Firearms

Beretta Moves to Tennessee Update and New Model Review

Beretta ARX100 rifle

Cheaper Than Dirt! recently had a chance to talk with officials at Beretta and check on the progress of the move to Tennessee we all read about a few months ago, and take a quick run through some of the new products for 2014. The result: we got even more than we had bargained for!

Beretta 692 shotgun
A competition over and under should have as much weight as possible in the receiver area, to provide higher stability before and after each shot. Better stability, more precision during handling and better balance, the new 692 features a 1.3mm wider receiver (with respect to the 682 Gold); thus allowing better handling and control.

The new plant will be in Gallatin Tennessee, which is about 20 minutes outside of Nashville. Cheaper Than Dirt! wanted to update our readers as to the progress of the move, so we reached out to the folks at Beretta and requested a few pictures. Unfortunately, Beretta told us that currently the new site is still rolling hills and lines on paper. It makes sense; this was not a move that had been planned for years. Instead, it is a move prompted by the draconian lawmakers in Maryland. To set up an entire new facility, with manufacturing capabilities and staff members, takes more than a few months.

Currently, Beretta has mock ups of what the plant will look like, and plans to break ground this fall. In the beginning, the plant will feature manufacturing and engineering. However, the first two things that need to happen between breaking ground and turning the lights on will be developing the infrastructure itself and hiring the key people necessary to take it from foundation to full deployment. This will include engineers, key staff to ensure the machines are properly laid out and a staff to hire the remainder of the required employees—today’s estimates have this number at around 300 people. Beretta’s current thinking has the plant fully operational in 2015.

This is not only good news for gun enthusiasts in Tennessee, but also shows the direction Beretta has been moving in the last several years. In an interview with Beretta, officials confirmed to Cheaper Than Dirt! that its engineering and R&D departments in the United States have grown several times over in the last seven to eight years. This has resulted in products such as the Nano, U22 Neos and now includes the A300 Outlander shotgun, Pico and ARX100.

Beretta Pico

Super thin, ultra concealable, and easy to configure, the Beretta Pico sets a new standard for the micro compact carry pistol. The thinnest .380 auto
made—by a full millimeter—the snag-free Pico’s slide and frame is a true 18 mm at its widest point.

Manufacturing

It is typically easier to start manufacturing a new product in a new facility than to relocate manufacturing of a current product. Beretta’s original plans were to manufacture the ARX line in Tennessee, believing the residents making the product should not be barred from also owning the product. However, at this time, it is currently too early to foretell what the political landscape will look like and definitively say which products will be manufactured at any specific U.S. plant.

As with any large corporation, Beretta is still ironing out some of the details and hopes to have a more definitive plan some time next month. Beretta has assured Cheaper Than Dirt! that it will be among the first to hear of the news, so be sure to check back.

Made in the USA

Introduced at the beginning of the year, the ARX100 started shipping in May 2014. A noteworthy fact of the ARX100 is that the barrel is manufactured right here in the U.S.—a first for Beretta. Another new Beretta product made in the U.S. will be the Pico, a sub-compact pocket pistol chambered in .380. The Pico is the little brother to another U.S. manufactured pistol, Beretta’s 9mm Nano, which has been a top-selling pistol for the last several years. A key shotgun is Beretta’s A300 Outlander, which is also a U.S. manufactured product.

To be fair, the A300 is also manufactured in other locations around the globe. Manufacturing facilities build A300s for their local market, which means in the North America, they are made in Maryland. Part of the reason behind that decision is the fact the A300 is considered a price-point offering aimed at the hunting market or someone new to the shooting sports who may not be ready—or in a position—to spend $1,700-2,000 for a shotgun, but still wants the quality and reliability typically associated with owning a Beretta.

Tactical and 3-gun

Beretta ARX100 rifle
The ARX100 is the ultimate evolution of the modern sporting rifle. Designed for ease of use and ultimate reliability, the ARX100’s feature set is unparalleled.

Beretta is one of the few companies manufacturing all three guns used by serious competitors of 3-gun. Complementing the ARX100 are Beretta’s 1301 Tactical and 1301 Competition. If the first thing that comes to mind with the words Beretta and competition is clay shooting, you would be right. However, 3-gun takes a shot at busting clays from an entirely different angle. The 1301 Competition is a black (shot)gun designed for 3-gun competition and more than worthy of doing whatever it takes to run one through it paces. Rumor has it, that a certain Cheaper Than Dirt! writer has a complete 3-gun setup on its way, so be sure to check back for a complete range report in the near future!

2014 has marked the year where Beretta has taken a step back by expanding or refining product lines to fill in the gaps consumers have clamored for engineering to address—particularly in the areas of upland and competition shooting. As evidence, although launched last year in Europe, the Beretta 692 Competition Grade over-under shotgun finally made its way to our shores in 2014. The 692 was built on the legendary Model 682 which dominated for over a decade and features some exciting enhancements.

Major advances of the 692 and DT11 include replacing the stepped cones for restriction of the barrel to a barrel with a progressive conicity utilization. The new design uses a single step for the 692 and no steps at all for the DT11. The progressive restriction of the 692’s barrel provides a tighter and thus more predictable pattern. That is more than lip service for serious shooters. As proof, Kim Rhode, a five-time Olympic medalist—including three gold medals and several national championships and member of the U.S. Shooting Team—recently signed on with Beretta and selected the DT11.

Beretta 1301 Tactical shotgun
The 1301 Tactical is Beretta’s new gas operated semi-automatic shotgun designed for law enforcement and home defense.

Whatever your shooting pleasure Beretta not only has you covered, it has your back. In addition to a lineup that has something for every shooter, Beretta’s expansion to Tennessee was in response to Maryland lawmaker’s draconian rules imposed upon its citizens. Companies with that kind of moxy are the ones we, as shooters and supporters of the Second Amendment, need to be supporting. Of course the fact that Beretta offers some of the finest firearms on the market doesn’t hurt either.

Do you have a favorite Beretta? Have you been pining for a Model 692, DT11 or something else? Share your Beretta story in the comment section.

The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (34)

  1. I’m glad Baretta is creating jobs , we’re their products are appreciated , I feel sorry for the loss of maryland, but stupidity thrives in the north.

  2. My model 85f in 380 acp is a super reliable and accurate firearm. I have ran over 15k rounds through this in the past 10 years .

  3. From one Sgt. to another Glock has been around for 30 years still 10% that of Beretta and I love them both but truly two different animals. One’s a machine and ones a machine that’s a work of art.
    If Glock is so bad why is everyone and their cousin making metal/polymer guns? Enough!
    Am I the only one who would buy a tomcat in 380? Guess I’ll keep carrying my .32 tomcat.

  4. Let me know when they start hiring. I currently have a job but would love to be able to work for BERETTA

  5. Beretta is my favorite brand of firearms. I have an older Beretta 92 in 9MM that has been running trouble free for well over 20 years. I also have 2 PX’s, a full sized in 40 S&W that sits in my nightstand and occasionally is used as my car gun. My wife has a sub-compact PX in 9MM that is her usual CCW gun she keeps in her purse. My wife’s former CCW pistol, a 32ACP Tomcat she now keeps in her jewelry safe. One of my Berettas, a gun show find I couldn’t resist. A WW2 bring-back, a 6.5 Carcano manufactured by Beretta.

    My goal is to some day have a fine high grade Beretta O/U 12 ga shotgun. Currently I have Zoli and Franchi O/U’s which are both fine shotguns for their day. With both being close or over the quarter century mark in age. In the next few years I hope to add a modern functioning but classic looking wood stocked Beretta O/U. Strangely I even use a Beretta manufactured spreader choke tube in my Turkish made 12ga home defense riotgun.

    I hope some day to have the financial resources to afford a trip to Italy. The Beretta museum second only to the Vatican will be on my list of places to visit. I’m told Beretta’s museum has firearms dating back to the 1600’s.

  6. I purchased two Beretta “neos” .22 cal pistols and ventured the opinion that every household would have one given the chance to run a few rounds thru one.

    It has a full length picatinny rail on top (the action and barrel are under it), and it breaks down with an imbedded thumb nut in 10 seconds into 3 subcomponents, the picatinny with accessories, barrel and action, and the trigger and lower frame. It has 2 ten round mags with a thumb knob that one can press for ease of loading.

    The downside is having to bore-sight the iron sights and any optical accessories each time you take down the gun with the thumb nut.

  7. I can honestly say that I was lucky enough to be issued three of the
    the best pistols during my careers in the of Army and Law enforcement..
    (Army) The Colt 1911, ( Law enforcement) The Smith a Wesson Model 15, Masterpiece, and of course the Beretta 92f . All of these fine “Combat Weapons” have a place marked in history as the best of the best. I am lucky enough to afford all but the Colt 1911 ( I bought them from my agency). Maybe someday I will be able to get a Colt 1911 but until then I consider it an honor to have the other two.

  8. Firearms Instructor and I carry a 96, 92A2 and have owned the 92fs. We just returned from range day. Two Glocks malfunctioned. One malfunctions 3 + times. Glocks stove-piped. My Beretta has never done this…let alone malfunctioned. Its the difference of 300+ years of manufacturing compared to 13!

  9. Sad that it may come to that. Safe to say the firearm community is strong and loyal to the cause of freedom and common sense.
    Some put down the M9 but I love the workmanship and “How do you get that slide to be so smooth”? It’s like it slides on ball bearings the size of Atoms.

    1. Sorry must add, is it possible for Beretta to produce a 380 Tomcat?
      I do own metal/polymer pistols but love the Metal/alloy pocket pistols Beretta produce. A tip up barrel 380 would be great!

  10. Wish they had thought to move to Texas. Will be safer for any arms manufacturer due to what the ‘Draconian’ laws are actually leading to. Texas should prove to be a safer Christian hold-out area for what is to come and is not landlocked which would make it easier to continue operating.

  11. Welcome Beretta!

    We thank you for choosing Tennessee.

    I may hold off on a planned purchase until I can look over the “Pico”.
    It fits the bill for something I want!

  12. Was hoping your article might have addressed when the PICO would begin to ship. It was announced with fanfare in May 2013, and again early in 2014 at Shotshow. However, as of end June 2014, it still seems to be unavailable.

  13. I was hoping they would move and wish they had picked Central Florida.
    Oh well.
    I love your pistols and my M9 is the pistol I shoot the most acurrate of any pistol I own. I usually take home a target with a baseball size hole in it when I’m done. 10 ring no more.
    It all started with a 1936 M1934 and now I own 5 pocket pistols two full size and recently a ARX 160 in 22LR.
    I’m thinking ARX 100 next. All good investments. Hope the price comes down.

  14. Great job Beretta…move the factory to Tennessee out of Maryland. They don’t want you in Maryland. As for the Tennessee people, they will embrace you with open arm hospitality and buy your products by the truckload. I hope and pray that you thrive in Tennessee. Drink some Jack Daniels and relax. Welcome to the real South !!!

  15. The 92f was my issued duty weapon in Los Angeles for almost 3 decades . I never felt out gunned I just carried lots of ammo. Great gun. Very very reliable. I own it now.

  16. Two thumbs up to Beretta for having the good sense to get the heck out of
    “The Peoples Republic of Maryland”!

  17. Instead of Ranting and Raving about the Liberal Media about, your Liberal
    Maryland’s expulsion of Beretta to Tennessee. Why don’t just ask Beretta, directly about their decision on move.

    1. @ Secundius: I will assume your comment was directed at me since I seem to be the only one to have mentioned anything about the “Liberal Media” thus far. I have to say your comment does not appear to flow in response to the gist of anything I wrote, so please forgive me if it was not directed towards me; but in the event that it was:

      First, I was not “Ranting and Raving” about the “Liberal Media”. A written or verbal “Ranting and Raving” is hardly constituted by, nor accomplished in the single sentence I wrote.

      I did however calmly state with one sentence that the liberal media would essentially deprive the public of the knowledge they deserve in knowing how their government’s failed policies enticed a company to seek another state to build a new factory thus depriving the locals of that future economic prosperity. Again, that was hardly a rant, just merely a fact.

      Second, there was never an “expulsion of Beretta” by Maryland. As a matter-of-fact the author incorrectly stated Beretta’s intent to “move to Tennessee” at the top of his article. In reality Beretta will continue to maintain its headquarters in Maryland and build an additional new factory employing 300 in Tennessee. So no such conditions exist that would allow you to be correct when stating, “Maryland’s expulsion of Beretta to Tennessee”.

      And lastly, why would you write that Beretta should be asked directly about their decision to move? You’re being silly given the author clearly stated that Cheaper Than Dirt! recently spoke to officials at Beretta – thus indicating they were “directly asked”.

      You normally make more sense, so I’m going to assume you haven’t had your morning coffee yet or you tied on a good one last night and tried to play on the computer before bed.

  18. I get an extreme sense of satisfaction when I see these gun manufacturers stick to their threats and actually move plants out of these anti-gun states. Too bad the liberal media will never cover stories about its impact due to job losses and the local economy.

    As for Beretta, I can only speak to the M9 (92F) I carried as Military Police back in the day, and the rumors behind illegal bidding that landed Beretta the military contracts.

    That M9 felt like a monster in my mid-sized hands. I had always qualified expert on every military weapon I fired, but that Beretta was still a chore due to its massive size. Of course you never talked about it being too big for fear of being labeled a whimp. And because I was always able to win the case of beer for having the best score, no one was ever the wiser.

    For that reason though, I’ve never really looked at anything made by Beretta in a personal defense weapon and only carry Glock on duty now. I will however look into their Pico .380 as a possible ankle backup now.

    1. G-Man, I know this is kind of a late comment (just saw this thread) but I am retired USAF and feel the exact same with the feel of the M9. It never felt comfortable in my hand, as I have a good size palm but fairly stubby fingers.

      I highly recommend the PX Storm line! has a totally different feel and comes with replacement backstraps (I use the thinnest one).

      I have the PX Storm Compact .40 decocker model, and simply love it.
      It has fairly light recoil for a .40, decent sights and decent trigger in single action (though a little less reset throw would be nice) and mine is extremely accurate. Worth a try

    2. @ JTOLLACK: Actually your comment isn’t late at all. This is one of CTD’s more recent articles.

      I went and took a look at the PX Storm you recommended. I am in love. That is a nice looking series of which I had no idea existed. Thanks for the tip.

      I just picked up a Canik55 TP-9 (Desert Tan) for Father’s Day so I’ll have to wait a while to slip a PX Storm past the wife. But I am very serious about getting one now. Thanks again for taking the time to respond; otherwise I would never have known.

  19. I live about 15 miles from where the new plant is going to be built. I don’t care if I sweep floors or clean the bathrooms I’m going to try and get one of those new jobs…

  20. Good! They going where they’re wanted and the hell with these states that reject our right to keep and bear arms. They’d better learn that you get the good with the bad and if you look at the states that have trampled our second amendment rights they’re social sewers.

  21. I’m very happy to see Tennessee get Beretta’s investment in new facilities and employees and the Maryland anti-gun advocate lose and scramble to explain their loss. My next gun will be a Beretta

  22. I’ve never had a Beretta handgun, but their shotguns are the best. I’ve heard some of the military has dropped the Mosbergs and replaced them with Berettas. Good move

  23. Never much cared for their handguns.Just a matter of personal preferences.I have seen some quality in some of their scatter-gun offerings.
    I very heartily approve of the stance they are taking in this move.At least someone at management level in this country still has some cojones left.

  24. Never much cared for their handguns.Just a matter os personal preferences.I have seen some quality in some of their scatter-gun offerings.
    I very heartily approve of the stance they are taking in this move.At least someone at management level in this country still has some cojones left.

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