As the bolt action pistol market heats up we’re starting to see established players dip their toes in the water. Bergara, a relatively traditional company making wonderfully accurate and high-quality rifles at good price points, is teasing a pistol build here at SHOT Show 2020.
This little guy is a 7-inch .22 LR, built on the recently-released B-14 R action. Apparently, if Bergara goes into production with pistol builds, the plans include a shorty .22 LR and a shorty 300 Blackout. Most likely 9-inch barrels for each. Threaded for suppressed use, of course.
Bergara’s bolt action pistols will be built on a lightweight aluminum chassis with a pistol brace like the SB Tactical FS1913 brace seen here.
The gun at SHOT Show is an early prototype and a bit of a teaser to judge interest levels and customer reaction. If Bergara moves forward with the project, pistols in .22 LR and 300 BLK should be ready for sale by the NRA Annual Meetings this spring.
I shot the B-14 R at Range Day and was shocked by how smooth and precise the action is. It’s comparable or better than some of the extremely expensive .22 LR actions designed to fit the Remington 700 footprint. Smooth, quick, reliable, and fast, I had no problem rapidly making a very tight group on steel at 100 yards. (A video from shooting the B-14 R is at bottom)
As .22 LR has typically achieved within 5% of its maximum velocity potential in a 9-inch barrel, and as 300 Blackout was ostensibly designed with a 9-inch barrel length in mind, the pistol format makes absolutely perfect sense for these cartridges. In many cases, the shorter, stiffer barrel will be even more accurate than a longer, heavier barrel that exhibits increased harmonics and heat-induced POI shift.
Here’s to hoping we see Bergara pistols available for sale this spring!