Remington Versa Max Tactical Shotgun Sneak Peek

Remington brings to the table a new, patented gas system that will make the Versa Max Tactical shotgun a weapon upon which you can bet your life.

Last week, I traveled up to Remington’s research and development facility in Elizabethtown, Kentucky, to tour the facility and try out the new Versa Max tactical shotgun. I had heard reports about the Versa Max, but I had not handled one until a few days ago. When the daylong event was over, my assessment of their tactical version is that the gun has the potential to overtake the competitive tactical shotgun market.

A handful of gun writers toured the facility and met Scott Franz, the director of research and technology, and Michael Keeney, the director of firearms development for “Big Green.”

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When they brought out the tactical version of the Versa Max and passed it around, and then showed us a disassembled Versa Max, they had the full attention of this hands-on guy. I was quick to ask Franz if any of their reverse engineering technology was employed in the development of the Versa Max.

“It’s pretty obvious,” Franz said with a grin. “From a technical standpoint, we look at what our competitors do and improve it. The innovation is the gas system, and it’s 100 percent American-made.”

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The disassembled shotgun in front of me bore a very clear resemblance to the Benelli M4—but on steroids. The biggest change that Remington brings to the table is a new, patented gas system that ensures the Versa Max Tactical will function with a wide array of loadings in the harshest of environments.

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A few minutes later, we walked to their indoor range and fired everything from dove loads to breaching loads to 3-1/2-inch turkey loads. No problems there. After lunch, we headed to a local gun club to shoot a few cases of shells. Throwing all skeet and trap etiquette aside, I thumbed seven rounds into the extended magazine tube and put one in the pipe. It took me a few shots to get used to the 24-inch barrel, but then I ran a gun-full of rounds while standing at the No. 4 station and shooting the close birds coming from the high house. It was satisfying to watch the orange orbs turn to black dust until the gun went dry.

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When somebody said “sporting clays,” everybody else grabbed the longer-barreled guns and started walking to the first station. I grabbed the Versa Max Tactical and thought it would be interesting to give it a whirl. My old friend Gordy Krahn, from North American Hunting Club, was in fine form, and only missed one target on the sporting clays range that I can recall. I, on the other hand, shot my normal 60 percent average with the Versa Max. It probably didn’t help my score that I even tried to shoot one of the stations from the hip. The real reason that I did this was to see if I could make the gun malfunction. Shooting inertia-driven guns without being supported by a shoulder is asking for problems, so I was curious if the gas-operated Versa Max would work in a similar situation. It did.

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The Versa Max Tactical made it through the sporting clays without a hitch. The word from Remington is that they will start shipping their Versa Max Tactical in December. Stay tuned for more details in an upcoming issue of Guns & Weapons for Law Enforcement, where I’ll run this gun with a wide variety of tactical and sporting loads.

Load Comments
  • Correction on the barrel length. It’s a 22-inch barrel. The MSRP is $1,399, but the folks at Remington tell me the “street price” could be about $200 less.

  • Andy

    Dang for sure that is a Benelli M4 with a longer barrel.

    Wonder why 24″? Will they let the after market community use their patented gas system for the production of shorter barrels?

    Any word on the price?