Browning Citori Composite

Browning Citori Composite

When John Browning began building his final shotgun—the vaunted Superposed—I doubt he ever envisioned the walnut-and-steel beauty undergoing a makeover such as this. For 2023 Browning (the company) debuted a composite version of the Citori—an over/under that more than 50 years ago used the Belgian-made Superposed as its blueprint when it replaced that classic break-action. I first saw the Citori Composite at this year’s SHOT Show Industry Day at the Range. It was sitting in the gun rack next to synthetic, camo-clad autoloaders. Skeptical of such an iconic shotgun having been transformed from wood to plastic, I picked it up and headed to the 5 Stand. To my surprise, it was a few ounces lighter than the original but shot much like it.

The Browning Citori Composite is available with 26-, 28- or 30-inch back-bored barrels, and there is a ventilated top rib but no side ribs, which saves a few ounces in comparison to traditional models. There is an ivory bead front sight and a mid-bead. The steel-shot-compatible barrels have 3” chrome-lined chambers and ejectors. Three flush-mounted Invector Plus chokes (Improved Cylinder, Modified and Full) and a choke wrench are included. Each choke is identified with notches in the end and writing on the side. Other chokes are available separately.

Like the Superposed, the Citori has a boxlock action. A steel hinge pin holds the barrels in place, and a tapered locking bolt provides durability. It’s rare for a Citori action to become compromised. The gun is built at the Miroku factory, in Japan, and the steel receiver is stout. The action has a polished, blued finish, and there is stippling on the sides and bottom along with the names “Browning” and “Citori.” The Browning Buck Mark appears in gold on the bottom of the trigger guard. The single selective trigger is inertia operated and averaged 3-1/3 pounds of pull for the top barrel and 3½ for the bottom. The tang-mounted safety contains the barrel selector.

The stock’s cheekpiece is adjustable via a pair of screws, allowing the shooter to customize fit. For those who have difficulty keeping their head down on the stock, this is a welcome feature. Stock dimensions (without the cheekpiece adjusted) are: 14¾” length of pull to an Inflex II recoil pad, 1¾” drop at comb and 2½” drop at heel. The composite material allowed Browning to make the grip areas thinner, to better fit shooters of all sizes, and rubber overmolds on the pistol grip and forend ensure a secure hold. The forend is removed with a Deeley-type latch.

Since the Citori Composite debuted in late January, my testing was relegated to shooting clays. Like other Citoris before it, the gun fit me well, and its 7.4 pounds were well balanced between the hands. (Our gun had 26” barrels; models with longer barrels are heavier.) I did find the tall white bead up front slightly obtrusive, as my eyes kept switching back and forth from the target to the bead. That said, those who like a point of reference when hunting or shooting clays may find it useful. I was shooting 2¾”, 1-ounce and 1-1/8-ounce loads and, thanks to the recoil pad and back-bored barrels, found the felt recoil moderate. The gun proved to have a 60/40 point of impact, which is ideal for the rising birds typically encountered in upland hunting and sporting clays. All I know is that it worked for me. The price is $2,200. For more information, contact Browning, browning.com.


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