Sauer Updates the 404 Series Rifle

Saur & Sohn has updated their 404 rifle line with a number of improved features. These rifles seem to be aimed at European big game hunters and Safari hunts. It retails for $3,800 and is available in .30-06 and .375 Holland & Holland. I’m assuming more calibers will or currently are available but these are the two that came out in the press release. The bolt has interchangeable bolt heads along with interchangeable barrels. The barrels can be swapped out for new calibers. Note that is not to be confused with Sig Sauer, the two companies joined forces to work on the 220 and P226 and earlier series of handguns but other than that the two are separate today. The company has the record of being the oldest firearms company continually active in Germany.

404 Classic XT

404 Classic XT

What really stands out about the S 404 is its patented safety concept, the heart of which is a completely new manual cocking system. The ergonomically perfect metal cocking slide on the bolt shroud allows the rifle to be cocked both comfortably and silently since the sound of the detent button in the rear third of the slide is automatically muffled by the soft flesh of the thumb. The slide is retracted to its uncocked position by simply pressing the button again with the thumb. In addition to the manual cocking feature, an automatic firing pin safety works inside the S 404 to prevent it from firing when the bolt is not fully closed. In order to open the bolt with the gun on safe, whether loaded or unloaded, it is only necessary to push the cocking slide forward two millimeters while at the same time lifting the bolt handle. This way, safe handling becomes instinct aided by intelligent technology.

A key highlight of the S 404 is the revolutionary SAUER Quattro trigger system. With the help of the integral SUS universal key, the shooter can now choose between four different trigger pull weights in seconds. Regardless which setting the hunter chooses, the SAUER Quattro is sure to delight with a trigger characteristic that gives new meaning to the term ‘bone dry’. From the ultra-precise long-distance shot at the target range or up a mountain slope to the driven hunt in freezing weather, there is a setting for every situation. The finishing touch is the ability to fit the trigger to the shooter’s hand.  With a three inch adjustment range for length of pull and a left-to-right swivel range of 5 degrees, it guarantees each shooter optimal contact with this important operator interface. The perfectly curved extra-wide grooved trigger blade ensures that the trigger finger finds a comfortable position with ease.

The newly conceived and patented SUM (SAUER Universal Mount) offers a low build height, superior stability, and 100% return to zero. The mount base is milled into the receiver of the S 404, thereby assuring the highest level of strength with the tightest possible tolerances. In addition to adjusting the trigger pull weight, the SUS universal key has another purpose: This tool allows for lightning-fast disassembly of the S 404. Replacement of the stock and barrel can be carried out in less than a minute. The removable bolt head provides an added plus in flexibility.The SAUER 404 allows the hunter to shoot all available calibers with a single rifle. Even the jump from Standard to Magnum is no problem: Simply swap out the bolt head to transform the S 404 from a .30-06 for local hunting to an uncompromising buffalo stopper in .375 H&H Magnum in two easy steps.

They’ve got some really well made videos!

404 Synchro XT

404 Synchro XT


Infantry Marine, based in the Midwest. Specifically interested in small arms history, development, and usage within the MENA region and Central Asia. To that end, I run Silah Report, a website dedicated to analyzing small arms history and news out of MENA and Central Asia.

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  • AD

    It’s… beautiful…

    I’m not completely sold on the new decocker or scope mounting system, but they fixed the few minor issues I saw with the old barrel-switch system (the one-piece bolt and need for a separate tool to remove the barrel and stock).

  • Markus Gluschitsch

    These are the available calibers:

    :.243 Win., 6,5×55, .270 Win., 7×64, .308 Win., .30-06 Spring., 8×57 IS, 9,3×62

    Magnum:7 mm Rem. Mag., .300 Win. Mag., 8×68 S, .338 Win. Mag., .375 H&H Mag.

  • Julio

    As the S404 was a new introduction in 2015, it seems a bit misleading to speak of an “update”. The update, if there is one, is to the S202, which now stands in relation to the S404 much as Blaser’s R93 does to the R8.

  • Plumbiphilious

    Out of pure hobbyist curiosity (by which I mean no offense), what exactly are you paying for when you pay for $2000+ bolt actions? Guns like Blaser have their nifty collet system and a straight pull bolt design, so with them you pay a lot for the unique engineering aspect.

    What nifty bells and whistles do you get with traditional turn-bolt guns like these? I see here quick-change barrels are one.

    I’m probably only going to ever afford just “the perfect ONE” (if ever at all) of these ultra-premium bolt guns, so I’d like to know what I’m looking for.

  • Apologies. I hadn’t seen that webpage you mentioned, just the one that we were provided with and although I did a bit of searching on the Youtube videos, it’s in a separate category than the product announcement.

  • Zachary marrs

    Almost 4k?


    Maybe someday…

  • petru sova

    I think the idea of switching trigger pull weights in the middle of a hunt can and will lead to accidents or missed shots. One should choose the trigger pull one is most comfortable with and learn how to use it. This comes from actual experience not internet chatter.
    I do like guns with beautiful wood stocks but that is about all I like about this gun. You would think for that high a price you would have gotten a controlled feed gun not an unreliable push feed system that is known for double feeding under stress.
    I think to for the horrendous price they should have not given you an el-cheapo hammer fudged rifled barrel either. Or for that matter el-cheapo machine cut checkering either.
    You do not have to spend a lot on a very nice reliable hunting rifle unless you want a prestige gun and have money to burn. I recently picked up an FN Mauser rifle and had it re-barreled with a match grad barrel. I hand polished the barrel and had the gun re-blued and I installed a double set trigger and refinished the stock that had also hand checkering, not modern junk machine cut checkering. I glass bedded the action and floated the barrel. Total cost of the used gun as well as the work done was only $650 dollars and I had a controlled feed 98 Mauser, which is the most reliable rifle action ever made and it was made of quality forgings not junk castings as most modern trash is made of these days.
    The results were 3 shot 1/2 inch groups at 100 yards, all I could have ever have hoped for in a light barreled hunting gun. No junk plastic stock, no junk hammer fudged barrel, no junk machine cut checkering, no junk plasticky finish, no junk dull blueing. no unreliable push feed mechanism, no modern little junk extractor and it does not have a bolt handle that will fall off if dropped as in the Remington 700 series of junk guns.
    Believe me modern castings and plasticky stocks are not as good as it gets.