SIG Cross PRS v. SIG Cross Rifle

By: True Pearce

SIG Cross Rifle on the bottom. SIG Cross PRS on top. MDT CKYE Pod Triple Pull (top). MDT CKYE Pod bottom.

SIG Sauer has been crushing the gun world, in a good way, with innovation and new products. They’ve made every other gun company get off their butts, market, and play catch up. The real winners are the gun enthusiasts like us. The truth about the success is no doubt their phenomenal leadership and that SIG Sauer employs more engineers than the entire rest of the firearms industry combined. They have over 300 full-time engineers. In addition to already providing every branch of the military with P320 pistols, they just recently landed the largest military contract in history with the Next-Gen Squad Weapons Systems contract which includes their new 6.8×51 Fury Hybrid ammunition. 

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The 6.8 Fury leads us full circle into what we’re reviewing today: the SIG Cross Precision Rifle System (PRS) and SIG Cross Rifle. The first bolt actions SIG Sauer created in the Cross model were lightweight hunting rifles chambered in the new 6.8 Fury/.277 Fury. I shot one of the first elk ever taken with the rifle and cartridge. You can read about that here. 

The author with one of the first elk ever taken with the .277 SIG Fury

The SIG 6.8 Fury is essentially a .308 dimension cartridge necked down to .270 (.277) or 6.8. If you’re thinking that is not impressive, I’d agree. The rest of the story is that SIG created a two-piece high-pressure cartridge that included a stainless steel base. The cartridge safely pushes projectiles at over 80,000 PSI. In real-world language that’s 20-30,000 psi more than most magnums and you can see it in the velocities. Now that’s impressive! Read more about the 277 SIG Fury HERE

SIG’s new .277 Fury.

The point is that SIG didn’t trust any of the current bolt action designs on the market to handle the  80,000 psi that their new cartridge was putting out. So, true to their nature, they created the SIG Cross from the ground up to handle higher pressures. It’s stronger than most other bolt-action rifles on the market today.

Cross Controversy

The SIG Cross hasn’t gone without some controversy. There has been one company that accused SIG of stealing their rifle design. It was likely just for attention as GunsAmerica has examined both rifles and found that they have literally nothing in common from an action/trigger standpoint and only have things in common that many rifles share like a barrel, stock, pistol grip, handguard, etc. The “other” rifle uses a Merkle-style action and the SIG Cross is fairly unique to SIG. In other words, they don’t share much in common other than they both look like modern bolt actions. I’ll add that there have been no patent lawsuits that I’m aware of.

Not long after the original SIG Cross was released a YouTuber borrowed one from a friend, modified the trigger, and was able to get the trigger to release by slamming the bolt with the safety on. While this was the one and only rifle that ever had the issue, and it was exclusive to the modified trigger, SIG did a complete recall and made changes to the trigger that prevented the issue from ever happening again. The SIG Cross has passed every drop test and is now one of the safest bolt action triggers on the market.

SIG Cross Precision Rifle System (PRS)

The SIG Cross PRS weighs in at 14.2 lbs and is the bigger, heavier, fatter younger brother to the original SIG Cross Rifle that weighed in at 6.5 lbs. 

Cross PRS on top Cross RIfle on bottom

The PRS is heavier on purpose as it is designed to be a precision-style rifle. Heavier rifles are easier to shoot as they settle down faster, recoil less, and generally have heavier barrels that allow for more shots without heating up as fast and stringing. 

SIG made the PRS heavier starting with the fully adjustable buttstock. The original Cross used aluminum for the buttstock but the PRS uses steel and it’s noticeably heavier. It also doesn’t feature all the lightning cuts that the Cross Rifle had.

PRS on the bottom is steel and adds a lot of weight.

The stock on the Cross and PRS are fully adjustable for length of pull and the cheekpiece is spring-loaded so that you can adjust it with your face pushing down on it and then lock it into place.

The kick pad is squishy, effective, and can be moved/adjusted vertically up and down by pushing a small button on the side. 

The buttpads are adjustable up and down with just the push of a button.

The length of pull and stock height adjustments can be made without tools. They’re tool-less which is really handy.

The PRS stock also has a bag rider attached to the bottom of the stock.

Steel bag rider on the PRS.

The stock folds on both rifles. The lockup is extremely tight. I find the stock slightly difficult to fold unless I’ve been practicing. Once you have a rifle with a folding stock you realize that it’s an awesome feature.

In the folded position the stock locks the bolt down.

The folded stock locks the bolt shut.

The safety is very similar to those on an AR-15 with the exception of the PRS version. On the right side of the PRS the safety is designed to be a thumb rest. You can still turn it on or off with your right thumb on the right side, but with the safety in the off position, it’s a perfect thumb rest. I think it’s very innovative, and while a small thing, it’s one of my favorite features. 

PRS safety rotates on and off but acts as a thumbrest in the “off/fire” position.
Cross rifle features a traditional ambi style AR safety.

Pistol grips on precision rifles have become more and more vertical. Vertical pistol grips are great for prone or tripods and they’re the choice of most precision rifle shooters today.

The vertical pistol grip on the PRS.

The SIG Cross PRS is no exception and comes with a fairly vertical pistol grip right out of the box. If you don’t like it, you can trade it out for any of the dozens of AR-style pistol grips on the market. The PRS also comes with a steel weight in the bottom of the grip.

The steel weight has a hole that allows you to access the screw holding the grip to the gun.

The trigger is totally unique to the SIG Cross Rifle and SIG refers to it as a two-stage match trigger. The trigger is really nice for a production, factory-style trigger. I should mention that it is adjustable but that mine came from the factory set at 3 lbs.

The trigger easily moves about a quarter of an inch and then stops. Adding more pressure makes the trigger break. It’s a very clean crisp definitive break.

The bolt throw on both Cross models is 60 degrees and it’s easy to manipulate very fast. It’s not “custom rifle smooth” right out of the box but it’s really good, and I’ll bet that with some time, will get there.

The bolt handles themselves can be changed but I like both the way they are. The PRS bolt handle is large and easy to grip, just how you’d want it on a precision rifle. 

The small serrated button allows for bolt removal.

The bolt itself is removed by pushing the small button right in the middle of the receiver and behind the scope rail.

The bolt body is pretty large, has flutes in it, and looks like it would allow a bolt head swap (somewhere in the future?). The bolt head features three beefy lugs, a heavy-duty extractor, and one ejector. 

Notice how large the lugs are.

Traditional precision rifles feature an action that a barrel screws into. The traditional action is then dropped into a chassis or stock and bedded and torqued to try and make them all mechanically one piece. The SIG Cross IS all one piece. The barrel screws into the receiver and the receiver is what the magazine attaches to. It’s also what the handguard attaches to and the buttstock attaches to. The entire rifle is monolithic. There’s no upper and lower like an AR15, even though it kind of looks like a bolt action AR-15. There’s nothing to bed. This is a good thing and makes for a very rigid platform.

The action/receiver is aluminum with steel reinforcements. 

The magazine that ships with the Cross PRS is an AICS style 10-round Magpul and the Cross magazine is a five round.

The PRS magazine release is slightly different from the Cross in that it has wings that stick outside the front of the trigger guard and is bigger and easier to manipulate.

The PRS mag release is Ambi and much easier and faster to use. Exactly what you’d want for competition or precision work.
The Cross features a much lower profile mag release that is much less likely to snag in a hunting situation.

The top of the action features a large steel Picatinny scope mount rail that extends from the back of the action to several inches out over the handguard. 

The handguard on both models of the rifle features M-Lok slots all over it, but that’s where the similarities stop.

The PRS (top) handguard is much thicker, longer, heavier, and comes with the full length steel ARCA rail.

The PRS handguard is thicker, heavier, and 18 inches long with a flat bottom. It comes with a steel ARCA rail that is also 18 inches long and runs the full length of the handguard for attaching bipods and tripods. 

The Steel ARCA rail is a nice touch and it adds significant weight.

The Cross Rifle features a lighter, shorter, 14 ¾ length handguard.

The lighter shorter handguard of the Cross rifle still features M-Lok all over it.

The barrel on the PRS is a heavy contour, match-grade stainless steel, 5R Rifled, 24-inch barrel that comes in either 1:8 twist for 6.5 Creedmoor or 1:10 for 308. Those are the only two chamberings currently available in the PRS version. The muzzle is threaded ⅝-24, comes with a thread protector, and is ready for a muzzle brake or suppressor. The muzzle also features a recessed target-style crown. 

The Cross rifle barrel shares most of those features but it’s a lighter contour and is either 16 or 18 inches long depending on the caliber. The Cross rifle is available in 308, 6.5 Creedmoor, and SIG’s 6.8 Fury. 

I tested the accuracy of the PRS with a SIG Tango 6 5-30×56 mil scope. I shot out to 600 yards and laid down some three-inch groups on steel at 600. At 100 yards I tested five different types of ammo. Most shot half MOA or better with the PRS and that was as it was getting dark. I think even better groups might be possible.

The Cross is lighter and more difficult to shoot groups with. Regardless, it still turned in a few groups under 3/4 MOA with most just under 1 MOA. Plenty good enough for hunting. No doubt with the right load it would do even better.

Ammo from Hornady, Norma, and SIG were tested in both rifles.

Final Thoughts


The PRS Cross rifle has been well thought out, well manufactured, and it has every feature you’d want for an out-of-the-box precision rifle. If I was to complain about anything it would be the lack of calibers that the rifle is available in (only available in 308 & 6.5 Creedmoor). At a minimum, SIG should have included 6mm Creedmoor. The PRS is definitely too heavy to hunt with and lacks chamberings in any real hunting calibers, but that’s not what it’s designed for as a precision rifle.

At a MAP price point of $2499, this is a feature-packed precision rifle with the biggest up-and-coming gun company in the world as its manufacturer. You can’t go wrong if you want to shoot long range or spend most of your time at a range.

SIG Cross Rifle

On the other hand, the SIG Cross rifle might be nearly a perfect hunting rifle with its folding stock, lightweight, incredible features, ability to adjust to fit youth hunters on the fly, and chambered in the powerful 6.8 Fury. I found it new for sale on GunsAmerica for $1599.

Learn more about the Cross at SIG Sauer

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