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Back in the day, I ran economic development for Texas. Convincing firearms manufacturers to move or expand in The Lone Star State was one of the favorite parts of my job. I didn’t think H&K would ever be one of my targets. But then, lo’ and behold, there I was, sitting in the Governor’s office with the CEO of H&K, telling me how H&K was going to start making guns for the U.S. civilian market . . .

Why now? I asked. We never thought about it, he answered. Germans don’t carry guns. Then someone in the company pointed out that U.S. civilians accounted for about 25 percent of all of H&K’s sales. Ears were perked. Eventually. He assumed it must be a rare thing, maybe it’s people in the countryside carrying pistols on ranches? The Governor and I answered by showing the exec our carry guns. He was shocked.

Sadly, H&K chose not to expand in Texas. Several years later they chose a manufacturing site near their sales office in Georgia. But the shift to the civilian market was immediate, and real.  Enter the H&K VP9, their striker-fired everyday carry-sized compact pistol. Thanks in large part to the VP9, the American market now accounts for forty percent of H&K’s sales. H&K’s smaller VP9SK model (above) is the latest addition to the family, designed to capitalize on big brother’s success.

H&K VP9 SK NIB (photo courtesy of JWT for thetruthaboutguns.com)

HK bills the SK as their sub-compact. While there’s no real definition of what gun sizes mean, this certainly stretches the definition.

If you’re thinking Ruger LCP II size, think again. If you’re thinking Glock 43 size, nope, the SK’s bigger than that. I consider the Glock 26 –the official “baby Glock” — as the top of the sub-compact size range. The VP9SK is a bit bigger than that, too.

If you want to bracket it, the VP9SK is in-between the size of a Glock 26 and a Glock 19, and just barely smaller than the G19. I guess if an M16A2 is a carbine, the VP9SK is a sub-compact pistol. Good luck ankle carrying this one.

H&K VP9 SK flush magazine (photo courtesy of JWT for thetruthaboutguns.com)

The SK’s slide is a bit shorter than the standard VP9. At 6.61″ it’s not quite 3/4″ shorter than the standard model. The “big” change is the shortened handle — although we’re talking less than an inch in total reduction.

The junior pistol is all of about two shots of Kuemmerling less weight than its senior. I don’t see the cost of a shorter barrel and the corresponding shorter sight radius, as well as the grip length reduction, worth the very small change in the overall footprint of the gun. The VP9 is a very easy gun to carry already, both inside-the-waistband and outside-the-waistband. The SK’s shortened handle does print less, but it’s nothing a little forward cant in an IWB holster wouldn’t solve.

All of the controls — for both normal humans and shamefully afflicted southpaws — are ambidextrous, placed within easy reach.

H&K VP9 SK paddle trigger (photo courtesy of JWT for thetruthaboutguns.com)

With the SK’s flush fit, 10-round magazine installed, my pinky tucks underneath the handgun’s handle. Since my palm is slightly longer than the handle, I had to loosen up my grip to get my palm away from the magazine to allow it to drop freely. This isn’t much of a problem; I didn’t have to shift my grip on the gun itself. It is, however, something I had to train for.

The H&K VP9SK ships with a second, longer magazine. As you’d expect, the pinkie extension made a cozy home for my last finger. In two-handed fire, the extra purchase doesn’t make a huge difference, but it’s a definite plus for single-handed work.

On a “subcompact” something’s got to give. But not everything. The SK’s a good size with excellent texture and an excellent grip angle. The finger grooves — more like swells — helped push my hand up higher on the gun, exactly the opposite of what most finger grooves do.

The SK’s shortened grip still has the same great feel as the original VP9. It includes different back straps and different palm swells. As I do on most pistols, I chose the largest size of each, thickening the grip a good bit. For most pistols (including the SK), the choices position my trigger finger in a better place for a smooth, straight back pull. With the VP9SK, the palm swell’s increased size had an added benefit.

H&K VP9 SK slide (photo courtesy of JWT for thetruthaboutguns.com)

Like many pistols with a shorter slide and a fairly small in circumference grip, my firing hand thumb can’t seem to stay off the slide release. With this pistol, if I keep both of my thumbs forward, my firing hand thumb lays completely over the slide release.

The VP9SK’s slide release is fairly light/easy to release. There was nothing I could do to keep my thumb from migrating to the frame in long strings. So I never got the slide to lock back on an empty magazine when holding the gun two-handed. With the thicker palm swells, my non-firing thumb sat slightly farther away from the frame. When my firing thumb laid on top of it, I finally had enough room to keep my thumb off the slide release. Mostly.

H&K VP 9 magazine well (photo courtesy of JWT for thetruthaboutguns.com)

The VP9SK uses the same “European style” paddle magazine release as the VP9. Two small wings extend on either side of the trigger guard where it meets the frame. To release the magazine, push either side down. It’s very different than the traditional thumb button mag release, but at least as effective.

The first time I saw this system I thought it would be a challenge. It’s not. Pulling my firing hand’s middle finger off the handle to depress the release is super simple. It’s even easier if I’m bringing the gun up in front of my face — where it should be during the magazine change. I found the paddle intuitive, requiring less of a shift in my grip than a button style release.

The challenge: going back to a standard magazine release after this review. Whenever I wanted to drop the magazine of my G19 review gun (watch this space), I found myself hitting the trigger guard. Bottom line: shooters should stick with one style release or the other. They both work well on their own, but switching back and forth does not.

H&K VP9 SK sights (photo courtesy of JWT for thetruthaboutguns.com)

The SK’s sights “glow in the dark” — like that super rad poster on your ceiling back when you were in middle school. After range day, I put the SK in its case. When I pulled it out an hour later in a dark room, the sights were still plenty visible. Even so, I worry about them “failing” after sitting in a holster all day.

With a light held in an ice pick grip at my temple — how I actually like to use a light — the flashlight’s ambient light illuminates the sights enough to see both the sights and my target just fine. Even so, I’d much prefer the tritium sights on the LE version. The $100 price increase for the LE model, which also includes three magazine instead of two, is well worth the price of admission.

HK smoothed out most of the SK’s edges. For a carry gun, that’s generally a good thing. If you’re trying to rack the gun one-handed — to either fix a malfunction or load a new magazine — not so much.

I was hoping the removable “charging assist inserts” on the back of the slide would be sharp enough to use for a one-handed reload, but the front of the wings are beveled away, leading to another ramp to the rear. Every everyday carry gun should have a ledge rear sight that can be caught on a pocket, belt or shoe sole.

H&K VP9 SK loaded chamber (photo courtesy of JWT for thetruthaboutguns.com)

The VP9SK also sports a cocked striker indicator. Once the pistol’s placed back into battery (after charging), a red dot appears in the rear of the slide. Technically, the SK also has a loaded chamber indicator. Clock the red markings on the side of the chamber. You’ll need sharp eyes to tell the difference. (Hint: bottom pic is loaded.)

H&K VP9 SK rail (photo courtesy of JWT for thetruthaboutguns.com)

The H&K website boasts that its trigger is “unmatched in production striker fired pistols.” H&K, Walther shooters would like to have a word with you. A PPQ-beater the SK’s trigger is not. But it’s quite good; fairly short with a perfectly positive reset. After a couple of small starts and stops,the SK’s trigger breaks at just over five pounds.

Note the SK’s MIL-STD-1913 rail. Ahem, I meant GLOCK: note the MIL-STD-1913 rail. Speaking of Gaston, the SK weighs six ounces less than a Glock 19. But it sure doesn’t shoot like it. Given its size, the VP9SK is a low-recoil pistol with little muzzle rise.

For this review, I put 500 rounds through the SK. Most of those were IMI’s 115gr die cut rounds (no lack of joy in the irony there). I also fired Cap Arms 115gr FMJ, Cap Arms 147gr FMJ, Federal Premium HST 124gr +P round and Remington HTP 9mm HP round. I had one reliability issue. On round 158, using the IMI 115gr round and the factory magazine, I had one failure to completely return to battery.

A quality trigger, good frame geometry and a quality polygonal barrel helped the smallish pistol achieve better-than-average accuracy. Well, with some rounds. The 147gr Cap Arms FMJ round was the best shooter, at 2.5″ five round groups averaged over 20 rounds total.

[This is a particularly easy-shooting round that tends to score well in a range of pistols. So of course Cap Arms is no longer making it.  I’ll be searching for another subsonic 9mm round that tests well for the future.]

IMI’s 115gr die cut round averaged just barely over that, at 2.8″. The outliers were the Federal HST 124gr round and the Remington 115gr HTP round, both of which averaged at a full 3.5″. All groups were shot off bags at 25 yards.

H&K VP9 SK full (photo courtesy of JWT for thetruthaboutguns.com)

Shooting the VP9SK reminded me why I like the VP9: it draws and shoots well. The SK naturally points to the target. It shoots fast. And the sights fall back down in recoil quickly and predictably. If you don’t have a VP9, and are looking for a very slightly smaller version of that same pistol, this is the gun for you.

That said, I think the VP9 is a great size as it is. The SK version, although it shoots very well, just doesn’t reduce the size enough to make up for the loss of real estate of the grip, sight radius, and barrel length.

Specifications: H&K VP9 SK

Caliber: 9mm
Length: 6.61 in.
Height: 4.57 in.
Width: 1.31 in.
Barrel Length: 3.39 in.
Sight Radius: 5.73 in.
Weight (with empty magazine): 23.07 oz
Magazine Size: 10 rounds
MSRP: $719 (about $599 via Brownells)
Part No. 700009KLE-A5, with 1 flat and 2 extended floorplate 10 round magazines with night sights – MSRP $819

Ratings (out of five stars):

Style and Appearance * * *
The simple utilitarian look of multiple geometric shapes with little or nothing to tie them together.  But German.

Customization * * * *
You can hang a light on it. Multiple back straps and palm swells are offered, as well as sight options. I expect it to follow the big brother and eventually offer threaded barrels and multiple colors.

Reliability * * * * 1/2
There’s perfect and not perfect.  Still one failure in 500 rounds ain’t horrible.

Accuracy * * * *
Sub 3″ accuracy at 25 yards is ok for a full sized gun, but earns this “subcompact” an additional star.

Overall * * * *
The VP9 has been a solid performer since day one, and the sub-compactish version is no different. Easy to carry, quick to point, fast to recoil and more accurate than other pistols of its size. Points off for good, but not stellar accuracy, mediocre sights, and not much change from the “standard” version.

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    • Israel is an illegitimate state with a bunch of war criminals at the helm. Good on H&K for not supporting them.

      • If Israel is an illegitimate state then so is the US, Mexico, every country in Central and South America, most of the Countries in Africa, many in Europe, Canada, several in Asia…hopefully you see the point.

        But H&K didn’t single out Israel. H&K got bused a few years ago selling guns to conflict zones, and got called to task when hundreds of their guns ended up being used by Mexican drug cartels. The international community, and especially the European Union got all in a tissy about “Germany’s deadliest company.”

        So, being good Europeans, H&K caved to pressure and established a set of standards of nations they would sell to that was more welcoming to their neighbors. Those are:

        1. NATO or “NATO-equivalent” (Japan, Switzerland, Australia and New Zealand)
        2. High score on Transparency International’s corruption perceptions index
        3. High score on Economist Intelligence Unit’s democracy index.

        • Evey259, no I could care less what you think. My point was to put fact to your ridiculous bullshit so that readers can see an argument based in reality.

        • JWT, I wish this site had a better comment system…I’d be mashing the “thumbs up” button on damned near every one of your posts.

        • Fine, I guess I’ll bite. The difference between most of the states you listed (barring some in South America and Africa,) is that they were created not by outside forces working towards a goal of appeasement, but from within with people of a given national identity working to often throw off a government oppressing them. I mention South Africa and South America as seeming outliers because of the involvement of western countries in their revolutions and how they often made things shift not in favor of the populace, but in favor of those foreign interests. Israel doesn’t even have that going for it. It has SOME historical backing in Zionists essentially invading the Ottoman Turks’ claim to Palestine. At the height of their migration in 1917, the British government set out to create a Jewish state in the land of Palestine. These plans were halted by the world wars, and do you honestly believe a beleaguered people like post-WWII Jews could have done anything even remotely resembling a conquest of the holy land? Israel is an illegitimate state because it was not won by blood and sacrifice of a people borne of a region, but instead colonized by foreign invaders with significant international backing for no reason other than “I want it.” The sovereignty of the Palestinian people was further damaged by the United Nations’ Palestinian Partition Plan which, despite a Palestinian majority, still ceded more land to the Israelis because they expected a greater deal of migration following its creation. Though this particular plan was not followed, the Jewish people still went ahead and announced the creation of Israel. What followed has been years of war crimes and ethnic cleansing in Palestine with damn near everyone turning a blind eye to it because they are our “allies”. They have committed war crimes and have had several regulatory commissions on their ass but still no one seems to give a damn.

          In short, Israel is a mongrel state headed by war criminals and no matter the reason for H&K no longer selling to them, I applaud their decision, especially seeing as how it’s based on some pretty damn good criteria.

        • Evey259,
          You shouldn’t have bitten. You have showed a tragically flawed view of reality, history, and a misunderstanding of even the basic concept of a nation state. Your argument is so ridiculous, so divorced from reality that it can be defeated with only two words: Native Americans.

        • And yours can be rebuffed by the knowledge that Palestine had a functioning and adequate government, not a loose association of tribes. Please continue to be a Zionist apologist if you’d like, but it holds little water.

        • Palestine had a functioning government? When exactly was that? Prior to WWI it was a vassal of the Ottoman Empire, not an independent state, and after the war it was run by the British as “Mandatory Palestine.” Prior to the Ottoman Empire, the area was, first, the Jewish State until it was dismantled by the Romans for its penchant for continuous revolt, followed (mostly) by Muslim rule or intermittent Crusader rule, and ruled mostly as part of the Byzantine Empire, until around 1300 when the Ottomans rolled in.

          By your standard, if the truth be known, there is not a single legitimate state in all of the Middle East, as the borders of each and every single one of them was set up by the British and the French drawing lines in the sand on the break up of the Ottoman Empire, with vassal “friendly” governments set up by the British and French. In essence, they picked a strong man and appointed that man (and of course his tribe) as Shah or King, etc. This included every single country from the Mediterranean to India, and included the Palestine mandate ruled by the British until the time of the creation of the State of Israel by the United Nations.
          That is why the area is such a mess; both colonial powers ignored existing tribal and religious differences, creating states that combined elements of all groups. I suspect that this was intentional, to ensure that the resultant states remained fractured and weak.
          Have the Israelis committed apartheid acts and perhaps war crimes? The former probably, the latter is questionable, but the definition of “war crime” keeps on expanding. In any event, what do you call the invasion of the de jure State of Israel created by the United Nations in 1947 that was immediately invaded by Jordan, Egypt, Syria, Lebanon and an army from Iraq?

        • israel is simply a continuation of the ancient kingdom of israel and as such supercedes the claims of any other people in the region to that land. Its jewish and will remain so for the foreseeable future. “Palestinians”? There were no “palestinians” before 1967. Just “arabs”…….arabs who have never had an independent state called “palestine” nor have anything linguistically, religiously, culturally or even culinarally to distinguish themselves from jordanians, egyptians, syrians, saudis or any other arabs in the region…..”palestinians” are a fiction, they dont exist, only the descendents of bedouins from the arabian peninsula who came in search of better pasturelands for their livestock and goaded on in their settlement by muslim rulers who wanted to dilute the power of the resident christian and remaining jewish populace who stubbornly refused to convert after centuries of iskamic domination….

      • Sorry, the State of Israel has been around for several decades and has withstood many attacks on its existence. Whether or not you agree with that fact is irrelevant. Call it “might makes right” if you will, but if a nation is able to claim territory and hold it militarily, it is legitimate, politics and condemnation notwithstanding. Look at Russia’s annexation of Crimea and parts of Georgia; the UN community can gnash its teeth all they want, but at the end of the day, through use of arms, Crimea is no longer part of Ukraine, right or wrong. The same can be said of Israel- part of British Palestine was given to Jewish nationalists, and they have held it ever since then (I know this is a simplification).

      • Were you born naturally stupid or is this after a life of hard work on your part?
        Israel is the only legitimate country over there.

      • I know you hate the Bible, but there is no more legitimate state on earth than Israel. No people alive today have a more ancient claim to any patch of dirt in the world than the Jews to Israel. Their society and written history in the region definitely predates any Muslim or European nation or people. Also there are no actual palistinian people before 1917 historically speaking. The Arabs who call themselves that have a homeland, its called Jordan. The Jordanians kicked them out for being radical terrorist.

        • After the great flood, only Noah ,his wife and three sons lived in the middle East.Other nations (those who can) tracing their genealogy to Noah, essentially spread out from the epicenter of the middle east through “legal and illegal” migrations to what we now know as the continents of Africa, North America,South America, Australia, Europe. Interestingly, the so-called “heathen” Native Americans history before the advent of christianity recognizes that there was once a great flood that covered the whole Earth.Native Americans trace their origins to the great flood.Israel also through biblical genealogy can trace their origins to the great flood. Every other nation on earth are occupiers of what does not belong to them.

        • Palestine, was a Roman name given to the region after the sack of Jerusalem. Palestine is a place named Palestine nearly 2000 years ago. This nonsense of Palestine being a creation since 1917 is utterly false and you are pushing that falsity as evidence for an ideology you believe being correct. You are being a revolutionary who shouts while they hit someone. That you have the need to start with a strawman accusation meant to hide insult, while simultaneously insisting no insult was implied. You have no concept of admitting fault other than admitting it’s someone else’s.

    • I recently bought the VP9SK and was thrilled with it ….. until I read the story that your link points to. Thx for the info Keltex78.
      Oh.. and evey 259. Argue with the God of Abraham first, read His Word, and should you choose to ignore and rebel, suffer your own fate. God gave Isreal that land.
      Don’t be a sheep mislead by lies. But as for me and my house we shall serve the Lord.

      • Yeah, and the Romans took it away from them and God never gave it back to them in nearly 2000 years. God must have been pretty pissed at the jews from keeping a homeland from them for 2000 years, but you would hardly have guessed that in they way they talk and feel about their self righteousness. God didn’t give back Israel to the jews. Migration, money, politics, the UN, and Truman needing last minute jewish support to defeat Dewey in an election for his support of the new Israel, to get Israel back for the jews. God had nothing to do with 1947.

  1. Thanks for the love of the paddle mag release. I own one paddle and three push button release guns. With my slightly smaller than average hands, the push button requires that grip rotation to get enough purchase on the button, especially if the button is sticky.

    The paddle requires no grip shift at all. I like to use both the thumb tip and index finger tip in a pinching movement to flip the paddle. That way, if the paddle is a bit sticky, and mine was when new, it still moves smoothly.

    • I couldn’t agree more Michael! I own an HK VP9 and I’ll never carry it. Why? Because the capacity sucks. I prefer a full size gun with 17 rounds minimum and Glock 17/34, Walther PPQ 5”, Canik TP9SF, TP9SFL, TP9SFX, Steyr M9A1, Steyr L9-A1, and FN 509/FN FNS 9 5” all fit the bill nicely. Also, my CZP10C which is about the same size of the VP9 has a better trigger, shoots better, and has the option of extended 17 round magazines which are awesome. HK is fucking retarded for not marketing a full sized pistol with a 4.5 or 5 inch barell and a 17 or 18 round magazine. They don’t offer any magazines PERIOD that are larger than 15 rounds.

      Regarding this silly little VP9SK model, I can pocket carry a Glock 26 as my back up and use the 12 round magazines with the finger extension and it fits me like a glove.

      And speaking of triggers, the Walther PPQ, Canik TP9SF, TP9SFL, TP9SFX, Steyr L9-A1, Steyr M9-A1, and CZP10C all have superior triggers compared to the VP9. All better guns in every aspect. Hell, I even like my Beretta APX better than the VP9 because it shoots great and the capacity is there too.

      I remain unimpressed by the VP9 series. They are not up to par with the pack in one way or another.

      • the vp9sk le is my current EDC with a 2+ extension baseplate. Love the ergos, sights, and rapid aquisition. Can punch the center out of a target with rapid fire with no problems. Never had a problem with grip and the slide release, found it funny though that with large-xl hands the smallest configuration worked best for me. The 13/15 mags were supposed to come out last month and Im still waiting. The trigger is not better than my PPQ but a close runner up. The G26 is also a 10 rounder standard but didnt work for me, the flat mag grip was too short in hand.

      • So the extra 2 rounds is going to make that much of a difference? Are you you waiting until round 16 and 17 to hit your target? I don’t own any Steyr’s but I either own or have shot the others you mentioned. These firearms are mass produced and obviously have variations in trigger feel. Hell, there are probably over 20 aftermarket triggers for Glock for people seeking the perfect trigger. In my case the G19 Gen 4 I purchased the trigger was so bad (confirmed by several people) that I ended up purchasing an aftermarket trigger. That was the first time I ever had to purchase an aftermarket trigger for a pistol. Made a world of difference and I am glad I didn’t give up on the gun.

        Everyone has their expectations on what a trigger should feel like. I am an old 1911 guy and used to shoot competition with a couple of Wilson 1911’s. Times have changed and I now carry striker fired pistols due to weight and capacity. Nothing wrong with Glock, H&K, Walther, SIG, S&W and so on. I think people should find a pistol that they feel fits their hand, like the trigger (takeup, break and reset), and can shoot the best. Then practice….. I try to shoot at least a couple hundred rounds a week. When you combine all that, you really don’t need to worry about 15 rounds vs 17 or 10 rounds vs 12. If you still don’t feel confident in your abilities, carry a couple of extra magazines.

        • So if you knew you were going to have a home invasion with 4 attackers, would you rather have 17 loaded in your gun or 15? For me, every round counts. Any time saved reloading is a blessing. Capacity gives me comfort and if two guns are somewhat equal, I’ll always take the one with greater capacity.

          • 4 attackers….. with 15 rounds that amounts to 4 per person with one only having 3. I agree that more rounds would be better but if you plan for the worse you will always have more magazines. In reality, I would always default to my AR that has much more capacity but in a pinch, a pistol will do. That being said, I feel confident that 10 or 12 rounds will be sufficient to do the job, if that isn’t enough then I am not doing mine.

      • I have Sig Sauer,HK,Beretta and XDM. Of all four, I consistently punch a hole through the bull’s eye with the HK.One vital shot that nails it for me and does not require a second shot is better than carrying a gun with higher capacity that will require me making taking several shots to hit the target.Another man’s misfortune is another man’s fortune.

        • I’ve reconsidered the VP9. While I wish it held 17 rounds, I’m making an exception because the gun is fucking outstanding and I shoot it like a boss. I carry it regularly now. Let’s be honest, 15 rounds is plenty. I’ve evolved.

      • For Mark. It’s all in your opinion. You are the first I know to not praise the trigger of the VP9. In my opinion as I shot it side by side with the Walther, I give a slight trigger advantage to the VP9 and my reason for choosing it over the Walther. Being a left handed shooter I have been happy with all HK products. Yes, if i were marketing the VP9 a 5 inch model would be produced. If lack of rounds are an issue carry another magazine. I’ve carried 6 shot snub nose revolver for protection. No matter what I carry I am aware of the guns capability and my shooting ability. Situational awareness! Someone will always say they don’t have enough rounds even with a Glock & 30 round clip. The only complaint I have heard about an HK is the cost.

        • Since my first post I have changed my mind. I have fallen in love with the VP9 and it is now in my regular rotation. I’m ok with the capacity.

  2. The charge assist “wings” are not intended for one handed racking. I found this out from HK after a call. You can try it but be prepared to go searching for them after they fly off.

    • If you do have the LE version of the VP9SK, the night sights have a leading edge with a concave V-groove that is perfect for one handed racking. Catches on a flat surface easily, works even better on a stiff belt.

  3. Conceal sized pistols automatically give up magazine capacity, but 10 rounds? In 9mm?
    I handled one in my local shop and immediately fell in love…but. The standard for this size conceal pistol is 12. If you’re CCW-ing a double stack capacity handgun, you are deliberately choosing a higher round count…in hand…not in a spare mag in your pocket. Why would anyone buy a pistol this size, even with HK’s rep for quality, with an immediate penalty of 2 rounds?

  4. So the pistol is the same size as the Ruger SR40C/SR9C. I really like that form factor. Ruger’s is literally half way between the G19 and the G26.

  5. Off topic but it’s being reported that at least 12 people have been shot at Aztec High School in Aztec, NM.

  6. I bought a VP9 on Sunday and for the price I paid ($499) it will probably be the best shooting, nicest trigger, striker fired gun I’ll ever own until I can find a PPQ for that price. I think more manufacturers should offer paddle releases for the mags or at least make the mag release button bigger, I really find it easy to use. Sportsman’s Warehouse has had a few nice sales this Christmas, I’m hoping there will be another before the end of the year.

    • I agree with you on the paddle release. My carry gun (Kahr pm9) occasionally gets enough pressure on it from my backside while I’m seated that the mag release gets pushed in. When I have it IWB I have to do a quick “mag check” every time I stand up out of the car. This would not be an issue with the paddle system.

    • The Walther PPQ line, CZP10C, Steyr pistols, and Canik pistols all have better triggers and better capacity as well. I own all of these (including a VP9 of course) and of all my striker fired guns, the VP9 would be the last thing I’d use as a side arm if I was going to war. (i.e. venturing down to the gas station with all the druggies hanging about)

  7. Wife has full size VP9. She is a lefty and out of the box this pistol works for those of the left handed world.

    One of the top striker fired pistols out there IMO.

  8. I own an HK VP9 and I’ll never carry it. Why? Because the capacity sucks. I prefer a full size gun with 17 rounds minimum and Glock 17/34, Walther PPQ 5”, Canik TP9SF, TP9SFL, TP9SFX, Steyr M9A1, Steyr L9-A1, and FN 509/FN FNS 9 5” all fit the bill nicely. Also, my CZP10C which is about the same size of the VP9 has a better trigger, shoots better, and has the option of extended 17 round magazines which are awesome. HK is fucking retarded for not marketing a full sized pistol with a 4.5 or 5 inch barell and a 17 or 18 round magazine. They don’t offer any magazines PERIOD that are larger than 15 rounds.

    Regarding this silly little VP9SK model, I can pocket carry a Glock 26 as my back up and use the 12 round magazines with the finger extension and it fits me like a glove.

    And speaking of triggers, the Walther PPQ, Canik TP9SF, TP9SFL, TP9SFX, Steyr L9-A1, Steyr M9-A1, and CZP10C all have superior triggers compared to the VP9. All better guns in every aspect. Hell, I even like my Beretta APX better than the VP9 because it shoots great and the capacity is there too.

    I remain unimpressed by the VP9 series. They are not up to par with the pack in one way or another.

  9. Round 158 failed to go into battery? Maybe not the pistol’s fault, could it have been a bit of fatigue setting in?

    Disclaimer, I do own a few HK’s, Caniks, Glocks, Sigs, etc…. Loose grip can cause issues that appear to be the pistol when it’s the shooter or light powder round.

  10. I’ve yet to see another gun I like better than my Walther PPQs. I’m ready to get a .22 version next.

    HK is asking quite a bit of coin for this version so it better be better. From the review I’d say it’s average.
    But it’s not below average like evey239 is.

  11. “If you’re thinking Ruger LCP II size, think again. If you’re thinking Glock 43 size, nope, the SK’s bigger than that. I consider the Glock 26 –the official “baby Glock” — as the top of the sub-compact size range. The VP9SK is a bit bigger than that, too.

    If you want to bracket it, the VP9SK is in-between the size of a Glock 26 and a Glock 19, and just barely smaller than the G19.”

    Having never shopped much less owned a Glock, this is completely meaningless to me. the first hand gun I shot was a Glock, but I have no idea what it was, other than that it was fat and I hated it. I could not successfully identify one Glock from another. The specs are far more informative. And what I learned is that this is a very portly little gun, even fatter than my old Springfield XD9, which was too fat for me to conceal.)

  12. HK will not sell to Israel
    Why not?
    Israel is a democratic state with an army at or above NATO level
    The Israel Defense Forces abide by the Geneva and Hague conventions on the laws of war
    It will abide by any end user agreement not to furnish guns to 3rd parties
    It has a large Arab minority that includes Palestinians who can vote and are protected by rule of law
    Any of its soldiers or citizens who commit crimes against minorities are punished
    It allows all faiths to pray at the Holy sites and prevents Jewish fanatics from entering the Dome of the Rock
    So, where is the problem selling to Israel?

  13. Looks interesting, but I’ll pass. “round 158 failed” and no hammer!
    So you fired 157 rounds at the range, and on your way home you get car jacked! You raise your weapon and fire, but nothing happens, except you get shot by the bad guy. If you had a double/singe action weapon, depending on what the failure was, pulling the trigger again instantly might have saved your life.

    Of course I don’t know what the failure was, so the above analogy is hypothetical. I am set to buy one of the new Springfield XDE’s. I know some folks will have a problem with me buying an XDE, but I am somewhat disabled, and this gun is very easy to rack, and is the smallest 9, DA/SA on the market. Price, $440 at my LGS, Cabela’s, full MSRP $519

    I have been carrying a Ruger SLR, and love it, but 5 rounds leaves me a little apprehensive, and the weapon is not quick to reload.

  14. If this Gun had 12 round magazines available I might be interested. Putting finger rest on the bottom of a magazine is a stupid solution. Why not offer a factory +2 baseplate on the extra magazine it comes with? I know HK is supposed to be coming out with 13 round magazines, but I am not sure what these will look like. I am not fan of slip on grip sleeves because of their tendency to slip and make magazine insertion difficult or impossible.

    You also made a comment about the 1913 rail and Glock pistols. The new Gen5 has a 1913 spec rail slot vs the special Glock rail slot on their previous pistols.

  15. Leaving all the politics and Glock fanboyz drama out of it…. I own almost every pistol listed in the comments above. My Glock 19 Gen 4 trigger was so bad I almost traded it. Put an Overwatch Trigger in it and it quickly became one of my favorite carry pistols. I have a Walther PPQ as well as a CZ P-10 C and yes, they both have good triggers and are solid performers. Thought about getting a G26, but never could get used to the small grip and it just didn’t work for me. Enter the VP9SK, now bear in mind that I only have a sample of one, but the trigger is as good as any of the above and better than most. Same thing goes for my VP9. That and I didn’t have to spend $125 on an aftermarket Glock trigger.

    I’m an older gentleman that isn’t into all the hype and drama involved with pistols. I just find something I like and that works. I just picked up a S&W Shield 9mm M2.0 for my daughter after she tried the other Glock, Walther, etc single stacks because that is what she liked/shot the best with. I actually liked it enough that that I am going to pick up an M&P M2.0 Compact for myself. Find something that fits your hand and you can shoot well with…. Then practice, practice and practice.

  16. I just purchased the VP9sk….. As a Marine who has fired every type and make of pistol known to man (just a little hyperbole there), this is by far the best shooting compact pistol I’ve ever fired. If the author is getting 2.5″ groups at 25 with bags he’s not doing it right. Right out of the box I shot sub-2″ groups at 20 yards standing. I shot 250 of the shittiest range rounds I could fine with nary a problem. I have the LE sights and was at an indoor range.

    • Couldn’t agree with you more Marine One, picked up a VP9SK couple days ago and shot it along with my new P-10C and it stole the show, I’m a huge CZ and 1911 guy but that HK is one of the best shooting guns I’ve ever owned, now one of my favorites. Definitely deserving of a spot along side of my many CZ’s. Might not be for everyone, feels like it was custom made just for me, damn nice gun !!!

  17. I think that all of the politics-related comments should be deleted. This is a review about a handgun, not a polemic about post-colonial era 21st century politics. There are plenty of forums where you can argue all you want. . . Better yet, take it to private email. But I doubt that will satisfy you since there won’t be an audience for your opinions.

    Other than that, I appreciate the various first-hand experiences shooting the VP9-SK. I’ve only had the opportunity to handle the gun in a store. I have to say it fit my hand the best of all the compact and subcompact 9mm handguns that I have tried. The VP9-SK is now at the top of my list of potential handguns. It’s helpful to hear how well the gun works for different people when it is being fired.

  18. I have 2 H&K USP’s, a 9 and 40, I have 3 Magnum Research Baby Desert Eagle’s, Gen 1 Compact 40, Gen 2 Full 9 and Gen 3 Compact 9.

    All five guns are most excellent after going through ownership of 3 Glock’s, 3 S&W’s and a few other makers not worth mentioning and currently own S&W MP 45.

    The H&K’s and Israeli made BDE’s are so accurate, easy to care for and Flawless when I purchsed wheher they were brand new or previously used.

    All the comments as to Politics is unwarranted. The problem with guns is Politics anyway.

    Gun ownership is an awesome responsibility and burden to the wise and a tool for good and sport. Man can pervert anything to horrible uses.

    I was 65 before purchasing a weapon with only Military and Hunting experience as a teen with Dad till 2017. My view of guns tempered by the media and a Progressive Liberal past.

    Guns are not for anyone by any means.

    Guns are to Protect and for Sport.

    With my CWP, I feel responsible for those around me as never before. My driving has been tempered realizing that my responsibility as a CWP holder is to represent Proper Behavior always.

    At 65, responsibility increased and world view expanded.

    Commenting as a Mongrel. Gentile and Jewish. Imagine the 40’s where a Germany had not been corrupted with hatred utilizing Germans and German Jews to create a technological superior army. Could the world have stood against that?

  19. I have the same issue with the slide not locking back after last round. I kept thinking it was due to underpowered ammo and then I realized finally that my grip causes my thumb to contact the slide release just enough that it won’t lock back. I have to conscientiously change my grip which sucks. EVERYTHING else about this gun I love. Hopefully they come up with an aftermarket slide release lever that rides a little higher like they have for Glocks.

  20. I have carried my VP9 for four years now and have experienced zero issues. Being an instructor for a company that issued M&P 40s for a decade and now the FN 509, an outstanding pistol in own right, I will continue to stick with my VP9.

    I have experienced the slide release, last round not holding the slide to the rear, issue with most every semi auto polymer pistol I have ran. I just adapted to it to solve my own ergonomic problem. A high, thumbs forward grip lends itself to the shooter’s issue. Gun fighting is a thinking man’s, or woman’s, game. Use your head to win.

    The new model now holds the “required” 17 rounds to make people happy and the 15 round magazines have been discontinued by HK. Some will say they saw the light. I say buy 20 round magazines for home defense or move up to a rifle caliber, suppressed SBR with 30 rounds of “you had better stop that” ready to go.

    .02 from my drop of firearms knowledge.

    Now, can we please get back to the senseless Israel debate and name calling that so make this article a must read? LOL

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