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2022 Shotgun of the Year: Benelli SBE3 20-Gauge

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Welcome to our annual Golden Bullseyes, an award program that honors pinnacles of design, innovation, performance and value produced for American hunters.

Golden Bullseye winners are selected by a panel of experts representing more than a century of collective experience in shooting, hunting and outdoor trade. To qualify for consideration, a product must have been:
• Recently introduced and available to consumers prior to nomination;
• Used/tested by AH staff or our contributors;
• Reliable in the field and thus meeting the consumer’s expectations;
• Innovative in design and function;
• Readily perceived as a value to the consumer;
• Styled in a manner befitting the trade and its enthusiasts.

Benelli Super Black Eagle 3 20-Gauge Semi-Automatic Shotgun

2022 Shotgun of the Year: Benelli SBE3 20-Gauge
In 1991, Benelli introduced perhaps the most technologically advanced autoloading shotgun ever devised: the Super Black Eagle. It was the first autoloader to cycle 2¾-, 3- and 3½-inch 12-gauge shells in any order without adjustment via its ARMI inertia action that uses the gun’s recoil to cycle the entire gun around a floating bolt. It’s simple and self-regulating, fast and reliable. New iterations were offered only in 12-gauge until last year when the SBE3 20-gauge was released, and hunters around the world rejoiced.

Benelli SBE3 Shotgun Recoil Pad

The 20 is a 5.8-pound scaled-down clone of the 12. It handles 3-inch shells and offers Benelli’s most advanced recoil mitigation system, Comfort Tech 3.

The gun features a 26-or 28-inch Crio-treated, vent-rib barrel with a fiber-optic front sight, oversized controls, and a beveled loading port and redesigned loading gate. Five chokes are included. The stock is adjustable for drop-at-comb and length of pull.

Hunters looking for the best 20-gauge shotgun for upland birds or waterfowl should be entirely happy with the SBE3 20-gauge. MSRP: $1,899; benelliusa.com.


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