ArmaLite AR-31: New Short Action Rifle in .308

ArmaLite AR-31

ArmaLite is set to announce a new bolt action rifle similar to the company’s AR-30A1.  The ArmaLite AR-31 is a short action rifle that will be initially offered in .308 Winchester.  Depending on popularity, other calibers are a possibility.

A nice feature of the AR-31 is designed to accept AR-10B magazines, meaning that a wide variety of existing mags, from five to 25 rounds, are immediately ready to go with this rifle.  I do not believe the Magpul Pmags will fit the AR-10B, but if someone could confirm or correct this information in the comments, I would appreciate it.

Sub-MOA accuracy will be standard with this rifle, assuming you use good ammunition.  Don’t expect to feed it no-name reloads from last year’s gun show and get great results.  However, if you run top quality factory ammo, or are good at loading your own, you can expect excellent results with this rifle.

ArmaLite AR-31 rifle

Other details on the rifle have not yet been announced.  Specifications such as barrel length, weight, etc. should be announced in the near future.  For now, we have to make some educated guesses based on the released photos and the existing ArmaLite product line.

It would appear the AR-31 will ship with a muzzle brake.  It is not known if it is a proprietary design, or an off-the-shelf product with a proven design.  The rifle appears to be equipped with a long Picatinny rail on top, with short rails on the fore end of the stock.  The buttstock looks to be the same style as the stock found on the AR-30A1.  The 30A1 can be had with fixed or adjustable stocks, so I would imagine that the same might be available on the ArmaLite AR-31.

New ArmaLite AR-31 rifle

There is no word on pricing yet.  The AR-30A1 runs from $3,264 to $$3,599 on the ArmaLite website.  I would expect this rifle to be in the same price range.  I believe this is the first new rifle from ArmaLite since the company was bought by Strategic Armory Corp.

I would expect this rifle to be on full display at the SHOT Show in January.  We will be at the show, so we will bring you plenty of details on this new gun from the event.

Update – November 2013

ArmaLite released additional information about the AR-31 rifle that will ship in 2014.  The gun will have a 24″ barrel with a 1:10 twist.  MSRP will be $3,460.  Total weight on an unloaded gun will be 14.1 pounds, and the overall length will be between 45.4″ and 47.4″ depending on stock adjustment.  We will definitely get photos and more information on this gun at the 2014 SHOT Show in January.

Update – December 2013

The good folks at Guns & Weapons for Law Enforcement magazine got one of the early production models of the AR-31 and did some accuracy testing.  It seems that at 100 yards, they got groups of 0.29″ – 0.60″ depending on ammo.  Check out the February 2014 edition for the full story.

By Richard Johnson

Richard Johnson is a gun writer, amateur historian and - most importantly - a dad. He's done a lot of silly things in his life, but quitting police work to follow his passion of writing about guns was one of the smartest things he ever did. He founded this site and continues to manage its operation.

5 replies on “ArmaLite AR-31: New Short Action Rifle in .308”

That is great news. I had looked at the 30A1 previously, but wanted a .308. This will definitely fit the bill.

What makes this rifle any better or worse than something like a Desert Tactical which is every bit as accurate, but more compact?

The 30A1 is a good rifle, but it isn’t very mobile. Keep that in mind when you are thinking about these rifles. Excellent quality, but no where near as handy as some other options.

If your optic has enough large enough adjustment range if you can see it you can hit it. At 1760 yards ( one mile) a 175 grain match rounds has approximately the same down range energy as a .357 magnum has at the muzzle. With that being said, if 500 to 800 yards is your target range, there much lighter and less expensive rifles that have just as precise shot placement is this one. A rilfe such as this doesn’t make any sense untill you start talking about long range magnum calibers.

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