Best 9mm Pistols of All Times – Best Handguns


Best 9mm handguns voted by Weapons Media Google+ Community

Hello and welcome to Weapons Media Top 9mm handgun list, voted by our Google+ community. In this post we will discuss and argue what are top 9mm pistols currently available on the gun market. We take great pride and joy knowing we have such an awesome Google+ community, therefore we actually listened to you guys and put together this sweet list. The guns shown in this list hold no specific order; they are top picks from our Google+ community members and have received most votes in our G+ section, as best 9mm pistols in members opinion. Let’s see what our highly knowledgeable Google+ users voted as the best 9mm handguns:

Glock 17


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Weapon type: semi-automatic handgun

Country of origin: Austria

Effective shooting range: 50m (55 yards) 

Muzzle velocity: 375 m\s or 1,230 ft\s

When this gun was still in prototype phase, it’s maker – Gaston Glock, didn’t even possessed any previous firearms experience, let alone a true gun manufacturer background. He in fact, did possess something much more valuable; advanced knowledge of synthetic polymers which will, later, transform the gun making history as we know it. Gaston Glock was the first gun maker in the history to use ferritic nitrocarburizing process which preserved metal gun parts from corrosion. Now, it’s widely accepted and proven method of protecting many metal gun parts, but in those days nobody even considered this method as something beneficial to gun manufacturing in general. This is only a part why Glock 17 is one of our top con-tester for best 9mm pistols.

First time when Austrian military proclaimed they need to replace their Walther P38 handgun, in 1980., the Glock 17 came to shine. But it was no easy task to satisfy Austrian military condition; the handgun that is to replace  Walther P38 had to fulfill these 17 conditions:

  1. The design of the gun should be self-loading.
  2. It was required to fire NATO-standard 9x19mm Parabellum rounds.
  3. Magazines of the gun should not require any aid for loading round into them.
  4. Gun magazines should not have less than 8 rounds capacity.
  5. Gun firing actions should be single-handed, before and after firing gun preparations of the gun should be the same.
  6. Handgun is required to be absolutely accidental-proof from shocks, drops on a steel plate from 2 meters of height and strokes of any kind.
  7. Maintenance and reassembling of the gun needs to be possible without help of any tools or special equipment.
  8. Maintenance and cleaning of the gun must be possible without help of any tools or special equipment.
  9. Same as P38 – the construction of the pistol must not exceed 58 separate parts
  10. Special equipment such as gauges, precise testing and measuring devices should not be required for the long-therm upkeep of the handgun.
  11. Gun manufacturer has to present the Ministry of Defense full set of engineering drawings and all of the exploded views. They are required to be supplied with all of the important details used in the making of the pistol.
  12. Every single component of the pistol should be reusable on another same-brand pistol.
  13. During the first 10,000 test rounds firing, no more than 20 malfunctions will be allowed (not even small glitches like minor jams of the pistol).
  14. Upon firing 15,000 test rounds of standard ammunition, the handgun will  be inspected for traces of wearing-down. Afterwards the same pistol will be used to fire an over-pressure test cartridge of 5,000 bar (standard 9mm NATO rounds have 2,520 bar). The pistol is to withstand all of these test and still be able to function in order or else it will be disqualified.
  15. Handling the gun in a proper way should never endanger it’s user with an case ejection.
  16. When firing 9mm Hirtenberger AG S-rounds, the muzzle energy of the pistol needs to be at least 441.5 J
  17. The pistol that fails to acquire at least 70% of the total available points shall not be used in military acquisition.

After realizing Austrian Army planned to have their old personal sidearm replaced, Glock promptly assembled a team and had a working prototype of his Glock gun in less than three months. Glock 17 entered the competition with modern design and cost-efficient, durable polymer parts, and it became clear right from the start that Glock’s 17th technical design will take the crown. Entering this competition and beating a renown weapon manufacturers such as Heckler & KochBeretta and SIG Sauer opened a new era of handgun manufacturing and carved Glock 17 name in history books.

Browning Hi-Power



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Weapon type: semi-automatic handgun and semi-automatic

Country of origin: Belgium

Muzzle velocity 335 m/s (1,100 ft/s)

Caliber: 9×19mm Parabellum7.65×21mm Parabellum, .40 S&W

The Browning Hi Power is a single-action, semi-automatic handgun coming in two different versions; in 9mm and .40 S&W calibers. Whole design of this sidearm have originated by American firearms inventor John Browning, this is where this handgun got it’s name from. Later it was completed by Dieudonné Saive at Fabrique Nationale (FN) of Herstal, Belgium. After Browning death in 1926, design was finalized and utilized to the fullest potential. This specific handgun is widely considered as one of the most used military pistols in words’s history. The Browning brand have been proud sidearm in the armed forces of over 50 countries.

The name itself (Hi Power) might be considered as misleading because it usually means the gun will hold less than 13-round magazine capacity. Not in the case of this sidearm as it is capable of holding almost twice the amount of contemporary designs, more specifically Luger an Mauser 1910. The handgun is often labeled with designation HP which stands for “Hi-Power” or “High-Power”. In some cases it is also labeled as GP (French for “Grande Puissance”). The usual terms (P-35 and HP-35) are reffering to the pistols year of making, as it was introduced in 1935. Even the Belgium military calls this gun “Hi Power”. Only in Irish service the designation BAP or Browning Automatic Pistol is used which stand out of the other commonly used gun labels.

Smith & Wesson M&P


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Manufacturer: Smith & Wesson

Country of origin: United States of America

Produced: From 2005 to present

Feed system: Detachable box magazine

Another fine piece of firearm coming from the US gun manufacturing brand Smith & Wesson – the M&P. This specific handgun is made as polymer-framed, with locked breech and semi-automatic, short recoil operated pistol. The first known version was introduced on the market in the summer of 2005 and continues to see a great success to this day. While this gun is marketed as law enforcement specific sidearm, it is also widely used as a personal weapon of choice for many civilian firearm enthusiasts.

Specially designed trigger system of M&P prevents the pistol from being fired unless the trigger is fully depressed, even in cases where the pistol is being dropped. Special internal lock and detachable box magazine are also available as safety options. In 2009 the gun received another safety update in a form of external thumb safety.

CZ 75 SP-01


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Weapon type: semi-automatic handgun and selective fire

Country of origin: Czechoslovakia, Czech Republic

Effective shooting range: 50m (55 yards) –  for 9mm CZ-75 Editions and CZ-75 Automatic

Weight: 1.12 kg (2.47 lb)

Made by  Česká zbrojovka Uherský Brod, the ČZ 75 was first edition of today’s popular variant CZ 75 SP-01. Made in 1975, this pistol is one of the original “wonder nines” presenting a staggered-column magazine, hammer forged barrel and an all-steel construction. Česká zbrojovka made it’s name by building high quality, resistant pistols that holds great value in their low price tags. Indeed, these brand features brought great success and delivered the CZ 75 SP-01 on the gun market.

The CZ P-07 DUTY is a compact, polymer-framed CZ 75 alternative featuring a redesigned trigger mechanism and extended magazine version. With the latest redising the CZ P-07 DUTY has less parts and an improved trigger pull. SPHINX 3000 design had great impact on the exterior of the gun and the SPHINX is, as we all know, the Swiss CZ 75 clone. The CZ P-07 DUTY  comes chambered with 9mm Luger and .40 S&W cartridges. We can all agree, this handgun is a fine piece of Czechoslovak weaponry and great addition to our list.

SIG Sauer P226


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Weapon type: semi-automatic handgun

Country of origin: Germany, Switzerland

Gun manufacturer: SIG Sauer

Gun Cartridge: 9×19mm Parabellum, .40 S&W, .357 SIG

SIG Sauer made this pistol as a full-sized, service-type handgun which comes chambered with 9×19mm Parabellum, .40 S&W and .357 SIG cartridges. This gun holds the same basic design as SIG P220 but has higher capacity and staggered-column magazines, unlike SIG P220 which is equipped with single-column magazines.

Primary produced in Eckernförde, Germany by J.P. Sauer und Sohn GmbH, SIG firearms are also manufactured in Exeter, New Hampshire, United States by SIG Sauer Inc., which was formerly known as SIGARMS Inc.

Many copies of this hand gun were produced; by China’s Norinco (NP226) and Myanmar and Iran produced their copies without the permission of SIG Sauer to be used by their armed forces.

Walther P38


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Weapon type: semi-automatic handgun

Country of origin: Germany

Gun manufacturer: Carl Walther Waffenfabrik, Mauser Werke, Spreewerk

Gun Cartridge: 9×19mm Parabellum

First submission of this gun to Heer, the German army, was designed with locked breech and a hidden hammer. After the complaints it was later redesigned with an exterior hammer. The first noticeable version was Modell MP/H which contained the exterior hammer. Modell Heeres Pistole—Model Army Pistol was adoped by the German army in 1938 only after few of them were made.

When the World War II started increased demand for quality handguns fired up the Walther P38’s production. Two factories in  Mauser and Spreewerk were quickly founded and started producing. 328,000 of this gun were produced and marked with secret code “byf” which indicated Mauser as the manufacturer.

During the WWII Walther P38 has gone throught 2 different model variations and many more post-war variations were created. This gun is a real piece of world’s history and remains the Nazi Germany trademark weapon to this day.

Walther PPQ

Walther_PPQ wikiPhoto Credits:

Weapon type: semi-automatic handgun

Country of origin: Germany

Gun manufacturer: Carl Walther GmbH Sportwaffen

Gun Cartridge: 9×19mm Parabellum, 9×21mm, .40 S&W

The Walther PPQ is also called PolizeiPistole Quick Defense and Police Pistol Quick Defense. This pistol is a semi-automatic weapon that was developed by the German company Carl Walther GmbH Sportwaffen. Primary use of this pistol was for German police, security forces and the civilian pistol market as a substitute for the Walther P99 pistol. Walther PPQ comes chambered with 9×19mm Parabellum, 9×21mm, and .40 S&W cartridges.

The design of this handgun is nothing innovative, it shares the same design principles with Walther P99QA and  P99 variants. Many features came later with the Walther P99 RAD which included re-designed grip, trigger guard modifications and slide with forward grinder. Most of the changes improved the performances of the gun and gave it a totally new utility.

Baby Eagle II BE9915R


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Weapon type: double-action/single action semi-automatic

Magazine Capacity: 15+1

Gun manufacturer: Israeli Military Industries

Gun Cartridge: 9mm Luger

This gun may come as a surprise to even some expereiance shooters; The Baby Eagle II BE9915R is a kind of gun you would have thought as a heavy-duty, high-power gun that weights a ton. With this “baby” this isn’t the case as it brings the best of both worlds; delivering power-shots while being light and precise (light for non-polymer gun). Weight of the gun should be taken as an estimate, this is not a heavy gun for full-steel gun but it might be considered as heavy for some that are used to polymer, light guns.

Most of the features implemented are essentially taken from the CZ-75 and poured into “baby” Eagle II. The Baby Eagle II BE9915R owes a lot to CZ-75 and it’s design – safety of this pisol brings the hammer down and also detaches the trigger from the firing mechanism. This means if the hammer is down, in the Safe position, the gun won’t fire. The Baby Eagle II BE9915R is quite special piece and should be treated as such. The Israeli Military Industries did an awesome job with this “baby” and brought to us one more handgun worth trying out.

EAA Witness Elite Match

eaa witness elite match

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Weapon type: single action, semi-automatic

Magazine Capacity: 17+1

Gun manufacturer: Israeli Military Industries

Gun Cartridge: 9mm Parabellum

Once you try EAA Witness Elite Match you will never want to own any other gun. This pistol’s design and firing accuracy is unmatched by even more expensive guns with longer barrels. The EAA Witness Elite Match delivers amazing accuracy and provides unique feel when shooting for even weaker sex, this gun is pure pleasure to fire.

The “Witness” is really reliable gun as many reports firing it for over 100 times and not getting a single jam or any other issues with this pistol. However some problems do accure; the stock magazines EAA Witness Elite Match ships with are usually cousing many problems to the oweners and have to be replaced. Usually it’s best for buyers to check these faults before buying EAA Witness Elite Match. Do not get us wrong, this is one fine pistol, but these small errors should be covered as well, just to be on the safe side.

Heckler & Koch VP9


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Weapon type: semi-automatic

Magazine Capacity: 15 or 10 rounds

Gun manufacturer: Heckler & Koch Oberndorf, Germany

Gun Cartridge: 9mm Parabellum, 9x19mm NATO

The Heckler & Koch VP9 pistol is another great creation from very renown gun manufacturer  – Heckler & Koch. VP9 provides ultra reliable operation combined with superb trigger mated to a new HK striker firing ignition system. This pistol is designed with long lasing effects in mind and comes with limited-lifetime warranty (for law enforcement officers and other special units this warranty is limited to 1 year).

For civilian usage there aren’t many guns that provide such high value as Heckler & Koch’s VP9. With lifetime warranty this pistol will bring you great value over-time for it’s price, while providing you with high accuracy and reliability. When it comes to safety, this gun just “nails it”. The Heckler & Koch VP9 comes equipped with multi-function safety which will keep it safe from firing even in most harsh conditions. This means you can rely on VP9 to provide safe function coupled with high-end results.

About John A. Heatherly – John is the author of The Survival Template and The Cave and The Sea, A Novel. Follow the links to learn more!

Author John A. Heatherly photo credit Peter Bennett
Author John A. Heatherly
photo credit Peter Bennett
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