Gun Makers to Deliver Proposed Army Handguns in January: Report


The next milestone for the U.S. Army’s program to develop a new standard-issue pistol for soldiers is just a few months away, according to a news report.

Gun-makers plan to submit their proposed pistols to the service in January as part of the Modular Handgun System, according to an article by

Here’s what the article said about the timeline:

“Under federal rules, the Army is not naming the manufacturers who have expressed interest in offering a gun. Companies will deliver their proposed guns to Army officials in January. The Army will then select up to three finalists and put the weapons through more testing, including evaluations from soldiers. The first soldiers would receive it for official use in 2019.”

Companies such as Beretta, which makes the current M9 model, and Smith & Wesson Holding Corp., which has partnered with General Dynamics Corp., among others, plan to compete for the contract.

As my colleague Matthew Cox has reported, the Army rejected Beretta’s proposal to adopt an upgraded version of the Beretta called the M9A3 (shown above), which featured new sights, a rail for mounting lights and accessories, better ergonomics and improved reliability. Instead, the service opted to search for a new firearm.

Troops are apparently eager for a new design. Here’s what the article said about soldiers’ satisfaction with their firearms:

“A 2006 survey found that 58 percent of soldiers who returned from combat reported being satisfied with the M9 pistol, a low score compared with the 75 percent satisfaction rating for the M16 rifle and 89 percent for the M4 carbine. Roughly a quarter of soldiers said they wanted a weapon that used a bigger bullet that could more easily stop an enemy.”

About the Author

Brendan McGarry
Brendan McGarry is the managing editor of He can be reached at Follow him on Twitter at @Brendan_McGarry.
  • Lance

    One survey makes you think no one likes the M-9 strange talked to solders who don’t mind it. In the end it depends on what caliber they want if we stay with 9mm then it makes no sense to leave the M-9 design.

    Again this is all hype like ICC made years ago. No approval of a design is made in stone till its actually issues to troops. Don’t buy into hype like this crap.

    • NIcholas

      it deos make sense. The M9 is flawed. I have built thousands of them. I have never seen a pistol come direct from the factory, brand new, unfired, and have such a high percentage of major malfunctions. I have seen countless cracked rails, bolts, retaining pins snapped on our initial test fire that results in the slide projecting backward into the chest of the shooter…..the M9 is not our best option.

      you said, “if we stay with 9mm then it makes no sense to leave the M9 design..” this is absolutely untrue. What about sig P226? what about HK’s? what about glock? I’ve built thousands of those as well and have NEVER seen parts come from the factory of these companies broken or out of spec…..not once.

      • Joshua

        You do realize the slide hasn’t been able to dislodge from the frame in years? They fixed that right after the Navy pointed it out back in the early 90’s.

    • Larry

      I carried a Colt .45 , the only draw back was a 7 round mag, now there are 10 round mags, we ought to go back to the .45 in 10 round. The knock down power far supersedes a 9mm or 40 caliber. Also we need to dump the M16 and it’s variants, it is a piece of crap, it is too super sensitive to weather and ground conditions, and the 5.56 is too weak, we need at least the knock down power of the 7.62×39. We can adapt the upper in 7.62×39 to our AR/M16 platform. Sorry to you AR owners.

      • 45k20e4

        Ballistic testing has proven faulty, pretty much everything you stated.

  • Grantorino

    I have an idea handguns are a very personal weapon more so than rifles. Save the taxpayers money, don’t borrow more from China and help the U.S. economy and protect service men and women from jihadis. Give tax credits to service personnel who buy American made handguns and accessories and allow them to carry them every where concealed or openly. Freedom first, safety second!!

    • Thomas Jones

      The problem with POWs (personally owned weapons) is that what happens when it breaks? The Army Armorers won’t fix a POW nor would they carry replacement parts for it. That’s why they want a standardized sidearm. :D

    • usisfubar

      Who is and how is anyone going to supply all the different types of ammo and all the different parts for all the different types and calibers of handguns that would be carried. I am into .45 with 200 grain bullets at 1000 fps or just over.

    • CCC

      Safety First and Foremost. Whats the use of freedom if no one is safe….

    • Paul

      Who is going to supply all the various rounds for these private weapons?
      Would there also be a inspection process to make sure the rounds are legal?

  • Alfred Co

    I had tried several gun and size of bullets. The main reason that we have to stay with 9mm is to be with the same bullets as our NATO counter part. When we are in WAR, we have to have a interchangeable bullet with all our friends. 9mm was adopted as 85 % of the stopping power of a 45 bullet which was design base in the Philippines in WW 1 in the south of the Philippines to stop those rebels.when they go biz-ark.

    • TeXan

      individuals can use the APO to deliver their individual ammo in the field

      • KMan

        Not anymore.

    • usisfubar

      The .45 was adopted to fight the Moro’s in the Philippines after the Spanish American war and before WW1 because the .38 didn’t have the stopping power needed. The .38 and 9 mm are the same size and about the same power. A hot loaded 9 mm is about the same as the .38 special but less than the .357 mag. All 9 mms and .38s are .356 to .357 which includes the .357.

      • Mike in Fort Worth

        Just for clarification purposes; our troops weren’t using the .38 Special against the Moros, they were using the .38 Colt. The .38 Colt is very anemic compared to the Special or to the 9mm. Also, I agree with Big Daddy (below comment), there is no such thing as stopping power in a handgun round. Handgun rounds,regardless of caliber, put holes in people and nothing else. This is especially true when your talking about FMJ ammo. If a soldier is using a handgun in combat then things have gone well and truly wrong and that soldier needs a lot of ammunition in his weapon to put plenty of holes in his opponent.

        • defensor fortismo

          It’s also worth noting that the issued rifles of the day, krav Jorgensens, were also ineffective. All this proves is that metaphorical cocaine is one hell of a drug.

      • Stefan S.

        Another myth becoming reality. The .45 Cal was adopted because the then elite troops the Cavalry need a round to stop a charging horse. Not a wacked out jungle tribesman!

    • big daddy

      There is no such thing as stopping power. I suggest you read up on modern ballistics, especially from the FBI.

      • Stefan S.

        There is stopping power. Turning ones foe’s head into a canoe is stopping power.

    • brsinai

      Yeah? When was the last time the US was in such dire straits that we had to run to our NATO counterparts to get 9mm for our pistols???
      Please, there is no real reason to align ourselves with NATO for 9mm ammo, especially if is comprimises capability.



    • Snow

      They were worn out, It was an outdated and heavy design, that was expensive to produce. It was especially heavy in 9mm, and didn’t hold many rounds. It had too many moving parts that wore out easily compared to more modern pistols. 45 acp is a difficult round to teach people to shoot and hit anything with, requires a lot of range time and expensive heavy ammo. 9mm has plenty of stopping power with good hollow point ammo.

      • usisfubar

        The felt recoil of a fast burning 9 mm and slow burning .45 cartridge is the same. Most good guns in .45 will out shoot most 9 mm’s. My .45’s with 200 grain hollow points at just over 1000 fps, feel the same as my friends hot 9 mm’s in hollow point but are far superior in accuracy and knockdown power. For those that don’t know, you need 1000 fps or more to make a hollow point work right. One more thing you might like to know is that hollow points are illegal to use in war per all our treaties and rules of combat.

        • seans

          Hollowpoints are not illegal cause the US didn’t sign any of those treaties. And you might want to talk to the FBI about knockdown power and how that isn’t a thing. Or how the 9mm is equal to if not better all around cartridge to the .45

          • Christina Gaffney

            Razer Bullet puts the hollow point to shame, and has stopping power.

        • Snow

          Wrong on all counts

        • 45k20e4

          Most 45 rounds are in the sub 1000 fps range. A 200gr 45 over 1000 fps is going to have a lot more kick than a 9mm. If you think they feel the same, you either have some SCREAMIN 9mm, or that 9mm is MUCH heavier than your 45.

      • Larry S

        Military can not use hollow point ammo. I carried a .45 for 25 months in Vietnam and it never let me down I will take it over a 9 MM any day of the week period, it is combat proven over many years…..

        • seans

          The US military is not prohibited from using hollowpoints. We are not signatories of the Hague Conventions.

        • Gene

          The 9mm, too, is combat proven over many years. It has been used by multiple armies and police forces throughout the world. Just a short list of the military weapons that have use it include MP40, MP18, MP5, Sten, Sterling, MP38, Lanchester, Uzi, an so on… Not to mention the uncountable sidearmes in that caliber.

      • Smith

        “Good hollow point ammo”, which just happens to be against the articles of war which the U.S signed. Can’t use them on foreign enemy–however, the Homeland Security thugs can use them on you here in the USSA.

        • Mike in Fort Worth

          The Hague Convention “outlawed” expanding ammunition but the USA never signed it. We abide by the Convention by choice but we are not bound by it.

      • Zach

        But under the Geneva convention “Dum Dum rounds” (Hollowpoints) are banned. So hollowpoints are out of the question.

      • David

        Can’t use hollowpoints in combat. Only FMJ. Geneva convention.

    • EVILE


    • Old MP

      Study the ballistics before you go talking knock down power

  • Snow

    The Glock 17 Gen4 fits the Army’s requirements to a T. Also, the G19 or G26, for those that need a smaller concealment weapon, like CID. Glock will even put a thumb safety on, if anyone is so silly as to request such an unnecessary thing.

    • Nicholas

      the only issue with Glock is the safety issues. without an external safety feature the DoD wasn’t pressed to go for it.

      • Snow

        The have dropped glocks off of buildings onto concrete and they didn’t go off, put them in cement mixers and they didn’t go off. Dragged them behind trucks and they didn’t go off. The Glock has three separate safeties. The only way it will fire is if you pull the trigger. Keep your finger off the trigger and it is safe. How hard is that to do?

        • Mike in Fort Worth

          I agree with you on the Glocks. I carry one daily and it’s a very safe weapon. However, the military likes external safeties because they have troops carrying handguns that receive minimal training with said weapons. Since DOD probably isn’t going to give the average soldier much in the way of handgun training it makes sense to require external safeties.

          • BuylocalBill

            It’s a sad situation when soldiers are sent off to war with insufficient training in their basic weapons. Sounds like something one would expect from some third world nation, not the US.

  • mack

    Hell, just reissue the 1911 Colt

  • Marine

    The Marine Corps got a limited run of Kimber 45’s. We can mass produce the ammo and even train with stuff we have made since the 1920’s, with ball ammo (required by Geneva convention) it provides sufficient terminal ballistics, and it is not hard to manage compared to a glock or beretta. In fact most of us find it easier to shott accurately. 7-12 round capacity is much less than the 14-21 of 9mm but hell- “get thaere the fustust with the moistest”. I preffered the 45 over the 9mm. In fact we had single shot torso “stops” with the 45, and one of my machine gunners shot a man 7 times in the body with his 9mm before he fell off the side of the gun truck.

    • seans

      The Geneva convention does not prohibit hollow points. Curious where were you that you had two different caliber pistols being used in combat

      • Del Varner

        Additionally, I don’t believe that the US ever signed this, and can use hollow point ammo if it so desires.

    • Larry S

      Carried a .45 in Vietnam and continue to do so today and it has never let me down…..

  • Hans

    Oh, that old 1911 thing. Its a myth. I shot those in the Army years ago. Hated them. The Army version was highly inaccurate (worn out likely) and only held like 7 rounds. The design is very old and we have learned a lot in the last 100 years. Give me a good modern 9mm with a high capacity magazine. Anything larger is more difficult to hit the target with after the first shot. Look at what Israeli’s did with those 9mm Uzis back in the Six Days War. Or, a MP-5 or many other sub guns use 9mm, NOT .45. The 9mm is very capable. The .45 does NOT knock someone down with one shot as the urban legends say.

    • Snow

      The 1911 fan boy cult is in full cry.

    • evile

      REALLY! let me shoot you with a 45 ACP at a hundred yards and we’ll see if you still think its a myth. the 45’s nowadays may look the same as the one in olds but with new materials and a few changes it still kicks like ass!!

      • Bob Jackson

        Pointless hyperbole.

        • 1C3X

          Do you even think he knows what a hyperbole is? Lol

    • Scott

      The Uzi and MP5’s were shooting 9mm CARBINE ammo, much more powerful than 9mm handgun ammo.

      • Gene

        Wrong. I used and was issued an MP5K-PDW while deployed, and we were issued standard NATO 9mm ball. And, wtf is “9mm CARBINE ammo”? FYI, the Uzi and MP5 are SMGs.

  • Bud

    No mention of the 40 S&W/10mm. They are the in between of the 9mm and the 45acp. Also, we should revert to the WWII side arms, 38s (For the women, and those with small hands) and the 45acp. Or, the 9mm and the 40 S&W/10mm.

    GO FOR IT!!

    • Mike in Fort Worth

      The 10mm when loaded to full power generates too much recoil for the average shooter. The FBI tried it and ended up downloading it to the the point that S&W created the .40 S&W.

      The .40 is a solution in search of a problem. There is nothing the .40 does that can’t be accomplished with a 9mm (or a .45).

    • evile

      40S have a tendency to destroy the barrel or the slide because of the round that goes into the chamber hotload or factory. i’ve seen videos of 40’s creating havoc in the gun range.

      • 45k20e4

        Drastic misinformation.

        Properly engineered firearms have no issues.

  • Don M

    1911 45 acp went through two world wars korea vietnam and a host of other conflicts Experience is the Best Teacher of Realibility and Performance There is No Way a 9mm can out do a 45 That is just a Fact Enough Said ! I know I’ve Shot and own both and have used both in compatition

    • Snow

      Glocks are rugged and reliable, they have been used in conflicts and wars all over the world for the past 30 years and are battle proven. They are standard issue by the military of several nations, and in use by more police departments in the U.S. than any other pistol.

    • VTGunner

      We also had M-16A1’s, flak vests, steel pots and 20 round magazines. They all worked then so we should never issue something better since it worked 40 years ago!

  • Larry S

    Have owned and carried at one time or another over passed 50 plus years all of them, don’t own a 9MM have in the passed as well
    as 40 S&W. I like 10 MM very much but my main carry is my Glock in .45 ACP……

  • Airborne_fister

    In a dramatic shift for the US military, the army is considering the use of bullets that can expand and break up when striking a target to make new pistols more lethal, raising concern that doing so would violate international law

    According to the Army Times, the Pentagon recently reviewed the use of “special purpose ammunition” and determined the army could look into enabling its next-generation XM-17 pistol to use various kinds, including hollow point bullets. Currently, only ball ammunition is used in the army.

    The difference is that while ball ammunition penetrates deeper into an enemy when they are struck, hollow point can break up once they hit an individual, destroying a larger area of tissue and generally producing more damage. As a result, they are more lethal.

    The other difference is that, unlike ball ammunition, expanding bullets were banned under the 1899 Hague Convention. The bullets are not used by NATO members, either.

    Richard Jackson, the special assistant to the US Army Judge Advocate General for Law of War, acknowledged to the Army Times that the Pentagon’s new posture marks “a significant re-interpretation of the legal standard.” However, he insisted that any potential use of such ammunition by the US would not be a violation of international law.

    “There’s a myth that (expanding/fragmenting bullets) are prohibited in international armed conflict, but that doesn’t make any sense now,” he told the news outlet.

    Jackson went on to say that while the 1899 Hague Convention prohibited the use of expanding bullets internationally, the ban doesn’t actually apply to the US because the US never signed it. He also noted local law enforcement agencies around the world are allowed to use them.

    “Very few states have signed [the Hague Convention] and the United States is not one of them,” he said to the Washington Post. “Law enforcement agencies use hollow points all over the world, so if it doesn’t violate the human rights standards that applies these days, why are we applying those standards on the battlefield?”

    Even Article 23 of the 1907 Hague Convention, which bans “arms, projectiles or material calculated to cause unnecessary suffering,” does not apply, Jackson said, because using hollow points on the battlefield in certain situations would be more humane than continuing to use current standards.

    “There are actually humanitarian benefits from the use of this type of ammunition,” he told the Post. “By staying in the target there isn’t as many collateral effects….it will not go through the target into a bystander nearby or someone in the next room.”

    The Army itself echoed this sentiment in a statement, saying, “The use of this ammunition supports the international law principles of preventing excessive collateral effects and safeguarding civilian lives.”

    The Army’s argument is, essentially, that since modern warfare often takes place in urban environments, hollow point bullets would minimize collateral damage. Ball ammunition, because it can penetrate tissue more deeply, can as a result blow through a target and potentially hit others nearby. Ball ammunition can ricochet and hit other people as well. Potentially, these sorts of risks would be reduced with hollow point bullets.

    • Daveg

      Many of our Allies carry hollow points, was in Afghanistan and ALL of the British guys had 9mm HP in their weapons…

    • BuylocalBill

      I remember being told during basic training many years ago that ball ammunition was intended to cause sufficient damage to the human body that if the person survived the initial moat, they would be significantly incapacitated and would require immediate evacuation for medical treatment. This would tie up other soldiers are stretcher bearers in transporting the wounded man. Of course, this presupposed the absence of air or ground transport.

      The circumstances of bbattle are continously changing and require that military leadership remain alert and adaptable to deal with that change. Any decision on a change to handgun caliber needs to take into consideration any evidence of failure of the current caliber and an assessment of the suitability o the current caliber to battle circumstances during the service life of any new platform. Are we likely to be fighting in any place where the current caliber would be unsuitable?

    • Bruno1941

      The same argument can be made about gas munitions…and that’s why they are not used.
      Do we want our soldiers to be shot at with HP?
      What is sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander…

  • Phillip Martin

    The U.S. military should have a standard model pistol but it doesn’t have to be a 9mm. A soldier should be able to use his own pistol if the military doesn’t issue one. Not everybody is issued a pistol. As far as repair and supply for individually owned pistols that would be the owner’s problem and a small one at that. Breakage occurs but is rare. It has never happened to me in over 50 years. Choosing a cartridge for the military pistol is not as important as weight, capacity and the ability to service the pistol.

  • big daddy

    I’m still amazed that people are holding onto the incorrect information put out there in the past. First thing we did not sign anything that stops us from using hollow points we do it for many reasons, one is they did not penetrate well. New barrier blind ammo does and they are used by police and government agencies now. The FBI has been doing extensive research into ballistics and I suggest people read about it, just google it. It’s the Hague Convention people refer to and we did not sign it.

    As for caliber, there is no such thing as knock down power, try reading about physics. Ballistics as well as wound ballistics is what y’all need to study before commenting. The 9mm-.40S&W-.357SIG & .45ACP all create very similar wound channels, even a gunshot specialist in the ER cannot tell the difference. Most handguns do not kill easily, rifles do. New barrier blind bonded JHP ammunition is very effective and is getting better as we learn new production techniques. Right now the ATK Federal HST 124+P or Speer Gold Dot 124+P is the most effective rounds out there, also the HST SP 147 for longer barrels. For better barrier penetration the Hornady Critical Duty is another.

    9mm is by far the best compromise round, the gun is lighter, can hold more rounds and is easy to shoot effectively. Therefore even the smallest of stature soldiers can have an effective weapon. Ball ammo is useless unless it’s very high velocity which defeats the purpose of finding a lightweight gun and easy to shoot yet effective ammo.

    There is no such thing as knock down power and bigger bullets do not make bigger holes, our tissue is elastic.

    What the army has to do is spend more time training the troops to shoot.

  • Ingo Steinig

    Take the John Moses Browning patents, 1911 or High Power, and manufacture them in the USA. Both pistols are on the market in .45 acp and 9mm. The Browning’s are the best pistol designs available. I prefer the .45 acp in the High Power. The high Power has the better angle of the grip to frame. Even the Beretta Army Pistol is build on Browning’s Patent. Build the Browning Pistol in the USA with adjustable grip elements, for people with different hand sizes can adjust the pistol to their hand to get a safe shooting grip.
    p.s,: John Moses Browning was an American gun designer.

    • Snow

      You mean you don’t know that numerous companies are making 1911s in the U.S.? And they are all very expensive compared to Ruger, Glock, S&W, etc. 9mm pistols also made in the U.S.

    • Frankpat77

      The Browning High Power is only chambered in 9MM and 40S&W. It is not chambered in 45ACP. I have carried both the 1911 and the High Power and I like the High Power better. Although I would be happy with either one.

  • DOG Jones

    The Sig P220 is the gun of choice. It comes in the .45ACP and at the end of the day on the range you hand does not hurt like it does with the 1911. It will last forever and I ccan not say that about a glock.

    • FormerActionGuy

      LOL a gun made by the neutered, I mean neutral Swiss. Any country that sat with their thumbs up their asses while the rest of the world fought Hitler, doesn’t get my money!

    • Jeff

      If the Military doesn’t pick the P-220, because they want to stay with the 9 mm. Then pick the P-226. Great pistol.

  • mike smith

    the 1911 45,is the best way to go,just improve the sights,i have used it in combat,and in civilian life,it has the best stopping power,

  • M. Todd

    Hello Folks ,

    It does not matter what we think the new pistol should be !

    The Army’s Generals , & Congressmen will decide .

    Our troops will have to bear that burden as always , God Bless them !

    M. Todd

    • 1c3x1

      Actually, from the vast majority of these comments, I am glad ‘we’ are not picking it.

  • GotDear

    I have to disagree, “knock down power” is just a general term for kinetic energy, so yes there is such a thing. This all ties into terminal ballistics, as does velocity, projectile size and weight. As far as wound channels I am not sure I agree.

    I would suggest a modular platform that allows a soldier to choose between 9mm and 45acp. There are plenty of 45acp systems that can hold 13 to 15 rounds. As far as weight goes I would have to give that metric to the 9mm. And lets face it shooting effectively requires practice, no matter what your shooting.

    • big daddy

      Sorry GotDear you are incorrect about that concerning knockdown power and wound channels. It’s not a matter of agreeing, I am quoting experts and scientific experiments done by the FBI and other entities known to be reliable including doctors. There’s so much information from credible sources on the internet that there is no reason to continue all this misinformation, sorry but it’s just plain ignorant. You have to understand what you are reading and that takes some in-depth research. For instance gel testing is one of the most misunderstood tests done.

      Kinetic energy mean little unless there is a huge difference like double the amount as in a handgun and rifle round. The most important thing is the terminal effect which means what the bullet does at the end of it’s travel when it hits it’s target. That is the most important factor other than range and consistent accuracy. Many 9mm rounds produce much more knock down power than any .45ACP according to your take on it. The Underwood +P+ 124 GD round @ 1300fps in your mind it should knock a guy on his butt, it won’t. It produces way more energy than any .45ACP. There are so many factors involved and that’s were terminal ballistics come in. As well as wound ballistics….that is how the bullets effects living tissue.

      A .45ACP and 9mm are so different as to make it extremely difficult and ultra expensive to produce a handgun that fires both. The 9mm type handgun can be made to fire .40S&W and .357 SIG but the .45ACP requires too many changes.

      I just was at the range this morning and a young women who is shooting 2 weeks was hitting center mass very well at 7 yards with NO flyers with a 9mm. She was taught correctly and her technique was good, she just needs to get consistent.

      Proper training and enough range time trumps any caliber and type of ammo. Hitting vitals is more important.

      I suggest you read more as I have been doing, it’s a fascinating subject and one that is being upgraded all the time.

  • DCV

    Bottom line on any weapon the military uses is you will never make everyone happy. The 9mm is fine for close quarter firing and training is paramount (2 to the chest, 1 to the head, HUA!) but a larger caliber for more stopping power would be better. This is going to be the same b.s. as all the uniform changes/updates/research we’ve wasted money on in the last decade (Army ACU already looking to be replaced, AF ABU sucks unless you work in an office, OCP/Multicam rocks but doesn’t fit all environment patterns as originally promised). Suitable items already exist with nearly zero need upgrades/updates to make Mil Spec. Some officer somewhere needed some unnecessary grand program to put on the performance report for promotion. Probably never been deployed, never will be, but makes decisions that have a dramatic affect on our members on the ground. Many folks are correct though… The round needs to be one our allies use or you just create another failed gov program.

    • brsinai

      Why does the cartridge have to be something our allies use? Since when do we count on our allies to provide critical logistical support on the battlefield like bullets for pistols?

      • jason

        actually i think the reverse is more likely, we will supply them with ammo, to support us.

  • Josie Wales

    Think of the Army’s search for a MHS broken down into its two intrinsic parts – the cartridge (bullet) and the delivery system (gun).

    Whether the US signed any treaty is moot, both NATO the US military’s “ball” ammo (i.e. FMJ, no JHPs). That being said, its been pretty well proven a number of times over the last 100 years that slower moving bullet with a greater diameter and heavier weight has/does more terminal damage (wounding) than a faster moving bullet with a smaller diameter and lighter weight.

    So from a terminal ballistics perspective, a .45 caliber bullet, cartridge will serve the military better than a .40/10mm, and a .40/10mm will serve much better than a 9mm/.355/.357/.38, and while it originated in Europe and was the “European handgun caliber” in WWI and WWII, NATO and Europe will go the way of the US, especially in this day in age (if they chickens ever get the guts to put themselves in harm’s way anyway). Perceived recoil of the 45 vs the 9mm is nominal, so don’t buy into the recoil is a factor — this is a weapon designed to use in war and may be a soldiers last chance of defense, recoil will be the last thing on their mind. Weighing all the pros and cons, a 45 or .40/10mm is the better choice.

    Regarding the gun (aka delivery system), in this day of polymers and plastics, no doubt the new MHS will have a Polymer body with a steel slide. Its lighter, easier to manufacture, and cheaper to make. The rest of the design specs are in the Army’s MHS RFP (request for proposal), so going into detail here is just speculation. I’m guessing they want the gun to be “point-and-click” so DAO like a Glocks, or some Sigs, FNs, Walthers, S&W’s, etc. that breaks at about 5 – 7 lbs. (trigger pull).

    Like someone said, if the Army requires a manual safety, one can be installed. They’ll want the gun to be super simple to field-strip, and insensitive to dirt, grime, elements, etc. And they’ll want it to have a minimum number of parts, and those parts will have to be “overly strong”, solidly reliable, inexpensive, and easy to manufacture. And they’ll want as high a mag capacity without resulting in an unwieldy wide grip and having a reasonable LOP (length of pull). The barrel will be impacted by the MHS spec’s desired maximum size, so I’m guessing between 4″ and 5″

    What’s left? Sights? Rail system? Again, I have not seen the MHS details criteria or spec, so its a guess, but basic, strong, and simple will always win over non-basic, weak, and complicated features.

    IMHO, the new Sig or FN models in .45 or 10mm would be good options, if the Army was selecting from pistols already in production.

  • Phil

    I have carried the 1911 in the Army and Air Force, the SW model 36 and Model 15 in the AF and the M-9 in the Air Force…as a civilian law enforcement officer and park ranger I carried 38s, 357s, 1911 45s, and the Glock 19, 9mm…….my comment is I did not like the M9 Berretta but qualified expert with it over and over….there is NOTHING wrong with it….the open top never jams a round, dirty or clean, it always works..and it is accurate….personally, I have very expenses and not so expensive handguns, but I carry the Glock 43 and 19 because the also work 100% of the time…the reason I cary Glocks is because they are small and light…something not that big of a deal in combat…so my comment is since hollow point ammo is now allowed why not just leave the M9 alone…it works and holds a lot of ammo….why spend a bunch of bucks just for change?????

  • LeadHead

    Note the language in the RFP: “Modular Handgun System”. I could be wrong, but I think the only sidearm with modular capabilities now is SigArms with interchangeable barrels/calibers. Nice weapon, but high priced.

  • Guest

    FNX Tactical .45 FTW! As someone who has used the beretta in combat, either give me better bullets, or a bigger caliber. I shot a DOG 6 times point blank with the beretta (ball ammo) and I didn’t think I was hitting the dog. Turns out all 6 rounds went through the dog including 2 headshots and it kept on attacking. It took 9 rounds to finally kill it. 9 rounds to kill a 30 pound dog!! So I prefer terminal ballistics to penetration. Putting 7 pinholes through a target is NOT the same as one massive traumatic cavity expansion. A single shot with a .45 ACP hollow point would’ve dropped that dog with one maybe 2 shots. The military is gambling with using 9mm ball…and it almost lost one of it’s half million dollar Military Working Dogs in the process.

  • LIAM

    Well one thing is for sure…there are gonna be a LOTTA M-9’s on the market soon…and cheap also!!

    • J8HN

      You must be dreaming..those weapons will be destroyed

      • Snow

        Only if Hillary or a D is elected. The M9 is not full auto or full auto capable and has no features that are not already on the civilian version. It would only make sense to sell some of them, just like the government did with 1903springfields, M1 Garands, M1 carbines, 1911s and WW2 Victory model S&Ws.

    • CaptainDoc

      There are lots of 9’s for sale now.

  • JohnD

    Love the M1911, tolerate the M9 because it is issued and have no choice. Shoot Expert with both and have years of firing multiple types of handguns. KISS principle works. Keep the upgraded M9A3, add a few grains of powder to the 9mm making it a plus P and save the millions for buying M113/577 replacements!! That piece of crap is still being used, endangering our troops lives by being so old and fragile!

    • CaptainDoc

      The case can be extended and a larger bullet with more velocity can be acheived but then there would be some more unhappy people. .45 is the answer but I seriously doubt it will arrive back on the scene. More practice for better shot placement would reduce the amount of rounds the weapon must carry. There are many ways to address the problem but there are also many ways to hide from the issues.

  • Stefan S.

    You trust the ACU, XM-8, M-4/M-16 that can’t be replaced morons to select a new pistol? I’ve got a bridge in NY to sell you.

  • CaptainDoc

    There is the possibility that a new cartridge can be made such as a 9 mm with a longer case, similar to the .38 to the 357 mag. extension of the case. Long enough to handle a heavier bullet short enough to shoot standard 9mm and enough power to increase the knockdown. The grip of current handguns could accept the longer cartridge but I have doubts that the current weapons could handle the pressures. Knock down cannot compare with the 230 grn. .45 but at least we would be moving forward and everyone would have something new to complain about.

  • Rich

    Just a side note for everyone that has been in combat (to include me, 3 tours in Iraq) there are the stories of war and street that grow as they are told. I am out of the military now and I am a Crime Scene Investigator currently. I work a number of different types of scenes. One of the most prevalent scenes we have in Florida are shootings. I have seen 5’7″ 140lb teens that have been in shoot outs that get hit with a .45/.40 4 or 5 times before they go down. I have seen a victim get hit once with a 9mm go down with one shot. I have seen victims get hit 12 times with a 7.62×39 before going down. The fact is no round is perfect. I used the M9 and liked it, and I was a great shot with it. I have all the confidence in the world that if I had been in hand to hand that I could have taken down an insurgent with a 9mm! As some of you may recall, how many of your counterparts were shooting EXPERT in the military? I know in all the units I served in, it was way less than half. So, unless you are a great shot the bigger rounds are a hindrance. My personal carry is a XD-40 and I love that thing!!!! And it is nice that everyone keeps mentioning Sigs, FNs, or how about HK?? What it comes down to is budgeting, and the military will go with what will save them money plain and simple… always have and always will. They will not spend that kind of money on the average service member, Special Operations they would. And as far as wounds, yes the bigger the bullet the bigger the hole in the body, I deal with it everyday. The skin is elastic, yes, but only if the skin is intact. I can without a doubt walk up to a body and tell in a few seconds if someone was shot with a round larger than a 9mm. Ammunition makes a big difference like some of the posters have said. If you have a 9mm HP go into you it has the potential to stop you just as quick as any other round, just depends on WHERE in the body it hits. Let alone on the civilian streets, if you are pulling your handgun in combat than the enemy is within feet from you and it will not be hard to hit center mass. The old stories of people dropping from one shot of anything are funny. Unless you are hit with a .50 or 12 ga then you will most likely not just “drop”. The human body will continue to function for a time before it shuts down. We have even had people shot in the heart and keep fighting/running for a few minutes before they go down, and they were not on drugs. Adrenaline is a funny thing and it will keep anyone going even if they are critically wounded. Some people don’t even know they have been shot. Theories are nice, storytime is nice, but I see about 3 shootings a week and I can tell you that bigger is not necessarily better.

  • RobC

    So with these surveys about the effectiveness of the 9mm, how many of the individuals who responded have actually shot someone using the M9. I’m guessing that the number is very, very close to zero.

  • Phantom Ray

    my vote is for the FN 5.7×28- lighter, more ammo, better penetration and a 30 shot magazine

  • Steve B

    Check out the CZ handguns: seriously underrated IMHO

  • Chief “J”

    The soldiers are trained in the use of handguns and I suppose bullet placement is one of their training category. So, this will make any soldiers a marksman with the handguns. As for me, I train myself with 38/357 revolver, 9mm, 40 cal. and 45acp. I don’t have any special gun like colt 1911. Being a military retired I’ve purchased handguns that are economically affordable. However, all the calibers that I mentioned are good for military service. I must say this, when using handgun during actual combat you can use anyone of them ammos with precision. It must be precise when shooting the enemy and bullet placement is a must.