Beretta Unveils Heavy-Hitting ARX-200 Rifle


Beretta recently introduced the ARX-160 (and civilian ARX-100). One of our readers liked the ARX-100, but I think it’s pretty much terrible from stem to stern. The design isn’t visually appealing in the least, the furniture feels like it was made by Mattel, and the ergonomics just don’t work (for me, anyway). Still, to each their own. The Italian armed forces picked up the gun (surprise!) and the American civilian market seems to be somewhat receptive, but very few others are jumping on board. Following on that resounding success Beretta has decided to roll out a similar looking 7.62×51 NATO based rifle that lacks many of the features that were selling points on the ARX-160 and it isn’t really any prettier . . .

From Janes:

Although not based on the ARX-160, the ARX-200 maintains a family look and feel with the earlier rifle, with many features such as the magazine release, the hold-open, and others remaining the same to facilitate training in services using both rifles.

A gas-piston operated weapon with locked breech and rotating bolt, the ARX-200 has no double-side expulsion, brass being always ejected on the left. However the cocking handle can be switched left or right dismounting the rifle, and the three-position fire selector (safe-single shot-automatic) is available on both sides.

The ARX-200 does not feature an immediate change barrel system, a quick change system having been adopted in the form of a single bolt under the handguard, fixing the heavy 16-inch free-floating cold hammer forged barrel to the bolt assembly.

I’m still sitting here scratching my head and wondering, “why?” I mean, I get that this is a natural brand extension of the ARX line, but the 200 lacks every single feature that Beretta fanboys were pointing to as proof that their Chosen One firearm was superior. The gun is no more ambidextrous than any other standard AR-10. The barrel change system is gone, replaced by something closer to the SCAR way of doing things. And it still looks more like a Super Soaker than a real firearm.

As for accuracy, there’s not much of note. “In terms of accuracy the new 7.62×51 mm rifle exceeded company expectations, obtaining a 1.5 MOA accuracy at 100 m using match-grade ammunition, a performance in line with designated marksman rifles,” the article boasts. That might sound great to a lot of people, but as someone who refuses to keep anything that groups over 1 MoA with normal ammo in their safe, no thank you.

Meh? Meh.


  1. avatar jwtaylor says:

    “brass being always ejected on the left.”
    Surely not. I am missing something here. Right?

    1. avatar Nick Leghorn says:

      Pretty sure the reporter got it wrong. The picture clearly shows it on the right.

      1. avatar jwtaylor says:

        Saw that too. Still scratching my head. I can understand reporters getting things like 5.45vs5.56 wrong, but not left vs. right.

    2. avatar John L. says:

      It looks from the pic like it ejects to starboard.

      Left or right depends on which end of the rifle you’re looking from. Perhaps the reporter chose an … unwise … vantage point.

    3. avatar Gov. William J. Le Petomane says:

      It only ejects to the left in the case that you’re the one being shot at. In which case I doubt you’d care nearly as much about the direction the brass is flying as you would which way the bullet is flying.

    4. avatar Mark R Young says:

      Glad I was not the only one to catch that.

  2. avatar Detroit Medic says:

    To each their own, all day everyday.

    But man that thing is so ugly. Which I find shocking because the 92 is a beautiful gun.

    I’m not a fan of its functionality, but the images of an Inox 92 and a hot rust blue 1911 are deep Jungian archetypes of what handguns are in my mind.

    It’s like Enzo Ferrari designing an Edsel. What the hell happened over there?

    1. avatar int19h says:

      You have to admit that they’re improving. The old one looked like a pregnant hippo, now it’s more of a pregnant buffalo.

  3. avatar michael kennedy says:

    I jumped on the .22 version because the early videos from shot show said you would be able to change the ejection ports.

    Nope. Not on my gun. Also when you pull too hard to extend the stock, it pops right off. It may weigh little but it feels big and clunnky.

    The only plus I give it is that for the .22 version, it can take the same mags as the Colt and HK .22 rifles since they come out of the same factory.

    1. avatar Aerindel says:

      Yep, its only the .223 version that does that.

  4. avatar WRH says:

    Bloated pig comes to mind.

  5. avatar Anonymous says:

    If I didn’t know any better I’d have thought they were 3d printed.

    There is so much plastic, I bet I could print most of one.

  6. avatar Dracon1201 says:

    I bet it retains the horrible trigger, lol Beretta putting out such a fail. It’s almost everything I don’t want in a gun. I have high hopes for the MCX.

  7. avatar joe_thousandaire says:

    I don’t see how this is any uglier than an AR.

    1. avatar younggun21 says:

      Well the UGG boot stock for one. Then you take the oversized receiver and couple that with the obnoxiously sized polymer hand guard that is wholly un-functional and it looks pretty ugly to me. but to each their own.

    2. avatar GRW says:

      Then stay right where you are, the reeducation bus will be coming to pick you up. All you will need is $59.99 for the shipping of your free AR tinted goggles and your 16″, 18lb red-tac-dot-lite-lzr-whizzbang combo (don’t get it wet, feed it after midnight or fire the weapon with it attached, the internals work loose).

      Always remember a $300 used no-name “AR” is better than all battletested rifles, no exceptions, all other weapons make you less of a man, except if your a woman then they promote facial and arm hair growth.

      The Russian stuff is unreliable, the Italian ugly, the German and British under engineered.

      All hail Armalite, slayer of demons, lover of Goddess’s, conqueror of…. well that’s not important. Kabosh!

      *For those who didn’t get it and are offended right now. Can I just say from the bottom of my heart, you chose the wrong platform and you should feel bad.

      1. avatar Yellow Devil says:

        The AR system, far from being perfect, is still a pretty good rifle with excellent profile, ergonomics and weight balance. This coming from someone who owns an AKM and M-14 style platform, as well as shot countless other platforms.

  8. avatar Terry in Oregon says:

    60 years to come up with something better than a FAL and this is the best a modern company like beretta can come up with. Yeah gonna stick with my FAL.

    1. avatar GRW says:

      I think companies could make something just as good, it’s that the military/political requirements mean you have to use their choice of caliber, it has to be ambidextrous, a 10 year old girl has to be able to fire it all day without a sore shoulder (even though we wouldn’t ever ask one to in the west). It also must have 15 picatinny rails even though we’ll only issue one piece of equipment that only works on the top, can’t be a bullpup because we need to pay for a carbine in 20 years at jacked up prices etc etc etc.

      Accuracy and reliability are optional for initial run (the defense secretary has played COD, just call in an air strike) it can be improved over the 30 years at additional cost if need be.

      Almost like that all results in the b***d child of compromise and corporate welfare rather than the best weapon we can make. Been that way since the 5.56 was standardized.

  9. avatar John L. says:

    They kind of remind me of some tropical fish I had as a kid. Gouramis, I believe.

    1. avatar anaxis says:

      Hey, you’re right; that’s a very apt comparison. “Gourami” even sounds like something the macaronis would nickname the rifle.

  10. avatar younggun21 says:

    Yeah the looks coupled with the fact that it underperforms in accuracy testing compared to most available AR-10 style rifles (not to mention the price tag difference) makes this a no go. Why pay more for an ugly version of an AR-10 with the same or LESS features if you take compatibility into account? At the very least with an AR-10 you get to take advantage of the vast market for AR parts.

    1. avatar John L. says:

      “Why pay more for an ugly version of an AR-10 with the same or LESS features if you take compatibility into account?”

      Some folks will pay a lot for a nameplate, I suppose. Their money, their choice.

      Me, I went for an M1 Garand in .308 instead. (The safe needed a firearm that actually takes clips…)

      1. avatar younggun21 says:

        Very true. I guess I’m coming at this from a “bang for your buck” or pragmatic standpoint. I suppose that Beretta has a group of loyal customers that love the brand. I just don’t see them making a living on that thought. Companies like H&K have some iconic firearms that get a cult following because of their use in special operations groups like the MP-5, PSG-1, USP line and recently the 416 in US special forces. I don’t see you getting a lot more for your money here and there is the problem of support in terms of gear. Proprietary parts are going to be a problem and if only one military in the world adopts it, there is no market incentive to produce innovative upgrades to the platform.

        1. avatar John L. says:

          I hear you re bang / buck ratios. Some brands can make a living at it, Harley-Davidson being the most obvious one to come to mind.

          However … in order for HD to survive, they did have to improve their quality. All of the old Harley jokes linger (Why do the Harleys park on the dirt? Public service – keeping the dust down.) but they have far better quality than they used to. Basically they’re like modern 1911’s – the engine is an old design, fundamentally, but made with modern manufacturing methods & materials and the other bits (eg electronics) are modern if hidden.

          Beretta might be able to live off the name plate for a while, but it will have to be backed up by solid products. And they have to be attractive enough to, frankly, maintain or expand their customer base as the old customers die or otherwise move out of the market.

          I wish them luck. But I don’t this rifle will do that for them.

      2. avatar anaxis says:

        I have a Beretta-made, CAI-assembled 30-06 Garand (Italian barrel, receiver, gas-system, with USGI trigger-group, bolt/magazine internals & NOS furniture), and it cost roughly half of what a vintage Springfield would’ve set me back for.
        I guess occasionally being a Beretta doesn’t command the premium like these new plastic polished-turds do.

  11. avatar Aerindel says:

    1.5 MOA doesn’t sound like much but its a huge improvement over the ARX-100 which in beretta’s own words is designed for 3-5 MOA.

    And the quick change barrel system is irrelevant anyway since the still unreleased caliber conversions for the ARX-100 cost as much as an entire AR.

    But I actually like the way it looks a lot. Not enough to buy one, MSRP will no doubt be around $3k.

    1. avatar Jason says:

      You are correct. The arx100 is pretty god awful and i wouldn’t want to trust it making any shot over 150 meters, it actually would shoot a 4moa group, even with a good scope. If they can make a platform that shoots 1.5 moa with the .308 or 7.62 nato, that is light years ahead.

  12. avatar Dustin says:

    This kind of petty silliness is what the gun market has become. It’s a gun. In .308. Made by Beretta. You want it or not? I’ve got a Saiga .308 and an RFB already. Is there something inherently terrible about this rifle that makes it worthless for it’s intended purpose? Whatever, it’s just another gun. The fact that they made this “line” in .308 means it’s the first one that might actually be worth buying! If you want a rifle in .308, you like this one, the price is right, it doesn’t blow up when you shoot it, it’s at least marginally accurate; good buy! There are plenty of guns I don’t have. Because they’re pretty much all the same where it counts.

    1. avatar Craig says:

      I think it depends more on the author/speaker than the times. The M14 was the standard Camp Perry gun well into the 90’s, about 30 years after both the AR15 and the M16 were introduced.

  13. avatar Don in PA says:

    These ARX look like stretched out cats.

  14. avatar Rusty Chains says:

    Ya know there is a competition for the worlds ugliest dog, well this is a solid contender for worlds ugliest rifle.

  15. avatar Steve Clark says:

    It’s different enough to get a second look anyway.

  16. avatar Accur81 says:

    Not a single gun in your safe groups over 1.5 MOA? Interesting. You must not own any 12 gauge shotguns, slug guns, most pistol caliber carbines, most .22 LRs, and virtually every pistol ever made, almost all revolvers and many lever action guns.

    1. avatar Roy says:

      LOL. I was just reading an article where Nick was talking about his 9mm Sig MPX. Hyperbole maybe? I dunno, but I feel like I can remember reading some other articles he wrote where he was talking about some other pretty impressive rifles he personally owns that were 1MOA or better.

  17. avatar Bill Kohnke says:

    Fat is the new svelte.

  18. avatar Barstow Cowboy says:

    It reminds me of when they give Ned and Jimbo rifles in South Park, their rifles always look like mutant AR’s.

  19. avatar Desert Ranger Tycho says:

    How much does it weigh? Everyone makes fun of me for spending the money on an FN Scar 17S until they pick it up. Weight matters!

    Just checked the article. Unloaded it is 9.9 lbs!!! My Scar is 2lbs lighter! I don’t see any saving graces to this rifle.

    1. avatar PeterK says:

      Yeah I really really want a SCAR. I have heard so so many good things.

      1. avatar Desert Ranger Tycho says:

        Not sure what you heard but I love mine. Geissele Trigger is a must! Rocks out to 750 meters accurately. It’s not a tack driver but for the weight savings it is worth it.

    2. avatar Roy says:

      Wow. I’ve never even held a SCAR 17, so I didn’t realize they were so light for a .308 rifle. 7.9lbs is really impressive. No wonder special forces have such a bonor for the SCAR-H.

      1. avatar Desert Ranger Tycho says:

        While I can’t speak for other people’s “extreme happiness” for a rifle I love that the scar weighs half of my friend’s AX. Granted he can shoots tacks out to 900meters but at least I can carry mine around without slipping a disk.

  20. avatar PeterK says:

    Yeah, I wish I could get past the looks, but with certain things, I just can’t get past the looks. Like the beretta arx’s. Nope nope nope nope nope.

  21. No double standards put the DC politicians on Obamacare and SS.Thanks for your support and vote.Pass the word.

    1. avatar John L. says:

      Somehow I don’t think Obama is responsible for the Beretta under discussion.

    2. avatar Matt in FL says:

      Your comments are tolerable when it’s at least on-topic. When you post the same word-for-word comment in multiple threads, that’s spamming. Stop it.

  22. avatar Roy says:

    I like the ARX line. It’s not near as sexy and hollywood sci-fi friendly as the Beretta CX4 storm, but I still like the overall look. We’ve practically reached the zenith of small arms advancement and where getting to the place where future firearms are all gonna look the same by virtue of how they work. It’s tough to differentiate between SCARS, ACRs, XCRs, Brens, B&Ts etc in this day and age to the uninitiated. The ARX is definitely a unique take on modern rifles.

    1.5 MOA is pretty good for a military grade semi-auto DMR. In line or better than Dragunov SVDs, SR-25, PSG-1, etc.

  23. avatar clickboom says:

    “but as someone who refuses to keep anything that groups over 1 MoA with normal ammo in their safe, no thank you.”

    You don’t have any ak’s?


  24. avatar Galtha58 says:

    I own several Beretta firearms and I have to admit the two in the picture are not attractive at all. Seems like the company has lost one of their best features with these two. Though if they are still well built and reliable I suppose that is a plus. But the 1.5 MOA with match grade ammo seems like the accuracy is really not that great. So, I would pass on either one of these if I were in the market for a weapon of this type.

  25. avatar Not Jimbo says:

    Can we get someone else to do the gun reviews? With Leghorn it’s all “I think it’s ugly, it must be bad” or “I don’t like it, it must be bad”.

  26. avatar K-Bizz says:

    Is this one “unusually powerful” too?

  27. avatar Royal Tony says:

    I find the rampant fat-shaming of this rifle to be quite triggering.

  28. avatar Out_Fang_Thief says:

    This seems to be Beretta’s knock-off of the FN SCAR. Looks like one anyway. You would think the Italians could muster a better effort for an original design. I mean, they’re only famous for it. So, is imitation really the sincerest form of flattery, or is it just an economically prudent business decision to mimic the successful design of your competition?

  29. avatar DaveC says:

    Now, now everyone. We all know that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. And sometimes a child has a face that only a mother can love. I have never understood the publics appeal to most of the “great” artists (Andy Warhol??). So, let us not be too overly critical. I mean, if it is good enough for the Italian army…well, need I go there?

  30. I got what you mean, thanks for posting. Woh I am happy to
    find this website through google.

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