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While attending the Civilian Response to Terrorist Threats class recently at the SIG Sauer academy, I made a rather fatal mistake. I was in the process of purchasing a SIG Sauer P938 (click here for my review on that gun) and I happened to jokingly ask the guys in the pro shop if they had anything else that I needed to get. One of them asked me, “How about a P210?” I couldn’t believe that they had one. The P210 is an almost mythical gun – you hear about it, but you rarely see it. It’s manufactured in very small quantities and you have to look long and hard to find someone who has it in stock. A few months ago while contemplating the purchase of a highly accurate gun for IDPA that could make up for some of my shortcomings . . .

I had considered the P210, but when I asked about its availability, the pro shop guys kind of laughed and said good luck finding one. But there I was with a chance to actually buy of these guns. While I really couldn’t justify buying two guns at the time, I figured that if I passed on this opportunity, I’d regret it. Just please don’t tell my wife.

The P210 began its service life in the Swiss Army in 1949 and remained the Swiss Army’s primary sidearm until 1975 when it was replaced by the P220. Rather ironic that just around the time the U.S. Military was getting ready to replace its .45 1911s with 9mm Beretta pistols, the Swiss were going the other way moving up in the world to the .45 P220.

Original P210s were all steel and came in both 9mm and 7.65x21mm varieties. The design was based on the earlier French Modele 1935A pistol created by Charles Petter in 1935.  The Modele 1935A was chambered in 7.65x21mm which may explain why the P210 was originally offered in two calibers.

One of the unusual design features of the P210 is that the slide rides inside the frame rails rather than on the outside as is common on pistols derived from John Browning’s design (see comparison photo below – the P210 is on the right).

The advantage of this is that that the pistol can be made with a very tight fit between the frame, slide and barrel without compromising the reliability. The upshot of all this tightness is that by eliminating the slop in the fit, the pistol is highly accurate as there is very limited movement between the parts that could affect the bullet’s flight. In short, you get a pistol design that can be manufactured in moderate quantities, but with the tightness of fit usually reserved for hand-finished guns.

In 2010, SIG announced that they’d be re-releasing the P210 in an updated design. The factory in Eckernförde, Germany acquired the license from the original Swiss Arms when the German company bought SIG Arms, AG. At the present time, all SIG P210s are manufactured in Germany. You really can’t do much better heritage-wise; you get a Swiss design manufactured by quality-obsessed Germans.

The new model keeps some of the design features of the original, but also has some changes that are much appreciated. It’s still completely made of carbon steel (the slide is machined out of a solid billet of steel) which makes it a fairly heavy gun, weighing in at a hefty 37.4 ounces. Both the slide and frame receive SIG’s standard Nitron coating process which helps to ward off rust.

The new model includes a drop safety and according to the SIG website, the manual safety has been improved over the original (unfortunately it still sucks, but more on that later).  The beavertail was extended and curved to make it both more comfortable and more effective. Finally, thankfully, SIG dropped the original European bottom magazine release, changing it to a frame-mounted mag release where God intended it to be.

In keeping with German design sensibilities the sights are very utilitarian. You won’t find any dots, lines, tritium or fiber optics here, just a black post and notch. This is the exact same sight setup on the only other German pistol that I own, a H&K USP Tactical. The sights on the standard P210 are fixed, but the even more expensive target model ships with an adjustable rear sight.

There’s also no rail, so you can forget about any gun-mounted lights, lasers or other doodads. This gun is clearly designed to be shot in decent ambient light. The grip’s simply gorgeous and fits my medium-large sized hands extremely well. I’m not normally a huge fan of wood grips. For me, I seem to get a better fit with either aluminum or plastic, but in this case, there is no way I’m even going to consider changing them out (it’s not like there are a lot of aftermarket alternatives anyway).

The P210 is renowned for its accuracy. The design specs calls for every P210 to be capable of putting five rounds into a 2 inch circle at 50 yards before leaving the factory. As with some of SIGs higher end pistols, a test fire target is included in the box. I’m a little confused as the target included with my pistol does indeed show five shots within the 2 inch circle, but the 25 meter (roughly 27 yards) box is checked. Three of the five shots could be covered with a dime with the other two shots remaining in the 2 inch circle. It’s possible this gun was actually tested at 50 yards. The test target is a standard one used by SIG and doesn’t contain a check box for 50 yards, so perhaps the engineer simply used what he had available.

My testing bore the accuracy claims out (keeping in mind that I won’t be keeping Rob Leatham awake worrying at night). At 7 yards, the pistol’s a tack driver.

That’s ten rounds that you are looking at on the target above. Moving back to 50 feet, things opened up a bit, but the pistol still did fairly well given my meager skills:

I had the opportunity this past week to use the P210 at SIG Academy’s Long Range Pistol Shooting course. We shot at various targets and distances that ranged from trying to cut a business card in half edge side out from 3 yards out to hitting a steel chest plate at 100 yards.

The P210 excelled across the board. In the card splitting challenge, I cut the card in half with my first shot. The other students took as much as a full magazine to accomplish the same feat. Out at 100 yards with a timed challenge, the accuracy of the P210 let me draw from my holster and strike steel in less than 9 seconds. One thing I learned about this gun was that the sights were calibrated for 25 yards. Once you get past 50 yards, you actually had to hold low to hit the target (a high hold was not needed because even at 100 yards, a 9 mm bullet is still pretty much point of aim, point of impact).

The single action trigger pull is a very smooth 4 lbs. with virtually no stacking or annoying take up. On a brand new P210, the trigger has the feel of a gun that has had several thousand rounds put through it. The trigger isn’t advertised as being one of SIG’s Short Reset Triggers (SRT), but comparing it to my P229 which does have an SRT, I had a hard time telling the difference.

According to SIG, the P210 is the most accurate pistol they offer. It even eclipses the X5 and X6 lines in accuracy, but has a price to match. At an MSRP of $2,199, it’s less expensive than any of the X6 pistols and many of X5s, but more than double the cost of most of SIG’s main line guns.

It’s a limited production pistol which means you can expect to pay full list price if you find one. A recent search of retailers and on Gunbroker confirms that you are not likely to find a new one at less than MSRP.  I was fortunate to purchase it at the SIG Academy Pro Shop using my 20% class discount. That knocked over $400 off of the price meaning that if I wanted to, I could probably have bought all of the P210s they had in stock and sold them at a profit. I only wish I’d thought of it at the time.

Aside from the stratospheric pricing, there are a couple of nits I have to pick with the P210. The first is the manual safety. On my other single action guns, the safety lever protrudes far enough from the frame that it’s easy to disengage on the draw stroke. With the P210, the safety is a hair too small – while testing it on several occasions, I wasn’t able to smoothly disengage it on the draw. This is a known problem with P210s and I’m surprised that SIG didn’t address it during the redesign. If you have large hands, you are probably okay, but you’ll want to check this out for yourself before plunking down that kind of cash.

Then there are the magazines. SIG magazines have never been what anyone would describe as bargain priced, but with a list price of $75 for a P210 mag, they are horribly overpriced for an eight round single stack. On top of this, they are the most difficult magazines to load that I have ever used. Getting the last two rounds in is an exercise in frustration and you’re going to leave some DNA behind in an extended shooting and loading session. On the plus side, SIG is gracious enough to include two magazines with the pistol.

Aftermarket accessories for the P210 are lacking to say the least. Holsters in particular are difficult to find. My usual standbys – Blade Tech and Comp-Tac do not make anything for the P210. Mitch Rosen, however, does and I have placed an order with them. Beyond that, there isn’t much more you’d want to add. Unless you have huge hands, you probably wouldn’t want to replace those phenomenal wood grips, but if you do, good luck finding something to fit this gun.

All that said, the P210 is a pleasure to shoot and a true tack driver. It’s a tremendous pistol that carries an equally tremendous price tag along with a couple of warts. If you’re looking for a super-accurate 9mm though, this is certainly one worth considering.


Length                             8.5 in
Height                              5.6 in
Width (with lever)     1.3 in
Weight with mag        37.4 oz.
Capacity                          8+1
Trigger                            SA
MSRP                               $2,199 (street about $2,199)

Ratings (out of five stars):

Style: * * * * *
This gun is simply gorgeous.  Not a lot of useless bling and those walnut grips are to die for.

Ergonomics: * *
The trigger is as smooth as a baby’s bottom, but the safety lever is almost unusable in its stock configuration. Fix this and we are looking at 4 stars or better.

Accuracy: * * * * *
All that I can say is, wow. I’ve never shot a gun this accurate and using it is a great leveler when shooting against people with more ability. The P210 consistently puts the bullet where you aim it. If you can overcome your own shooting shortcomings, this gun will not let you down.

Reliability * * * * *
It shot whatever I threw at it including frangible rounds (which give some pistols indigestion) without a single hiccup.

Customize This: * *
Forget it. If the grip fits you, you’re golden. If not, well, find another gun. If you like leather holsters, Mitch Rosen has you covered. If you prefer kydex, you’ll need to go the custom route.

Overall: * * * *
I really struggled with this final rating. The poor design of the safety really detracts from what is otherwise an exceptional firearm. On the flip side, the phenomenal accuracy of the P210 goes a long way towards making up for the problem. If you’re in the market for the Bentley of handguns and can comfortably reach the safety (and don’t mind paying through the nose for magazines) then this is your baby.

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    • 2200 for a glock, not even if it was made of 100% gold. a person should be shot in the knees just for saying glock around the pure greatness of a sig…….

      • That’s why its not called a Slide RELEASE. Its a Slide stop or slide lock. It really was not meant to be manipulated by the thumb. When the slide lock locks back on an empty magazine you replace the magazine and then pull back on the slide and release…chambering a new round.

    • Its 2020 and the Sig 210 is still the most accurate, best engineered and most beautiful hand gun in the world. 73 years in a row.

      Glock is doing V4 and still does not shoot straight and the trigger is still bad.
      1911 are still hovering between too loose and very loose.
      Sig Sauer now makes gun that go off when dropped.
      Berettas still dont hit barndoors.
      People carry tiny 45 sprayers and shoot their own fingers off.
      Carrying an unchambered SA is still safer than a DA Glock with 4 crunchy internal cams achieving less safety.

  1. I’m thinking for $2200 one could have a Glock 34 or even 17L (or similar high cap polymer 9mm) suped up and customized to blow this thing out of the water. Just speculating.

    • This is why I hate glock guys and 1911 guys, there can be no discussion of any other pistol without them still claiming their gun is or can be superior ALWAYS.

      • I’m not really a “Glock Guy”, and I’m sure it’s a very fine pistol. I’m just saying that this thing appears to waaaay beyond the point of diminishing returns with it’s price.

        • You are missing the point. The SIG P210 is the Colt Python of production autopistols. There are plenty of Smith and Wessons that are just as accurate as a Python, but they’re not handbuilt pieces of mechanical art.

          Beauty and build quality are worth something.

        • Jean,

          You’re missing my point. I’m not saying it’s not a beautiful piece. It is. It’s aesthetically pleasing, it’s demonstrably uber accurate, it received a great review from an author I trust. I’m certain it’s a downright dream to shoot.

          What I am saying, however, is that’s about all I can see in it. A safe queen and a target shooter for someone with $2200 burning a hole in their pockets. A beautiful, precision hand crafted, machine? Yes. ~Four times the price of it’s competition? Yes. Bringing ~four times the utility of it’s competition? Not a chance.

          Like the Ferrari comment below. Is a new $250,000 Ferrari demonstrably better than a $5000 used Honda Civic sedan? Of course. Is it higher performance? Obviously. Is it more aesthetically pleasing and pleasant to drive? Certainly. Does it offer ~50 the utility to someone who doesn’t race or have $250,000 burning a hole in their pocket? Does it offer 50 times the utility to someone who does %85 of their driving commuting to and from work at 65mph? Not a chance.

          It’s a beautiful piece. It’s not “bad”. I’m not knocking it. Just like Jim said in the review. If you’ve got $2200 that you want to spend on a stupid accurate, fun to shoot hand gun, then be my guest. I’m not saying you shouldn’t and I’m not knocking anyone who does. What I am saying is that price tag is awfully hard to justify when the gun doesn’t really offer any advantages, over a competitive priced handgun, that I would find useful.

          That’s my take anyway, and maybe I’m wrong.

      • Yes, I have noticed that too……the problem is most of those guys have never fired a straight T series hi-power. If they have ….they would not be so cocky.

    • You can get a $30,000 mustang and bolt on all sorts of stuff to make it faster than anything from the factory.

      ….But it will never be a Ferrari.

      • A supercharged V8 Stang with a create engine might not be a Ferrari, but it will beat one. I have seen plenty of $100,000 cars left at the starting line by $30,000 supe-ups. If you want a race a gun that fits all of your needs and your hand, you might want to a gun with more options. It doesn’t mater how expensive or what name brand the other guy has, as long as he walks home a looser.

        • What is it that they say about economists–they know the price of everything and the value of nothing?

        • You kinda just reinforced his point. Supe it up all you want, throw all your money at it. I am still riding a Ferrari and shooting a P210 while you are in a mustang holding a glock which look like frankenstein got his hands on both. There is fast and there is class. Just saying.

    • Just to add my 2 cents…. I shoot a p210. My friend use to shoot a glock 34. As i said use to. 🙂 He put extra money into better sights and reworked the trigger. He could never get past the problem of rounds jamming too often as his shooting stance makes him short stroke. After a few months of playing with the glock he sold it and bought a Sig p210 also. It has not jammed once on him in over 500 rounds AND, his groups are half the size they used to be with the glock 34. As for me I can honestly say it is the most accurate gun I have ever shot. PERIOD! I may not be the world’s best or worst shot. When I put 8 in a group the size of a silver dollar at 25 feet it sure puts a smile on my face. I also have not had a single jam in close to 2000 rounds. P210 over glock 34 any day.

    • Actually, originally Swiss design based on a Erench one. Our club has one – lovely to shoot and I have no problem with the magazine release, but then I’m not a ‘practical’ shooter – just an occasional target shooter. For self-defense? If you haven’t sorted the problem out with your first 8 rounds are you still around to reload? … and then I would want a super-accurate fire-arm that I am comfortable with and shoots to point of aim!

  2. “The P210 is an almost mythical gun – you hear about it, but you rarely see it. It’s manufactured in very small quantities and you have to look long and hard to find someone who has it in stock.”

    So, like a Shield. Got it.

      • My brother has had one in his case since shortly after they came out… but always a different one since people buy them so quickly. I really like it personally, it’s quite an excellent little gun. There are a few of them at my range in 9mm and I’ve had the opportunity to try them out. Have not yet tried the 40S&W. The only (very minor) knock is the trigger reset could be “crisper” or perhaps “more audible”, but that is really pickin’ nits because it better than adequate as is.

        • Don – not sure if you are referring to the same gun. The P210 is only available in 9mm. To the best of my knowledge, in the whole history of the gun, the only other caliber has been the 7.65 x 21 mm flavor.

        • I pointed out yesterday (below) that the P210 was made in 9mm and 7.65 “Luger”, not 7.65 (.32) French Long. Got to thinking later that in my 1971 Guns Illustrated (I was a junior high gun nerd) the most expensive handgun listed was not the P210, it was a P210 Target that came as a boxed set with 9mm and .30 Luger barrels AND a “Service Ace” style .22 LR conversion kit. Think that target-sighted 3-caliber wonder may have run as much as $1200 in ’71; wonder what the whole setup NIB would be worth today?

      • The standard response to any inquiry about the shield in my part of the country has, for the last 4 months, is a hearty laugh-in-your-face-come-back-next-year. I envy those that seem to be able to conjure one of those little buggers from thin air at will.

  3. Military P210 (mod. 49) were eleased on mass on the civilian market two years ago, so the price is very low now, for a good preserved original one (from CHF 1600.- to CHF 1000.- now). Very cool guns, able to shoot better than most pistol-caliber carbines in the 25-150 meters range. Safety is awful indeed, the hardest to remove I’ve ever saw on any gun. It tends to bite my hand, like french MAC 50.
    Pist. 75/ military P220 is in 9×19, not in .45 ACP.

  4. Purchasing a P210 and one other pistol is not buying two guns at the same time, it is buying five new guns at the same time!
    There is one at my local Bass Pro that I have been admiring from afar (like you would admire a supermodel at a coffee shop) but, alas, barring a winning lottery ticket, it shall always remain in supermodel territory for me.
    Actually, if I won the lottery I might be able to afford a supermodel girlfriend too!

  5. The French 1935A and later, cheaper-to-make, 1935S were in an oddball round called (at least in the US) .32 Long. Aside from a weird little French submachine gun with a fold-up-under-the-grip magazine, I’m not aware of any other weapons that were made in the 1935 round. My understanding is that the 7.65 x 21 is the bottleneck “.30 Luger” which was the original “Parabellum” round before being necked up to the 9mm so common today. A lot of common Euro handguns were made in .30 Luger for European sales because of restrictions on sales of “military” chamberings to civilians. I remember seeing new-condition .30 Browning Hi-Powers (Belgian made) for about $300 in Shotgun news 20 years ago, and I’ve read a review of a P220 (the Euro model with the bottom-grip mag release) in .30 Luger that an American serviceman in Germany had picked up and brought home. So it would make sense that there had been a .30 Luger P210, but I doubt if there was ever one in “.32 French Long.”

    • This thread made me break out the 1935A. Hadn’t shot it in years. Now I remember why: 10lb 4 oz trigger, microscopic sights, and predictable results on target. I now shoot pistols well enough to suspect it wasn’t user error!

  6. Wow. My eyes like it but I wonder what the practicality these days of a single-stack 9mm for that much money. I mean, I could get a good quality ar in .308+magazines+a decent amount of ammo for the price of one pistol. Yes it’s beautiful and accurate but that’s about all I see going for it.

  7. Sounds schweet! BTW, I came across a minty Colt Python, six inch barrel over the weekend. Widow who’s hubby was a cop. She hadn’t thought about selling (has no children) but I told her it was probably in the $1500 range, maybe more, maybe less. I wouldn’t like her getting ripped off by anyone. I am not particularly into revolvers, but this one is nice. Should I make her an offer?

    • if you want a classic collectable. but if you shoot it a lot you’re going to bring it’s value down. if you want a shooter buy a new smith or ruger, they don’t have the “investment” factor in their price.

      • I have an SP101 and a standard Redhawk, they are for shooting, I would keep the Python as the new Queen of the safe. She also had his (husband) S&W model 12-2 ‘duty’ gun, in average condition, I offered her $400 for that already.

    • Yes. Don’t shoot it a lot, of course, but the Python is only going to appreciate value. At least you know you’ll give it a good home.

      • Unfortunately, nothing is perfect and one can find fault with just about any gun. That said, I’m not an engineer so I can’t agree or disagree with many of the points made. I will say that from my reading of this article, that Prodeo suggests the safety is prone to failure once the thread lock compound wears off. Seems to me that it this were the case, Sig would have a major lawsuit on its hands and I’ve not heard of anything.

        Time will tell, I guess. I plan to shoot the hell out of this gun as much as I can to see if I can induce some kind of failure. Sig offers a lifetime warranty, so we’ll just have to see what happens.

    • my understanding is that the tolerances of the slide, barrel and frame can be held tighter due to the fact that there is less side to side movement between the slide and frame. Tighter tolerances mean tighter fit.

      • Again, why would that be? Why could they not get tight tolerances no matter which way the slide is shaped? Sounds like a marketing claim to me.

      • You can accomplish the same thing on a 1911. You can either machine the slide/frame with lower tolerances to the point where you have to lap the slide to the frame, or you can crush the slide inwards to the point where you have to lap the slide onto the frame.

        The “slide inside the frame” design might be a bit more resistant to dirt/dust fouling, but if you drop a P210 in the dust, odds are you’ll find that the slide won’t cycle – just like a tight 1911.

  8. I disagree with the OP, the P210 is the closest handgun to a 5* rating in my book. A thing of beauty, worth every penny and then some. I don’t understand your CUSTOMIZE THIS rating. One doesn’t f with this piece. and the “safety” is a non-issue to me. This isn’t a home defense or a ccw contender. For those of you who can’t see spending so much for the P210, OK, but don’t knock it. The P210 has always been and continues to be something “very special” to those of us that own them and to many who don’t. There aren’t many handguns that fall into this category.

  9. No, the P220 the Swiss adopted is not a .45. The .45 P220 is an export gun for the American market. The reason why today’s P220s are all .45s is because all other chamberings went double stack and were renamed P226.

    • This.

      The P220 was designed because of the cost of making the P210 and was chambered in 9x19mm, just like the P210. And I’m pretty sure the Swiss never adopted it and only just recently adopted the P226 to replace the P210.

      I feel it is somewhat indicative of the quality of this pistol that while only Switzerland and Denmark adopted it, neither country until very recently has seen fit to replace it in service, even with the availability of lighter, higher capacity pistols. (Of course, Canada still uses the Browning Hi-Power and has since the end of WWII.)

  10. I’m an HK guy. (queue the snide comments)

    BUT, for several decades, I have lusted after a 210. Back when I could afford the price, I wouldn’t be caught dead with a 9mm. One of the few (many, several, constant) mistakes that I have made over the years.

    I’m guessing that a 210 is not in my future, but it’s still in my dreams.

  11. I believe one of the writers for American Handgunner or Combat Handguns(Leroy Thompson?) claimed that when worked as a bodyguard overseas and was in a position where he was unable to carry a long gun, his choice was a P210, because he felt confident making head shots out to 50 yards.


  12. I purely love the P210, and have wanted one for years. After Sig reintroduced them I seriously considered getting a P210 Target at $2300.00. Then they came out with the P210 SuperTarget, and OMG is that a lovely pistol!

    The sad fact is that I can’t justify a $3000.00 safe queen.


  13. The Swiss Army has dropped the Sig 220 and replaced it with the Glock 17 4th gen… to replace the sig 220. The sig 210 is a great gun… it was one of the guns on which the cz 75 was based and which I think is the best….

    • P220 is still there for many years. Only special forces got some Glock (17 and 26, I think) as on option, and military police got the SIG-Sauer SIGPro. Standard forces aren’t looking for a new pistol.

  14. Gentlemen,

    I read about the P210 extensively, then attempted to buy one. Last week Sig had a Grand Opening Sale for their new pro shop in Epping N.H. From 12-5 everything in the shop was 20%. Needless to say I drove up from Ct and bought mine.

    It was shipped to Ct two day air. Why did I buy it?

    The style, quality and craftsmanship are beautiful.
    The accuracy is amazing.

    My thoughts are, because they are very limited in production, I can shoot it for years, then sell it at a profit and enjoy every minute in between.

    CD’s pay nothing, so I would rather invest my money in some this I really enjoy. Note I also own a Smith & Wesson 41 that is also a pleasure to shoot.

    Enjoy the toys you have!!!!!!!

  15. Just purchased the fixed sight version as an early Christmas gift to myself. I own a lot of guns, but the P210 was always on my list. Can’t wait to get it in my hands.

    Several years ago, Novak’s was doing a limited number of custom P210s, including a side mag release button conversion. I handled a couple, and they were beautiful.

    Hopefully my Sig Armorer buddy can get me a break on magazines.

  16. Jim,
    I am a proud new user of P210 SUPER TARGET. I yet gave her a nick name ”LADY”.
    Can you indicate me which holster model have you choose for your? How does it ”work”?

    About the price, here in Europe I bought her for exactly 2.000,00 EUR (20% VAT included).
    I was at dealer shop trying different SIG models (my husband is SIG possessed) and I have small hand (obviously I am a woman) and at the begining I was thinking omg too big to hold, but from the first moment when I hold her in my hand it was like: ”Hay I am Lady, you wanna take a ride”.
    And in a moment I understood my husband. Since than I enjoy her weekly on camp. Accuracy, handling..etc…*****

    I apologize for any grammatic error since I am not an english native speaker.

    And Jim,
    thanks for answer

  17. Folks, I have owned a few guns, but none are as fun to shoot as my Sig P210.

    I agree the price does provide some serious thought, but I have no regrets. At this point I have put about 3000/4000 rounds through it and I still feel WOW every time I shoot it.

    A friend and I took a ride up to Exeter for the Grand Opening of the store in August. I bought the Legend for 20% off and shipped it back to CT.

    Everyone who shoots it, falls in love with it.

  18. I also lusted after the P210 for many years. Recently decided to drop the coin on one and am very pleased with the results. For years I used to tell everyone that my most accurate out of the box handgun was the Sig 220. The 220 was one of my first handgun purchases – probably 25 years ago. I’ve put a lot of rounds down range with it over the last quarter century – at least 50,000 rounds. That’s a lot for me, anyway. I’ve bought lots of guns over the years and found many that I like and that shoot well. The P210? Good God Almighty. It fits in my rather large hands very nicely and shoots right on point. I can shoot 2″ groups with it at 50′ all day long. It has an elegant design and is a work of art. The only downside? I’ve come away with a brown smudge on my hand after shooting it – perhaps oil rubs on the wood and then my hands? Figure that’ll go away sooner or later.

    As for the guy that said the mags were hard to load? (I think the author of this story?) I had the same problem but figured out that only happens if you try to load the mags the way you load a 1911 – sliding the round in parallel to the round already in the magazine. Completely by accident I discovered that if you put the base of the round in the magazine at a 45 degree angle and let the back of the round push the stack down then it slides right in. The lip of the magazine catches on the cartridge if you try to load ala 1911-style.

    Anyway, I love mine. I wish I had gotten it years ago. I’ve only had it about two weeks and have really enjoyed it in that time.

  19. Hey guys I have shot the Sig 210 Swiss and the legend as well as the Target and the Super Target. In a nut shell all i can say is that the Germans made a great job of copying the Sig 210 but could not attain the fine tolerances that the Swiss made so the end result is and all of the guys who have the new legends and targets will notice that after a 100 rounds of ammo the top slide digs into the barrel making a wear mark on the top half of the barrel from the front as a matter of fact all brand new Germans have that mark even at 6 rounds the factory fires.

    I can say that i took the German apart and examined each component and compared it with the Swiss the quality difference was at least 30% poorer. The barrel alone stood apart. I know they did a good job on other short comings of the Sig but when you are paying a ton of cash for a Legend one could buy a good used Swiss for around that price which will still shoot better that the legend. I respect the Germans but if you are going to say that they are better than the Swiss I would differ.

    I can well imagine the effort of the Germans to bring in the Legend at a time when the Sigs are running out but a classic is a classic and will never be duplicated. Time will tell lets shoot these Legends for one full year and hopefully by next year the Germans will wake up to to the harsh fact that a copy is a copy. Guys, when you start making a Lexus in other parts of the world gone is the wind………………..

    • Hi all,

      Writing from Switzerland and a proud owner of a 1952 Sig 210/2 (Swiss army model). Here in Switzerland almost every target competition shooter owns an old P210 (better if chambered with the 7.65). The new models are nice for sure but I can confirm what bob says: the quality of the new 210’s is not on par with the early models made by the Waffenfabrik in Bern (Switzerland).

      If you also take into account that in Switzerland you can find 210/2 models at prices around 1200-1500$ it’s a no brainer to buy one for target shooting.

      As for glock’s: in my humble opinion no tune up can give a glock the same accuracy of an old 210. The 210 is in a whole different league and it’s obvious at the first time you disassemble one. There is a reason if a used barrel for an old P210 costs the same as a new glock 17.

      Not hitting on glock’s they are great guns and a great IPSC shooter, but for target shooting… just leave the old 210 alone.

      • Thanks to Daniel,

        I wish to point out one more thing about an accurate pistol and that is the length of the barrel I have never fired a Glock so cannot say what is the length of the barrel on the piece however the longer the barrel there is a significant increase in Velocity and accuracy. The shorter the barrel there is less pressure and the bullet and action are less reliable to deliver good results. To hold a 3 Inch barrel versus a 6 Barrel you are looking at least 50 Feet per second faster bullet and a sure recycling of the spent round because of increased pressures on top of that accuracy is easy as the human hand is only capable enough to hold some thing as much steady. To hold a 2 Inch stub on target is lot harder than to hold a 6 inch on target.

        The grip of a Sig and some older pistols like the 1911 are universal made to take medium hands and a strong grip is what makes a pistol accurate. There are so many factors affecting the accuracy of a firearm and I don;t hesitate to say that all these factors were addressed by the Swiss to make the world best pistol the 210. The time and effort spent by Sig to make a pistol then is what made it to change since cheaper plastic models came in and competition became tough. Alloy is lot tougher than plastic since cost is 10 times less there is no machining required , an alloy pistol has to be machined and a bunch of stuff done to it to make it worthy of mating with the slide.

        The above points are not rocket science and in the coming times I am sure we might come up with strong plastics which might rival the alloy………


      • I can second that. P210 is the Ueberpistol.
        The 7.65 is an amazing cartrigde,
        9mm version too – just a tad too powerful for my taste.
        I als own two very late Swiss-Lugers chambered in 7.65.
        Slightly better.

        Gen 1 to 5 P- A210 are extremely well designed, materials are out of this world.
        Those guns generally last 250 000 rounds before needing an overhaul. 1911 and Glocks do 2-5000 rounds between overhauls and are wrecked after 10k.
        The 1911 and Glocks are great guns in their own ways and for intended purposebut in the longterm 5-10x more expensive to own.

        As for the new germanbuilt P210. Beautiful and accurate gems. Materials are substandard compared to the older service guns. MIM, IC abound. I dont think you cant get as much life out them

        Also the beavertail is not really needed. Did not have the hammer bite me once in 20 years. I can attest its a myth. Safety is two hand operation. In my opinion
        the ultimate safetyprocedure. Stance, flip safety, aim, shoot.

        • The hammer bite is not a myth, I have scars to prove it and appreciate the add-on screw on Beavertail on my 210-6.

        • You are right on Tom . The biggest point is the Sig 210. Is a perfect masterpiece of gun design and yes a copy is a copy . I have owned the original and the german but however hard I try . Its beyond compaire. I cannt give it 100 percent to the german made call me biased but being an engineer its the truith.

  20. What I find interesting in these articles is the attribution of accuracy or performance enhancing qualities to certain items, though other firearms void of any of those features are also impressively accurate.

    E.G. “One of the unusual design features of the P210 is that the slide rides inside the frame rails rather than on the outside as is common on pistols derived from John Browning’s design (…) The advantage of this is that that the pistol can be made with a very tight fit between the frame, slide and barrel without compromising the reliability. The upshot of all this tightness is that by eliminating the slop in the fit, the pistol is highly accurate as there is very limited movement between the parts that could affect the bullet’s flight. In short, you get a pistol design that can be manufactured in moderate quantities, but with the tightness of fit usually reserved for hand-finished guns.”)

    But take my Glock 22: no full length rail on the frame, but four short and thin sheet metal tabls and some plastic for rails. Yet that pistol impressed my for its accuracy right out the box.

    Or my S&W Model 52, not exactly a model of tightness in the frame to slide department either, yet a true tack driver.

    As you can see from my website, I’m no Glock fanboy, and own several Sigs, one of which is my daily carry. My point is, I don’t think the true Grail-like recipe for pistol accuracy has been found yet, but my money is on barrel to slide lock up, not slide to frame fit. Tell that to my Les Baer…

    • I personally think that many pistols today are accurate even if they are cheap. Glock’s are a great example. But I believe that there is a degree of accuracy that only a few great guns can achieve out of the box. I fire sigs (226, 229, 2022), a glock (17), an H&K usp tactical and a CZ 75 shadow regularly, and they all are great guns. But still, every now and then while shooting at 25 meters and at 50 meters there is a flyer that spoils my 15 shots run. That almost never happens with the 210. Repeatability is the key with the 210. Accurate and consistent every single time I shoot with it. And the most impressive thing is that the 210 I own is a 60 years old gun… and still shoots like new.

      • Right on Daniel,

        I don’t have varied experience as you have had so with all that you have said could not agree more. Its a tragedy that we would not see these old variant for very long as they are no more in production but gives you the joy of ownership of having one of these in your safe.


      • Ah, but can you be sure the cause of the flyer is the firearm? I wouldn’t go quite as far as the French would say (Un mauvais ouvrier accuse ses outils; 🙂 ) but let’s face it, I for one would not compare mi body to a ransom rest (still the gold standard for repeatability, is it not?), and even my best reloads have a margin since I don’t weigh and analyze case thickness. I long stopped sorting my bullets by weight…
        Put another way, the day I decided that I would not be held hostage to my pistol’s accuracy is the day that I got my Les Baer and my 22lr conversion kit (Marvel). I knew that from that day on, every single hit outside the X ring could be attributed to a sole cause: me!

        • I shoot all the Guns I mentioned regularly and the groupings I am able to achieve at 25 meters with the 210 are constantly about 1 inch tighter then with the other pistols (same ammunition with all the guns). At 50 meters I shoot the 210 almost exclusively, sometimes the 226 and the USP but with worse results. And when I shoot in competition there is only one gun (as with almost all the other swiss competition shooter): the 210.

  21. Hi every boy,

    The time a pistol stays in the top position truly demonstrates the fact that it has it to keep it there. I don’t doubt that other pistols would not shoot just as good as the Sig Swiss or Sig German but the main concern is how long will the thin supports hold and if they do then we have a advancement over the Sig design. I have seen that the Sigs have been around since the second world war and so have been the 1911 and are still old classics who still shoot good, we hope that the controlled cost Handguns of today which are mass produced will hold up and if they do that is good for the Gun lovers as more and more can have quality firearms, only time will tell and I am sure we have come to a time where people are more into Precision and quality will not bother the added cost. Mercedes were rarely seen in the early 80s but today they are common and we see people willing to spend the extra buck for the two attributes. Time is the best judge ………….


  22. Not sure where you got your facts, but the Swiss Army’s P75 service pistol is a SIG P220 in 9mm. A version in.45 is also available, purportedly for the US market. Recently, SIG had a special with a newer version P220 in .45 witha picatinny rail in a set with a .22 conversion.

    For the P210, do take a look at SIG HiGrip as an alternative to the wood grips.

  23. Well, I finally purchased a Swiss P210-6 to go with my P210 Legend. I will be taking delivery next week.

    I hope it is as much fun to shoot as the Legend. I know a lot of folks have had discussions regarding the price. If you can afford one, buy it,,,,, you will not regret it.

    I have always believed that accuracy comes from lots and lots of practice, but shooting the P210 certainly helps me shoot better.

    Everyone who shoots it, falls in love with it..


  24. Hey All Picked up my New sig P210-9 Limited First Edition. Yes Special, Will it be used? Yes a bit, Is it true to the precision and quality we all hear?Absolutely. Is it for everybody? certaintly not. This is a gun as a tool is remarkable, It is everything anyone could want as far as accuracy, fit and finish. Shoot or Not, It is well worth the inexpensive price that most seem to think over priced. To each thier own, If you like this piece and you can afford, can’t go wrong…….. Peter

  25. Peter,

    I couldn’t agree more. My Favorite guns are P210 Legend, P210-6, P226 X-5, and smith and Wesson 41. They all have wonderful attributes, and are a pleasure to shoot. Shoot your gun, love every trigger pull!

  26. The Sig 210 can load 8 rounds to the magazine not counting the one in the chamber . However if for personal defence one is to shoot to defend one self the most a person will shoot is no more than 4 rounds. It is a life and death situation and needs nerves of steel to pull a sight on the assiliant. There is so much adrellin kicking in that vision is blurry, hands shake, specially if bullets are coming in from the other end. Hence it is important that a trully full size pistol, with accuracy, and recoil can be braught back to the target 4 times since each time the pistol has to be aimed and gathering from range practice where one is calm and composed with no bullets coming your way. The average time is 5 seconds times 4 or 8 depending on the situation is 20 seconds and 40 seconds . I am sure it will end lot sooner than that. Practice and Practice is the key its the man behind the gun not the gun itself.

  27. “Rather ironic that just around the time the U.S. Military was getting ready to replace its .45 1911s with 9mm Beretta pistols, the Swiss were going the other way moving up in the world to the .45 P220.”

    That is absolutely false. The P220 was originally chambered in 9mm and that is what the military carried.

  28. Hey there. Nice review. Just one correction:

    The Swiss have not moved up from 9mm to 45. The P75 (aka Sig P220) was only issued in 9mm to swiss soldiers.

    Have a nice day and greetings from Switzerland 🙂

  29. Keeping the record straight:
    The swiss army P220 is P75 is A75 = Procurement1975. Good gun, nothing special. Mag release is traditional and not thumb release. No Cal. 45 ever issued to swiss army.

    Serials 210:
    The earlier the gun the more jewelllike the finish. Later guns have more utilitarian blueing. Both have super crisp lines and nononsense engineering details. One has to consider that they took pride to better the Swiss Luger to get the 210 beeing procured. I own 1 early 210 and two very late Swiss-Lugers and love them.

  30. Love it. Great gun. Not worth the price tag. If money was no option and I was just collecting, I would own one. Personally when I can get the same accuracy and reliability in safer gun like a CZ 75, for less than half the price, that’s the route I’m going. Hell you can get a custom shop target upgraded CZ and it’s still only half the cost of the P210.

  31. As a piece of jewelry, I get it. But a single-action, 8 round single stack 9mm that weighs over two pounds and costs over two grand? Not a great choice for a carry or IDPA gun. You could buy a Smith M&P and a ton of ammo and extra mags for the same money.

    • Will, an M&P isn’t really in the same class as this gun. I could understand you bringing up CZ, Browning HP, or even a 1911 clone, but an M&P is a poly-gun. This isn’t a game show called “What Can I Get For The Same Money!” Besides if you want a solid cheap poly gun why buy a gun that the jury is still out on. The M&P line has had several recalls and was dumped by more than a few law enforcement agencies due to problems. I know some of them have been addressed, but the number of people lately suggesting nothing but M&P’s in reply to any article about any handgun has made me suspicious. If you really are just a fan of the M&P that’s fine, but really an all steel classic weapon with a great history like the P210 is on a different playing field all together. It’s the 1911 of Northern Europe, with a service history running back to 1949.

    • Yea and you can get a cardboard box and live under the freeway, but why not enjoy your life while you’re living it and go ahead and purchase one along with a S&W Model 41 like Linda and then maybe even move into a real house….but whatever floats your boat.


  32. Most accurate semi automatic I have ever fired. CZ is good but no where near this gun. This gun is worth more than the price. There is nothing you need to do to this gun to make it better. I have fixed sights and shoot a six inch splatter target at 50 yds. Now I did two tours in Nam and my eyes suck..but this gun a 6 o’clock hold is right there. Oh yeah this is off hand, but even using a sandbag I can only do a little better…Using Blazer 115gr fmj 9mm rounds. I now know why they call this gun The Legend.

  33. I’ve owned a p-210-6 for about 25years. Its the most accurate center fire pistol I own! I used to be a hobbyist dealer and so I have some fine things. . Colt custom combat carry/target, Browning Medalist, 17L
    fine Walthers, beautiful HK,. Anyone needing to own a p210 for defense is making a mistake! Maybe long range offense if your AR is jammed or empty! The most beautiful trigger as a famous old gun writer once said “Like the proverbial glass rod breaking”.

  34. To me this is the ultimate ” one day when I’m grown up” handgun. It’s absolutely beautiful, super accurate and ludicrously expensive. It’s not practical at all as a carry gun and few of us will ever get one, but let’s face it, we all want one!

    • The range I shoot at is run by the county and they don’t let pistols shoot at 100yds….3 days ago I went to the range, it was hot and only the range officers were there. The SRO said Frank if you still want to try your Sig at 100 yds today is the day. We set up a large target reversed it so it was blank and I put a 9 inch stickum black show your hits target in the center. The range officer said he would spot with his binoculars. I fired my first mag of 8 rounds and hit the black 3 times. offhand….I let the Range Officer shoot a mag as he was dumbfounded at where I was hitting…I told him to hold low on the center of the target and the bullet will carry…I was shooting Federal cheap paper punchers 115 gn FMJ…..he hit black twice….I fired four mag 32 rounds and put 12 in the black and I could not see the red bullseye which I hit 3 times…..I have shot a lot of pistols but none like this out of the box…..I carry a Springfield Armory XDs .45…..5 in the mag 1 in the pipe. Nice carry just pull it and fire, it has safeties but they disengaged when in process of firing. 3.3 inch barrel.

  35. Had my 210 – 6 out last night! Some guns are owned for their practicality and others are owned for their uniqueness or accuracy. Target pistols are never meant to be self defense or carry weapons. My 210 is one of my target pistols and is also my unique beauty. I can spend pleasureable hours handling it.
    I put the black platic grips back on recently. They actually look more attractive and fitting than my nice wooden ones!

    • Guys,

      I have a legend that I shoot regularly, and a 210-6 that has never been shot. I love them both. Some day I might actually shoot the 210-6.

      • Hi Linda,
        Mike here, are you free Saturday night? Great, I’ll pick you up at 6:00 p.m. sharp.
        Until then enjoy the rest of your week.

        p.s. Please do not forget to bring the 210-6 that has never been shot.

  36. I have the original Sig 210-6 and besides the fact that it is deadly accurate, the feel of the gun is sheer joy, you feel you are holding sheer confidence even if it is a single stack. These are things of the past when quality mattered not a conveyor line machine. I can say with confidence that they were the best are the best will stay to be the best pistols ever made and built. Lucky are those who have these and people are no fools who are still paying 3500 Dollars for the originals when you can buy others for a pittance. The best judge are the people and I can say with confidence that these have become family heirlooms to be passed on to the next generation, something that children will look forward to getting from their parents.

    • You got that right! My son is waiting for my 210-6!
      It’s gonna b awhile, haha my folks made it to their 90’s.
      A buddy of mine is a famous ww2 fighter ace and in his 90’s. We were going thru some of my guns and his the other week. It was sad that he lacked the strength to chamber a round and that he could barely lift the govt models to his face. I’m starting to think of what would be best, aside from a personal guard at that age.

  37. Of all the talk of value for the money and what to buy my 2 cents are as follows. I’ve owned a p210 target legend for 5 years. Brand new it shot like a dream. I have put 20 thousand rounds thru it. It shoots as well today as it did new. Do that with any Glock or S&W or any other gun you like. What time is it? Time to rebuild or replace it because its worn out.

  38. Hi Jim Barrett,

    Wondering if you had a chance to review or even shoot the new P210 that is manufactured here in the USA ?
    Just purchased one off Gunbroker and won’t have in possession until mid May as I live in Ca. but I am a Minnesota resident. I decided to also buy a S&W Model 41 along with the Model 627 V-Comp. Man my finger is getting itchy. Guess I’ll just have to go down to the range and pop off a few with the ones I have. Seventeen days and counting, ….Sigh….

    Thanks for the great writing,
    Mike Stilinovich

  39. Had the opportunity to shoot a P210 target a friend had found online and loved it. I now have one on order, supposed to be in (hopefully) by the end of Nov. I’ve always been a big fan of Sigs and they are the majority of what I own for pistols. Bought a Legion in 40 S&W last year and it took a while to get it in, but was worth the wait. We have a 50 yard range set up with steel chickens at 50 yds. and steel plates at 10 yds. I shoot the chickens with both my Legion and my HI-Power also a Smith Mod. 57. I’m really looking forward to getting the P210 out there. Also have two Pythons, both in mint condition though one is flawless, almost factory new came in a felt lined presentation box. I’ve only shot it enough to adjust the sights and the other only gets shot occasionally. I hope the weather holds so that I can get the P-210 out, we have an indoor range but I prefer to shoot on the outdoor ranges

  40. I had a P210-6 that I bought for a song in 2000. Put only 235 rounds through it before I traded it and another pistol for a SIG-Hammerli P240 in .32 Wadcutter. The 210 kept biting my hand; I didn’t want to shoot it. The 240 was superbly accurate and a joy to shoot, but just try to find .32 wadcutter ammo.
    At any rate, I saw a P210 Legion at a gun show in 2012 and fell in love. It wouldn’t bite my hand with its generous beavertail, and it did away with the hideous European mag release. The dealer was anxious to move it since he needed the money, so I walked out the door with it and two extra mags for a cool $2K. I have never looked back! Wonderful pistols come along so seldom, and I’m a single-action semi-auto guy who craves accuracy. The Legion is the star of my 1911/High Power/Colt 1903 and 1908 single action collection that gets shot to the tune of 20,000+ rounds per year. Life is good!

  41. I bought one 11/06/2019 and the POS broke a guide rod on my very first range session ! A telephone call to Sig Sauer revealed that this was not the first complaint about broken guide rods ! It is now two weeks later and I cannot get Sig Sauer to send the new guide rod. After many e-mails and many telephone calls to Sig Sauer all I get is a bunch of lies and promises of mailing me a new guide rod !
    I have just checked the “Sig Sauer Forum” on my computer and it is flooded with complaints regarding broken guide rods and everyone is of the same opinion as me——Sig Sauer has put a load of bad , defective guns on the market and has no way to cover all the complaints about the SIG SAUER P210 newest debacle !

  42. I bought the Wife a new American made Sig P210 Standard in early 2021, and it is by far her favorite centerfire pistol. Her favorite rimfire is her Volquartsen Black Mamba, so she has refined tastes. At first, I thought the three dot sights would be a liability for target shooting, but wherever you put the center dot, that’s exactly where the hole appears on the target. The P210 routinely shoots 1 inch groups at 25 yards, or about the same as the Mamba. The range we shoot at has a rental P210 Target, and we shot them side by side and we all think the grips on the Standard were a better fit for smaller hands than the grips on the P210 Target. The P210 now has a little more than 1200 rounds through it with no malfunctions. I am seriously thinking about buying myself a P210 Target, and then ordering up a set of the standard grips. Hopefully Sig will make a long-slide 6 inch version of the P210.


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