CHAPTER 10: The Mossberg MVP Scout

There are arguably three definitions of the scout rifle. The populace definition is any bolt-action rifle with an extended eye relief scope. There’s COL Jeff Cooper’s definition. And finally, there’s the definition/s conjured by everyone else. The Mossberg MVP Scout clearly meets the first and last. It allows for a forward mounted optic and is exactly what Mossberg thought a scout rifle should be. Cooper would have likely called it a “pseudo scout.”

Like all commercial scout rifles of the 21st century, the MVP Scout is an interpretation of Cooper’s conceptualized general-purpose rifle. While not adhering to every element of his specifications, the MVP exemplifies the essence of the concept, and that’s powerful, fast handling, highly portable rifles, well suited to hunting, protection, and survival.

When Mossberg first introduced their MVP patrol rifle, which was a 308 Winchester version of their popular MVP, I immediately told those at Mossberg who would listen they should offer a scout-like rifle to compete with the Ruger GSR. Surprisingly, they listened. Unsurprisingly, they did not ask for any of my input. Not that I know everything, but I thought it would be a great opportunity for a manufacture to finally get it right – or at least get it close to right.

The full-length rail covers the action and many find this undesireable on a Scout Rifle. Notice the wear marks on the left side of the stock; this rifle has been used hard!

As it turned out, Mossberg only made three alterations to their MVP Patrol rifle. This is typical of manufactures looking to increase sales with line extensions, requiring the least amount of effort possible. Those of us who are on the other side of the counter often balk and question why a company did not do it this way or that. We often forget that the driving influence behind a company in business to sell things it to make money. Mossberg felt the MVP Scout would sell well as they had it configured, even though it was short of Cooper’s desires. They were right.

NOTICE: This is the last chapter preview of The Scout Rifle Study published on-line.