February 12th, 2020

Mauser 18 Named American Rifleman’s 2020 Rifle of the Year

Mauser 18 Rifle of Year golden bullseye NRA American Rifleman

This caught us by surprise — NRA’s American Rifleman Rifle of the Year is not a Ruger, not a Weatherby, not a Savage. It is a made-in-Germany Mauser. That’s noteworthy. The Mauser 18 bolt-action rifle has been named 2020 Rifle of the Year by the editors of American Rifleman magazine, as part of the NRA’s annual Golden Bullseye Awards. READ Mauser 18 FULL REVIEW.

Mauser 18 Bolt-Action Rifle is Rifle of the Year
How did the Mauser 18 win top honors? The American Rifleman says it’s because this rifle offers excellent “accuracy and ruggedness at an exceptional price point”. The Mauser 18 is available in both short action and long action types, with a wide variety of chamberings, making it suitable for nearly all types of hunting — from varmints to Big Game. The Mauser 18 is available in .243 Win, 6.5 Creedmoor, 6.5 PRC, .270 Win, 7mm Rem Mag, .308 Win, .30-06, and .300 Win Mag. The Mauser 18 is relatively light — rifle weight without optics is 6.4 lbs (standard) and 6.6 lbs (Magnum).

In announcing the M18’s selection, the American Rifleman stated: “…At an MSRP of $699, the Mauser M18 is priced a bit higher than most competing models, but well below any new-production Mauser since the height of the Cold War. While rifles in this class are typically spartan, the M18 offers a few extras along with better-than-expected test results. Purists who can’t separate the brand from its full-length-extractor/controlled-round-feed legacy won’t be fans, but hunters seeking an affordable rifle with reasonable expectations of Mauser performance and durability, likely will be.”

Mauser 18 Rifle of Year golden bullseye NRA American Rifleman

The Mauser 18 features a synthetic stock with a classic American hunter profile (like a Remington 700 stock). There are rubberized grip inlays. The steel receiver has a 3-lug bolt for shorter bolt throw. The rifle boasts a 3-position safety allows hunters to safely carry a round in the chamber without fear of the bolt being nudged out of battery. A five-round magazine offers ample capacity for follow-up shots. The Mauser 18 also features an adjustable trigger allows you to set your own preferred pull weight.

Mauser 18 Rifle of Year golden bullseye NRA American Rifleman

“The Mauser 18 was introduced as ‘The People’s Rifle’, and it has been embraced by hunters throughout the world who want a rugged, reliable, and accurate rifle at a great price. To be recognized as the 2020 American Rifleman Rifle of the Year further validates how exceptional this rifle is in its category.” said Jason Evans, CEO, Blaser Group.

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May 27th, 2016

Savage A17 Wins American Hunter’s Rifle of the Year Award

Savage A17 Semi-auto Varmint 17 HMR Rifle

The Savage Arms A17 rifle has been named the 2016 Rifle of the Year by American Hunter Magazine, which awarded Savage Arms a Golden Bullseye Award. “Savage Arms has created a modern rimfire rifle deserving of a 2016 Golden Bullseye Award” said Doug Hamlin of NRA Publications. Savage Arms President Al Kasper declared: “We’re incredibly proud to receive the American Hunter Golden Bullseye Award, and with this recognition, we’re confident we have produced a category-leading firearm.”

Savage A17 Semi-auto Varmint 17 HMR Rifle

The A17 is a 17 HMR semi-automatic with delayed-blowback action. Previous semi-auto 17 HMR designs struggled to cope with the extra power of the 17 HMR cartridge compared with a .22 LR. Savage solved that problem using a delayed blowback mechanism with retracting locking lug. You can see how that works in the video below.

Watch this Video — You’ll Learn Something about Semi-Auto Rimfires

This Savage-produced video demonstrates how the 17 HMR Savage A17 rifle works. The video includes nicely-done 3D Graphics that illustrate the function of the A17’s delayed-blowback action with “interrupter lug”. Using “X-Ray View” animation, the video shows what happens INSIDE the chamber as rounds are fired. The video also explains how the 17 HMR presents a tougher engineering challenge than the lower-pressure .22 LR cartridge.

Varminter.com Savage A17 Field Test and Hunt Report

Ammo Accuracy Results from Varminter.com Field Test:
Savage A17 Semi-auto Varmint 17 HMR Rifle

NOTE: This entire test was performed without cleaning the barrel. For each ammo type, ten (10) 5-shot groups were done. That’s seven times 50, for a total of 350 rounds. The gun used Savage’s original, first-generation polymer A17 stock. Some folks have reported better accuracy with the late-model A17s in the laminated wood thumbhole stock or the laminated wood Sporter Stock (shown below).

Savage A17 Semi-auto Varmint 17 HMR Rifle

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January 12th, 2012

Golden Bullseye-Winning Products Named by NRA Publications

Golden Bullseye Awards, 2012For what’s its worth, NRA Publications has announced its 2012 Golden Bullseye Product Awards. A few of the honored products, such as the Barrett MRAD, are indeed innovative and well-designed, while others, such as the Keltec KSG shotgun, have been plagued with problems. Some winners seem to have been chosen primarily for the value of their magazine advertising contracts… but that’s business for you. It would be interesting to see how this list would change, if the winners were picked by vote of real shooters and hunters, rather than magazine editors.

For American Rifleman, NRA’s flagship publication:

  • Rifle of the Year: Savage Model 111 Lightweight Hunter
  • Shotgun of the Year: Stoeger Model 3500
  • Handgun of the Year: Kimber Solo
  • Tactical Gun of the Year: FNH-USA SCAR 17S
  • Ammo Product of the Year: Winchester Elite Blind Side
  • Optic of the Year: Leupold Mark 8 1.1-8X 24mm CQBSS
  • Accessory of the Year: LaserLyte Laser Trainer Target TLB-1.

For Shooting Illustrated, a practical shooting publication:

  • Rifle of the Year: Barrett MRAD
  • Shotgun of the Year: Kel-Tec KSG
  • Handgun of the Year: Smith & Wesson SD Series
  • Ammo Product of the Year: Federal Premium Guard Dog
  • Optic of the Year: Nikon M-223 Riflescopes
  • Accessory of the Year: SureFire MAG5-60 High-Capacity Magazine

For American Hunter, NRA’s hunting magazine:

  • Rifle of the Year: Winchester Model 70 Safari Express
  • Shotgun of the Year: Beretta A400 Xcel Sporting
  • Ammo Product of the Year: Barnes VOR-TX
  • Optic of the Year: Swarovski Z5 Riflescopes
  • Gear of the Year: The Gun Tool by Real Avid
  • Vehicle of the Year: 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland
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