Remington VersaMax Sneak Preview

The first models won’t ship out for another month, but Cheaper Than Dirt! managed to get a sneak peek at Remington’s newest autoloading scattergun, the VersaMax. Waterfowlers and dove hunters have long wanted a semiautomatic shotgun that could reliably cycle a wide range of shotgun shells. In the past, it took much experimenting to find out what loads a particular shotgun would reliably cycle and feed, and you could forget about having a shotgun that was capable of reliably cycling both light 2 3/4″ 7/8 ounce target loads back to back with heavy 3 1/2″ 2 1/4 ounce magnum loads. Remington has found a solution however.

Any Load, Every Time, Anywhere. That’s Remington’s motto for the VersaMax. Remington incorporated their patented VersaPort Gas Piston System which utilizes only 2 moving parts in the entire gas system: dual gas pistons on either side of the action smoothly operate the bolt with each shot. The VersaPort system changes the number of ports that are open based on the length of the shell in the chamber. Shorter and lighter 2 3/4″ shells allow all 7 ports to be wide open and allows the gas system to extract the maximum pressure from the load. Longer 3″ shells block off 3 of the ports leaving only 4 open while the longest 3 1/2″ shells leave only 3 gas ports open.

The ability of the VersaPort system to automatically vary the size of the gas openings depending on the size of the shotgun shell enables a shooter to load shells of various lengths and power levels back to back in the magazine tube and fire them all without the need to adjust the shotgun between loads.

Above all, Remington wanted a supremely reliable shotgun when they designed the VersaMax. To that end, they put it through hell and back in testing. Waterfowlers know how important it is to have a shotgun that works under all manner of conditions. Remington engineers put more than a quarter of a million shells through a single VersaMax firing as many as 425 shells every day for more than a year. They tested it at temperatures as low as -20 degrees Fahrenheit and as high as 140 degrees Fahrenheit and experienced no failures whatsoever. They even fired more than 1,000 rounds as fast as they could reload and pull the trigger through a VersaMax, giving the barrel no time to cool, and still the gun functioned flawlessly.

Barrel Length Finish MSRP Estimated Ship Date
28″ Black Synthetic $1,399 September 2010
28″ Mossy Oak Duck Blind Camouflage $1,599 November 2010
26″ Black Synthetic $1,399 January 2011
26″ Realtree AP-HD Camouflage $1,399 January 2010

There will be 4 models of the VersaMax released in 12 gauge over the next 4-5 months. The initial 28″ model with the basic black synthetic stock should start arriving on retail shelves sometime in September of 2010 and will be quickly followed by the Mossy Oak Duck Blind Camouflage model in November of 2010, giving hunters plenty of time to practice with it prior to the spring turkey season.

In addition to being extremely reliable, the VersaMax is also very simple to disassemble and clean. It breaks down easily into 5 main components and can easily be assembled or disassembled in less than a minute. Remington’s patent pending “self cleaning” gas system has no O-rings, no gas piston seals, and no springs to foul. You can easily run through thousands of rounds without cleaning the shotgun. In fact, quality assurance engineers at Remington’s test facility did just that, firing more than 10,000 rounds in between disassembly and cleaning without a single failure. That’s reliability you can count on!

Waterfowlers know how harsh weather conditions can be when you’re trying to keep warm sitting in the duck blind. Freezing temperatures and howling winds make some shotguns difficult to operate while wearing heavy gloves, but the VersaMax features an enlarged trigger guard and oversized safety switch to make manipulation easy and sure.

In a departure from tradition, Remington used a new hard anodized aluminum receiver to make the VersaMax lighter and easier to carry on long hikes to and from the blind. Ergonomics are incredibly important for an accurate shotgun and this shotgun is no exception. The lighter weight of the VersaMax makes it fast and easy to mount the shotgun while the included shims make the drop and cast adjustable to fit nearly any shooter. The length of pull is also adjustable with the included kit, and super comb padded cheek piece set in the stock is fully adjustable for even more comfortable shooting.

Unlike many other bird guns, this new offering comes from the factory with interchangeable Hi-Viz fiber optic sights which allow the shooter to adjust them to suit their preference. Most other shotguns come only with a front bead.

Low recoil is very important when you’re spending all day out in the field. A softer shooting shotgun reduces shooter fatigue and soreness while allowing hunters to stay on target and be smoother with faster follow up shots. You’ll spend more time shooting and bring home more game with faster hits. The Super Cell recoil pad makes this new scattergun one of the softest shooters on the market today while the soft touch stock and forend with rubber overmolded grip panels give the shooter superior grip.

For duck hunters, water and moisture are an ever present nemesis threatening expensive firearms with rust and corrosion. Remington’s new VersaMax has a TriNyte coated barrel and gas system with nickel plated internal components that provides superior corrosion resistance under any weather condition. A custom carrying case included with every gun sold provides further protection of the firearm while transporting it.

Remington’s new VersaMax is the culmination of years of research and development by one of America’s oldest and largest firearm manufacturers. Their revolutionary adaptive gas system enables virtually any 12 gauge shell to be reliably cycled through the action, and the enhanced ergonomics of the stock make it adaptable to fit shooters of nearly any size.

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 (19)

  1. I like what you guys are up also. Such clever work and reporting! Keep up the excellent works guys Iˇ¦ve incorporated you guys to my blogroll. I think it will improve the value of my web site 🙂

  2. to be so close to the newborn killdeer … awesome. i want i were while in the room. this kind of beautiful images!

  3. Looks butt ugly, and as usual, we get to read about space age bull and polymers (plastic).
    Kind of heavy and about 5-600 dollars too high.
    Any tool and die maker or machinist can tell it’s cheap looking, and they charge too much for someone elses design.

  4. It’s been my experince that most shotguns will pattern one load better than any other. Has anyone tested how well it patterns 2 3/4 shells vs 3 or 3 1/2 shells. I’m a little skeptical about this area, since so much attention is placed on shell cycling and not down range pattern performance. If you have any information, we’d all like to hear it.


  5. It looks like a great gun! I heard the street price for the MODB is going to be $1349.00. By the way the 887 has turned out to be a great gun.
    I have 200 rounds through mine and have not had a single malfunction. The very first ones had issues but the later ones are fine. Only $299.00
    for the black version is a deal.

  6. Is it only me or does that gas system look suspiciously similar to the one used on the Benelli M4? Also, that lever above the trigger on the right side looks a lot like the Benelli’s shell release lever. Hmmm…

  7. Does it have a rubber O ring ?

    if they can get it under 1K it may sell but for the price they want there is better and more proven stuff out there

  8. I agree with the post by “Steve” regarding the cost. $1599.00 for a duck gun is too much. I really, really wanted a Versa Max, but I won’t pay >$1000. Guess I’ll stay with my Browning A-5 Magnum until either the price drops or someone comes out with a gun the average-joe-hunter can afford.

  9. Such a simple solution to the problem, let the shell dictate the amount of gas needed/used! I can not wait to try it!!!

  10. Looks like a promising gas system design. If Remington surrounds it with a well built gun they should be back in the race with Beretta/Benelli and Browning/Winchester. I’ll be holding out on buying a new autoloader until I can try the Versamax, A400 Xplore, and Maxus back to back.

    I’m a huge Remington fan so I’m rooting for this gun to be a well executed final product. I just hope it isn’t akin to the 887.

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