Well, the 2011 SHOT Show is closer than the 2010 Show, so I thought I would take a look at some of the most popular new guns of 2010. Popularity was determined based on Google keyword searches and forum posts that I read. So, yeah, this list is pretty arbitrary, but hey, it’s my list. Your feedback is encouraged!
Gen 4 Glock (any) – Like them or hate them, the Glock line of pistols is one of the most popular series of handguns currently in the US. One of the few complaints about the Glock has been the size of the grip. Answering public demand, Glock introduced the Gen 4 series of pistols that feature an adjustable grip size, new grip texture, a magazine release button update, and a double recoil spring assembly.
Taurus 740 Slim – Based on the success of the 709 Slim, Taurus introduced the .40 caliber version in 2010. The 740 Slim is a compact, single-stack pistol chambered for the .40 S&W cartridge. Larger than the current crop of .380 pistols in the market, the 740 is still a very compact package that offers 6 + 1 rounds of a respected self-defense cartridge. Also unlike many diminutive pistols, the 740 Slim has good sights that, while smaller than a full-size gun, are easy to pick up and are adjustable. Read this for a full Taurus 740 review.
Ruger SR9c – The SR9c pistol is the compact version of the full sized SR9. Ruger has re-made themselves in recent years, offering many more concealed carry and tactical products like the LCP, LCR, and SR556. The 9mm SR9c is a continuation of their self-defense concept. I have not been able to shoot a SR9c yet, but from all indications Ruger has a real hit with this pistol.
Smith & Wesson Bodyguard – Smith & Wesson has always been known for their great revolvers. Armed citizens and cops alike have favored the J-frame revolvers for pocket and ankle carry, with models like the 442 and 642 being some of the most popular guns in the S&W catalog.
This year S&W introduced a polymer-metal hybrid revolver with an integrated laser called the S&W Bodyguard chambered in .38 Special. The revolver looks similar to the J-frame ‘hammerless’ revolvers that sell so well for S&W, but apparently are a complete redesign, sharing no parts with their all metal predecessors. One of the obvious changes is the ambidextrous cylinder release that was moved from the side of the revolver to the top where you would normally find a hammer on a revolver.
Sig Sauer P226, P229 E2 – Who knew so little could do so much? Sig Sauer redesigned two of their guns, the P226 and P229 E2 pistols, enhancing the ergonomics based on the feedback they have gotten over the years. The result is a pistol that fits most hands MUCH better, offering improved trigger control and shootability. Just looking at the pistol, you wouldn’t think that you would notice any improvement. But picking the gun up for the first time, you “get it.”
I recently received a Sig P226 E2 and took it to the other officers in my department (which issues the older P226). Passing it around to more than two dozen officers, almost every officer (90+%) thought the changes were a significant improvement, with many being shocked on how much Sig had improved the gun’s ergonomics.
Chiappa Rhino – The Chiappa Rhino is expected to ship in the next few weeks, so it is not strictly one of the most popular new guns for 2010 yet, but I expect it will be. Chiappa turned the revolver design paradigm upside down with the Rhino. Time will tell if the revolver with remain popular, and if so, whether it influences other revolver designers, but for now, it is certainly generating a lot of buzz this year.