I reviewed the SIG SAUER P229 9mm not long ago in this column. In case you missed that review, I was duly impressed! Military units like the Navy SEALS use the P228/229. Numerous law enforcement agencies prefer the SIG line. Probably the largest user in Ohio is the State Highway Patrol, which issues a DAO version of the P220 in .40 caliber. There is no arguing the excellence of the SIG line.
What has been missing from the SIG lineup has been a striker-fired model. Striker-fired pistols have enjoyed great popularity due to the nature of their trigger operation. The trigger pull of striker-fired guns tends to be much shorter and lighter in terms of travel and weight than double-action hammer-fired pistols. This is because most striker-fired pistols are partially pre-cocked when the slide is cycled, meaning the trigger has to do less work. Less work for the trigger finger usually results in an improvement in shooter accuracy. SIG may have waited awhile before coming out with its own take on the type, but their take is loaded with extra features that have made it worth the wait.
I recently tested the 9mm SIG 320 Carry, the middle size of three frame choices of this modular pistol system. The other sizes are full and subcompact. The Carry size is a great compromise and works well for home defense or concealed carry, but you don’t need to settle for only one size. The P320 is rightly touted by SIG as the most adaptable pistol ever, capable of being tailored to the needs of the individual without compromise. The P320 can be changed into whichever frame size the user wishes as well as any of three calibers—9mm, .40, and the excellent .357 SIG round. There is no changing of the backstrap available or needed—it’s the polymer grip module that is changed out. The actual frame of the Sig Sauer P320 is stainless steel and rests inside the grip module. It is where the serial number is located.
Another option I have never seen before involves the trigger. You can choose between a smooth trigger face or a tabbed trigger safety, similar to the Glock. My test pistol featured the smooth trigger face, which is much more comfortable to shoot in extended sessions than the safety trigger of a Glock. Magazine capacity is 15 rounds, and the magazine is blued steel with a polymer floorplate.
The Sig Sauer P320 has an ambidextrous slide release, and the magazine release button can be switched for left-handed operators. My test pistol featured three dot SIGLITE night sights. The slide is also stainless steel and is Nitron-coated for total rust resistance. There are front and rear cocking serrations.
I tested the P320 at the new indoor range at Vance Outdoors in Obetz, Ohio. The pistol was one of the Vance rental guns. As is expected with any pistol from SIG, the P320 ran flawlessly. The Carry size grip frame fit my hand perfectly. The trigger is easily managed with a short stroke and a relatively crisp release. I was rewarded with a fist sized group of shots at 30 feet fired two-hand standing. Recoil was light and easily managed. While I only had a small quantity of ball ammo available at the indoor test range, there is no doubt the Sig Sauer P320 will handle any modern JHP ammo just as well.
I liked the Sig Sauer P320. It would be interesting to put through its paces as a full-size duty pistol, and convert it to the Carry or Subcompact size. This would be cheaper than purchasing complete pistols for multiple uses. The price for the Sig Sauer P320 9mm Carry at Vance Outdoors is $616. For more information visit www.sigsauer.com.