As far as the firearms industry is concerned, the new year doesn’t start until the NSSF SHOT Show is behind us. This event took a digital hiatus last year and left nearly every member of the media feeling less than whole for 2021. This year herds of manufacturers, writers, and videographers returned to Las Vegas to battle the mask Nazis and restore gear groping to its former glory. I was among this crowd and had the opportunity to get my hands on some extraordinary gear, including several new rifles that I urge everybody to check out when they can. Here are my top five new rifles seen at SHOT Show 2022.
Best 5 New Rifles From SHOT Show 2022
Daniel Defense – DD4 RIII
This was by far the biggest news of the 2022 SHOT Show. In fact, you couldn’t open up the app without being aware of it. When first debuted the RII rail was groundbreaking, as it connected in a manner that the AR world had yet to see. The six-bolt lockup provided a platform sturdy enough to hang whatever you wished off of it, including something as heavy as a 40mm grenade launcher.
However, the days of a quad rail are long behind us, and it’s MLOK’s world now. With that, the RIII was born and delivered the same durability that we have come to except, now with lighter, more modern MLOK connectivity. The DD4 only represents one of many rifles that have been retrofitted with this upgrade, so check out the website to see what else got a facelift. (danieldefense.com)
Winchester Xpert .22LR
With ammo being a bit more expensive than it used to be, many shooters are falling back in love with rimfire shooting. While Winchester has made a gun or two chambered in this classic plinking and small game cartridge, none were quite like this. The Xpert .22LR bolt-action rifle is built with a minimalistic polymer stock that houses a robust action made from American steel. This stock features sling eyelets both fore and aft as well as a forward Picatinny rail section that is handy for flashlights, lasers, or bipods. This stock also includes length-of-pull spacers as well as a clip-on cheek riser, allowing each shooter to make it their own.
The action feeds off of a 10/22-style magazine and will accept aftermarket designs as well to increase or decrease capacity as needed. Standard features include both an adjustable trigger and rear sight as well as an oversized bolt handle and an ambidextrous magazine release. (winchesterguns.com)
Mossberg MVP Patrol Rifle 300 Blackout
The .300 Blackout cartridge is best suited for shorter-barreled rifles that are capped off with a suppressor. Although the AR-15 became the standard for launching this round, most will agree that some of that beautiful suppression is lost through the moving parts. The Mossberg MVP .300 Blackout Patrol rifle addresses that through a conventional bolt action and runs standard AR-15 magazines, making it easy to share ammo with your battle buddy or hunting partner. Other features include a threaded medium bull barrel, pre-mounted Picatinny rail, and a pair of sling studs for the effortless addition of your favorite accessories. Like other rifles in this line, the .300 Blackout features Mossberg’s adjustable LBA trigger, which carries a secondary safety built into the shoe. This rifle is bound to catch the eye of pig hunters and at just 36.5 inches overall, it fits neatly into the category of “truck gun.” (mossberg.com)
Savage Impulse Elite Precision
The Impulse marked Savage’s entry into the straight-pull realm with what is arguably the least expensive model on the planet. When Savage released this rifle, it was originally geared to attract hunters as a means of making a faster follow-up shot. In this writer’s opinion, it should have been introduced to target shooters, particularly the PRS crowd, as they have a far greater interest in shots #2 through 10. For 2022 Savage considered this crowd and delivered a straight-pull chassis rifle that is built to slay the precision rifle shooting sports. An aluminum MDT chassis is mated to Savage’s signature action, offering ambidextrous functionality and the fastest bolt throw possible. Other features include the integral ARCA rail for bipods or other accessories and a fully adjustable buttstock. (savagearms.com)
Bushmaster – .450 Bushmaster
Whoever was in charge of naming this rifle must have been out with COVID but hey, it works. With Bushmaster back in business, it was only prudent to offer a new rifle in its namesake cartridge. This straight-walled beauty has been praised for taking medium game in thick brush and moonlights as one hell of a man stopper. This rendition features a 20-inch barrel with a carbine gas system and includes a five-round magazine, making it ready for the woods right out of the box (after adding an optic, of course). Creature comforts include a classic A2 stock and grip set alongside a modern 14-inch MLOK rail. (bushmaster.com)