The Fastest .308 Win. on the Market?

Liberty Ammunition Animal Instinct .308 bullets

If you ask Liberty Ammunition, there is a new King of the Hill, and I am not hearing any complaints. People are looking for bigger, better, and faster, which explains the rise in popularity of the AR-10 platform. Liberty Ammunition did not come as a “me too!” Instead it came as a “Me First!” with a production .308 round clocking at 3,500 fps. That is 2,700 foot-pounds of energy at the muzzle! Here is the full release from Liberty.

Liberty Ammunition’s Animal Instinct .308 (7.62x51mm) Win. offers hunters and LEO’s increased lethality.

Liberty Ammunition Animal Instinct logo Liberty Ammunition is unveiling the first hunting round, the .308 Winchester, in its new Animal Instinct ammunition line. The Liberty Ammunition .308 Win. is the fastest at 3,500 FPS, and exits a rifle with a muzzle energy of 2,700 FPE. This lead-free copper monolithic, fragmenting hollow-point Liberty Ammunition round is the next generation of one of the most popular hunting and long range rounds in existence.

“Animal Instinct ammunition is optimized to deliver the most extreme energy transfer at impact, while still providing exceptional penetration, giving hunters that ‘ONE & DONE’ capability they seek,” Matt Phillips, VP of Sales and Marketing for Liberty Ammunition explained. “”Animal Instinct’s match grade accuracy and noticeable low recoil allows the hunter to be more proficient while making the shooting/hunting experience more enjoyable.””

Liberty Ammunition Animal Instinct .308 bullets
Liberty Ammunition Animal Instinct .308 Win.

The .308 Winchester was introduced in 1952 as a sporting round to fit a standard short-action rifle. The highly-accurate round quickly found favor with big game hunters and shortly thereafter was adopted by the U.S. Military for the M14 rifle. Liberty Ammunition’s Animal Instinct .308 Win. is lighter than its competition at 100 grains. Animal Instinct .308 delivers more lethality in a flat shooting round with match grade accuracy, all in a low recoil, easy to manage package.

Hunters, law enforcement officers and military operators alike, will all benefit tremendously from Liberty Ammunition’s Animal Instinct line, providing them pinpoint accuracy, significant increase in lethality, and low recoil for more control.

Liberty Ammunition Animal Instinct
Caliber .308 Winchester
Weight 100 grains
Velocity 3,500 FPS
Kinetic Energy 2700 FPE
Accuracy 1 MOA @ 500 yds.
Terminal Effect 5″ W x 16″ D
Description Copper Monolithic, Fragmenting Hollow Point, Lead Free Hunting Round
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 (64)

  1. I don’t think half if not more know anything about guns , bullets ,killing,or evidently 308 for those saying it won’t help the recoil I don’t need science or an expert’s to tell me that a lighter projectile is going to be less recoil I know from shooting thousands of rounds myself.3006 220g kicks a very noticeable harder than the 150g.and who said they need more of a load to shoot 3500fps you shooting 100g bullet.And as far as killing goes the 308 kills but you usually got to track the animal you should know if you’ve killed animals like you say that a high velocity bullet causes a shock that drops animals in there tracks something a 308 don’t do I’ve dropped more medium game deer with a 100g243 in there tracks 24 cal than I have with a 30cal 308 .I love the 308 and Iam very interested in seeing what this bullet will do and velocity is what the 308 is always lacked and Iam interested in seeing a 30cal 100g bullet will do I think it could have potential for me to get my 308 back out the cabinet instead of the 3006 or the magnums will see.One more thing I just what makes people say what they say if you love hunting and shooting and the 308 you had to have wanted it to be faster for less drop and more shock the exact reason the military has gone with the 300lapula mag and the 338.

  2. Liberty Ammunition’s Animal Instinct .308 (7.62x51mm) Win, any more news when this ammo is going on the market?

  3. It surely sounds good, BUT LOW RECOIL? I used to shoot National Match for the U S Army Reserves and I found that the lighter the bullet in front of a large quantity of power severely increased recoil instead of lessening it. That said, it the round is as accurate as Liberty says that it is, perhaps this .308 round will regain its place as an excellent sniper round recently usurped by the .338 Lapua round.

  4. Please test this ammo before depending upon it. I tried Liberty 38 special and 357 magnum in my revolvers (S&W and Ruger) in both cases it “locked up” the guns. No rotation, and then no ejection!

  5. So, when does a bullet become too fast? I just wonder why people mess with a proven performer. The 308/762NATO has served me VERY well for a long time.

    1. Too fast factors. There may be others, these come to mind first.
      1. When the bullet disintegrates as it leaves the barrel.
      2.When accuracy is lost.
      3. When pressures are too high. cratering primer / primer flow into firing pin hole , splitting cases, separation of head, primer blow through and bolt failures are dangerous.
      4. Unreasonable recoil.
      5. Accelerated barrel throat wear.
      6. Copper smearing in lands.

    2. Bill, thanks for the info. As a reloader, I’m aware of what you mentioned. I just wonder what these rounds will do that standard 308/762NATO don’t already do.besides giving you an unleaded bullet.

  6. I have been reading books by Bryan Litz.At 100 yards I can get clover leafs, when shooting at 600 yards my groups are no where near sub MOA. I have experimented with different loads and can not figure out what I am doing wrong. Do you have any recommendations on books to read?


    1. Sounds like you don’t understand the basics of rifle accuracy. If you are shooting cloverleafs at 100 yards, what do you think will happen at 600 yards?

      The answer is that those coverleafs will open up to whatever accuracy you had at 100 yards out of your gun.

      For example, if your cloverleafs measure 2 inches at one hundred yards. They will be 4 inches at 200 yards and six inches at 300 yards.

      Seems to me you would want to find out what optimum accuracy is from your rifle at 100 yards and then see how you are shooting at 600 yards.

      You DO KNOW don’t you that if your rifle and bullet shoot 1 minute of angle at one hundred yards, it will shoot 2 inches at 200 yards and 3 inches at 300 yards–correct? That is this is its OPTIMUM accuracy the rifle and load combination is capable of IF YOU do everything correct.

  7. What extra cost would thre be if they added extra stats such as barrel lengrh and rate of twist that sped and energy came from.
    I see mention of less pressure but how much, as todays gunmen are very knowledgeable they are mostly not wanting to pay top $ for rounds that may not be right for certai. Autos and twist or length of barrels.

  8. While for the most part, well intentioned, the majority of responses and posts reconfirm why the firearm industry markets crap like this. It’s obvious that most on here know little if anything of the science of ballistics. (Terminal , external, etc).
    I am no expert either, but I try to learn by reading peer reviewed texts, articles, reference materials, attend classes by legitimate experts (Gunsite, Riflesonly, Tacpro, etc). Even my own limited knowledge of ballistic science I know this particular round has no practical or even subspecialty use. It will be inaccurate at ranges that are typical for the 308, ineffective for medium to larger game, law enforcement will in NO way adopt this due to the ridiculous liability of this untested round , and military applications?! Come on , the 308 is the tried and tested round for the rifle for ranges from 300 to 900 yards. Less than that it’s called 5.56 and more than that you have even more choices (338 Lapua for instance)
    This round was made to sell to yahoos and uninformed masses to shoot the hordes of attacking zombies.
    I can’t wait to see what’s next!

  9. Has this round been tested on any rapid cycle squad support weapons. As a retired SGM, the men of my American Legion Post fire @ 500-1000-1500 yds. at least tawice a month. Pushing the envelope with the operators. Advise

  10. I consider myself a novice with long range shooting. What pointers can you give me to increase my accuracy? I am using a remington 700 sps varmint chambered in .308 win. The range I go to has a 600 yard range and my grouping needs a lot of work. Thank you for your time.


    1. Two pieces of advice.

      1. Work your way up to long distance. The same good practices will help you shoot at 100 yds or 1000 yds.

      2. Buy a well reviewed book about precision shooting or watch some how-to videos online. Use your favorite search engine and spend some time reading.

  11. Most common form of Zombie Ammunition, are called “Sledgehammers” or RIP’s. But there NOT SOLID, their Steel with a Bare Gel Injected into the Bullet Form (Semi-Gelatin Synthetic Substance). Which varies from Ammunition Manufacturers…

    1. @ Matt.

      I don’t do Video Games, Sir? Federal Premium .458 LOTT 500-grain Sledgehammers.

      YOU CAN LOOK UP THE REST, After Playing YOUR Video Games!!!

    2. “Federal Premium .458 LOTT 500-grain Sledgehammers”

      Yeah that’s gonna be a regular lead bullet with a copper jacket buddy.

      You said “But there NOT SOLID, their Steel with a Bare Gel Injected into the Bullet Form (Semi-Gelatin Synthetic Substance)”

      What manufacturer makes that bullet? I’ll wait………………………..

    3. @ Matt.

      WHERE IN THE mentioning of Federal Premium, DO I “MENTION” SOLID STEEL. As I Recall I mentioned that Most “Sledgehammers” were Steel with a Base Gel Insert. ONLY the 9x19mm/Parabellum’s made by Sellier & Bellot of the Czech Republic were made of SOLID STAINLESS STEEL…

    4. The round you described above, Federal Premium .458 LOTT 500-grain Sledgehammers, has no gel insert nor stainless steel. Just show me a link to any bullet made with stainless steel and a “gel” insert.

      Your stories are so convoluted that you can’t even keep them straight. Just stop please.

    5. @ Matt.

      Maybe you should read the Article with the “Cut-Away Photo” of the Round. Instead of looking at the First Thing That Pops-Up on the Screen…

    6. I searched. Didn’t find anything like what you’ve described.

      If you were telling the truth you would have just posted the link.

      Everyone learns when we respond to things we actually know about, and read what others say when our knowledge is lacking. When you baseless information about, we all suffer. Those of us who know the truth have to waste time correcting you, and those of us that don’t know the truth are led astray.

      Have a good weekend.

  12. Being a former military and law enforcement sniper, how well will the new .308 1000grn Animal shoot out of a 20″ barrel bolt gun? My 168 n 173 grns shoot sub moa at 1000 yds.

    1. @ FFLuig.

      IF the M1A, is chambered in .308Win. then the Answer is YES. But if it’s chambered in 7.62x51NATO, then the Answer is NO. Cartridge “Thickness” and “Propellant” in the 7.62×51 is different, then that used in the .308Win.

      Mil-Std’s. Tolerances are measured to the 1/10,000 of a INCH, While Mil-Spec’s. are to the 1/1,000 of a Inch…

  13. 100 grains? It surely “sounds” like a great bullet, but at 100 grains, I seriously doubt that it will hold its accuracy at 1000 meters as the 168 grain .308 does. Since it’s ‘all copper’ the anti-leaders will love it and strive to make it the ONLY .308 bullet. It probably will be a good hunting round if it doesn’t ruin a lot of meat. For the time being, I’ll keep using the 150 and 165 grain hunting rounds.

    1. The bank angles are different between the 2, but the general included angles are compatible between rounds. The SAMI literature indicates that the velocities exceeding 3200 fps lead to premature barrel wear and possible case over pressures, even at 100 grains.

    2. @ Ronnie Burns.

      1. 7.62x51NATO: is actually a .308/7.82×51.2mm with an overall length of 69.9mm (Mil-Std.).
      2. .308 Winchester: is actually a .308/7.8x 51.18mm with an overall length of 71.12mm (Mil-Spec.).

      Differences are in Propellant Charge used and the Length and Thickness of the Propellant Brass Cartridge being used…

  14. Top of the Line Bullet, is a Titanium-Jacketed Tungsten Bullet that requires a FFL 10 permit just to buy the Round. EIGHT TIMES the Stopping Power of a Conventional Bullet, with ONLY 30% the Effective Range. Heaviest is a 7,000-grain Bullet of UNKNOWN Caliber. NO KNOWN Composite Armor will Stop It, Short of Chobham/Depleated-Uranium Armor…

    1. Obviously you have no idea what your talking about! I got my hands on a few boxes to see if I could match it by hand loading. No way you can match the performance. This round is one bad mother! It has almost double the penetration of hornaday. And will expand to kill anything! Wounded animals? Not likely unless your aim is as bad as the info your giving. Best round I’ve tested in 308. Test done at magnum research

    2. @ Jimmy.

      You might what to “REREAD” th the Magnum Research Report, SIR? Tests were performed USING “TITANIUM” and “TUNGSTEN” made Desert Eagle .44 Magnum PISTOLS, NOT Ammunition…

    3. SGS Carbide makes cutting tools such as mill bits for the commercial metalworking industry. I can’t find any evidence of them making bullets. Ti-Namite is the brand name for their proprietary tool coating. Here is the quote from their website-

      “Ti-NAMITE Tool Coatings are specifically engineered for SGS solid carbiderotary tools. This proprietary multi-layering process results in maximized tool life and increased speed and feed rates in any application”

      Not that it wouldn’t be an interesting idea, I just can’t find any evidence of it existing. Have a link?

    4. Really? No mention of them existing anywhere online. I’ve asked you for a link to any of these bullets you’ve described actually existing, and you’ve supplied nothing.

      Are you just making things up? How old are you?

  15. Whew, this guy Keith, knows it all. If you have a question about the bullets performance just ask Keith, he has hundreds of hours of experience with all kinds of .308 ammo and has shot hundreds of rounds of this new ammo, so no one knows what to use it for better than Keith.

    1. Not sure what Your problem here is..(aside from the obvious) but for your information here’s a little context:

      Hornady Z-Max & Nosler’s Varmeggeddon 110 grain .308 Polymer Tipped Varmint Bullets have the same SD. (that’s Sectional Density for the uneducated crowd of which You seem to be a part of) It is 0.166…

      Sectional Density is the number We use to grade potential penetration of a given projectile. Here’s how it’s done;
      You take the weight of bullet in grains and divide it by 7000 (# of grains in a pound), then You divide that number by the squared diameter of the bullet.

      That’s called M A T H. Say it with me, M A T H….It is not subjective. It’s a F A C T (Fact; not subject to opinion)

      Liberty’s bullet is 100 grains and carries an SD of somewhere around 0.145 (less is worse).

      A standard .22 Long Rifle 40 grain Bullet has a Sectional Density 0.216 (more is better)

      What’s all this mean? It means that a standard .22 Long Rifle has more potential penetration than Liberty’s 100 grain “Animal Instinct” (which they claim as having “maximum penetration”) that You seem to believe to be the “Best .308 Bullet you’ve ever seen.

      Offering an opinion is one thing. Attacking Me verbally with Jerry Springer sarcasm for actually taking the Time to Learn of what I speak and attempt to share it with dipshytz such as yourself, (by invitation) especially when evidence of Your uninformed stupidity is so blatantly obvious is another.

      You should probably just crawl back into Your Mom’s basement and leave the grownup talk to the Grownups.

      Have a Nice Day

  16. This is a HUNTING Bullet? Hunting what? This is nothing more than a very expensive varmint package. That’s if you like exploding varmints. It’s not even any good for serious Target Shooting. Practical hunting purposes for Game such CXP2 Class Animals it is worse than useless. Zero penetration, significant fragmentation, both which add up to a lot of wounded animals and wasted meat. Predator Hunting is out due to the exploding effect of this bullet and what it does to Pelts. LEO’s using this Ammo might very well find themselves on the business end of a unnecessary use of force Lawsuit. Law Enforcement’s mission is to Stop Bad Guys, not mutilate them. To say this round is irresponsible is an understatement. Again..Aside from bragging rights, (btw 3500 FPS is no great trick out of a .308 Winny with 100 grn. bullets, specially for us Hand Loaders.) somebody tell Me what this round is good for? Seriously, these People need to lay off the Zombie Movies.

    1. “Zombie” – The new ad ‘gimmick’ for the nimrod out there;)

      “….providing exceptional penetration….” It is hard to marry that statement with the bullets description, “Fragmenting Hollow Point,” as very believable.

      I do haggle a bit with Keith on the usefulness aspect of this bullet. Not familiar with its cost, probably expensive being a “Zombie” round? It is fairly flat shooting, 0’d @200 it drops a little more or less three feet @500 yds, and w/a 5mph cross wind factor, you would have to account for nearly a foot and a half of wind movement. So, to achieve that “1 MOA @500 yds,” you better be a match wind reader, or shoot only on a ‘windless’ day! Additionally, the ‘fragmenting’ problem would be somewhat mitigated at extended ranges – 250 out, as the velocity and ME has receded significantly out there!

      Having NOT tried these things, ammo or bullets (if available), can not comment ‘specifically’ on their suitability as described by Keith. Personally, I prefer the Barnes bullets for “one and done” kills; having used both their 30/110 and .223/5.56/70 bullets, with excellent results on game to deer size.

    2. Liberty has several Youtube Videos where they promote the effectiveness of their bullets/cartridge creations. The Vids I’ve taken the time to watch generally show High Fence Hunts on what appears to be a Texas Game Ranch. They do test on live animals but distances are kept fairly short. Some of them are almost within Bow Range

      As a Copper Monolith Bullet, these projectiles will bleed energy and velocity faster than a traditional Lead Core Bullet. That simple physics. Copper is about half the density of Lead. At close range (under 100 yards) the practical differences are nominal. At Ranges beyond that, due to the rapid loss of inertia, variations from wind velocity and direction will have significant & detrimental effects on trajectory and due to the rapid loss of energy, terminal performance will dissipate rapidly. That’s not opinion, that’s physics. Add this to the fact that Liberty States this is a segmented fragmentation bullet.and You have to wonder where they get off claiming these bullets provide maximum penetration. Penetration of what?

      Like You, I have not had a chance to test these Cartridges. I did an Internet search and came up empty so I don’t even know where or how anyone would buy them. That being said, I have extensive experience with Hornady’s Z-Max and Nosler’s Varmeggeddon 110 grain versions. These are both polymer tipped copper jacketed, lead core hollow points designed for maximum energy transfer via high velocity and thin explosive jackets. Even with the polymer tips the B.C. of these bullets is low. about the same as a round nose 150 grain hunting bullet. Sectional Density is a scant 0.166. The Muzzle Energy Liberty Crows about is, and this can’t be stressed too much, is AT THE MUZZLE.

      I spoke to the Engineers at Hornady about the Z-Max ( the Hornady Plant is literally an hour from where I live) and they told Me that the .308 Z-Max was never intended as a .308 Winchester Bullet. Hornady designed those Bullets for 300 Blackout Market. That being said, @100 grains, one can only guess what the guys at Liberty were thinking when they came up with this one.

      So unless You plan on sticking the barrel of your rifle up the Critters Hoo Ha or in it’s Ear, the advertised ME is very misleading. Add to this the fact that Liberty advertises these cartridges as having “maximum penetration” when the Science directly contradicts Their claims and any intelligent, reasonable person can only come to the conclusion that they are another “Fad” Bullet *targeted* (see what I did there?) at Nimrods (your word) that don’t know any better. Liberty appears to like to Padding their numbers in attempt to increase sales to the Newbie Crowd that simply don’t know what they are talking about or dealing with.

      Add to all that the Price Tag, which I’m going to guess based on Liberty’s other offerings, is more Out of Line than In Line with your average commercial .308 round which comes in at somewhere around $1.20 per. In other words, (betting these are significantly more than that) They are expensive Water Jug/ Water Melon Killers.

      Now if “Hunting” Water Jugs and Melons is Your thing, then by all means, go for it….It is after all Your $$. Personally, My choice for a lightweight .308 Hunting Bullet is Sierra’s 125 gr. Pro Hunter ( I’ve killed literally Dozens of Deer with them at ranges out to 200 yards and for extended Ranges, I’ll use the Nosler 125 Accubond. I have tested those bullets at the Range out to 500 yards and on Live Animals CXP 2 & 3, in excess of 300 yards and at 3200 FPS it duplicates 270 Winchester Ballistics and is a Laser Beam out to 400 yards. Terminal performance of the Accubond is in a Class by Itself. In a Word…It is Amazing.

    3. @ Firewagon.

      Yeah, I Know! I just surprised that they Didn’t Put them Into a “Lime Green” Electroplating Solution Bath. Before Boxing Them…

  17. Color me, impressed. I love anything new in ammunition,but at several grains of weight lighter than a average .308, how does in perform in adverse conditions,ie; cross wind, humidity, etc.? According to provided specs., it with do 1 MOA at 5 hundred yrds., but is this it’s limit? Can it be used at 700 or 800 yrds. with the same degree of accuracy, adjusted, of course for the extra distance? These are just a few things I would like to know.

  18. On paper, it looks fantastic. Any real world experience? Many rounds of 7.62X51 down range, mostly military and love the round. But, with conventional FMJ. Very interested in any real world experience on animals. Thanks.

    1. @ coyotehunter.

      Bullets are Nickel Plated for an extra Layer of Lubrication. So far there’s NO Down Side as far as Barrel Wear that has been documented…

    2. Barrel Wear is not about the Bullet…It’s about the Powder Charge….And these look like they will be Barrel Burners….Faster isn’t always better…

    3. @ Cold Dead Fingers.

      Agreed! The Nazi-SS, produced a 7.92×57 round in WW2 that ONLY had a Muzzle Velocity of 721ft/sec. and produced a sound of ONLY 41 decibels (less than a Library and Slightly More than Ambient Background Noise)…

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Your discussions, feedback and comments are welcome here as long as they are relevant and insightful. Please be respectful of others. We reserve the right to edit as appropriate, delete profane, harassing, abusive and spam comments or posts, and block repeat offenders. All comments are held for moderation and will appear after approval.