One of the Top Best 9mm Combat Handguns for Law Enforcement
The Sig P320 X-Carry is one of the best 9mm CCW I have tested. Sig’s P320 X-Carry is an engineering marvel of a new breed of semi-auto.
Sometimes I wonder just how many times we can repackage, reinvent and reintroduce a firearm which is basically the same weapon it was fifty to a hundred years ago? As examples, the Model 1911 in .45 acp, the AR-15 and the 9mm semi-auto in double action. Now with this said, there has been improvement in the reliability, sighting and accuracy of these weapons. But at the end of the day you pull the trigger, the firing pin/hammer ignites the primer which ignites the propellent or powder. The bullet or round being pushed by gases, travels down the barrel into the atmosphere down range and strikes the point of impact where the firearm was intentionally or unintentionally aimed. This has been a basic primer/cap-lock firearm function since the early 1830’s.
Improvements to the primer/cap-lock system have been from a single shot pistol or rifle to a revolving cylinder system to bolt action to the semi-auto. There were a few oddball designs which strayed off the engineering path but I will stay on this path. The semi-auto system was first introduced in a rifle in Austria in the late 1800’s. Many firearm’s companies followed suit at the beginning of the 20th Century with rifles, shotguns and pistols. Machineguns or full-auto weapons followed shortly thereafter.
Along comes Sig Sauer in 1976 and changed up the game. Sig Sauer has been a leader in the firearms industry for the last 43 years. In 2017 Sig Sauer won the U.S. Army’s contract to replace their M9 Beretta 9mm to a more versatile pistol. Sig’s answer is their proven P320 model. Sig Sauer’s “M17” is currently being produced with several options and variations to meet the needs of our Hero’s in the coming turbulent years. Sig accomplished this by engineering a 21st Century semi-auto pistol which meets and exceeds our military’s needs.
For the civilian market Sig Sauer has made available the 9mm P320 X-Carry in the ever-popular Coyote Tan finish as well as the black finish. The P320 X-Carry in the most basic way, is the same pistol as the M-17. The M-17 has been designed to be a versatile tool for military use. The P320 X-Carry was designed for civilian and law enforcement conceal carry. One very noticeable difference is the “Lightening Cut” in the slide. This 1.187-inch cut is in the top of the slide between the ejection port and the front sight. The theory is to lighten the slide at this critical point thereby reducing the barrel “flip”. In my testing of this P320 X-Carry, I found the barrel flip was manageable. My only worry about the large opening in the top of the slide is the availability for foreign objects to enter into the inner workings. If you are one who cleans their pistol once every six months, this might not be the pistol for you.
Another difference between the P320 M-17 and the P320 X-Carry is the flat trigger design. The P320 M-17 has the more traditional curved trigger design and the P320 X-Carry has an unusual flat trigger. At first look, I did not know if I was going to like this flat design. But once I started the test and evaluation by expending 200 rounds of Hornady 9mm, I found I didn’t really notice the flat design. Since the Sig P320 has a striker-fired system, there is no need for a stiffer long pull of the trigger. The trigger pull is the same each and every time. Being a striker-fired weapon, there are no safeties with the exception of the bipedal knuckle dragger who is holding it. This weapon should never be carried in anything but a quality holster designed for the P320. The only safety is your trigger finger. So, my fellow Warriors & Sheepdogs, keep your finger out of the trigger guard until you are ready to dispense some death and destruction.
Sig also sent me their 21-round magazine. Yes, my California Warriors, sorry for you. In testing this magazine, I had zero problems as I did with the 17-round magazines. However, when I had the magazine loaded up with 21 dirt-nap pills, when the slide was in battery it would not insert and lock into the magazine weld. The slide must be locked back before this magazine will be accepted.
SIG P320 X-Carry Conclusion:
The P320 X-Carry sample Sig Sauer sent me was a joy to shoot. I found if I did not hold this pistol firmly in my gun-hand, the last round fired from a magazine would be caught by the slide. I do this intentionally for testing purposes. If I held this pistol firmly, the problem would not present its self. This only happened twice. Gridley’s 21-year-old daughter had no problems with the side catching the empty case. She just loves this pistol. When shooting the P320 X-Carry the empty cases would fly back to my right but on occasion they would bounce off my chest, with some going into my tee shirt pocket. Yes, they were hot. This is not a problem as every semi-auto, even one digit off in the serial, will have different ejection patterns. Different ammo, bullet weight can affect this as well.
The trigger-pull of the P320 X-Carry averages 4.1 pounds with .3-pound variance. The pull is nice and crisp with an ever so slight travel. As in most striker-fired pistols, the pull is constant on every round fired. As I stated before, the flat trigger design gave me some pause as I am use to having a trigger with a slight curve. But I was delighted on how accurate I could shoot this pistol right out of the box.
The sight on the P320 X-Carry are Sig H3AS SIGLITE Night Sight No. 8 front and back. The rear sights on my sample had the Tritium isotope glow in the dark feature. The front sight glows as well and are excellent in low light and better in the dark. These sights in daylight are excellent. I shot most of my rounds at 15 yards which is reflected in this article. Multiple shots were fired in a rapid manner. It was not too difficult to get consistent good groups on my Champion B-27 targets. I love the Champion brand targets. The Hornady 9mm Critical Defense FTX ammo is my go-to 9mm CCW ammo. For those times when all is put on the line Hornady ammo will not let you down. I highly recommend Hornady.
Some other great features are the undercut trigger guard and enhanced slide serrations. With the undercut trigger guard, I could achieve a higher grip which assisted me in managing the recoil. The enhanced slide serrations give me a good grip for chambering a fresh magazine of deadly copper covered lead zombie killers. The functionality of these engineering feats as well as the lightening cut to the side makes for a great CCW combat pistol. The P320 X-Carry is what I would call a medium frame semi-auto but even with this it is easy to carry in the right holster. If you are looking for a 17 round CCW, look no further. You will be well pleased and well-armed with the P320 X-Carry.
Ballistics: Three shot averages
Hornady 9mm 115 grain Critical Defense FTX
9mm – 1105, 1110, 1084 = 1099 avg fps, avg 308 ft pounds
Sig Sauer’s P320 X-Carry Specs
- Caliber: 9mm Luger
- Action Type: Semi-Auto
- Grip Type: Modular Polymer X-Series
- Frame Size: Carry
- Frame Material: Polymer
- Frame Finish: Stainless Steel
- Slide Finish: Coyote PVD
- Slide Material: Stainless Steel
- Barrel Material: Carbon Steel
- Accessory Rail: M1913
- Trigger: Striker System
- Trigger Type: Flat (4.1-pound pull)
- Barrel Length: 3.9 in
- Overall Length: 7.4 in
- Overall Width: 1.3 in
- Height: 5.5 in
- Weight: 27 oz
- Other: Lightening Cut Slide
Sig P320 X-Compact
Hornady Critical Defense 115gr FTX
Champion B-27 LEO NRA silhouette