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Reader SACorey writes:

Speculation about the upcoming U.S. Army pistol evaluations and Beretta’s new M9A3 abounds. The Army says they want a new modular handgun to replace the venerable 9mm Beretta, but if history is any indication, the guidelines put forth for the evaluation process are meaningless. All the murky visions in everyone’s crystal balls that seem to be pointing toward candidates like the FNX-45, S&W M&P, and GLOCKs will prove to be unfounded . . .

The U.S. military procurement process — mercurial to say the least — has shown that stipulations set forth for designs are meaningless. The Army is known to capriciously select equipment before any evaluations are performed. They’ll then declare any results that are contrary to their selection as moot. We saw this most recently in the process to evaluate a M4 replacement, where it was clear the decision was made before the competition even began.

But in the event that the procurement process gets past this first hurdle, the Army tends to select a product they didn’t know they needed until they saw it. That was the case when Harley Davidson went outside the specifications and subsequently won the contract for motorcycles.

Also, never forget that bias towards old technology dominates all governmental and bureaucratic processes as demonstrated by the selection of the M14 (in 7.62x51mm designed to perform exactly like .30-06) over the AR10 and FAL (the right arm of the free world). That demonstrated that the Army didn’t necessarily want something new (just a Garand with removable magazines and full auto capability … and who doesn’t want that?). Similarly, I’d like my next girlfriend to cook and clean like my ex, but with a better attitude and the body of a pin-up model.

Given these trends in Army procurement, let’s look at a rundown of potential pistol competitors:

Caliber Flush Mag Cap frame modular Pic Rail
Manufacturer Model
Beretta M9A1 9×19 15 Aluminum no yes
Beretta M9A3 9×19 15 Aluminum no yes
FN USA FNX45 .45acp 15 Polymer backstraps yes
GLOCK 17gen4 9×19 17 Polymer backstraps yes
GLOCK 21gen4 .45ACP 13 Polymer backstraps yes
SIG SAUER 320 9×19 17 (full size) Polymer yes yes
SIG SAUER 227 .45ACP 10 Aluminum no yes
SIG SAUER 226 9×19 15 Aluminum no yes
Smith & Wesson M&P9 9×19 17 Polymer no yes

Any of these models can be made to work with suppressors and all are offered in non-reflective finishes and should pass all other stipulations set forth for the evaluation process.


Moving forward, let’s engage in a little speculation:

  • The Army will not take a pistol that is not DA/SA in keeping with ye olde ideas regarding second strike capability, so we can effectively eliminate S&W, GLOCK, and the SIG 320.
  • Modularity is moot since no DA/SA pistol (aside from the SIG 250) is offered with such capability.
  • Aluminum frames make generals feel warm inside (otherwise we would already have the FNX).
  • Only one other competitor has been deemed better than the M9 in the past (I’m looking at you, SIG)

Given those assumptions, there are only three real competitors in the race; the default M9A3, and the Sisters SIG, 226 and 227. The deciding factor will be the ammunition choice … and any real willingness to actually spend money. Since the Army hates change almost as much as it does writing checks, the M9A3 will win despite the fact that a preferred move to .45 ACP would make the SIG 227 the likely winner.

The SIG 227 is the pistol the USMC should have chosen instead of a Series 80 1911. Sadly, I was not appointed to make that decision.


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  1. I am curious what the writers credentials are to write a article on this. Consider that the vast majority of the US SOF have moved to striker fired pistols, and current TTPs for a immediate action drill are Tap, Rack, Bang, stating that a DA/SA system is going to be a winner is a little odd.

    • Well said. That, in combination with our trainers issuing Glocks to Iraqi forces and many troops of all ranks seeing how well the two pistols performed under similar circumstances, should seal the deal.

    • I agree with the DA/SA assumption although for different reasons. This “new” pistol will be for the masses not SOF guys who get to shoot all the time. It will be designed for the lowest common denominator who gets to shoot 40 rounds once a year if they’re lucky.

      And, while there is always a slight possiblity that the final version won’t be SA/DA, I would most certainly be willing to bet it will be required to have an external safety.

      • Your right about the lower masses, which is why having to master one trigger pull with a striker fired gun is a easier thing to do with limited training than a DA/SA system.

    • Let the butthurt flow through you, its just my musings on the army’s processes. You’re welcome to pen a counterpoint

        • Matt Cox the author recanted on that piece. Say in later post Army is looking at them. Don’t trust a single post on a milblog when other don’t follow on the piece themselves. Overall none of us will know what will happen. Though we can make very educated guesses.

        • The Army did not reject the M9A3. They simply opted not to accept Beretta’s proposal for an Engineering Change to the current Beretta design with a contract extension. Instead, the Army appears to want to consider other options through full and open competition. However, Beretta could win that competition, which is what SACorey is contending.

        • The Army just wants appropriations cash. They will get some money, then choose to stay with what they have and that means exactly what the author states- 9mm Beretta in its warmed over iteration. It looks like an excellent pistol, but you cannot expect Big Green to change when they have an open approval with Beretta for the M9A1

      • Yes. Your pathetically unoriginal and meaningless retort should support your ridiculous “analysis” very nicely.

    • I am also curious how the author can compile a list of nine potential contenders and not include a CZ-75?… Based on his stated prejudices of our military procurement let’s look at this pistol… It’s 9mm… It’s not polymer… It’s DA/SA… It’s hammer fired… It has an external safety… It’s extremely accurate for a combat pistol… It’s extremely reliable… It is a proven design that serves other armies extremely well… (I’m sorry S&W M&P fans, but a police gun that’s barely been around 10 years cannot be really labeled battle proven or tested… And yes, I know the 1911 wasn’t battle proven or tested when it was adopted.)… I’ve always felt that the CZ-75 has been under appreciated by we Americans.

        • It’s only 6 oz heavier than the M9 and is approximately the same weight as the 1911 that we carried for 74 years… And since it weighs more it will have less recoil for those recoil sensitive female Soldiers people keep referring to. (There is some merit to that argument… My wife’s favorite pistol/nightstand gun is a N-Frame S&W 625 because it has little recoil compared to other .45 ACP pistols.)

        • When Beretta got the M9 contract, they supplied fully-foreign-assembled guns for the first couple of years, then domestic-assembled pistols made with foreign parts for the next couple of years. Only after a certain point (5 years, IIRC) were the weapons required to be completely manufactured and assembled in the USA.

          It all depends on the contract details, but I seriously doubt all non-domestic manufacturers would automatically be shut out.

        • I’m sure CZ will be ecstatic at the prospect of opening a plant in USA given a customer as large as US military, with prospective contracts for years to come.

          (And it’s not like it’d go to waste – once the govt contract ends, they can just make & sell those same handguns on civilian market. In fact, they could do an FN and advertise it as “what our boys use over there”, it’ll sell like hotcakes.)

      • Unfortunately CZ pistols suffer from the old military N.I. H syndrome meaning not invented here so that’s a downcheck to traditional Army thought.

        • Let me bring you up to speed. M9, Italian; M249, Belgian; M240, Belgian; AT-4, Swedish; Carl Gustov, Swedish; Many of our MRAPs, South African; Thales radios, Australian.

          I can do this all day, but you may get the point. This doesn’t even count the foreign made stuff other units like EOD gets or anything that SF gets. So the Not from Here mentality only exists because somebody is related somebody in the domestic company.

    • What SOF gets has zero to do what every other member of the military gets. With your credentials you should know that.

      • No actually they do have a lot to do with what the regular military fields. Typically close to a decade later, but that is how it works. It filters from the top. Who had nods issued to everyone first. SOF. What about the M4 and then the M4A1. SOF. Plate carriers, multicam, kneepads, 300win mag. All SOF. The stuff rolls downhill. And the vast majority of SOF has been using Striker fired for over a decade, with some multiple decades now.

    • You make the dangerous assumption that the Army brass has reason and accountability. (Nod to As Good As It Gets). The writer is unfortunately right on. I can count the number of O5’s I trust on one hand. Im completely skeptical of anything higher.

    • I think that Sean has unknowingly answered his own question (“Why not use striker-fired weapons?”) in his own post.

      “Consider that the vast majority of the US SOF have moved to striker fired pistols”

      “US SOF”

      Despite the undying admiration and love shown to the military here, we should remember that the average bullet-slinger isn’t SOF material; there are a lot of low-speed/high-drag people in the military that don’t have the training and mentality to tap/rack consistently under pressure.

      Studies have found that 80% of misfires are resolved by a second pull of the trigger.

      When under pressure, most soldiers will probably simply pull the trigger a second time and the round will fire. You cannot do this with a striker.

      It is, frankly, safer to have a second strike capability than a slightly lower trigger weight.

      • Where do you get the 80% of rounds will fire when restruck And every branch teaches to Tap, Rack, Bang as the go to for immediate action now. So having the ability for a second strike goes against current pistol TTPs. And training people to shoot a striker fired pistol over a DA/SA is much simpler which is needed considering how little pistol training people get in the military

        • Eh, its pretty much the same level of complexity for all pistols, but how many soldiers remember tap rack bang under fire?

        • Double strike capability is important because: when an expected action does not happen, you will automatically repeat it. It is a basic brain function, and it will happen no matter how much you attempt to train it out.
          Have you ever had your computer have a slow day, and you click something and nothing happens? What do you do? You click it again, and when it catches up, you now have two of it(or whatever the action was). This is the brain’s way of double checking that it did, indeed, perform the action that it thinks it did.
          This happens to everyone at all times, and so to attempt to “train it out” of people is stupid, and doomed to failure. Certainly, train to clear malfunctions, but its so easy to provide a double strike capability, and people will do it anyway automatically, that to NOT have it is idiocy in the extreme. It matters little whether the firing rate of a dud round is 20 percent or 80 percent. If a double strike capability is there in the firearm, the trigger will get pulled again, and even if only one round in a hundred goes off the second time, that is a positive result, and no clearing is nesseccary. If it does not go off the second time around, THEN training will take over and tap rack bang will occur.
          Glock fans, no flames please… 🙂

        • Well considering that the reaction for a click with a rifle or pistol is the same exactly thing, tap rack bang. And I have witnessed people using that in combat, and after having had the responsibility of teaching pistol shooting in the military, I have to say, don’t really see the use of double striker capability with your average grunt.

  2. “never forget that bias towards old technology dominates all governmental and bureaucratic processes”
    The increasingly budget strapped US Army is already too invested in the M9 to move away from it.

    • This would be where I disagree. Unless the author has some inside knowledge that we don’t, the Army has already said that their inventory of M9 frames are at or near end-of-life. Unless there is a huge stock of new, swappable parts in their inventory already (there may be) the cost of switching to a new platform will not be that much greater than an evolution of the existing one. If that is the case, something like the 320 or 250 would seem to be a shoe in as it means a single platform differentiated by relatively cheap-to-replace parts for different branches. Of course, as the author states, this presumes that the people making the decisions won’t be capricious.

      • Army is still buying thousands of new M-9s so most are not at the end of there service lives. While striker fired pistol are popular many nations still use SA? for military sidearm. France Russia Italy South Korea China many more, most country’s who do are buying G-17s.

      • I did help move a crate of m9s at an Ohio national guard facility, so I could play with a 240, they looked pretty brand new to me.

      • reports that the army is still in the middle of a 100,000 unit delivery of M9s made in 2012. On top of that, every guard/reserve unit I know of has racks of basically unused M9s collecting dust in the armory, excluding the MPs that have to qualify with them once a year. I’m in a guard infantry unit, and no one has taken our M9s out of the rack in years. With the cutbacks, I don’t see those unused pistols being replaced any time soon. The pistol is a last ditch weapon in combat, and the M9 does its job to an acceptable level. There are (or should be) higher priorities when it comes to the budget.

        • I have been thinking this the whole time that the competition for a new sidearm has been going: why bother with replacing the sidearm, when you claim it will cost too much to replace the primary weapon (m4)? M9s are not meant to see actual combat; they are meant to be carried around by people who are never supposed to fire them (well, except MPs, I suppose), meanwhile m4s are meant to see constant use. It seems like a no brainer which should be upgraded if you are only going to do one.

      • This is where armchair gun experts go off the rails every time.

        There is a lot more to a military “weapon system” than just a bunch of pistols on a rack.

        The M9 is not going anywhere, for the simple facts that (1) the Army doesn’t have the money to buy a replacement system, (2) nothing on the market currently is significantly better than the M9, and (3) we have a vast amount of spare parts, magazines, manuals and other training equipment for the M9 already on hand.

  3. It’s because the lobbyists from Beretta have lots of cash to spread around to keep that juicy fat government contract. Cronyism rules the day in Washington and whoever has the richest cronies wins.

  4. my info is from an insider who is an instructor who has been talking to the army marksmanship unit they’re not even considering the m9a3 they are looking at .40 cal ,american made, striker fired ,polymer framed pistol with an external safety ….

    • I wouldn’t bet the DoD is going to a .40 cal. Were NATO and so we are stuck with 9mm. The .40’s recoil would make the women in the Army freak out and as well as we have billions of 9mm ammo in stock, don’t give into rumors. Most sources have the Army looking at Beretta’s improved design. Even Matt Cox who started the rejection rumor admitted he could be wrong.

      Like I said earlier while popular Striker pistols are not used by every nation on earth. While popular in some SOCOM units it doesn’t mean its best for regular infantry.

      • i assure you lance this from an instructor in green platoon whose talked to the army marksmanship unit that thats what they want now like i siad to dan its what they want that doesnt mean that they are gonna get it …

    • If Ruger doesn’t submit a modified version of the SR9 or SR40 I will be forever disappointed. It has the thinnest grip of any double stack handgun I’ve ever held (necessary for a “universal fit” gun that anybody can use comfortably). Made in Arizona by a wholly American company. Built like a damn tank. Comes with a safety. The only factory striker fired trigger I have ever felt that is better is on the Walther PPQ (yes, I will put my SR9 up against my VP9 any day for crisp trigger break). And more accurate than my Glock 17.

      It’s just about perfect.

  5. The single best option would be to stop paying lip-service to antique treaties and ditch FMJ. With modern hollow points or polymer-tipped hollow points, 9mm does just fine. Realistically, FMJ causes more of those nasty wounding effects the paperwork blathers on about. Expanding rounds do much better at actually killing the unfortunate target, rather than letting him run around with several holes poked clean through.

    Personally, I kinda like the idea of a Glock in .45 for most every pistol use in the military world. Pistols are for short range use, or vehicle crew where an M4 is still to bulky.

    • Amen to that. Although the Lehigh Defense X treme Penetrator seems badass and offers great cavitation capability, even surpassing JHP primary cavities towards the end of the wound track. It’s probably relatively barrier-blind as well. For a handgun, always.

  6. I agree on all points except: the standard cap. mag on the M9A3 holds 17 rounds. It is said to have greater functional ability in dirty and sandy conditions. It is still purported to be compatible with the old 15 round mags. There are 20 and 30 round mags allegedly available as upgrades.

    It’s also difficult to change when so many weapons are in play. Beretta may have a winner (again) with the M9A3, but these things are definitely not predictable.

    The Marine Corps went back to a high quality 1911. I would be happy to add the M9A3 or the USMC 1911 to my collection, but I’d rather have a Sig 226 Tac Ops with night sights and the SRT trigger.

    Anyways, they are only handguns in a world ruled by rifles. My first choice would be a Sig 300 BLK SBR.

    • The Marines didn’t go back to the 1911 any more than they went back to M14s. They ordered some new ones to replace the old broken ones they use in limited situations. Someone in the military uses an old Jeep during a parade and all of a sudden people think we’re going back to Willys.

        • Yeah. It’s a totally new pistol, that happens to have 95% parts interchangeability with the 1911A1.

          Dude. It’s a 1911.

        • Is it a f$%ing M9? Is it a 9mm?


          That’s going back to a 1911. That’s been updated from 1911. It’s a $2,000 plus gun that isn’t a run of the mill .45. Do some research.

        • What you fail to realize is… they never stopped using the 1911. They simply replaced the ones they’ve had since WWII. Which are broken. Read the RFP documents.

        • Well, my old unit used M9’s and they went back to .45s.

          Also, Colt wasn’t making desert sand colored .45s with quad rail, tritium sights, and strengthened extractors and ejectors in 1965.

          In other news, the M9A3 has upgrades and improvements over the M9 just like the new USMC .45 has improvements over the old rattletrap .45s.

  7. Keep saying. Unless we goto a new caliber IE .40 or .45 it makes no sense to goto a new pistol. We stuck with 9mm thanks to NATO and bratty Army women, so why bother changing to another 9mm does NOT make sense. While some say SiG was better it was NOT significantly better at best. I like the G-17 Glock but it isn’t a far superior design to the M-9 to warrant a replacement. Since most brass carry a M-4 Carbine with them now it pistols now get even less work. Most combat complaints in Iraq whereas due to bad mags made by Check Mate INC, which was fixed by buying more OEM mags from Beretta. and poor performance of M-882 9x19mm ammo. Switching to a 147gr FMJ or even better HP would eliminate the problem.

    Think DoD brass needs to lay off small arms our rifles/carbines and pistols are fine for now. We need new planes differently a new tank and ships save money, concentrate on project we do need.

    • “We stuck with 9mm thanks to NATO and bratty Army women”

      Which is kind of funny since one of the reasons .40 S&W exists is because of bratty FBI women.

      • Well FBI went back to 9mm for that reason. WA county Sheriffs same thing G-22 with drawn for G-17s women couldn’t handle the recoil.

  8. Sorry, but no. The 320 will win because the Army can procure a new handgun without justifying a logistical cost/headache of a new caliber, with the ability to switch to a new caliber later without going through another procurement decision.

    They can simply buy the 320 in 9mm, and later swap the slides/mags for .45ACP as they please without re-competing the contract. If they buy the P226, and then try and go .45ACP, they would need to buy P227s… whereas the 320 gives you both without a serial number change.

    • I heavily doubt it SiG lover. having two calibers would be a logistics nightmare. have .45 ammo sent to Europe where all there pistols would be in 9mm would be a waste in millions in shipment to and from. having wrong parts sent around would also waste millions. I know you love your SiG but the idea of model and two different caliber and parts is a no go.

  9. I thought I read on here last week that the a3 was out? Maybe not Idk. I like shooting the M9/92, but I have heard a lot of military complain about 9mm fmj.

  10. The major reason for procurement is the general dissatisfaction with the M9 across the services. MHS wasn’t initiated by the Army. It started as an Air Force program that was passed off to the Army run by the DOD. The Air Force wanted to replace the M9 with the Glock. Most of the Air Force’s small arms belong to the Security Police. Most of the Special Operations Forces use something other than the M9, mostly Sigs. The Marine Corps let a contract to Colt for 1911s to replace their M9s. Also, the Army is on a major tear to reduce soldier carry weight. Because of the body armor and all the equipment they carry, the Army is cutting the weight on everything. An ounce here and a pound there and pretty soon you have real weight savings. So polymer is definitely an option. I think the S&W M&P is a real option. About the only things the Army probably won’t change are the requirement for a manual safety and the caliber. There are real logistics issues with NATO forces if you change from 9mm. That doesn’t mean that there aren’t things you can do to the 9mm cartridge to make it more effective. That’s why S&W with General Dynamics (a major DOD ammunition manufacturer) is such a potent team.

    • Used a M-9 (M-92FS) for years no issue. Knew many in service who didn’t mind it.I can say all the same you said about how ICC started as with you for MHS. Same conclusions doesn’t make fainacal sense if we stay with 9mm to goto a new pistol. Some SOF do have M-9s in inventory. Just because its SOCOM approved doesn’t make it right for regular infantry (SCAR in mind). For a MP or s ob.

  11. The only weak argument I see is the aluminum frame. I completely agree regarding DA/SA, however. I would imagine the final decision to be 9x19mm, but .45ACP could happen. I really would not expect a .40 to fly.

    Also – don’t forget about H&K. Between the HK45-T and HK45C-T (plus minor modifications to things like the P30(L)) you’ve got a decent number of pistols that have modular grips, modular fire control systems, threaded barrels, and a non-reflective finish.

    The FNX45 would be my first pick, personally. If they stick with 9x19mm, the Beretta will probably win out.

  12. I live and work in DC and specifically work in defense contracts. The word on the street is that the Pentagon doesn’t even want to evaluate the Beretta. I disagree with you completely, the Beretta is on its way out.

    • Same was said about them-4 and 5.56mm in 2008. All the rumors and SCAR lovers slobbered at every post didn’t happen. Same with MHS all the predictions went down the toilet. Face it we are stuck with 9mm so that’s why the Army may stay with M-9s.

      As well as they USMC is NOT involved. Like with ICC no USMC help may also doom the program. USMC may stay with the M-9A1 for a while.

      • Well said, Lance. While the USMC bought some M-9A1s almost 10 years ago and rumors were that Marines will switch over to M-9A1s, all newer purchases have been M-9s of the old style and even the approved SERPA holster Marines have been buying for about 5 years only fits M-9s without a rail. Pistols are as high on the priority list as bringing back silkies.

  13. It’s always about the $$. Even more so nowadays in the current downsizing, cost-cutting environment.

    On that note, Beretta contracts/logistics/support/field data are all in place already. Going with the M9A3 would be the most cost effective option. Guaranteed winner….sadly.

  14. “The SIG 227 is the pistol the USMC should have chosen instead of a Series 80 1911. Sadly, I was not appointed to make that decision.”

    Wow. Just…I don’t know. Wow. I guess.

  15. The Army will stay with the current M-9 I bet.
    There are more NDs with pistols than with all other types of weapons combined. Pistol effectiveness in close quarters is very questionable according to after actions because pistols require far more training than a rifle to be proficient with.

    As a result there is serious discussion about making pistols weapons for only Colonels and SgtMajors and above. The Army is now the lead and they will stay with the M-9 (not even M-9A1)

  16. (just a Garand with removable magazines and full auto capability … and who doesn’t want that?)

    I’ll take 2 please…

    • The most bureaucratic illogical decision. Just knowing the inertia and budget constraints in our military, I think 9mm and some sort of M9 based pistol will still be around.

  17. The US Army will not move to issuing striker fired pistols in my lifetime. They will stick with an external hammer.

    By the way, my Beretta has 18 round flush fit mags.

  18. The question is, what will win out, buracratic inertia or an army of lobbyists? The next question is which army of lobbyists? A huge problem the military has had in the last decade is career officers eyeing a well paying consulting gig in the military industrial complex after retirement. Cough* General Dynamics* cough.

  19. The DOD will not be switching its entire small arms caliber over to 45 at the cost of millions and millions of dollars because some Colt stroker on the internet says it’s totally more deadly. These people have no idea how supply lines and interchangeability and procurement work. They have no idea what life cycle costs are, and how much longevity figures into the equation. The only thing that will replace 9mm is some sort of direct energy phased plasma rifle. Ever. To justify changing to anything, it needs to be demonstrated to be worth the change.

    • I’d especially say that the military isn’t going to switch over to .45 because of NATO-inertia. If we suddenly decided we wanted a higher powered pistol round, it would mean that suddenly US would be operating contrary to STANAG 4090.

    • Yeah, I overlooked that but the majority of the mags will still be 15, I suspect the military downloads them to 15 regardless

  20. The M9A3 makes sense because of compatibility with the existing M9A1. Magazines are interchangeable as I’m guessing are most other parts. They could simply phase in the new pistols without having to ditch their entire stock and replace everything. There’s a much smaller initial investment in sticking with Beretta. Considering that pistols are not usually the most critical part of a soldier’s equipment it make sense. Although they may send it back with some recommendations and it may be the M9A4 that ultimately wins out.

  21. I look for ideas to trickle down from SOCOM. Everything else slowly does. Many of them are choosing Glocks. CAG uses Glocks in .40 and SF and some Rangers are using Glock 19s.

  22. The Sig DID NOT BEAT THE BERETTA! Please stop spreading this lie.

    The Sig completely failed the dry mud test, firing only 79% of the time during the dry mud test and was the only entry to completely fail that test. You can read the test results yourself on page 38.

    • Which the dry mud test was thrown at due to the unscientific testing protocols of the test. Which the people who conducted the test admitted that they even felt it was a completely unrealistic and unrepeatable test.
      And the second set of test showed that the SIG was the superior pistol than the Beretta, but both pistols more than exceeded the trials requirements.
      And do you not find it weird that the SEALs have made the SIG 226 their pistol of choice if it fails horribly in the mud.

    • Your right. Beretta did beat SiG in that test as well as accuracy. face SiG shot there own foot by refusing to move to the USA at the time.

  23. As yet another example of the specs being meaningless, research the adoption of the Willys jeep over the bantam, which was the only one to meet all the criteria, and rejected anyway. They just changed the criteria to fit the one they wanted.

  24. In the General’s defense, Aluminum frames make me feel warm inside too.

    And don’t even get me started on steel frames. (CZ)


  25. Who gives a crap either way. I did two tours in Ramadi as a USMC 0331. The only time my m9 cleared my holster was for cleaning, and dog shooting, and carrying to chow when we were on Camp Ramadi. In real combat a handgun is just a way to get back to a real gun.

    • As soon as I can get my hands on a 240, I won’t worry about a pistol either. But in reality, the only thing the army needs out of a pistol is reliability and ergonomics.

      • If they’re used so rarely in practice, isn’t it rather an argument for a lighter (= polymer) gun? You don’t want to carry dead weight – lighter is more mobile, or alternatively you could carry that one extra mag that makes you go for longer before having to reach for a handgun in the first place …

  26. I just can’t see the US army going to a none NATO caliber, and I can’t see there being any desire for cash strapped European NATO nations switching over to a very American caliber.

    So IMHO its the new M9A3 and the 226 as the only dogs in this race.

    What’s going to hurt the 226 is what hurt it last time, it simply costs more.

  27. Wait, no one in the above comments has mentioned this… Since Beretta is in the process of opening that new plant in Gallatin Tennessee with the M9A3 be made there and if so would that have an effect on the Army’s decision?

  28. Knowing that FMJ’s have to be used, and by them NOT choosing a 45acp option, just goes to show you that Gov’t doesn’t give a sh!t about the US soldier.
    I bet any amount of money that they will choose 9mm again.
    Fvck NATO, start putting our own soldiers first!

  29. How come the little chart shows “backstraps” under the “modularity” column for two pistols but has “no” besides the “M&P” ? I think the M&P has a lot going for it. Not the least of which is that they are specifically designing a pistol BASED on the M&P platform. Who knows if they are going to build a SA/DA pistol with a metal frame, and slap the M&P logo and serrations on the slide? I still think Smith and Wesson is a long shot in this competition, but the fact that they’ve partnered with General Dynamics shows that they are serious about winning this competition. Smith and Wesson has been aggressively pricing it’s consumer handguns to gain a greater market share, and it’s stocks are rising. Having the military contract would set the civilian market on fire to get their pistol, and that’s why S&W really wants it. I think as long as Smith and Wesson is willing to change their design to accommodate everything the military is looking for, then they have as good of chance as any.

    That said, I still think FN is the most likely candidate to win considering their other recent contract wins with the military. Sig next, and Smith and Wesson as the wildcard pick.

  30. No. They’re not going to buy this thing. They’ll keep using the current M9s until the end of time (or at least until a Republican President and Republican Congress start spending more on the Military). This new Beretta saves NO parts from the current M9 except for the slide and magazine. That means that there can be no conversion process, like shortening an M16A2 into an M4 or modifying the fire group on an M4 to make it an M4A1. There is no backstrap system, no alternate frame or slide/barrel sizes, and no caliber conversion system, which means it fails the biggest points of the MHS program. Beretta thought they could milk the 92, and they were right, but the US military is not going to adopt a hastily painted POS when they can just refurbish or buy more regular M9s.

    • You realize that that they were still be issued a M9 right. The idea of only being issued a pistol went away in Iraq, but issuing both a pistol and rifle went up.

  31. >> hey’ll keep using the current M9s until the end of time (or at least until a Republican President and Republican Congress start spending more on the Military)

    The military doesn’t have a shortage of spending overall (US still spends more than the next three countries on the list combined). What they do have a problem with is 1) cost-inefficiency for government contracts which are seen as free cash by all contractors, and 2) spending money on useless and super-expensive crap like F-35 that goes unused while skimping on things like armed cars, body armor or infantry weapons that are actually used (and cost lives).

  32. I have no insight nor do I have any connections. I am betting on the P320 in 45 ACP. Sig has been leading the way in the modularity concept and is far ahead of most others if the Army is serious about this aspect of the specification.

    For the guys that think the military will make a decision based on current parts inventory or magazine compatibility, one word for you: F-35

    If I was choosing it would be the Glock 19. IMO the Glock 19 is a truly unbeatable combination of size, weight, simplicity, firepower, reliability, and low cost.

    • I doubt we would go back to .45 AUTO. Recoil, none NATO standard and the fact it be heavier than the M-9 in ammo and pistol weight. While some pistols in SOCOM use are .45s like the M-45 for MARSOC and Mk-23 for SEALs most operative personally use 9mm pistol like the Glock-17/19, M-9. I doubt we see SOCOM lead the way again look at the SCAR debacle.

      • Except the 1911 has one of the most benign recoils around. TTAG even had a test that showed that. Now if you are talking about a G21 then you are correct. The reason that the Beretta and the Hi Power have less recoil than the 1911 is not just the round. Both are large metal framed handguns that absorb the recoil energy in the slide and frame.

        • No that’s was rumor no major contract for HK .45s since Mk-23.

          Seans quit being the troll you are and quit dolling and licking your SiG your sick.

          Strange you have nothing but your ego backing you up.

        • So the MK24 I carried in Afghanistan just magically ended up in our inventory huh. Maybe HK just started passing them out for free. Kinda a sample deal or something like that. Or maybe you just don’t know what you are actually talking about.

          • Strange you said a few months ago you retired in the 80s. Seems your mistaken, with your career and you weapons., quit trolling

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  35. Well, you were dead wrong lol I wish they would have taken the M9a1. As a tax payer I would like to see the government save money instead of spend it. They already have M9s and the M9a3 uses same parts so money saved there. Oh well. Now they have new pistols and have to keep parts for their new pistols. After all it’s not their money anyway. 😔

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