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By Irwin Greenstein

Beretta 692 Over/Under Competition Shotgun Introduction

Beretta 692 Over/Under Competition Shotgun Introduction

Shotgun Life

Shotgun Life

Pikesville, MD - -( If you’re a fan of disco, the shuttle ride from the airport in Seville, Spain to the historic Hotel Alfonso XIII in the heart of the city got an upbeat start as the gray-haired bus driver played the Pointer Sisters’ “I’m so Excited” on the radio.

The song’s title augured the impending enthusiasm by the cadre of international media flown in by Beretta for the official introduction of the 692 over/under competition shotgun.

Several 692 Sporting models were available for five-stand and bunker-trap evaluations with a number of Spain’s top clays competitors on hand along with American Olympic skeet gold medalist, Vincent Hancock.

After a day of experiencing the Beretta 692 at the La Almenara shooting range in Burguillos, conversations with other writers during bus rides, cocktails and dinner were complimentary of the shotgun that consistently broke challenging targets. Maybe many of the reporters were good shots.

Nonetheless, you couldn’t ignore the reckoning delivered by the Beretta 692 during an afternoon barrage of targets blown to smithereens at La Almenara.

Olympic gold medal champion, Vincent Hancock, shooting a Beretta 692 at the La Almenara shooting range.

Olympic gold medal champion, Vincent Hancock, shooting a Beretta 692 at the La Almenara shooting range.

As the reporters discovered, you would be hard-pressed not to be excited about shooting the Beretta 692. In the premium price category of $5,000 to $7,000 it emerged as the most neutral handling and accurate clays gun in the segment — exerting considerable pressure on similarly equipped models from Blaser and Zoli. Because it’s a high-volume shotgun, the Beretta 692 is ranked below the premium Krieghoff K-80 and Perazzi MX8 and MX2000. Nonetheless, the shooting dynamics and quality of the Beretta 692 could exert upward market-share creep on those two winner’s circle regulars as progress in computerized rendering and manufacturing erode established value gaps.

From a historical perspective, the Beretta 692 is the successor to the popular Beretta 682, which has sold some 50,000 units since its introduction in the mid-1980s. Looking into the future, however, the Beretta 692 is more than a simple nomenclature enhancement to the 682. In addition to a catalog of new engineering goodies, the 692 redoubles a sleek design DNA for Beretta competition shotguns unveiled in July 2012 with the mighty DT11 clays pulverizer. Partial credit for the new look and feel of the Beretta 692 goes to the brainy folks at Porsche Design.

But when it comes to pushing the price/performance envelope, Beretta has leveraged economies-of-scale from the costlier DT11 as well as the 682 to sell the 692 at only 3% to 5% higher than the outgoing 682 Sporting, which sold for about $4,500, while the trap single model cost approximately $4,800. Bottom line: when the Beretta 692 arrives in the U.S. during Q1 2013, $5,000 will buy you a state-of-the-art Beretta clays gun that rivals the Blaser F3 Competition Sporting Standard at about $6,500 and the Zoli Z-Sport Bilanx at some $6,000. The repercussions for Blaser and Zoli could intensify when you tally Beretta’s vast marketing and dealer resources.

Regardless, it’s all good news for clays enthusiasts ready for a new, shiny shotgun.

Read the complete article here on ShotGun Life

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