30 Remington AR: New cartridge for the AR-15

Steve Johnson
by Steve Johnson

Remington, and sibling Bushmaster, have announced a new cartridge designed for the AR-15. The 30 Remington AR is a .30 caliber cartridge the length of a .223, allowing it to be chambered in AR-15s rather than AR-10 style rifles.

John Snow has the details:

The big difference is in energy. The .30 RAR in this bullet weight has about 500 ft-lb. less of energy than the 165-gr. .308 at any distance. A substantial amount less and one that will certainly have an effect on game in the field—but how much of a difference we’ll just have to see once we start killing some deer with it.

The R-15 is said to weight about 7.5 pounds, a full pound less than the R-25 in .308 Win.

More info @ Gun Shots

UPDATE: tammons @ ar15.com came up with this diagram of the case:

Short and stubby. It reminds me of the 7.62×39 as some have said in the comments. Oh and lets not forget the .30 Steve.

The consensus seems to be that it is a cut down .284 Winchester case, as is the .450 Bushmaster.

Yep looks like a short 284 case.
Good. I am glad somebody is doing this.

Should be a great hunting round, but hopefully they will be slow twist for less pressure like 1:16 – 1:18 twist etc.

Its sort of a AR15 version of a fatter 30BR. The 30BR case is 1.51″ L, the 30 RAR is 1.53″L.

A 30 br with a 22-24″ barrel can push a 125 gr moly bullet to 3000 fps with 34.5gr of H4198. I had one for a while and they are nice.

I doubt they will be able to run it at 55-60k unless they use an oly wssm upper and bolt.

For benchrest nothing is going to beat a BIB 118 gr bullet in a slow twist barrel
This should be a really good round if they do it right.
Look at some of the groups on the link below.

Here is a good read on the 30BR if interested

http://www.6mmbr.com/30BR.html

I had actually already designed something similar, a longer case version a while back just playing around.
I have a couple of 284 based bolt rifles, one straight the other 338/284 and its a good case. Very efficient case.

I ran it through case designer and modified it to a 30 RAR and the case should hold right at 43-45 gr h2o.

Its a short stubby little bastard.

The case capacity is just slightly more than the 30 BR but you cant hang the bullets out like a bolt rifle.

UPDATE: The GunPundit (Murdoc) says it will uses .450 Bushmaster magazines. Presumably single stack.

A couple of comments have asked how it stack up against the 7.62x39mm and if there is any need for such a cartridge.

How does it compare to a 7.62×39?

The 7.62×39 FMJ 123 gr round leaves the barrel at 2,300 ft/s with 1480 ft/lbs of energy. The 123 gr .30 RAR will leave the barrel at 2800 ft/s and generate 2141 ft/lbs. That a 30% increase in muzzle energy. This is a significant increase in a hunting situation.

This splits the difference between a 7.62x39mm and a 7.62x51mm (.308 Win.).

If the round uses .308 projectiles there will be a very wide variety available to the hand loader. Much more than is available for the 7.62x39mm (.310 projectile).

UPDATE: The outdoor wire has more info and this photo:


Left: .30 RAR, middle: .223, right: .308 Win.

The new shell will be available in three initial loadings: AccuTip BT, Core-Lokt PSP and a UMC MC the company describes as the “practice ammunition” for the hunter or shooter who doesn’t want the hunting round characteristics – or price. The two hunting rounds are 125 grain bullets; the full-metal rounds are 123 grain. Pricing is currently listed at $35.99 for the AccuTip, $26.49 for the Core-Lokt, and $18.99 for the FMJ.

Steve Johnson
Steve Johnson

I founded TFB in 2007 and over 10 years worked tirelessly, with the help of my team, to build it up into the largest gun blog online. I retired as Editor in Chief in 2017. During my decade at TFB I was fortunate to work with the most amazing talented writers and genuinely good people!

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  • Dollop of tennessee Dollop of tennessee on Jun 12, 2011

    I love this idea.

    A .30 caliber with some power behind it that fits the AR 15 size and weight platform. How could you go wrong with Remingtons latest offering? I don't think I could.

    Having just run the ballistics and trajectory of the 30 Remington AR in the latest 150 grain Core-Lokt on the computer, I think it will be absolutely perfect to use for deer, boar, and coyote hunting here in Tennessee out to the 250 yard mark if necessary.

    Semi-auto tested and proven platform, easy to carry, easy to maintain, easy optics mounting, powerful but not over-gunned, it has the hallmarks of a real winner.

    I am sold, and I am getting one.

  • JamesD JamesD on Jul 12, 2011

    I think the biggest advantage of the 30AR (as well as similar cartridges) is the ability to have 2 uppers, 1 capable of hunting deer/antelope and the other in .223 for smaller game or target shooting. For someone that prefers the AR platform this could be very attractive. It's also lighter than an AR-10/R25 by several lbs. My R25 is several lbs heavier than a conventional hunting rifle.

    I've finally seen some magazine reviews of the R-15/30 ('GUNS MAGAZINE' and 'THE COMPLETE RIFLEMAN') and it appears to work well out to at least 300 yards.

    According to 'THE COMPLETE RIFLEMAN':

    A 125 grain bullet from a 30 AR drops about the same as a 150 grain bullet from a .308 at 300 yards.

    A 150 grain bullet from a 30 AR drops about twice as much as from a .308 at 300 yards. Velocity and energy were listed as the same for the two at muzzle and 300 yards.

    Those velocities don't sound right to me at all. Same muzzle and terminal stats but twice the drop? Um... something about defying the laws of physics comes to mind.

    The article mentions taking antelope at 280 & 285 yards so 300+ yards would certainly be possible.

    If there are any serious flaws to the 30AR it's probably price and availability. MidwayUSA is listing 30AR uppers so you can definitely add a new upper to an existing AR... but for $800. A similar (20" flattop full floated barrel) AR-15 is $550 or less and even DPMS 308 uppers with stainless barrels are $519.
    And after a quick check of my local Cabelas and some other places for the rifle or ammo, neither could be found.

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