A new company in Texas is selling a precision rifle with a unique technology that allows even an inexperienced shooter to hit a target 10 football fields away. The price tag is a staggering $27,500.
Tracking Point describes the weapon as a smartgun, with a trigger wired to the scope so that the gun won't fire until it's locked on the target that's been tagged.
"There are a number of people who say the gun shoots itself," said Chief Executive Officer Jason Schauble, a former Marine captain who was wounded in Iraq. "It doesn't. The shooter is always in the loop."
The TrackingPoint rifles, which are Wi-Fi enabled and have a color display so users can post videos of their shots on Facebook or YouTube, started shipping in May. Schauble said his company is on track to sell as many as 500 of them this year, to clients that he describes as "high net worth hunters" who want to kill big game at long range.
TrackingPoint claims that the gun took down a South African wildebeest at 1,103 yards, a company record.
The company also has a deal to sell about 1,000 of the guns to Remington, which is Schauble's former employer. But the Remington model will be less expensive, running about $5,000 each. TrackingPoint's total sales for the year are expected to be about $10 million.
Lifelong hunter and construction executive Bob Ellis is one client who raves about the rifle. "I have not shot anything like it ever," he said in an email to CNNMoney. "The distance and accuracy of the rifle is a big WOW!"
Founder and chairman John McHale is a serial entrepreneur who's started several companies that were ultimately sold to Cisco (CSCO, Fortune 500), 3Com and Compaq, which was later bought by HP (HPQ, Fortune 500). Early in his career he worked on weapons accuracy systems for tanks. The idea for TrackingPoint came to McHale while he was on African safari and frustrated by his inability to shoot a gazelle at 300 yards.
Schauble is well aware of the damage that guns can do. His right hand is partially paralyzed after he was shot with an AK-47 during combat in Iraq. He wears black "kill bracelets" commemorating dead friends. He admitted that TrackingPoint's technology is "controversial."
Government agencies contacted the company last year for a demonstration of the weapon at a shooting range at the Quantico Marine Corps Base in Virginia. But Schauble says that the Department of Homeland Security didn't express any concerns that TrackingPoint's weapon is more of a threat than existing firearm systems.
Homeland Security and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives declined to comment to CNNMoney.
But the weapon has some "scary implications from a security perspective," said Rommel Dionisio, a gun industry analyst for Wedbush Securities.
"There are a handful of snipers who can hit a target at 1,000 yards. But now, anybody can do it," he said. "You can put some tremendous capability in the hands of just about anybody, even an untrained shooter."
Indeed, novice shooters from CNNMoney tried the gun and did hit targets 1,000 yards away.
What sets the TrackingPoint rifle apart is its high-tech electronic scope that automatically accounts for distance, gravity, wind speed, humidity, the rotation of the Earth and other variables that can influence whether a bullet hits its target.
The TrackingPoint scope allows the shooter to "tag" a target by placing a red dot on it within the crosshairs. Even when the safety is off and the shooter's finger pulls the trigger, the rifle will only fire when the crosshairs are locked on the red dot, making it relatively easy for even an inexperienced shooter to hit a target at long range.
Tracking Point charges from $22,500 to $27,500 for the different versions of its bolt-action rifle, which has a five-round magazine using .300 or .338 caliber ammunition.
Schauble hopes to land a contract with the U.S. military. He said that American soldiers could benefit not only from the long-range accuracy, but also the rifle's Wi-fi communications features.
"From a patriotic standpoint and as a veteran, I would love every soldier to be better armed today, and this technology could get them there," he said.
Frightening is the word. But lets look at it this way. If they are pushing guns on everyone for self protection and especially these high powered things they are distributing, they are in their own way creating jobs no? And when you figure in that we are all shooting each other, it only stands to reason, less people need jobs and business like gun manufacturers and funeral directors are happy little campers. Opens up lots of jobs too!
And when you figure in that we are all shooting each other, it only stands to reason, less people need jobs and business like gun manufacturers and funeral directors are happy little campers. Opens up lots of jobs too!
LOL! Teko, you crack me up!!
Yes teko everyone is shooting each other. Can't walk down the street without being shot.
This weapon would have great military application. But I don't see anything like this should be in civilian hands. If a hunter can't hit something at 300 yrds then he needs to move closer or needs more practice. I believe Congress would need to step up and outlaw this from civilian hands. But would also like to learn more about it.
I'm trying to picture a South African wildebeest and by its name ---- a gun that shoots from a great distance sounds in order.
Wow, who would buy a 27,000 dollar gun? This is the gun for celebrities and billionaires. But . . . it won't be long until they make a less expensive version. Lordy, a 'smart gun'. If someone is shooting at me, my only hope is that they'll miss . . .
Next they'll make it so you can hook your ipod up to it and shoot to your favorite song.
And then someone will buy them, then someone will steal them and we will be even worse off with a psycho running around with one of these is my fear.They will eventually make their selves to the streets just like all the others have.
My first reaction is~what a waste of technology. Why come up with more ways to kill instead of solving the problems so many humans face, like simply having clean water, healthy food and shelter ??
How about putting this energy towards building a sustainable economy ??
You give it up, worry wart. You ever consider your chances of being hit by lightning? You're doomed... big old shark attack, the potential for being shot by this gun, and then lightning...? Wow.... doomed, I tell you...DOOMED.
Okay brice - I am going to go real slow for you but this is your last chance.
brice said: You'll be attacked by a shark before you ever get shot by this gun.
mikesimon said: I've been attacked by a shark already
brice said: Then you've got no worries
That is illogical brice.
You said an event would precede me getting shot by the aforementioned gun.
I said that the event had occurred.
Logically that means that getting shot by the gun is more likely than it would have been had I not gotten attacked by a shark BECAUSE THE PRECEDING EVENT ALREADY HAPPENED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Can you grasp that logic?
That's my final lesson. If you don't get it by now you're doomed to wallow in a morass of confusion.
You survived a "shark attack". The odds of an "attack" are astronomical considering all of the man hours on the beach, in the ocean, yearly. Nonetheless, you are "attacked" and survived. Odds there are probably a lot tighter, perhaps 50/50.
Me saying you "have no worries" is in reference to the fact that the odds of you getting shot by this horrible, dangerous, life threatening gun... is probably in the same ball park as being "attacked" by a shark. Since you survived that, chances are that not only will you not get shot by this gun, but that you'd survive being shot by this horrible monster of a gun.
There are of course a lot of things you could do to better your odds of not getting shot, but I doubt you are capable of them.
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