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The massive Remington factory in Ilion, New York, is stirring back to life after a fall and winter of uncertainty following last year’s bankruptcy, breakup, and sale. Word is that sometime in 2021, we’ll see Remington guns on dealer’s shelves again. While that’s encouraging, 13 years of ownership by private equity group Cerberus Capital Management tarnished the brand, as quality declined. The new owners have the opportunity and the challenge of winning back Remington fans. Everyone—especially the diehards who bleed green—is waiting and watching to see what guns RemArms will make and how well they will make them. In an exclusive Q&A for F&S, Adam Ballard, Director of Product Management at RemArms, a 17-year veteran of the firearms industry, answered our questions about the upcoming new iterations of the Remington 870, Model 700, and more.
Q: How soon will we see new 870s and Model 700s on store shelves?
A: We are actively pursuing an aggressive timeline to get production started and intend to have our core legacy products [Model 870 and Model 700] on the shelf well ahead of hunting season.
Q: How will you restore Remington’s reputation for quality?
A: Quality is one of our biggest priorities in rebuilding this iconic brand. We are evaluating our manufacturing processes and product specifications to ensure that the product functions flawlessly, meets accuracy expectations, with better fit and finish.
Q: Which products will you be focusing on at first?
A: It’s most important to us to meet the high demand for our core legacy products, like the Model 870 and Model 700. Other products will return to the market as we build up our capacity and supply base.
Q: What about specific plans for the 870 and Model 700? Will they be price-point guns, premium products, or both?
A: We believe these products’ rightful place is in the mid to high end of their respective categories. As the beginning of a new chapter in this brand’s history, we intend to elevate these products with improved quality, features, and technical improvements to performance.
Q: What is the long-term plan for RemArms? Will it become a niche manufacturer like, say, Ithaca, or will it be a major force in the industry again?
A: Our goal is to be true to our brand and produce first-rate products for our consumers. While we might not be as big as “Big Green” once was, we believe a significant number of our brand loyalists will be very pleased with our new approach to quality and have no doubt we will continue to be considered a major force.
Q: Any special projects for new models or brand-new versions of existing guns?
A: For now our biggest priority is getting back to business with our core products. However, we have begun several exciting projects to reinvigorate existing product lines as well as developing new platforms that we will be able to unveil in the future.
Q: Remington rifles once had a stellar reputation for accuracy; with today’s focus on precision long-range performance, will hyper-accuracy become part of the company’s DNA again?
A: Yes. As we look to start up manufacturing, we are evaluating things like calibers, twist rates, and manufacturing processes in order to take back that reputation for accuracy and reliability.
Q: What are your plans for the Model Seven? The 7600 and 750? What about the semiauto shotguns?
After the 870 and 700, our next priorities are to bring back our revered model 1100 and the revolutionary V3 and VersaMax shotguns. We continue to evaluate the many other products and will make timely decisions on the direction to take as core products are up to top capacity.
Q: Last question: Will my new 870 be a Remington 870 or a RemArms 870?
A: Our name is RemArms LLC, but we own the rights to call the guns “Remingtons.” Your new 870 will say “Remington” on the receiver.