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NRA attendees woke up bright and early this morning to the news that Smith & Wesson has expanded their popular Shield line adding two new models chambered in .45 ACP. You can get one in any color you want — as long as it’s black — and either with our without a frame safety . . .

The gun feels very slim in the hand.


The new Shield45 ships with both a flush fit 6-round magazine (top) or 7-rounded extended version.


The barrel is a mere .2″ longer than the 9mm version and the’ve added a small section of serrations to the nose.


Smith’s also made the grip texturing noticeably more aggressive than on the 9mm versions.


Most impressive: the trigger. From racking and riding it on the show floor, the trigger felt pleasingly smooth with a wonderfully short reset. Can’t wait to send some actually rounds through one. Here’s their press release:

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (May 20, 2016) — Smith & Wesson Corp. announced today that it is now offering its popular M&P Shield™ pistol in .45 AUTO.  Smith & Wesson’s M&P45 Shield is a slim, concealable, lightweight, striker-fired polymer pistol.  From its one-inch profile to its optimized 18-degree grip angle, the M&P45 Shield offers professional-grade features that provide consumers and professionals with reliable performance and simple operation in a concealed carry. 45 AUTO firearm.  Whether deployed as a backup sidearm for law enforcement personnel, a deep concealment pistol for plain-clothes officers or a personal protection firearm for consumers, the M&P45 Shield can be carried comfortably and confidently, all day.

Jan Mladek, General Manager of the M&P Brand, said, “Our new M&P45 Shield takes personal protection to the next level by offering all the M&P features our customers have come to trust, combined with .45 caliber power. Well over 1Million consumers and professionals have chosen to “Shield themselves” with the slim, concealable and powerful M&P Shield pistol. The new M&P Shield in .45 AUTO provides that extra level of confidence.”

Available for the first time in .45 AUTO, the M&P45 Shield features a slim design combined with the proven and trusted features found in the M&P Pistol Series.  At 6.45 inches long, the M&P45 Shield is standard with a 3.3 inch stainless-steel barrel. On the left side of the frame, the pistol is fitted with familiar operational controls including a simple takedown lever, flat profile slide stop, and magazine release. For optimal firearm control, the M&P45 Shield is standard with an 18-degree grip angle, aggressive grip texture and front cocking serrations. The pistol is available with or without a thumb safety, and an extended trigger guard allows for operation with or without gloves.  The striker –fired M&P Shield is highly regarded for its crisp trigger and quick and audible reset.

M&P45 Shield Highlighted Features:

  • Lightweight, unloaded weight of less than 20.5 ounces
  • Slim, .99-inch frame width
  • Compact and concealable with 6.45-inch overall length
  • Aggressive grip texture
  • Front cocking serrations
  • Armornite® durable corrosion resistant finish
  • Includes 2 magazines, 6 and 7 round capacity

The M&P45 Shield model has an MSRP of $479 and is sold with a limited warranty and a lifetime service policy.

To see the M&P45 Shield in action, please visit


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  1. Maybe this is an early release model, but aside from the scratches, those front serrations look more to me like a machining mistake than anything else.

    • Did you mean xds instead of xdm? And does the xds have a better trigger than the Shield .45? Don’t leave us hanging.

      • I think he does mean the XD/m. Note the word compact.

        Until STB410 does ammo tests on 45 ACP from short barreled 45s I would shy away from the chambering in sub 4″ barrels. 3.8″ is probably close enough but there is the long slide XD/s for those who want a thinner single stack 45 for concealed carry.

        • You’re right I do mean XDM compact. I usually carry it OWB with a shirt or jacket over it.

    • I have not shot the other shields but I just purchased the shield .45. The trigger is really nice. While in the gun shop I was trying to decide between the shield .45 and the xds .45. I was allowed to dry fire both guns. The shield .45 had a better trigger in my opinion.

  2. I would be interested in holding one. Assuming it feels more like the Shield9 than the XDS does in my hand I might be interested in picking one up.

  3. Hmmmmm. I might be interested.

    I keep waiting for the SR 45c from Ruger.

    They haven’t responded ….. yet.

    • I have the SR40C. Awesome carry pistol. I would think you could get 7-8 rounds in a SR45C with a flush mag. The SR series is a little slimmer/small than Glocks, so they lose 1-2 rounds vs the Glock equivalent.

  4. Why the goofy trigger still? Haven’t people figured out that it isn’t a safety and isn’t necessary? That was just a Glock gimmick.

  5. I’m curious to see how it stacks up against the M&P 45c. I found that the differences between the Shield 9 and the 9c were so negligible that it wasn’t worth giving up the double stack and ambi mag release. And those serrations on the front? That looks like a screw up… can’t imagine what use they’d serve a shooter. I’ve never had to grab my pistol near the muzzle, especially not in that area.

    • According to S&W’s web site, frame width for the 9 mm Shield is 0.95 inch. For the regular M&P 9, which I would expect to be the same width as the 9c, it is 1.2 inch. That 1/4 inch is significant when carrying concealed, especially inside the waist band. Having handled both models, I can state that the Shield grip feels narrow in my hand whereas the 9 and 9/c fill my hand a little more.

      • I’ve carried all three: full frame, 9c, and the Shield. Given that I’m a lefty, the Shield’s lack of ambi mag release really soured me on carrying it, especially after the 3rd or 4th accidental mag drop landing on the floor. You’re right, the Shield is definitely thinner. But between subjective feels and objective dimensions, I really couldn’t tell the difference in the waistband between the Shield and the 9c. Having quality holsters probably helped in that regard. The full frame’s weight won’t be missed, and the Shield feels very thin in the hand. The 9c was, in my mind, a rather reasonable comprimise between the full frame and the Shield in terms of weight, size, and carry capacity. I wish I’d had the foresight to take pictures or video of the 9c and the Shield side by side to help put those dimensions into perspective, but without a doubt I’m sure there’s something exactly like that on YouTube somewhere.

  6. The slide looks a bit taller than the 9/40. Or it’s a visual illusion provided by your small Trump hands. jk????

  7. that’s decent magazine capacity for that size gun in .45. I like the grip texturing as well.

    Looks good, I carry a Shield 9 as my EDC and I love it.

  8. Looks like the front machining everyone dislikes has some grease in it, too. That is making it look worse.

    • Who knows what was in the Ruger booth. So many people I gave up on entering and looking around. Could’t bend over to pickup a cat much less swing it.

    • I’m not sure we will be seeing any new SR variants, now that the Ruger American Pistol is out. Maybe a RAP .45 compact is in the works?

  9. .45 acp out of very short barrels generally offers poor performance. And I am a .45 fanboy. For short barreled CC I carry 9mm.

  10. I like it. It is amazing to me more companies don’t make small 45’s(like Kahr and Springfield).

  11. Sorry guys but no piece of plastic will ever replace my 1911s. A good gun belt is all one needs to make up for the weight differences. Other then weight I cant see a reason to change systems. Same compact size, same number of rounds. Triggers?? Weight is the only big difference and that doesn’t matter much to me.

  12. I have the .45c and have shot the XDS.

    No way to get around it, shooting a small .45 is a handful, regardless of the manufacturer. but it would appear that Smith & Wesson has once again determined yet another way to hoover more $$$ out of my wallet.

  13. From the pictures, it doesn’t appear to have the changeable grips, like the other S&W’s have. So you’re stuck with ”one size fits all” kind of gun!! And max capacity is only 7 rounds. Why even bother with the 6 round magazine? S&W should just give you 2, 7 rounders. And 7 rounds, in this day and age is so antiquated!! You would think with their technology, they could’ve come out with a .45 that is than small in a double stack, with at least 10 rounds. Not that would’ve been worthy of notice, and a review!!

  14. My thumb safety is already broken. I can engage it just by holding the pistol upside down. Come on Smith. I haven’t bought a new product since you introduced the Hillary Hole and now I buy one of your new pistols and its out of service in less than 24 hours.

  15. I like the shield 45 I pichased 3 of them! Ome for the car ome dor rhe house and one that I cary. The my problems with the guns have been one the recoil sprimg blew apart and the other the trigger locks every now and the by the way this one has no saftey?…Smith CS was great about sending the label to fix the recoil spring problem .
    Got it nck in few weeks good as new. Now I havent sent the locking trigger one back yet but will. New gun with out burn in problems. The third one sits in the house I havent fired it yet have to see what suprises that one will have. Alll in all they are right for todays self defense world like all new first year models they do have a few bugs
    That Smithi Wessson is always great about taking care of.


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