It seems to me that Savage Firearms is currently manufacturing the perfect deer rifle, the Savage Model 16FLSS.
The rifle is part of Savage’s “Weather Warrior” series. This means that the rifle is made in stainless steel with a durable synthetic stock. The combination gives the rifle an attractive look that will last for decades — even standing up to the abuse that I put a rifle through.
The rifle is very nicely light-weight. The .308 caliber (7.62mm NATO) version weighs just 6.5 pounds. This makes the rifle easy to carry for extended hunting trips.
The 16FLSS comes in a wide variety of calibers: .223 Rem, .22-250 Rem, .243 Win, 7mm-08 Rem, .308 Win, .270 WSM, .7mm WSM, and .300 WSM. The 116FLSS is available for long action calibers: .270 Winchester, .30-06, 7mm Rem Mag, .300 Win Mag, and .338 Win Mag.
.308 is fully adequate for deer, or any other North American game animal. .308 also has the advantage of being 100% compatible with 7.62mm NATO. This makes .308 ubiquitous and inexpensive — and it makes .308 a good caliber for a long-term investment.
Savage Rifles feature the Savage AccuTrigger, which is user-adjustable and quite effective and helping shooters maintain accuracy during the trigger pull.
The Weather Warrior series comes drilled and tapped for scope mounts, a practical necessity for the modern deer hunter.
Best of all, Savage rifles are prices very attractively. With Savage, you get top quality and features at very reasonable prices.
But for me, the greatest feature was Savage’s support for left-handed shooters. We southpaws don’t get a lot of love from most major gun manufacturers, so I very much appreciate Savage’s making the perfect deer rifle — and the perfect deer rifle for me.