Big Green Comeback? Remington’s New Model 700 American Hunter Could be the First Step – NRA 2019

Remington’s new Model 700 is more of a redesign than a simple improvement.

It’s been a tough few years for Remington. The legendary firearms manufacturer has faced bankruptcy, ill-advised product launches (to put it mildly), and a potential lawsuit from families of Sandy Hook victims.

Faced with PR issues, gun companies have been known to slap a fresh coat of paint on a flagship product and “reintroduce” it as something genuinely new. Consumers might be forgiven for assuming the same about the Remington Model 700 American Hunter, but they’d be wrong. Remington incorporated real changes to the manufacturing process for the 700 American Hunter, and the result could be the first major step in the company’s comeback.

“We looked at all of the critical components separately, stepped back, and asked, ‘Can we make this gun better?’” Remington Firearms Product Manager Eric Lundgren told GunsAmerica at this year’s NRA Meetings and Annual Exhibits. “We want to make every gun that we make a precision gun.”

Lundgren explained that while Model 700’s have performed well since the line’s introduction in the 1960s, Remington engineers have made many small changes over a long period of time. Those improvements don’t always take other functions and components of the firearm into consideration, and Lundgren and his team wanted to take a more holistic approach for the 700 American Hunter.

SEE ALSO: Remington Model Seven Threaded: A Perfectly Practical Rifle

So, while the rifle incorporates some obvious, external changes (Leupold M40 scope bases, a composite Bell and Carlson stock, and a fluted barrel, for example), the real improvements lie where most consumers might not notice them.

Lundgren mentioned three improvements designed to maximize reliability and accuracy. First, the barrel manufacturing process now ensures that the outside of the barrel is perfectly concentric with the inside.

“We asked our barrel manufacturer, ‘If you could make a barrel any way you wanted, how would you do it?’ Make it that way,” Lundgren said.

The face of the receiver is also manufactured to be exactly perpendicular to the centerline of the bore, and Remington engineers tweaked the angles on the rear of the bolt lugs to improve primary extraction. (Primary extraction is what happens when a bolt is raised and is especially important when extracting high-pressure cartridges like the 300 WIN Mag.)

SEE ALSO: Testing Remington’s New Affordable Chassis Rifle – The R700 PCR

The jeweled and black-oxide coated bolt is buttery smooth, and the improved polishing processes for the X-Mark pro trigger translate to a crisp, clean break. The rifle is light enough to carry on an expedition, and the 20-inch threaded barrel is short enough to accept a suppressor.

None of these improvements should cast doubt on the quality of older iterations of the Model 700. There’s a reason the rifle has been a flagship product of one of America’s flagship firearms companies. But Remington’s attention to detail, not to mention the obvious passion of employees like Lundgren (a product manager, not a PR specialist), should give Big Green fans good reason to hope for the future of the Model 700.

About the author: Jordan Michaels has been reviewing firearm-related products for over four years and enjoying them for much longer. With family in Canada, he’s seen first hand how quickly the right to self-defense can be stripped from law-abiding citizens. He escaped that statist paradise at a young age, married a sixth-generation Texan, and currently lives in Waco. Follow him on Instagram @bornforgoodluck and email him at jordan@gunsamerica.com.

{ 17 comments… add one }
  • Louis Lambson July 9, 2021, 6:03 am

    Over 50 years of shooting and building Remington 700’s, i never found the need to remove, true or mess with the receiver as they, only 20 to 30 rifles, were all true from the factory. Maybe someone has found some which weren’t. A jig or tool slopped. I have not. The biggest problem is the trigger, it has too tight side clearance and very little left over oil or dirt messes with that.

  • John Pauza March 1, 2020, 7:54 pm

    Why all the fuss over a 20” barrel when most of us, in the East at least, are woods hunters. I prefer the shorter barrel for stand hunting where a 200 yard shot is a long one. Besides, the MV differential with a 6.5 Creedmoor between 20 and 22 inch barrels is about 79 FPS. Big deal, and the difference is even less the further you go down range. The major improvement this old Hunter would like to see is a decent trigger. Surely Remington could negotiate a great high volume deal with Timney or Trigger Tech. That my friends has a whole lot more to do with shooting a rifle well than a long, heavy and cumbersome barrel.

  • jbwood870 December 30, 2019, 9:46 pm

    All this rifle is, is a light tactical rifle dressed in a hunting stock. I ordered this rifle from my local gun shop, which they would’ve had it in stock. If so, it would still be there. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a nice rifle if you like this type. It’s heavy when scoped with a leupold vx-3 3.5-10×40 and it’s to short. I haven’t fired it yet since I’m not sure if I’m going to keep it. I’ll probably put on consignment back at the gun shop. It probably will be a good shooter since it was built on the new machinery. I like traditional looking hunting rifle and this doesn’t fit the build. This is just my opinion on the rifle.

    • DRB June 4, 2020, 4:26 pm

      Short of a wood stock it’s kinda traditional…under 7 pounds unscoped. Idk how lite a more traditional setup can be but this is fairly lite. JMO

  • Scott October 27, 2019, 9:34 pm

    I have been hoping that Remington would get back in the game. You cannot really take advantage of the 6.5 Creedmoor with this barrel length. If Rem would chamber in 7mm-08, this same rifle, I will buy immediately. Then it would be a perfect whitetail rifle.

  • Robert W. Kocher May 15, 2019, 9:11 am

    This rifle needs a longer barrel at least 22″ to 26 ” and claw type extractor, I own a couple 700’s and they shoot O.K. , but have a weak extractor, Remington should change it.

  • DarryH May 13, 2019, 12:39 am

    With a 20″ barrel…..I won’t give it a second look. 24-26″ and I may bite!!

  • Greg Sturgill May 6, 2019, 7:02 pm

    Now to make it in a lefthand and something besides a 6.5 creedmoor. I say 358 Winchester would be a good classic to start with

  • Zupglick May 6, 2019, 4:55 pm

    I think I’ll stick with my old Springfield.

  • Gary May 6, 2019, 4:41 pm

    I have more model 700’s than I can remember. Back in their hay day their pro shooter would show up at the national shoot for the steel Rams and chickens..(don’t recall what they call that at the moment, brain fart I guess). For a good number of years he would open up a factory new model 700 rifle, and proceed to WIN! That says a LOT about that gun! Or it DID anyway.
    I love my 700’s..but this rifle doesn’t impress me at all. Everyone these days just SEEM to be trying to get back to where they already WERE! Then want a slap on the back for doing it.
    Shoot it! Let the rifle do the talking for ya. And NO 3 shot groups! Or 50 yard crap either..just good old 5 shot groups from 100 yards with different ammo! It was always good enough in the past. No excuses either! Just shoot and report.
    Thanks!

  • Matt May 6, 2019, 3:26 pm

    “Entirely new model” is a tough sell. That’s an XCR Compact Tactical that’s been threaded, a larger bolt knob installed, and scope bases mounted. And I guess, blueprinted during manufacturing…

  • Bill Wrightw May 6, 2019, 12:46 pm

    …and a 3 position safety.

  • Big John May 6, 2019, 11:48 am

    At first glance it looks like a Savage with that Hurst shifter bolt knob. One of the best features of the 700 was the original one piece checkered/tucked bolt knob that would transport flat and not be a brush hook snagging every branch and vine while “still hunting”. Those that can’t easily manipulate them aren’t much of a Rifleman…but hey fishing lures catch more Fisherman than fish.

    The threaded barrel and Hurst shifter bolt knob are just two things to unscrew and loose in the woods while hunting and need to be relegated to range toys and Walter Mitty “tacticool” rifles (that’s right I said it).

    It’s not much of an “American Hunter”, perhaps they might call it the “American Punter”… however instead of punting what they really need is a “Hail Mary”!

  • Mike22-250 May 6, 2019, 11:39 am

    This is a nice pretty little write up on the 700. If your saying it is a “Precision” rifle out of the box show us the proof!

    I am waiting…..

    • S.H. Blannelberry May 6, 2019, 7:17 pm

      Give us time, we’ll post a review. This was NRAAM coverage.

  • Altoids May 6, 2019, 8:26 am

    Doesn’t look like they got rid of that weak stiff wire extractor. Never liked that about the 700s. They should use the real claw type as the original Mausers did.

    • David May 6, 2019, 12:19 pm

      I agree with that comment. The extractor is absolutely the weak link in the 700. Merely using a hot tank bluing process made my .375 inoperative, this despite a very long boiling water rinse afterward. “Winchester” figured out how to make the entire bolt out of one large forging, which is also the norm in the industry, while the Remington bolt has forever been manufactured out of three pieces. This is not to say that this construction is necessarily unreliable, but it is a cost saving measure compared to a one-piece forging. Kudos for them finally addressing the less than square receiver end and non-concentric (!!?) bore to O.D. issue.

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