Smith & Wesson Model SW1911 Sub Compact – Pro Series Pistol

Smith and Wesson SW1911 subcompact

Smith and Wesson has brought a new subcompact 1911 in .45 ACP to the market in their SW1911 line.  The SW1911 Sub Compact Pro Series is a tiny 1911 with an obvious eye on the concealed carry market.

The SW1911 features a Scandium frame, carbon steel slide, and stainless steel barrel, which all weighs in at only 24 ounces unloaded.  The gun is offered in matte black.

The gun loads 7+1 of the venerable .45 ACP and launches the rounds through a 3″ barrel.  Sights are typical three-dot.

Due to the reliability problems sometimes encountered with shrinking the 1911 platform, S&W installed an oversized external extractor to ensure positive extraction.  Smith and Wesson also equipped with subcompact 1911 with a three-hole trigger and a full-length guide rod.  I personally do not care for the skeletonized-type triggers, but your mileage may vary.

Smith Wesson SW1911 subcompact


  • caliber: .45 ACP
  • standard magazine capacity:  seven rounds
  • barrel length:  3″
  • overall length:  6 7/8″
  • weight (unloaded):  24 ounces
  • frame:  scandium alloy
  • slide:  carbon steel
  • barrel:  stainless steel
  • full-length guide rod
  • oversized external extractor
  • sights:  three-dot

List price on the SW1911 Sub Compact Pro Series is $1264.

Smith & Wesson 1911 Subcompact

2013 SW1911 Update

This SW1911 pistol, introduced at the 2009 SHOT Show, is still in the Smith & Wesson catalog.  The MSRP has dropped to $1,159.  While not “cheap” by many people’s understanding of the term, the price is lower than the introductory price of $1,264.

The gun has gained a lot of respect from even the most traditional of 1911 enthusiasts. These guns look good and run great. For the price, they are actually a very good deal. Sure, more than $1k for a handgun is a little over the top for many people, but for a real 1911 fan the price is not bad at all.

I’ve had a chance to shoot these guns on the range, but I have not had one in my possession long enough for a complete review. If this changes, I will update this article with my observations.

By Richard Johnson

Richard Johnson is a gun writer, amateur historian and - most importantly - a dad. He's done a lot of silly things in his life, but quitting police work to follow his passion of writing about guns was one of the smartest things he ever did. He founded this site and continues to manage its operation.

14 replies on “Smith & Wesson Model SW1911 Sub Compact – Pro Series Pistol”

Just purchased the S&W sub compact 1911 ‘Pro Series’.
I thought my Colt ‘New Agent’ series 90 was the finest
.45 CC made, until this S&W came along. In one word, SMOOTH!
It’s now my new CC pistol. What a fine weapon!

Great gun–replaced my Glock 27 (in my opinion Glock not as safe–like the grip safety of a 1911). Shot over 600 rounds, couple of FTF at the beginning–use Gold-Dots (dept issue)–I also like the fact that 230 grain .45 hardball can be effective, the only auto-pistol round that can claim that (WWI, WWII, Korea, Vietnam can testify to that fact). Recoil easy to manage–still don’t understand why the 1911 platform is so expensive–oh well.

I saw the Pro compact .45 at a recent gun show. I was curious and picked it up to heft it. This was an epiphany. This gun felt like it was custom made for my hand. Keep in mind I have an S&W M59 9mm that is a pleasure to shoot, and I carry a Kel-Tec P11 9mm, simply because I can carry it as a pocket gun.
I expect that firing the .45 with an alloy frame and 3″ barrel shouldn’t be any worse than firing my Kel-Tec with hot ammo. Anyway, after handling that .45, I WANT ONE!!!

I have owned this weapon for 5 months now…about 4500 rounds down the tube with 0 problems. The frame is fine, extractor works perfectly, and cheap-o mags still function. Great deal for 1000.00 gun.

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