July 05, 2018
By Joel J Hutchcroft
Browning Ammunition's new line of BXV Predator & Varmint ammo features nickel-plated cases and polymer-tipped Varmint Expansion bullets. The bullets are designed to provide flat trajectory and rapid expansion on impact. At present, BXV is offered in .22 Hornet (35-grain bullet), .223 Remington (50-grain bullet), .22-250 (50-grain bullet), and .243 Winchester (65-grain bullet). The .22 Hornet's factory-rated muzzle velocity is 3,100 fps. The .223 Rem. loading is rated at 3,400 fps. The .22-250 ammo is rated at 3,800 fps. And the .243 Win. load is rated at 3,400 fps.
Muzzle energy of the .22 Hornet ammo is rated at 747 ft-lbs. For the .223 Rem. load, it's 1,283 ft-lbs. For the .22-250, it's 1,603 ft-lbs. And for the .243 Win., it's 1,668 ft-lbs.
I received the .223 Rem. and .22-250 ammunition and fired it in my switch-barrel Thompson/Center Dimension rifle. I used the same Nikon Prostaff 4.5-18X 40mm riflescope with a Nikoplex reticle, switching it from one rifle to the next. I've used this scope for other projects and have come to like it a lot.
Both Browning BXV loads were accurate, averaging 1.08 inches and 1.01 inches respectively. Those are averages for five, five-shot groups with each load fired from a benchrest at 100 yards. The velocities, measured 12 feet from the muzzles, averaged 3,212 and 3,577 respectively. Using the velocity data as measured by my Competition Electronics chronograph to calculate the muzzle energy for each load, I computed figures of 1,145 ft-lbs for the .223 Rem. and 1,420 ft-lbs for the .22-250. Again, my results are based on measuring the velocities 12 feet from the muzzles.
Over the past year, Browning Ammunition has brought to market shotshells, rimfire ammunition, centerfire pistol ammunition, and centerfire rifle ammunition in just about every category. And now the company has a line of high-tech varmint and predator ammo that shoots extremely well.