When the lever-action rifle design was patented over a century and a half ago, it represented a giant leap in firearm technology. In the time since, lever-actions have become an American icon.
Lever-action rifles offer shooters a faster rate of fire than their bolt-action counterparts. They are often more compact than other rifle designs and many modern models are capable of taking the largest game in North America. Though never officially adopted as a standard rifle for the U.S. military, some lever-actions, like the Spencer 1860 repeating rifle, saw limited use in the Civil War. By the mid- to late-19th century, lever-action rifles, particularly those made by Winchester, surged in popularity, most notably on the Western frontier. (Here is a look at the most powerful hunting rifles.)
Today, lever-action repeaters remain a favorite with sports men and women and firearm collectors across the United States.
Using a report from Gungenius, which compiled sales data from GunBroker.com, an online firearms marketplace, 24/7 Wall St. identified the 10 most popular lever-action rifles in America. Guns are ranked based on 2022 online sales, though exact sales figures were not provided.
Henry Repeating Arms, a Wisconsin-based company, has more rifles on this list than any other brand. Henry manufactured more than 1.3 million rifles between 2016 and 2020, or nearly 9% of all U.S. made rifles in that period, according to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives. Though the company takes its name from the Henry Rifle, the first commercially successful lever-action repeater, it was founded in 1996 and has no other affiliation with its namesake.
It is important to note that some families of Henry rifles on this list overlap with others. The line of Henry .30-30 models, for example, includes rifles from other Henry lines, such as the Henry X Model. Other companies represented on this list include Browning, Marlin, Rossi, and Winchester – the brand name behind the Model 1873, dubbed the “Gun That Won the West.” (Here is a look at America’s top rifle companies.)
Click here to see the most popular lever-action rifles in America.
Click here to read our detailed methodology.
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