We already introduced the CZ 600 series here at all4shooters.com: there are 5 model variants which are essentially scaled around similar mechanics and here.
Six locking lugs offer a 60-degree bolt lift to unlock and cock the action. The bolt handle is a slim design with polymer tip for grip without unnecessary styling that weakens ergonomic benefit. The bolt face is semi-controlled feed with right side claw extractor and a manual ejector emerging from the base of the face enabling physical control of ejection force. The plunger itself is sprung to dampen the bolt stop.
CZ initially planned to offer switch barrel capability and fundamentally, it still is, but with the barrel’s retention screws are now heavily threadlocked in position to avoid careless user tampering. CZ even issued a recall notice in this regard. This means that barrels can still be swapped but a dealer must do it. I have swapped barrels back and forth without concerns, but it seems someone swapped a barrel without correctly re-tensioning the screws to the values marked on the action and had one come loose. I presume the lawyers got involved?
I certainly have no doubts over the mechanical concept and the barrels were easy to change. It uses three bolts clamping the action closed around the barrel’s tenon, the action is not pressure bearing, the bolt lugs lock directly into the barrel.
This Ergo is a .308 so had a .308-bolt head in place but these are also interchangeable. You can strip the bolt/swap heads without the need for tools.
There is a bolt release button on the right of the action’s rear bridge. Swapping the bolt face requires de-cocking and removal of the firing pin and with the extractor spring pressed, the bolt head slides out laterally from the shaft.
Some of the CZ 600 variants use a steel action which will accept a Rem 700 Picatinny rail, but the Ergo’s is aluminium with twin Picatinny bases incorporated into the machined, hard anodised receiver for simple scope mounting.
There is a 5-round detachable magazine on the underside with a release catch which gently springs the polymer unit into your palm. The catch also slides to lock it in position for security if desired. It’s a twin column unit so ammo presses straight in between the feed lips whether it is in or out of the gun, easy to use in all scenarios and easily topped up in quickly.
CZ have a new single stage adjustable trigger using a small Allen headed screw within the trigger guard that engages four pre-set weights. The unit is crisp, and I preferred weight `2` for summer but will likely switch to `3 ` for winter with gloves on. The smooth curved steel blade has plenty of space in the trigger guard which is moulded as part of the polymer stock.
Rifle safety uses a plunger passed through the stock behind the action tang, it presses down for “fire” or when lifted upward from behind the trigger guard, applies “safe” and locks the bolt. The bolt can still be opened with the bolt release catch pressed simultaneously when lifting the handle.
CZ’s cold hammer forged barrels are very reliable and this one is 20”/508mm long with a capped 15x1 thread at the 16.7 mm muzzle for moderator or brake. The barrel has a black, chemical finish of CZ’s own recipe and has so far shrugged off all corrosion, It’s free floating within the forend which although slightly flexible, has a spacious channel which maintains the free float from all shooting positions. Both front and rear uses moulded in sling anchor points and the rear of the stock is sloped to enable stable elevation control from a supporting hand when prone.
Both forend and buttstock feature black rubber inlays like the grip’s for assured tactile contact.
The vertical thumbhole grip is ambidextrous with slight palm swell, the comb is a reasonably high smooth, mechanically quiet moulding finished deep green for characteristic looks without ergonomic compromise. There’s no hollow resonance from the stock when fired and recoil transfer is linear with minimal muzzle lift.
The recoil pad is available in three thicknesses, grips the shoulder with a textured, medium durometer rubber to complete the 367mm/14.5” length of pull.
CZ 600 Ergo in .308: ammunition performance on target
|Ammunition||Bullet weight/gr||Stated Velocity on box (fps)||Average velocity recorded (fps)||Muzzle energy (ft-lbs)||100 m 3-shot group mm/in|
|Hornady Custom Lite Reduced Recoil|
|Hornady CX (copper)||165||2610||2640||2554||21/0.83|
|Hornady Precision Hunter ELD-X|
|Norma Evo Strike (copper)||139||2903||2757||2346||19/0.75|
The 1 in 10” twist rate of the barrel in 308 is a wise compromise given the increasing use of copper bullets. This is a physically light rifle but perfectly balanced with generous length of pull too, the stock offers plentiful forehand grip space and the cutout for the thumbhole is also spacious. The rifle is fundamentally easy to shoot consistently with such a good trigger and firing hand position relative to the blade.
The barrel is showed exceptionally good thermal stability which is testament to CZ’s precision hammer forging process and quality control. I shot three round groups to prove the MOA guarantee and conserve ammunition yet 5 round groups maintained the standards with very little point of impact shift between bullet weights and brands at 100 metres.
Some new features are innovative and patented but, overall, CZ have tackled every aspect of the design using reliable solutions that assure their reputation as true engineers. The bolt design is excellent, fast, smooth and with the control feed face, particularly delicate and reliable with ammunition presented accurately toward the chamber regardless of actual bolt operation speed, a definite update to the reliable, but dated control feed full length Mauser claw.
The slight buffering offered by the ejector as the bolt reaches its stop is an unusual but easily adapted character instead of the hard mechanical stop most actions offer at their bolt stroke limit. I cannot fault the trigger, it’s precise and easy to alter for you preferences with firm detents between weight settings, it offers feel like premium rifles at 3-5 times the cost of the Ergo. Accuracy wise, the gun meets it’s promised MOA standards and although the barrel interchangeability is now restricted to dealers, I have full confidence the mechanics which I tested myself and shown sub 0.3 mRad return to zero.
I will likely cover other 600’s like the Alpha, Trail, and Range over the coming year but the Ergo was the one I thought posed the best overall package for hunters the instant I saw it at the factory launch in 2021.
CZ haven’t tried to incorporate new features simply to save cost or mimic trends, they have made an individually appealing rifle I as a professional would be happy to carry, modern functionality, manufacture, and materials well without excessive price tag or marketing hyperbole.
CZ 600 Ergo in .308 specs and price
|Calibers: ||.308 test gun (medium action), .223, 6.5 Creedmoor,
.30-06, .300 Win Mag, 8x57 IS|
|Barrel Length: ||20”/508mm; twist rate: 1:10” |
|Overall Length: ||39.5”/1,038 mm|
|Weight:||6.4 lb/2.9 kg|
|Muzzle Thread: ||15x1|
|Stock:||Polymer ambidextrous thumbhole with soft touch
|Length of Pull: ||14.5”/367 mm (three recoil pad options)|
|Trigger:||Single stage adjustable, 600-1,350gr (22-48
|Safety:||Two position without bolt lock|
|Magazine:||Polymer magazine, 5-round capacity|
|Finish: ||Hard anodised receiver, chemical finish to barrel|
|Price (suggested in the U.K.): |
£1,262.99 (CZ 600 Ergo)