Savage vs Remington: Which is Better?

There are some rifle manufacturers that just spring to mind, regardless of what the specific topic is. If the conservation has to do with rifles and ammunition, then the chances are good that Remington or Savage will be mentioned at least once.

So let’s highlight these two icons with a brief comparison of where they began, how things stand today, as well some of their more popular products.

Savage Rifles

Origins, history and notable achievements

Savage Arms has seen it all and just about produced it all too. Rifles, handguns, and ammunition, Savage Arms hit the ground running in 1894, producing just about any firearms-related product you can think of, and put together the first hammerless lever-action rifle, the Model 1895.

The company earned its stripes during both World Wars when it produced a variety of military weapons that many enthusiasts would recognise today.

Fast forward into the 21st Century and their famous AccuTrigger was born. One could say it well and truly put Savage on the map, being a first-of-its-kind product and paved the way forward in terms of Savage being a leader in customization.

Sure, the Model 110 introduced back in 1957 was an equally inspiring moment for Savage, but the AccuTrigger seemed to offer so much more to the hunting fraternity.

The company’s history is sadly not without issues as it was passed around between various owners during the 60s and early 80s, before officially filing for bankruptcy in 1988.

It was not all doom and gloom though as Savage rebounded by focusing solely on the production of bolt-action rifles, much to the appreciation of hunters and has since gained in strength.

Savage is now owned by a management-led team of investors who purchased the company from Vista Outdoors in 2019.

Some noticeable rifles that are produced by Savage arms and ones which we will cover in this article are:

  • 110 High Country in .308 Win
  • 110 Apex Hunter XP in .223 Rem
  • Axis II XP Stainless in 7mm-08 Rem

Remington Rifles

Origins, history and notable achievements

Remington served its country well through both world wars, supplying many types of firearms and ensuring the US military was always a force to be reckoned with, ever since its creation in 1816.

Eyebrows were raised and interests amongst hunters peaked in 1962 when Remington first developed it’s now flagship Model 700 bolt-action rifle.

As they say, “the rest is history” with the Model 700 not only firmly setting Remington in as one of the leaders in the hunting firearm industry but many other manufacturers developed their own rifles based off of the Model 700’s reliability and accuracy.

Remington, although older than Savage, followed a similar path in terms of its development and progress in the world of firearms. However, its business track record is not without a few more difficulties than its American counterpart.

Sadly, Remington changed hands many times in the past and in March 2018 it filed for bankruptcy. Bizarrely, only two months after filing for bankruptcy, a restructuring plan was approved which gave new hope to the company.

However, it did not last long and on July 28th, 2020, Remington once again filed for bankruptcy and its assets were divided up and sold.

The brand name was purchased by Vista Outdoor, the same parent company that offloaded Savage Arms previously. There are now two companies making use of the Remington name, Remington Ammunition and Remington Arms, LLC.

The Remington reputation still lives on in many quality rifles, and we thought it only fitting to shed some light on them and compare these rifles to those of its Savage counterparts:

  • Model 700 SPS Tactical AAC-SD in .308 Win
  • Model 700 SPS in 7mm-08 Rem
  • Model 783 Synthetic Heavy Barrel in .223 Rem

Head-to-Head Model Comparisons

Remington vs Savage .308

Remington: Model 700 SPS Tactical AAC-SD in 308 Win

Remington Model 700 SPS Tactical Bolt-Action .308 Winchester

Certainly, an impressive rifle for those tactical fanatics. The 20” heavy barrel is finished off with a threaded muzzle, ideal for muzzle breaks and suppressors. This rifle comes with a 1 in 10 twist rate increasing the bullet stability.

It comes with a factory set trigger pull of 3 ½ lbs. which can be adjusted to 5 ½ lbs. improving its appeal as a customizable rifle.

The rifle is 39 ¾” in length with an average weight of 7 ½ lbs. The barrel is carbon steel with a matte blue finish and the stock is a Hogue Overmolded Ghillie Green pillar-bedded stock.

Savage: 110 High Country in .308

Savage targets those backcountry hunters looking to take down the large game at long distances with the 110 High Country. The spiral-fluted barrel is designed to maximize the rifle’s accuracy, while the AccuFit system increases customization by changing the length of pull and comb height.

Savage’s AccuTrigger helps to improve the shooter’s trigger action, making for precise shots over long distances.

A threaded muzzle finishes off the 22” long stainless-steel barrel, while the TrueTimber Strata synthetic stock finishes off the overall appearance of the rifle.

Savage definitely had hunters in mind when designing this rifle, by giving it an ultra-slim ceramic Cerakote finish, which ensures it is protected against corrosion and harsh weather conditions.


Verdict – Draw

These are two great rifles that were built for two very different purposes. The Remington focuses on tactical requirements, and Savage lends itself to hunters. Now that’s not to say either rifle couldn’t be used for hunting and vice versa on the tactical side, after all the .308 is a proven caliber in both categories.

Ballistic readings are similar, so the final decision was based purely on the aesthetics and how each rifle is finished off to suit its main purpose.


Remington vs Savage 7mm-08 Rem

Remington: Model 700 SPS in 7mm-08 Rem

The Special Purpose Synthetic (SPS) Model 700 by Remington is packaged as an affordable rifle for the everyday hunter, without cutting back on quality and performance. An out-of-the-box ready-to-go rifle, well as far as Remington is concerned.

Features include an ergonomically designed synthetic stock, carbon steel barrel, and receivers drilled and tapped for scope mounts. A sleek design without the frills and fancy curves or holes to distract the shooter from the task at hand.

The overall length is 43 5/8” with an average weight of 7 ¼ lbs. and a barrel length of 24”. Specifically, the 7mm-08 comes with a twist rate of 9 ¼ and length of pull at 13 3/8”.

Savage: Axis II SP Stainless in 7mm-08 Rem

I am not pointing any fingers here, but there may have been some peeking over the fence when this rifle was made because it follows an almost identical appeal to Remington’s Model 700 SPS.

Savage even states on its website that “The redesigned AXIS II XP Stainless package rifle offers hunters even better out-of-the-box performance at the same affordable price.”

Features of the Axis II include improved ergonomics, the custom AccuTrigger for enhanced accuracy, a stainless-steel button rifle’s barrel plus the bonus of a factory-mounted, bore-sighted Bushnell Banner 3-9x40mm scope.

Which is always handy for someone literally looking for a rifle that they can pick up from the store, ready to pack on their hunting trip.

Finer details of the Axis II are a total length of 42.5” including the barrel length of 22” and a length of pull of 13.75”. The stock is synthetic with a black matte finish weighing in a total of 7.34 lbs.


Verdict – Remington

I am not quite sure who the “fence peeker” in this scenario was, as both rifles and their descriptions are almost identical. This makes the comparison even harder than usual for me to pick one that comes out clearly ahead.

I almost gave it to Savage simply because they include a Bushnell scope, which truly does mean there is nothing more to add to it, but the Remington sneaked ahead on a slightly better twist rate coming from a barrel that is 2” longer.

Other than that, it really was a close one to call.


Remington vs Savage .223 Rem

Remington: Model 783 Synthetic Heavy Barrel in .223 Rem

Right off the bat, it should be mentioned that the Model 783 comes in two variations for the .223 caliber. There is an option of having a barrel length of 16 ½” with an overall length of 43 5/8”, or the second option which is a barrel length of 24” and an overall length of 43 5/8”.

Remington introduced the heavier barrel option to further improve the accuracy and performance of the well-known 783 models. Those dedicated to shooting .223 calibers, especially at vermin, will always welcome improved accuracy and performance.

The stock is dual pillar bedded, with a crossfire trigger and detachable steel box magazine that holds five rounds. It has a 9 in 1 twist rate from a carbon steel barrel and synthetic stock.

The weight of 8 lbs. is understandable with the heavier barrel but should not make for a big difference when firing the .223 Rem with a fitted suppressor.

Savage: 110 Apex Hunter XP in .223 Rem

Savage Arms 110 Apex Hunter XP Bolt-Action Rifle

Savage packed their Apex Hunter XP with some impressive technology to create an exceptional rifle. For those that know, the floating bolt head is a piece of engineering that truly enhances accuracy and performance. The floating bolt head allows for 100% engagement of the lugs and rear face of the cartridge.

Couple the floating bolt head with the AccuTrigger and precision button-rifled barrel in a .223 caliber, and you have yourself a deadly rifle with pinpoint accuracy.

To help with customization, the length of pull can be adjusted, and the Apex Hunter XP is designed with modern ergonomics.

Savage again tempts consumers into purchasing their rifles as it pairs the 110 Apex Hunter XP with a 3-9x40mm Vortex Crossfire II scope fitted and factory bore-sighted ready to hunt.

Specs of the Apex Hunter XP read as follows, the overall length is 40.25” with a 20” barrel weighing in at 7.67 lbs. is complimented by a synthetic stock with a black matte finish. A twist rate of 1 in 9 and length of pull at 13.75”.


Verdict – Savage

It is the attention to detail and engineering that persuaded me to give this one to Savage. The floating bolt head concept is a great sign of how much Savage is focused on ensuring their rifles offer the hunter optimal performance.

Anyone picking up the 110 Apex Hunter XP in .223 Remington is going to expect a certain level of performance, and the Apex will not disappoint.


Conclusion

It is almost scary how similar these two companies are, from their creation back in the 1800s, contributions in World Wars, tough financial times, right up to the products they manufacture and how they are marketed.

Who knows what the future holds for these two brands and if they will keep developing in parallel tendencies, or take new innovative directions. We only hope they continue to focus on producing reliable firearms that are so loved by hunters around the globe.

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