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5 Best Striker-Fired Pistols [Hands-On+Video]

Every striker-fired pistol pretty much looks the same...but which ones are the best?? We've got the rundown on the best striker-fired pistols.

Whether you are a fan of striker-fired guns or not, they are what’s hot, what’s hip, and they are here to stay.

But what has all that popularity gotten us? Well, a lot of black polymer pistols that look really similar.

There is a dizzying amount of striker-fired pistols on the market today, and it can be tough to figure out what sets them apart from the competition and, more importantly, which one might be right for you.

Our editors IRL

With that in mind, we filmed a video and compiled a list of our favorite striker-fired pistols (in no particular order) and why we think they rock.

Keep reading to see what we recommend!

Summary of Our Top Picks

  1. Best for Concealed Carry

    Sig Sauer P365 X-Macro

    Coming in at a paper-thin 1.1 inches, this is our top pick for those who want a concealable, high capacity gun.

  2. Best Value

    CZ P-10C

    The P-10C offers alot of great features at a very competitive price point.

  3. Most Reliable

    Glock G19 Gen 5

    The Glock 19 is world-reknowned for its legendary reliablity.

  4. Most Ergonomic

    Heckler & Koch VP9

    Adjustable backstraps, side panels, and out of the box ambidextrous controls help this gun fit a wide variety of hands.

  5. Best Overall

    Walther PDP

    Excellent ergonomics, and amazing trigger, extreme durability, and exceptional accuracy make this our top pick.

Table of Contents


Best Striker Fired Handguns

But first…if you aren’t familiar with the differences between striker-fired and hammer-fired pistols, we have you covered with our complete breakdown here!

Now, onto our faves!

1. Sig Sauer P365 X-Macro

The X-Macro is Sig’s latest evolution of their ultra-popular micro-compact P365, and we have to say…it delivers.

The X-Macro packs a ton of features in a small package.

Even though it is only 1.1 inches wide and 5.2 inches tall, the X-Macro has a mind-boggling capacity of 17 rounds of 9mm.

No other manufacturer has managed to stuff this many rounds in a gun this size.

Features include an optics-ready slide that lets you keep the rear sight when a red dot is installed, X-Ray night sights, a full 1913 accessory rail, extended beavertail, and an integrated compensator.

The integrated compensator makes follow-up shots a breeze.

Additionally, Sig was able to retain the full frame, slide, and fire control unit compatibility with previous versions of the P365.

Overall, the solid ergonomics, a good trigger, and the compensator make the X-Macro far easier to shoot than you might expect, making it an excellent choice for those wanting to maximize capacity without getting a full-size pistol.

Best for Concealed Carry
at Palmetto State Armory

Prices accurate at time of writing

Prices accurate at time of writing

Available Coupons

Don’t forget to check out our review of the P365 X-Macro in the video below or read up on the deets in our full review!

2. CZ P-10C

Sometimes guns punch above their weight class, and we definitely feel that way about the CZ P-10C.

It may look like another Glock 19-type clone, but in the end, you are getting more for your money.

CZ P10C and a box of 9mm
While it may look run-of-the-mill, the CZ P-10C feels far from it.

For starters, users will find a surprisingly nice striker-fired trigger on the P-10C. Secondly, CZ worked their ergonomic magic to produce a gun that avoids that blocky 2×4 feeling of some other polymer pistols.

Aggressive grip texturing and slide serrations, a deep beavertail, and mild palm swells help this pistol feel like it ”locks in” to your hand.

The P-10C shoots flat and fast, even in its stock configuration.

Metal sights are also a nice upgrade over much of the competition, and optics-ready versions are also available. Metal 15-round magazines are also standard.

The result? A super flat shooting, comfortable pistol with great features that comes in under $500.

Best Value
at GrabAGun

Prices accurate at time of writing

Prices accurate at time of writing

Available Coupons

Want to know more? Head on over to see our full review of the CZ P-10C!

3. Glock 19

You knew it was coming. We knew it was coming. What list isn’t complete without a Glock 19?

Glock 19 Gen 5, Stock
The one and only Glock 19, in the flesh.

Many designs have come and gone, but the Glock 19 has remained and is widely considered the gold standard of striker-fired pistols.

Why is that? One word — reliability.

With decades of military and law enforcement use under its belt, the Glock 19 is the most time-tested handgun on this list, in addition to being the most popular handgun in the world (with the biggest aftermarket).

Glock’s widespread usage means you can get all the aftermarket bells and whistles you can dream of.

Its 15+1 capacity and 4-inch barrel have become the industry standard size for compact pistols.

The trigger isn’t the best and is pretty spongy by today’s standards, and the ergonomics are a bit blocky for our taste. However, these guns still point well, shoot well, and their simplicity and ease of use can’t be understated.

Those who put a premium on reliability, flexibility, and simplicity will be hard-pressed to find a gun that does those better.

Most Reliable
at Palmetto State Armory

Prices accurate at time of writing

Prices accurate at time of writing

Available Coupons

Don’t forget to take a peek at our 3,500-round review of the Gen 5 Glock 19!

4. HK VP9

I know it sounds like heresy, but HK’s best gun just might be their cheapest one — the VP9.

HK VP9 Left Side
The VP9 came later to the game than many of its contemporaries, but it came to play.

Why is that, you say? Well, they finally made a handgun to compete for civilian sales rather than trying to lock down military and agency contracts.

Taking aim at other striker-fired guns on the market, the VP9 set out to do a lot of things better, and it did.

HK VP9 Trigger
The trigger is excellent, and the trigger guard offers generous room for those who shoot with gloves.

For starters, the VP9 has one of the better striker-fired triggers on the market. It is relatively crisp, with a predictable break and a fairly short reset.

Old models used 15-round magazines, while newer models have a 17-round capacity.

Where this gun truly shines is ergonomics. Not only are the backstraps interchangeable, but the side panels are too. This allows left or right-handed users to adjust the palm swell to fit them perfectly.

Good ergonomics means a good grip, and a good grip means better shooting.

Standard VP9s sport an ambidextrous paddle magazine release. It can take some getting used to, but it is quick and intuitive after the switch is made. For those that prefer a traditional button release, HK also produces a VP9-B variant.

Additionally, you get good slide serrations, as well as rear cocking wings that make racking the slide a breeze. It is capped off with a sizeable ambi slide release, making this one of the most lefty-friendly guns out there.

Most Ergonomic
at GrabAGun

Prices accurate at time of writing

Prices accurate at time of writing

Available Coupons

These guns are accurate, comfortable, and still deliver the famed quality and reliability that HK is known for.

Wondering if this is the gun for you? Take a look at the video review below or read up on it in our full review of the VP9!

5. Walther PDP

Last but definitely not least is the Walther PDP, and boy, does it have us in a lather. To be honest, we love these guns, but for a good reason.

Walther PDPs
The PDP comes in various configurations, and we love them all.

Walther’s Performance Duty Trigger has a little bit of take-up to a defined well, then a very clean break right at around 4-4.5 pounds, and a very short reset.

This is one of the best striker-fired triggers on the market, only matched by guns like the Canik Rival (a Walther clone).

Sean Curtis letting the camera know how much he loves his PDP.

All PDPs come with optics-ready slides, but the downside is that you have to submit a request to Walther to have them mail you the adapter plate for your specific red dot.

As usual, Walther implemented excellent ergonomics in the form of good grip texture and chunky Super Terrain slide serrations.

Users with small to medium-sized hands will also appreciate the extended, easy-to-reach ambidextrous slide release.

Walther PDP Grip with Pinky Extension
While it lacks traditional finger grooves, there are raised portions on the grip that act as “suggestions” to help guide hand placement.

The PDP is also available in various barrel lengths and also with full-size (18+1 capacity) and compact (15+1 capacity) grip sizes.

Additionally, Walther has recently introduced the PDP-F, which features a reduced grip to trigger reach and an easier to rack slide.

You can see the flat back and reduced grip circumference of the PDP-F (front) compared to the standard PDP (rear).

Accuracy and reliability are hallmarks of all Walther duty guns; the PDP has that in spades.

Best Overall
at Grabagun

Prices accurate at time of writing

Prices accurate at time of writing

Available Coupons

Still not sold? Check out our 10,000-round review video of the PDP below and our written review!

Honorable Mentions

Narrowing it down to just five pistols was challenging; unfortunately, not everything could make the cut. With that in mind, we snuck in two pistols in the video that didn’t quite make our best of but that we still like.

Smith & Wesson M&P 2.0 Metal

Life is better with a bit of heavy metal, right?

It’s aggressive. It’s mean. And it’s fun to shoot.

Smith and Wesson took their venerable M&P and glammed it up with an all-metal frame and an improved trigger to create the M&P 2.0 Metal.

With good looks in tow, it also has a jaw-dropping performance to match. These guns are extremely accurate, fast shooting, and soft-recoiling.  

at GrabAGun

Prices accurate at time of writing

Prices accurate at time of writing

Available Coupons

They are a bit heavy for duty use for some and are on the slightly spendier side for a striker pistol, but they run.

You can see our video on the M&P 2.0 Metal below or take a look at our full written review!

Grand Power Q1S

The Grand Power Q1S is by far the strangest inclusion on the list, but hey, some of us are strange people.

Grand Power may not be at the forefront of most people’s thoughts when it comes to handguns, but they offer some great features at reasonable prices.

Much like the Beretta PX4, the Q1S features a rotating barrel design that helps reduce muzzle flip. With a smaller 3.6-inch barrel, the recoil reduction is both noticeable and welcome.

Additionally, the gun has a shockingly good 3.5-4lb trigger that breaks cleanly at 90 degrees.

at Double M Defense

Prices accurate at time of writing

Prices accurate at time of writing

Available Coupons

Consider the fact that you get metal sights, fully ambidextrous controls, and three 12-round magazines for around $400, and you have a real sleeper on your hands.

Final Thoughts

Striker-fired pistols have improved so much in the last 15 years that it is hard to pick just five and keep the list manageable.

The good news is that striker-fired pistols are so popular there is definitely one out there for you.

If you didn’t see a specific gun here, be sure to check out our other articles, as we might just have what you are looking for.

What’s your favorite striker-fired handgun? Sound off in the comments below. Want to dive into the world of pistols even more? We got you. Check out our recommendations for the Best Beginner & Home Defense Pistols and Best Concealed Carry Guns.

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21 Leave a Reply

  • Commenter Avatar

    Springfield xdm...just saying.

    March 1, 2023 2:47 pm
  • Commenter Avatar

    It is difficult to narrow the striker fired down to a top 5 but this is an excellent list. I own each of these handguns except for the HK (I am waiting on the vp9-b to lower in price)
    The CZ p-10 series do not get enough props. I prefer my p-10c over my G19 gen 5 even after trigger and sight upgrades to my Glock.
    I have one SRO and I mounted it on my Walther pdp because it is my favorite striker fired to take to the range. Great trigger, ergonomics, reliability and accuracy. My top choice as well.
    Honorable mention could have included a FN 509 and a Canick (probably Rival).
    Great list!

    February 23, 2023 7:48 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Wyatt Sloan

      Thank you! The Rival was, without a doubt, the toughest one to leave off this list. As you said, it is tough to narrow it down and keep everyone happy. I definitely agree about the CZ P-10C. It is far too overlooked, given its price-to-performance ratio.

      February 23, 2023 9:13 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Harry Canning

    I think you miss the boat, CANIK, by far should be on that list, sights, trigger control,reloading ease, accuracy and it's reliable.

    February 23, 2023 7:37 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Wyatt Sloan

      Harry, the Canik Rival was the absolute toughest cut for us to make here. You are spot on about their performance. Keep an eye out, we should be getting a Canik Rival-S in for review sometime and we will have some media on it!

      February 23, 2023 9:11 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Al Gonzalez

    SWMP Shield Plus with 15 rd mag great new flat trigger night sights and OR. Should be top 3 now 399 with $50 rebate. FTW

    February 23, 2023 7:31 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Wyatt Sloan

      Al, the Shield Plus is an absolute steal with the rebate, and they are excellent guns! Going down to 5 pistols was tough, and we gave the slight nod to the X-Macro for that extra capacity.

      February 23, 2023 9:15 pm
      • Commenter Avatar

        I'm with AL & David, I've been packing S&W performance center 10mm kurtz (40cal) w CT grn lzr since 2016 and it hits exactly where grn dot is out to 25 more. with liberty ammo, 1 shot stop! No high cap. needed, x-mags close by and it fits perfectly in my carhart back pocket tucked in a Blackhawk pkt. holster!!!%

        February 26, 2023 6:26 pm
    • Commenter Avatar

      I agree, in fact I just bought mine. It seems that Smith and Wesson is aggressively trying to capture more of the market. We the consumers WIN. American made, Good quality at sharp pricing.

      February 24, 2023 9:13 am
  • Commenter Avatar

    What about the FN 509C

    February 23, 2023 7:17 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Wyatt Sloan

      Mike, keeping the list down to just 5 was already a tough task. Unfortunately, the 509 didn't quite have a clear-cut victory in any specific category for us. We do have a pretty glowing review of the 509T that you can check out here!

      February 23, 2023 7:31 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    J Hili

    Stand by two of these selections, the VP9 and the PDP. I actually own two PDP's, one is the Pro Series. Think they missed with the glock pick tbh, the Smith&Wesson M&P is more reliable (see flannel daddy's video, better trigger and overall better more modern gun. Glock does have the edge in after-market products but the SW isn't far behind.

    February 23, 2023 6:22 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Wyatt Sloan

      J, we have a lot of love for the M&P around here. The 2.0 Metal was too good to not mention, and I feel that it is the pinnacle of the M&P platform. It is just hard to look past Glock's real-world service history in favor of extreme stress tests. Both are great guns though, no doubt. Awesome call on the PDP; as you can tell, we love that series!

      February 23, 2023 7:11 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Chuck Cochran

    The PDP's trigger is frankly amazing. ACustom Shop trigger right out of the box. It's predecessor, the PPQ set the bar high, and so far, no other manufacturer has passed that bar, or even met it.
    Though the Gen 5 Glock is an improvement, my biggest complaint about Glock is their crappy trigger. Has been ever since the G17 was first released.

    February 23, 2023 6:15 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Wyatt Sloan

      Chuck, I agree with you on how good the PDP trigger is. I have several Walther striker-fired pistols, and it is easy to get spoiled on their triggers. I will say, if there is a local gun shop near you that has a Canik Rival or Rival-S, check it out! The triggers on those are absolutely fantastic.

      February 23, 2023 7:23 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Armed Citizen

    I will take my Taurus G3, G2C,G3C, etc price wise and any other way as my EDC! Less than 1/2 the price and just as reliable. A FANTASTIC AND RELIABLE PISTOL AT AN AFFORDABLE PRICE!!!!!!

    February 23, 2023 6:11 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Wyatt Sloan

      The G3C is an amazing gun for the price. Taurus has come a long way under their new leadership. Glad to hear you enjoy yours!

      February 23, 2023 7:14 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Darrin J. DeLange

    I picked the Sig P365XL as my EDC and I couldn't feel happier or more secure when I'm out and about. Besides all of the other features that make Sigs great handguns, its slim width and low weight was most important to me because it's a handgun that I can literally carry comfortably all-day long, unlike my Sig P320/M17 or Glock 17. It also has better capacity than my M&P Shield 9mm or the Glock 43X.
    However, just because the P365 is the best for me doesn't mean it's the best for everyone; for those in the market: try as many different striker-fired pistols at the range as you can before buying one, or you'll end up with a safe full of different makes and models...which isn't necessarily a bad thing.

    February 23, 2023 6:08 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Wyatt Sloan

      Darrin, the P365XL is an excellent piece of machinery. I frequently carry one with a Holosun EPS, and I love the size-to-performance combination. I also still carry my regular P365 on occasion, and as evidenced, we love the X-Macro too. The P365 series is hard to go wrong with!

      February 23, 2023 7:21 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Tom Werner

    Can't believe that the Springfield ANd is not even an honorable mention. It just happens to be my EDC.

    February 23, 2023 5:12 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      TJ Wolfcall

      The what?

      February 23, 2023 6:25 pm
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