America’s Most Popular Bolt-Action RiflesSeptember 6, 2023
The AR-15 is the best selling rifle in the United States. According to reporting from the Washington Post, there are an estimated 20 million civilian-owned AR-15 style rifles in the U.S., and most of them were made and sold in the last decade. Despite the surging popularity of semi-automatic, military-style rifles, there is still a large market for more traditional hunting and target rifles – particularly those with a bolt action. (Here is a look at America’s 10 most popular semi-automatic rifles.)
An older design, bolt-action rifles lack the high rate of fire semi-automatics are capable of. However, mechanically simpler than semi-automatics, bolt-action rifles are less prone to malfunction. Simplicity also makes bolt actions more precise when it comes to shot placement. Though semi-automatic rifle accuracy has improved in recent years, with fewer moving parts, the bolt-action platform has inherently greater accuracy potential.
Not only popular among hunters and target shooters, sniper teams in the U.S. military also use bolt-action rifles in situations where maximum precision is a priority. (These are the 26 guns in the U.S. Army’s arsenal.)
Using a report from Gungenius, which compiled sales data from GunBroker.com, an online firearms marketplace, 24/7 Wall St. identified the 10 most popular bolt-action rifles in America. Guns are ranked based on 2022 online sales, though exact sales figures were not provided.
Many rifle models on this list include variants available in a wide range of different calibers that are tailored to specific uses, including long-range precision and big-game hunting. Though the estimated base price of many of these firearms can be as low as a few hundred dollars, higher-end variations sell for many times that amount. Most of the guns on this list are manufactured in the United States, though some, like the Tikka T3, are made abroad and imported to the U.S.
Click here to see the most popular bolt-action rifles in America.
Click here to read our detailed methodology.
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