First Look: 30 Remington AR, the Newest AR Cartridge For Big Game

30rar_r15500x137 I’m at a new product seminar being hosted by Remington and its sister companies Marlin, DPMS, Bushmaster and H&R. At this morning’s session we learned about a lot of new items on tap for 2009, one of the most interesting being a cartridge that Remington has developed for big-game hunting with an AR.

It is called the 30 Remington AR, and as you might have guessed it is a .30-caliber round with the same overall length as a .223, meaning it will function in the R-15 line of rifles, which is much trimmer and lighter than the larger AR-10-sized R-25 rifles.

The idea behind the product is to give .308 Win. type performance in an AR-15 sized upper. The ballistics charts for the new round show give figures for a 125-gr. round in the 30 Rem. AR—or .30 RAR as I’ll call it here for short—versus a 165-grain bullet in .308 Win. Velocities are about the same for both rounds. The .30 RAR exits at 2,800 fps vs. 2,700 fps for the .308 Win. At 400 yards, the .30 RAR is going 1,816 fps to the .308’s 1,966.

The big difference is in energy. The .30 RAR in this bullet weight has about 500 ft-lb. less of energy than the 165-gr. .308 at any distance. A substantial amount less and one that will certainly have an effect on game in the field—but how much of a difference we’ll just have to see once we start killing some deer with it.

The good news here, however, is that AR fans who want a lighter weight rifle in a big-game cartridge have a new option to look at. The R-15 is said to weight about 7.5 pounds, a full pound less than the R-25 in .308 Win.

I’ll post some pictures and give a bigger report once I get back from the range this afternoon.

—John Snow