Remington is now offering a lower-priced version of their semi-automatic 12-gauge Versa Max shotgun, the Sportsman. The Sportsman maintains the innovative action and many of the features of the original Versa Max, but drops some of the more expensive add-ons to keep the price low. Rumor had it that Remington was preparing to unveil a new Versa Max, and those rumors came true.
The Versa Max Sportsman is a gas-operated semi-automatic shotgun, but instead of having a gas port towards the middle of the barrel the way most gas-operated shotguns do, the Versa Max is ported at the chamber. It has seven gas ports, three just past the chamber and four inside. Longer, higher-pressure shells block some of the ports, automatically leveling the amount of gas used to cycle the action.
In addition to maintaining the gas system the Sportsman can also chamber 2-3/4-, 3- and 3-1/2-inch shotgun shells. It has a capacity of 3+1 with standard and 3-inch shells and 2+1 with the big magnums. The Sportsman is likewise available in 26- and 28-inch-barreled versions in matte black, Mossy Oak Duck Blind and Obsession for Turkeys camo patters. That’s right, Obsession: for Turkeys. They also offer it with Realtree AP camo.
And even though the Sportsman comes with a “SuperCell” recoil-absorbing buttpad, that’s about the only added ergonomics feature carried over from the standard premium version. What you’re not paying for is over-molded rubber grips in the stock or a stock that’s adjustable for drop, cast and length of pull.
The Sportsman has a regular ivory bead and mid-bead sighting system instead of the more expensive HiViz fiber-optic sight, it only ships with one choke, modified, and it does not come with a hard carrying case.
Sans these extras Remington has been able to cut the price by about one-third. The original Versa Max has an MSRP of $1,400, and depending on the model, often sells for $1,100 or less. The Sportsman has a price tag of just $1,025 and we be you’ll see it in stores for around $800.
The Versa Max represents a new generation of semi-automatic shotguns, guns that will cycle all kinds of ammo without short-stroking or abusing the receiver. They’re comfortable to shoot and fast, which is of paramount importance whether you’re hunting, shooting clays or setting 3-gun records. This lower-price option will no doubt be popular since it uses the same proven action of the standard Versa Max.
Even the Sportsman surpasses the entry level by quite a bit. Of course, if you’re thinking about getting it, throwing a fiber optic sight up there, getting a whole set of chokes and a case for it, you might be better off getting the original. But if you like it just the way Remington made it, well, good news.
For all the details check out the product page here.