SIG Sauer
is truly mission-adaptable, and the weapon can be converted from 5.56 to .300 Blackout to 7.62x39 with minimal effort. To switch from 5.56 to .300 Blackout, all that is required is a barrel and op rod change, and switching to 7.62x39 involves a bolt face change. In addition, the rifle has a sophisticated auto-regulating gas system that fires both supersonic and subsonic loads, and it's possible to fire supersonic loads with a suppressor without damaging the rifle or impacting reliability. The MCX will initially be available in standard length, a short-barreled rifle (SBR) and pistol variants, and each version of the MCX offers the versatility of rapid caliber changes. The MCX is compatible with Mil-Spec AR-15 lowers, and a thoughtful new recoil assembly doesn't require a buffer tube, so it's possible to use folding stocks with this rifle. The SBR and rifle variants are available with four different stock options (low-profile side-folding skeletonized, side-folding skeletonized, telescoping and tubular side-folding) while the pistol comes with SIG's side-folding SBX Pistol Stabilizing Brace
[imo-slideshow gallery= 110],866 for the 16-inch rifle version; gallery= 110,058 for the 9-inch SBR; gallery= 110,132 for the pistol
Kimber Advanced Tactical SRC
Tactical bolt actions were popular at this year's SHOT Show, and Kimber
has expanded their bolt gun lineup to include the new Advanced Tactical SRC
, or Suppressor Ready Compact. As the name implies, the 16 inch barrel is threaded for suppression (SureFire
muzzle brake/suppressor adaptor included), and the rifle is built on a lightweight chassis system and chambered in .308 Winchester. The free-floated handguard comes with Key Mod slots for adding accessories, and the rifle's folding aluminum stock is adjustable for comb height and length of pull. At the heart of the new SRC rifle is Kimber's 8400 controlled round feed action with a full-length claw extractor and a three-position safety. The rifle accepts 5 and 10 round box magazines, and the trigger is factory set at between 3 and 3.5 pounds. Kimber's website states that the 11 pound, 6 ounce rifle is capable of .5 MOA accuracy.
Stag Arms Model 9-T
's much-awaited 9T
is a dedicated 9mm AR, and since it utilizes a true 9mm lower there's no need for a mag block. The upper and lower receivers are made of 7075 mil-spec 7075 T6 aluminum and are treated with type 3 hard coat anodizing. The flat-top receiver offers plenty of room for mounting an optic (Aimpoint
's slick new T-2
comes to mind), and the 9T comes with front and rear metal Diamondhead
irons as well. The 16 inch chrome-lined heavy profile barrel is topped with an A2 flash hider and surrounded by a 13.5inch Diamondhead VRS-T free-floating handguard. The blowback-operated 9T comes with a six-position collapsible stock and impressive 32 capacity magazine. Overall weight of the rifle is just under eight pounds. If you're looking for the perfect complement to your 9mm duty or defense gun, this could be it.
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Springfield M1A Loaded Precision Adjustable
The venerable Springfield Armory M1A
is becoming available in a precision adjustable package for added modularity. In this configuration, the M1A has a stock with adjustments for length of pull and comb height. It's suited mainly for prone and benchrest shooting with its pistol grip, bipod and optics rail.