I'm also interested in a lower priced entry level biathlon rifle package for myself and my wife. As previously posted Altiusguns.com has been very impressive when it comes to top of the line Anschutz and Izhmash rifles. If you email them they will send you prices and help you work through a build. It basically comes down to $1760 for an entry level 20 deg F plus race ready Izhmash 7-3, $2,800 for the Altius-Izhmash 7-3 upgrade, $3,160 for the Larsen 7-3 upgrade. The Anshutz package is pretty much top of the line and has a top of the line price of $3,900.
Eastern Sierra Armory out in CA sells a Savage MK II biathlon rifle package for about $1,500 (http://www.easternsierraarmory.com/blog/
So for around $1,500 - $1,760 which seems like the low end of the biathlon rifle package the only choices that I have found are the Savage MK II and the Izhmash 7-3. It seems like the package deals are the best for cutting costs as the snow sites, covers, hand stops, harness, rails all add up quick.
I wish I could find someone that has shot the Savage MK II at sub 15 deg F temps. I hear the accuracy of the Savage and Izhmash both drop below 15 deg F. When I was in CA where the temps never really got below the 20's (at least on the days I was out shooting) my scoped Savage MK II TRR-SR (worked over by a military sniper friend) from a benchrest held sub MOA out to 100yds and would have no problem in competition. We consistently could hit 6" steel gongs at 200yds. Out here in upper MN where I am now the temps stay around 5 deg F and are often 15 below at the range. The Savage with Wolf Match has had below standard performance. The bolt sticks, the magazines don't feed consistently and the shots are nowhere near 1 MOA. I will run some Lapua biathlon rounds through it and post the results asap as I'm sure the Wolf match is the biggest source of error at such low temps.
I would love to avoid having to drop $4,000 on a sub 15 deg F competition rifle if at all possible.
If you know anyone with a Sierra Armory Savage MK II biathlon set up please have them post a review.