Precision One Ammunition is a company out of South Carolina that is doing a great job making affordable, accurate, and reliable ammunition. In this ammo test I will be taking a look at their highly regarded .380 ACP 90r XTP load. I love some good .380, and I had high expectations for this load. I wasn’t disappointed.
Precision One has been a niche maker of some impressive ammunition for years now. If you’re not familiar with them:
(Precision One) manufactures new and remanufactured ammunition. Our company goals are to bring a consistent and accurate round to the marketplace. Only top quality components such as the brass, powder, primer, and bullets are used in all of the manufacturing processes. Most factory ammunition for the consumer is made with generic powders and broader tolerances. Our products are developed for optimum accuracy and functionality with tighter tolerances using top name brand products.
These statements were all proved true by my testing. I was happily surprised that a brand I’d never shot before was loading such good, clean ammo.
Accuracy and Basic Performance
I fired this load from my SIG P238 Emperor Scorpion. This is a very good, solid, and reliable .380 pistol that’s very popular on today’s carry market. I fired this load at 15 yards for accuracy from standing and discovered that it was really impressed. My average for five shots at this distance was 2.5”.
I had no reliability issues with the ammunition at all. The gun fed, fired and ejected all rounds like it was a walk in the park. The recoil was a bit greater than some other .380 ammo I’ve used, but it wasn’t a wrist-wrencher by any standard. Follow-up shots were fast and I had no problem staying on target through the recoil.
Velocity for ten shots was 845fps over my Oehler 35 P chronograph.
I received a 10% FBI gel block from Clear Ballistics for my testing. The load was fired from the P238 at a range of ten feet to simulate a CCW encounter. The bullets fired into bare gel penetrated to an average depth of 13”. This was very, very good for a .380 hollow point and that performance translated to excellent results through everything but the heaviest materials.
The bullets achieved excellent expansion and penetration through normal fabric (left bullet) and denim right bullet), but it choked a bit going through leather (middle bullet). You can see the middle bullet has leather fibers stuck in the tip. Despite that, this bullet managed to pass through 13” of gel as well, despite tumbling and yawing.
Other rounds fired into leather and heavy material expanded just fine. You can see in the below photo that there is leather in the center of the bullet and that it expanded perfectly.
I would not call these results erratic, as they just can’t always be predicted. Seeing one expand and another not isn’t always encouraging but, just like the occasional flyer, you can’t always guarantee that an individual bullet will do exactly what it needs to do.
The Hornady XTP bullet is a known, proven performer and Precision One loads it in a very stout way. The load generates a tremendous amount of power for a .380. The wounding ability of this bullet is already great to begin with, even with some clogging.
Wound channels were deep and wide for a .380. The permanent wounds began at about 2” in the gel and displayed a cavity about 5” long and about .5-.6” wide. Combined with the great-for-caliber penetration, the load was capable of delivering excellent wounding results.
The clogging is somewhat of a concern, but seeing it still penetrate to such an extent with a wad of leather jammed in the cavity was encouraging. Plus it didn’t over-penetrate, which is a concern of mine when it comes to EDC situations.
This was the first Precision One Ammunition product I’ve tested. They sell in 50-round boxes and are quite affordable as personal defense rounds go at $28.99. I really appreciate the accuracy, power, and reliability in my P238 and what this company does for the everyday shooter.
Ratings (out of five stars):
Accuracy: * * * * *
This load produced excellent groups and was very easy to make hits with.
Handling: * * * *
Recoil was reasonable and rapid follow-ups were not a problem. The SIG P238 is an easy gun to handle and this load made it just that much easier.
Reliability: * * * * *
I experienced no problems of any kind while shooting this cartridge.
Terminal Performance: * * * *
This is a very good, powerful .380 personal defense load that uses a proven bullet. I wish it did a little better when shooting through thick materials, but it demonstrated good expansion and excellent penetration for the caliber.
Overall: * * * * 1/2
Good, quality self-defense ammo comes in many forms. This is one of them. I was happy with it and my P238 was happy with it, but my gel was quite unhappy…and that’s a good thing.