Sabatti Rover Tactical – A .308 Powerhouse w/ Unique Multi-Radial Rifling — Full Review


Sabatti is a new brand to me, though it is far from new to firearms. They have been in the gun business for 400 years, an unbroken line of smiths from father to son, with no interruptions. That is a pretty big deal considering most of us, me included, couldn’t tell you how exactly our ancestors arrived on the continent.

Sabatti has quite a name in Europe, for high quality yet affordable hardware. They make shotguns and double rifles, in addition to bolt actions. In the United States, Sabatti bolt action rifles are brought in via the Italian Firearms Group, based out of Amarillo, Texas.


The test model we received is the Rover Tactical. This gun features a bull barrel, threaded and suppressor ready. Also on board is the new Sabatti multi radial rifling, which they boast is the greatest innovation in rifling in 100 years. Instead of normal lands and grooves, it has rifling of alternating radii. The result looks something like the skin of a golf ball. The benefits are supposed to be higher muzzle velocity, easier cleaning, and more accuracy.

The stock is a bit chunky on this model, but in the military context, sniper rifle rarely means light. If nothing else, it feels durable. There is a pebble texture on the fore end and grip area, nice for adverse conditions. The rear of the stock features a flat base, which makes sense if you need to use improvised rests. The comb height is adjustable, with a locking mechanism. There are embedded QD sling mounts front and rear, and on both sides.


  • .308
  • Over Sized Tactical Bolt Knob
  • Threaded Barrel
  • 5 Round single stack detachable magazine (Sabatti Mag)
  • 4″ Bottom rail to mount accessories
  • Matte black metal finish
  • flush cup QD attach points on the stock
  • Multi Radial Rifling
  • 20 MOA Picatinny Rail Included
  • 24-inch barrel
  • Multi-radial rifling
  • MSRP: $1,295

The action is smooth. It’s one of the better bolt guns I have seen recently. An oversized bolt knob ensures you won’t miss it during rapid fire. The trigger, however, takes the cake. It is a clean single stage, and it broke crisply at 2.4 pounds.

The magazine included is a Victrix, another well known Italian brand. Capacity is rounds in .308, feeding from a single stack. The magazine release is a bit unorthodox, being located directly at the front curve of the trigger guard. A little practice showed the best way to use it was to thumb press it while grabbing the magazine with the rest of the fingers. In field testing, it never proved a hinderance.

Range Time

How was the performance? Well, for the price point, pretty impressive. Using Black Hills 308 Match, the test gun turned in a 5 round group just over a half inch. The gun may be capable of more, that is a difficult thing to judge without more testing time. I can shoot sub ½ inch groups, but I can’t guarantee it on any given day. Even at a .55, these are impressive numbers.

Due to flooding on my local range, I was only able to reach out to 685 meters while I had this gun. That is suboptimal testing range for a .308 with a 27X scope, but it is what was available. After a sighter round, the Sabatti did shoot a sub 5-inch group, in difficult winds. For the price of this rifle, I consider that a win.

While the MSRP is $1,295, I have found the street price to be close to $1,000. For this kind of performance, that is a steal.

For more information about Italian Firearms Group, click here.

***Check out GunsAmerica for your next Sabatti rifle.***

About the author: Clay Martin is a former Marine and Green Beret, retiring out of 3rd Special Forces Group. He is a multi-decade and -service sniper, as well as 3-Gun competitor and Master ranked shooter in USPSA Production. In addition to writing about guns, he is the author of “Last Son of The War God,” a novel about shooting people that deserve it. You can also follow him on twitter, @offthe_res or his website,

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  • Big John February 27, 2018, 10:07 am

    Clay, any info on the action to stock interface? By the looks of the stock it appears to be more of an injected molded polymer (ala Choate) than a hard fiberglass (ala McMillan). Does it incorporate aluminum bedding “V” blocks in the stock?

  • August Bender February 27, 2018, 9:29 am

    The description of this rifle on the Sabatti website makes no mention of “multi radial rifling.” It reads, “The barrel is cold hammer forged in house from induction treated Chrome Moly steel.” They show three target rifles on the website, and only one, the model ST17 Competition Rifle, has a description that mentions rifling. For the ST17 it says, “Features Multi Radial Rifling and uses AICS compliant magazines.” The photograph of the bore shown above in this article doesn’t have sufficient resolution to see anything meaningful regarding the lands and grooves of the rifling. As far as “higher muzzle velocity, easier cleaning, and more accuracy” for rifles with this special rifling (as claimed in the article above), I’m skeptical. Show me some test data. I’m a retired mechanical engineer with lots of experience in ammunition development. It certainly is odd that the photos above show the adjustable comb installed backwards – I don’t know about that. However, it’s a good looking rifle and for the price it demonstrated pretty good dispersion in the test firing that Clay conducted.

  • Frank February 27, 2018, 8:50 am

    Interesting but not impressed. My Remington 700 308 5R 20″ would smoke that Meatball.

  • That Guy February 27, 2018, 2:03 am

    Any national match Springfield M1A and M14 will yield the same results or better at 750 yards. Price point similar. American Made. Used in combat and proven by our fine men of arms. Magazine capacity 20. Not 5. M1A and M14 are the better rifle for the money. Dead enemies is what’s really important. Polygonal rifling vs traditional is not an issue. A long tradition of gun smithing is great but that doesn’t mean squat when America makes rifles which are superior and keeps our citizens employed at home making arms for our own fine citizens and military. Italians sided with Hitler. Let’s not forget that fact.

  • BT February 26, 2018, 11:38 pm

    Bergara HMR. Less money, Rem 700 accessories fit. Magpul mags. Barrel production guided by Ed Shilen.

  • Russ H. February 26, 2018, 7:48 pm

    Yes, the cheek rest is on backwards. You do realize the advantage to that right? Take a second look. Now use your words… OK, I\’ll give you a hint: One end has a chunk cut out of it.

    • Dewey February 26, 2018, 7:59 pm

      That’s how an operating operator uses their cheek piece while operating operationally.

  • Jay February 26, 2018, 2:03 pm

    “Sabatti multi radial rifling, which they boast is the greatest innovation in rifling in 100 years.” I call Sabatti’s boast on that a pile of horse excrement. Poly rifling, meaning many sides, has been around longer than most of us. Those poly barrels can have three and up hills and valleys to make up the rifling! My 308 poly has 5 and shots fantastic! Just saying!

  • Adam Jeppson February 26, 2018, 12:31 pm

    The cheek piece is installed correctly, the rifle is aimed 180 Degrees out.

    Joke people, that was a joke.

    • Steven February 26, 2018, 9:21 pm

      It’s called a comb.

  • buhbang February 26, 2018, 10:57 am

    the rifling sounds a lot like caudle 3 land polygonal rifling to me, maybe they just gave it a new name?
    but if so, it will have higher velocities and better accuracy the button rifled barrels

  • Aloyisus Fornortener February 26, 2018, 9:35 am

    “Capacity is rounds in .308, feeding from a single stack. ” What is the magazine capacity?
    I saw no “skin of a golf ball effect” in that sawn barrel.
    Yes….cheek rest is backwards…and expect this weapon to be expensive enough to be questioned by the administrator of your trust fund.

    • Russ H. February 26, 2018, 8:00 pm

      The mag contains five rounds – it says so in the above specs. The cheek piece is on backwards – I expect for a good reason if you look what\’s on the other end of the cheek piece. No doubt this was intentional by the shooter, particularly if the scope was hastily mounted..

  • Bill S February 26, 2018, 8:26 am

    I am a little curious about longevity with the rifling they’re using. Wondering if perhaps barrel wear is offset somewhat by less resistance. Does the stock provide a Free Floating Barrel??

  • Greg kipp February 26, 2018, 8:23 am

    Broughton 5c rifling comes to mind here. Yes the barrel with cut “angled” rifling will clean easier, Have higher mussle velocities “reduced friction” resulting in more shots fired , not sure this rifle is “new” technology

  • Paul F. February 26, 2018, 7:18 am

    So… Am I the only one that noticed the adjustable cheekpiece is on backwards?
    Interesting looking rifle. If they made them in Lefty, I’d be awful tempted. I love being the guy with the oddball rifles. Needing left handed rifles has both been a great money saver (since so few places DO make them) and a source of great frustration (when I REALLY want one, but they don’t come in Lefty…

    • frhunter13 February 26, 2018, 7:54 am

      Good catch. No wonder it looked so odd. Ok, why no picture of this “revolutionary” rifling? The best I ever saw was elliptical cold rolled as in what HK has been doing for decades.

  • just1spark February 26, 2018, 7:12 am

    The cheek rest is installed backwards.

  • Rinaldo Manago February 26, 2018, 6:31 am

    Can’t seem to find the rifle tested in the video as spec’d above. Any help finding a distributor that carries the tested rifle as spec’d would be appreciated!

  • Chris Baker February 26, 2018, 5:12 am

    I’m curious what other types of rifling the company tested while prototyping. Specifically how does the radial rifling compare with octagonal rifling and why don’t more weapons use the octagonal? The only one I know for sure is the Desert Eagle my dad had.

    • Mark N. February 27, 2018, 2:18 am

      Do you mean polygonal? There are a number of handguns that do, though I don’t know of any rifles. The high end Kahrs use polygonal rifling and at least one Sig, if I recall correctly.

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