Benelli History

Timeline

121 - The Benelli style is born
121 - The Benelli style is born

Unanimously recognised as one of the most attractive semi-automatics of all time, endowed with a distinct personality and easily recognisable, the 121 is the progenitor of the entire Benelli production range. A model that breaks with any kind of previous design and led the way for a new generation of semi-automatics: elegant, light and easy to handle, with a steel receiver featuring an unmistakable orange peel painted finish and carefully selected woods, the 121 is the shotgun that remains in the hearts of all enthusiasts and hunters who follow Benelli. The operation is ensured by an oscillating lever, the foot of which contrasts with a cross bar on the bottom of the cover, while the head presses on that of the bolt. It is the bolt itself that, when pushed forwards by the large spring in between, causes the foot of the lever to rise and consequently the lock to release. The 121 is the shotgun that gives life to the Benelli style, a philosophy and a modus operandi in the production of guns with high quality standards that are hi-tech and innovative, with perfect aesthetics and function, unsurpassed in terms of quality of the finishes and the excellence of the workmanship.

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The key to success
The key to success

The ingenuity of the Benelli System, protected by international patent, lies in the rigor of its design, constructional simplicity and ease of maintenance. There are three main components: the bolt, that acts as an inertial mass and slides freely along guides made in the sides of the receiver, the locking head and the large free spring, mounted on the bolt. Its operations is ingenious and efficient. While the bolt assembly moves into the firing position, the locking head pin moves along a shaped guide inside the bolt to engage the locking head. When the trigger is pulled, all the components of the shotgun, with the exception of the bolt, move backwards. At the same time, the inertial spring is compressed between the head of the bolt and the body of the bolt itself. The cartridge drop lever rises to allow the cartridge to move from the magazine to the firing chamber. Towards the end of the recoil cycle, the pressure inside the chamber reaches a safe level and the backward movement of the shotgun slows down. Then, the heavy inertial spring pushes the bolt assembly backwards, releasing the revolving head of the bolt and extracting the cartridge fired from the chamber, pushing it against the ejector. When the empty cartridge leaves the receiver, the energy developed by the moving bolt assembly rearms the hammer and compresses the recoil spring inside the stock. Following this, the recoil spring pushes the bolt assembly forwards, in this way raising the shell forwards into the correct position and putting a new cartridge into the chamber. The brevity and ease of these movements together with mechanical precision and constructional simplicity guarantee an operating cycle which will not alter or jam, offering maximum resistance and extreme reliability.

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CRYOGENIC TECHNOLOGY
CRYOGENIC TECHNOLOGY

Used mainly in highly specialist sectors such as the aerospace and medical fields, cryogenic treatment consists of a gradual cooling of steel to temperatures well below -100° Celsius. It is a process that stabilizes the internal structure of the metal, removing the residual tensions and improving its mechanical characteristics. The result is a reduction in the friction coefficient, greater surface hardness and increased resilience. All this translates into less sensitivity to the high temperatures reached during firing and the consequent elimination of deformation and friction, giving optimum ballistic results. The advantages in terms of performance are exceptional: a prolonged working life of the barrel, an even vibratory regime when fired, improved resistance to erosion and corrosion, and the ability to withstand combustion residuals.

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Comfortech system
Comfortech system

The Comfortech® System is the first and only patent in the world able to change the rules of shooting, revolutionising the relationship between the individual and the gun and establishing new balances between weights and sizes, performance and ergonomics. Through the use of advanced technological means, state-of-the art materials and sophisticated calculation programs, specialist engineers and technicians have designed and constructed an integrated system made up of stock, recoil pad and comb, equipped with a high deforming capability and able to absorb part of the recoil force when fired. Made in technopolymer, the stock and fore-end is distinguished by the presence on both sides of 11 boomerang-shaped slots designed to make the stock more flexible and to create an important barrier against recoil. Its geometry is designed to contain and absorb the firing impact before it reaches the shooter’s shoulder, offering comfort never experienced before. The grip and fore-end have the special Air Touch checkering, based on the aerodynamic shape of the small dimples that provide the hand with natural ventilation and allow a firm hold to be taken in any situation. The Comfort Touch treatment applied to the stock and fore-end, not only enhances the aesthetic appearance of the shotgun, but also makes it extremely pleasant to the touch. The recoil pad and comb have a special anatomic form that maximises contact with the shooter's shoulder and cheek, increasing the surface area in contact and reducing the impact when the gun is fired. The material used is Technogel, a special gel developed exclusively for Benelli, the result of advanced research from industrial sectors in which the demand for absorption performance and distribution of the impact forces is paramount. Technology, design, research and innovation, these are the elements of the Comfortech® System patent.

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Super Black Eagle
Super Black Eagle

The reputation of the market leader in the field of mechanical design and technological innovation is based on certain unforgettable models. For the U.S. market Benelli was the first small arms manufacturer to make a semi-automatic able to fire supermagnum 89 mm cartridges, the Super Black Eagle. A sturdy and reliable gun, versatile and highly configurable. The guarantee of the inertial patent, the choice of resistant materials and indestructible workmanship have made the Super Black Eagle a shotgun that offers perfect and unexceptionable operation with any type of loading. Today it is the 31/2” semi-automatic that encompasses all the Benelli research and technology: the application of the Comfortech® System limits considerably the recoil felt during firing and allows a rapid return on target; barrels and chokes treated cryogenically guarantee excellent shooting accuracy; the trigger guard with its aggressive design and rich personality allows the trigger to be reached quickly and ensures a solid and safe grip, even with gloves on. Power, comfort during firing, precision and stability, shooting speed and reliable operation: Super Black Eagle is all of this.

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M2 & M3
M2 & M3

The M2 and M3 are versatile and powerful guns, totally reliable for any hunting and operating environment, thanks to great flexibility in use, precision and manoeuvrability. The M2 is an extremely resistant and exceptionally durable gun, due to the use of unalterable and technologically advanced materials such as the technopolymer for the stock and fore-ends. The high configurability of the shotgun makes its use very versatile: with a short barrel and special sights it is perfect for competition shooting, while with longer barrels, interchangeable chokes and variable drop stocks, it is ideal for hunting. The key to success for the M3 model lies essentially on the perfect combination of its operation: two mechanisms, semi-automatic and pump-action in a single gun. The switching system located in front of the arming rod makes it possible, with a simple action, to pass from the semi-automatic to the manual system. A gun that can take the widest range of cartridges and guarantees smooth operation, simple maintenance and maximum resistance under any conditions. The M2 and M3: resistant, and efficient shotguns that are safe and stable when fired.

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Supernova: design and power
Supernova: design and power

This is the shotgun that brought about a revolution in the field of slide-action firearms. Nova was the first pump-action firearm produced in Europe to have conquered the USA market. It is the first shotgun in the world with structural parts in tecnopolymer and with a rotating bolt mechanism, a symbol of safety, sturdiness, fluidity and speed of the arming cycle. Evolution today takes the name SuperNova. Superb and very striking design, attractive and distinctive lines for a state of the art product. It is the only slide-action gun to incorporate the Comfortech® System, the patent that has endowed the firearm with superior performance and operation, guaranteeing comfortable and controlled shooting even with heavy ammunition. Characterised by robust and decisive lines, the stock and receiver are made up of 2 separate sections. This allows maximum customisation, with possibility of changing the drop and deviation, something rarely found in pump-action shotguns. It is the only model to feature the Mag-stop, a button located under the fore-end that allows the cartridge in the chamber to be changed while leaving those left in the magazine in place. A reliable, safe and indestructible firearm with multiple applications that combines esthetics and advanced solutions.

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A.R.G.O. Patent
A.R.G.O. Patent

Simplicity, sturdiness, original and ingenious design are the distinguishing features of the patented A.R.G.O. Auto Regulating Gas Operated system, the gas-operated mechanism at the heart of the Argo and M4 models. Consisting of a gas operation unit containing a short-stroke piston, A.R.G.O. is located under the barrel, near the firing chamber, in order to exploit the hotter gasses and greater pressure. The gasses flowing from the barrel expand (in the gas collection cylinder) and rapidly accelerate the piston stroke, which simultaneously impacts with the bolt follower pins transmitting sufficient thrust to the bolt to send it backwards. It is self-cleaning because the position of the gas operation unit means that it works with gasses that are still hot and with relatively high pressures; in this way, the operation will always be safe with less build up of deposits. It is self-regulating because the gas operation valve acts as a regulator that expels excess gasses during firing. The greater the volume of gas flowing from the barrel, the quicker the pin valve opens and allows it to escape, in this way reducing the pressure inside the gas operation unitSelf-cleaning and self-regulating, A.R.G.O. guarantees firing precision, reliability, durability and confirms the technological superiority of Benelli.

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The marines choose Benelli
The marines choose Benelli

In 1998 Benelli won the contract for equipping the U.S. marine corps with a new combat rifle. The firearm that achieved this international success is the M4, the semi-automatic with the A.R.G.O. gas operated system, innovative and ingenious mechanics, resistant, precise and totally reliable. Every functional and operational requirement set out in the USA tender was exceeded with flying colours: 6 bullets on target out of 100% of shots, against the 5 out of 50% required; dismantling time 45 seconds, against the 60 expected; cleaning and lubrication in 10 minutes, instead of the 20 demanded; operation without any part of the gun being changed for 25.000 rounds while 10,000 rounds were requested. The M4 passed the most rigorous tests of the Joint Service Combat Shotgun under all surroundings and weather conditions: sand, mud, dust, heavy rain, snow, immersion under salt water, always guaranteeing unexceptionable operation proving to be totally reliable under all conditions. A victory and international recognition that rewards the technological superiority and production quality of Benelli and all those who played an active role in achieving this important success.

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Download the brochure
Download the brochure

Download the brochure in PDF format Benelli 40 years:

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Storia

From wheels to guns

Benelli Armi S.p.A. was formed in 1967. The idea behind the company, however, first came to the Benelli brothers, owners of the famous Benelli motorcycle company of Pesaro, in 1940. The Benelli brothers were passionate hunters as well as fine engineers, and at that time were already convinced that the future of hunting shotguns lay with semi-automatic models. This idea became reality when a brilliant designer from Bologna, Bruno Civolani, invented a revolutionary action. Civolani’s design led to the creation of an extraordinary hunting shotgun that used a simple inertia driven mechanism in place of a conventional gas operated system. With the bolt providing all the movement needed, this revolutionary design provided the fastest reloading action the world had ever seen, and permitted users to fire 5 rounds in less than a second. Benelli is a constantly growing company thanks to major investments in research and development. Over the years, innovative new products and advanced technology have consolidated Benelli’s prestige and spread its reputation among hunters and target shooters alike, aided by the company’s strategy of offering a range of semiautomatic shotguns that is recognised as the widest available today. Benelli was acquired by Beretta in 1983.

Mission: technology, quality, performance and design

Continuous innovation, research, the development of new technologies and materials, precision engineering and distinctive design are the keystones of Benelli’s philosophy.
Benelli’s mission is focused on the design and production of semiautomatic shotguns that stand out from the competition for their advanced technology, refined styling and unrivalled reliability. Owning a Benelli shotgun means owning a product of distinction, and one to which all enthusiasts aspire.

Production and technology
Thanks to a strategic and consistent use of technology and an advanced industrial-standard production plant, the firearms that Benelli manufactures all offer superb ballistic performance and excellent functionality. Benelli has invested heavily in research, design and testing, and production takes place in a high-tech factory equipped with new generation plant and machinery under the supervision of the latest ERP and quality control software. Benelli also attaches the greatest importance to the professionalism of its people, and sees its workforce as key to ensuring the development of products and services that will consolidate its reputation as leader in the world of firearms for sport and defence.

Certification and sustainable growth
Prototypes are tested according to the strictest international standards and Benelli’s Company Quality System implements both NATO AQUAP 2110 and ISO 9001 standards. Benelli’s organisational and operational capacity received major recognition when the company’s Environment Management System was certified to ISO 14001 and OHSAS I 8001 standards, proving that Benelli’s unrivalled product quality is achieved in full respect of the environment.

Milestones
The continuous development of new technologies has enabled Benelli to introduce a series of products that are seen today as milestones in shotgun design.
In 2002 Benelli threw down another gauntlet by entering the rifle market. This was a new departure for the company and demanded the highest levels of mechanical precision and reliability. With the introduction of a revolutionary new gas driven rifle action, Benelli pushed forward the frontiers of ballistic performance, and confirmed its reputation as a dynamic company full of ideas and resourcefulness.
In December 2007, Benelli Armi acquired all the rights to the Franchi trademark.

Bimillionaire: 40 years 2,000,000 of rifles

The Bimillionaire shotgun celebrates an impressive milestone in the history of Benelli: 2 million shotguns in 40 years of production. 1967-2007: Over the last 40 years, Benelli has grown dramatically and achieved ever more ambitious objectives. This growth has been driven by passion, technology, quality and continuous commitment to production. Benelli’s management style and company philosophy have become recognised as models of efficiency, professionalism and innovation, capable of deriving maximum benefit from constantly developing design capacity, highly qualified human resources and advanced technology. Buying a Benelli shotgun means that you recognise and appreciate the passion and care that underlies its unique technology. Elegant lines, quality finish, prestigious materials, warm wood essences and beautiful veining are all typical Benelli characteristics. Benelli semi-automatics are the forerunners of a whole new generation of shotguns and have the ability to fascinate, excite and inspire. Benelli is now embarking on a new chapter in its history, with the same enthusiasm and dynamism that characterised its formation and its growth so far. This new chapter will be yet another of new challenges, projects, dreams, inspirations and rewards. Benelli: 40 years of quality, technology, innovation, passion and authenticity.

Vinci: maximun innovation

One of the latest additions to the Benelli family, the Vinci is a totally original and innovative shotgun and a whole new concept in the world of semi-automatics. With the Vinci, form serves function, however. The Vinci is therefore revolutionary in looks too, improving radically on any shotgun made so far in terms of efficiency, simplicity and ergonomics. Creating complex designs is relatively easy. It is far more difficult to create a beautifully simple design. The Vinci delivers amazing performance and characteristics, but stands out even more for its wonderfully simple design, balance and modularity. The Vinci was designed to beat the competition. That is why it delivers unrivalled performance whatever the situation.