It seems that occasionally the firearms market goes in trends, and it appears that as far as new shotguns go this year, there are some definite trends. If youâ€™re into waterfowl hunting, well, thereâ€™s a big crop of new guns just for you. And if youâ€™re a 20-gauge fan, then youâ€™ll just have to check out all the new modelsâ€”both hunting and defense orientedâ€”in that chambering. If none of those new guns strike your fancy, donâ€™t worry. There is a bountiful bevy of traditional and not-so-traditional smoothbores. Hereâ€™s a quick look at some of the coolest new shotguns for 2013.
Also new are a synthetic-stocked Montefeltro ($1,139) and a Speed-Bolt version of the Vinci. The Vinci Speed-Bolt boasts superior balance, light weight, reduced recoil and minimal muzzle rise as a consequence of the new tungsten-inset bolt. The bolt is designed for faster cycling and to handle loads as light as 1 ounce. Other features include the QuadraFit buttstock, a corrugated V-Grip, and cryogenically frozen barrel and choke tubes. Price: $1,599.
Another of Berettaâ€™s newest offerings is the gas-operated A300 Outlander (pictured), which by all accounts combines American-made affordability with Italian-designed elegance and reliability. This 12-gauge semi-auto handles everything from light target loads to 3-inch magnums, and comes in black or camo finish. Price: $775 to $845.
Also new this year is the BT-99 Micro Midas youth trap gun. This number comes with a scaled-down buttstock with 13-inch length of pull, a beavertail forearm, ivory front and mid-beads, Vector-Pro lengthened forcing cone, and chrome-plated chamber. Barrel length is 28 or 30 inches. Price: $1,429.99.
But the one that got my attention is the new 12-gauge Citori 725 Feather over-under (pictured). With its lightweight alloy receiver and 28-inch barrels, it weighs 6 pounds, 9 ounces. The receiver is a low-profile design, and its finish is silver nitride. This shotgun also has the Vector-Pro lengthened forcing cones and Invector-DS choke tube system. And itâ€™s also available with 26-inch barrels. Price: $2,649.99.
The Model 612 Home Defense is fitted with an 18.5-inch barrel (fixed Cylinder Bore choke) and a black synthetic stock. Weight is 6 pounds. Length of pull is 14.5 inches. Finish is matte black. An extra 26-inch barrel is available. Price: $290 (complete gun), $126 (extra barrel).
The all-black Model 612 HC-P (Horde Control Pump) (pictured) comes with a full-length, pistol-grip stock; a full-length fore-end; a 20-inch barrel with Cylinder Bore choke; ghost-ring sights with glow fiber dots; and an optics rail. It weighs 6.5 pounds; length of pull is 14.5 inches. Price: $349.
Thereâ€™s also a new youth-size Affinity Compact in 20-gauge with Realtree Max-4 camo finish. The shortened buttstock reduces length of pull to 12.38 inches. Barrel length is 26 inches. Weight is just 5.5 pounds. Price: $999.
Rounding out Franchiâ€™s new guns for 2013 is a brand-new over-under called the Aspire. This nifty little gun comes in either 28-gauge or .410 Bore. The slim action, automatic safety with built-in barrel selector, 6mm upland-style vent rib with fiber-optic front sight, Prince-of-Wales-style pistol grip with thin wrist, and slim fore-end make the gun easy and comfortable to use. Barrel length is 28 inches. Weight is 5.8 pounds. Finish is casecolored receiver and rubbed-oil stock. Price: $2,299.
The one that piqued my interest the most is the 930 Waterfowl (pictured) with synthetic stock in Mossy Oak Shadow Grass Blades camo. This autoloader comes with a 28-inch, vent-rib barrel with interchangeable Accu-Set choke tubes and fiber-optic front sight; sling-swivel studs; and ambidextrous, top-mounted safety. Price: $736. The new camo finish is also available on other select models.
Also new this year are a Zombie version of the Versa Max ($1,599) with 22-inch barrel, extended magazine and Gargoyle Green finish; the pump-action Model 870 Tactical ($872) with 18.5-inch barrel, and Magpul stock and fore-end; and a special 100th Anniversary collectorâ€™s edition Model 1100 ($1,999) with engraved receiver, B-grade walnut stocks, 28-inch barrel and hard case.
Other new shotguns from TriStar include the 20-gauge Setter S/T over-under ($534), the left-hand Viper G2 12-gauge semi-auto ($549 to $629), and a brand-new model called the TEC 12 that functions as both a pump gun and a semi-automatic. Converting between the two action styles is accomplished by rotating a lever. The gun comes with a 20-inch barrel and a black, synthetic, pistol-grip stock. All TriStar shotguns are backed by a five-year warranty.
The PA-459 TR Threat Response 20-gauge pump has the same aluminum-alloy receiver, but comes with a full pistol-grip buttstock, an extended forearm, an extended and ported choke tube, a Picatinny top rail, an adjustable ghost-ring rear sight and an elevated-blade fiber-optic front sight. Price: $499.
The PA-08 Synthetic pump is a traditional field gun with straight, black, synthetic stock and 26- or 28-inch barrel. It also has a raised rib and brass bead front sight, three interchangeable choke tubes, sling-swivel studs and matte black finish. Price: $399.
Also new this year is the Super X Pump Waterfowl Hunter (pictured) with Mossy Oak Shadow Grass Blades camo finish. Itâ€™s offered in 12-gauge with 3- or 3.5-inch chamber, 26- or 28-inch backbored barrel, and Invector-Plus choke tube system. Prices are $459.99 (3-inch) and $499.99 (3.5-inch).