6.8 Western: the new Long range hunting caliber from Browning and Winchester
The 6.8 Western Winchester/Browning cartridge has been designed for long-range hunting and sport shooting, packing more energy than a vast majority of direct competitors in the same caliber range
New for 2021 from Winchester and Browning, the 6.8 Western caliber promises to become the next best thing around for long-range hunting and long-range sport shooting.
With global interest for those disciplines growing rapidly worldwide, and with bolt-action rifles being available on all civilian markets – even those with strictest regulations – engineers at both companies teamed up to seek a solution that could offer magnum-level performance with a modern, high ballistic coefficient projectile, while still chambering in short-action rifles that would offer a short bolt throw and weigh less.
The 6.8 Western was designed from the ground up to be the ultimate long-range cartridge, with a short and wide bottle-necked case, capable in any big-game hunting scenario and a great fit for those who enjoy long-range target shooting.
Initially to be made available in 165-, 170- or 175-grain loads, the new 6.8 Western sports longer and heavier bullets than other 6mm calibers (including 6.5 Creedmoor, 6.5 PRC and .270 Winchester Short Magnum), ideal for big-game hunting and long-range precision shooting, with less recoil than other popular loads, including .300 Winchester Short Magnum, .300 Winchester Magnum and .300 PRC.
And with muzzle energy levels reaching up to 3226 ft-lbs (approx. 4373 Nm), depending from the load, the new 6.8 Western surely packs a punch – enough to bring down even the hardest prey with a clean kill at long range.
«The 6.8 Western cartridge development defines collaborative innovation,» said Matt Campbell, vice president of sales and marketing for Winchester Ammunition.
«We have designed a cartridge for the growing segment of long-range shooters and hunters that offers significant features and benefits. We strive to introduce new products that add value to our customers, and we believe the 6.8 Western will do just that.»
«The 6.8 Western cartridge brings a new perspective to long-range hunting and shooting,» said Ryan Godderidge, senior vice president of sales, marketing and firearms for Browning.
«It provides magnum level performance in our short action rifles, giving the shooter highly effective down-range energy, even at longer ranges, while allowing for a lighter-weight platform. We’re excited about bringing this into the marketplace.»
Browning and Winchester will start distributing the new 6.8 Western platform on the north American market in Fall 2021.
The initial offer will include two loads from Winchester – 165-grains Expedition Big Game Long Range, offering a muzzle velocity of 2970 fps (905,2 m/s), and 170-grains Ballistic Silvertip, offering a muzzle velocity of 2920 fps (890 m/s) – and one from Browning: a 175-grains Long Range Pro Hunter load offering a muzzle velocity level of 2835 fps (864,1 m/s).
Rifles chambered in 6.8 Western will also be made available around the same time, and will include versions of the Winchester Mod.70 and XPR rifles and of the Browning X-Bolt rifles. Some have already been announced by both Companies, and we will report about them specifically as additional information becomes available.
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