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Taurus 738 TCP: .380 ACP Pistol Takes Aim at the Ruger LCP

Taurus TCP

Three versions of the Taurus 738 TCP, or Taurus Compact Pistol, were introduced at the 2009 SHOT Show in Orlando.  The TCP, also known as the model 738, is a .380 ACP pistol clearly aimed at taking market share from the wildy popular Ruger LCP.

The TCP  is a very small, thin and lightweight polymer pocket gun. The sights are described by Taurus as “low-profile,” but I would more accurately describe them as almost non-existent.  That’s too bad, because this would have been one way the gun could have differentiated itself from the Ruger.

The Taurus TCP has a slide lock, ambidextrous magazine release, and a loaded chamber indicator.  A slide stop is not always found on pistols of this size, and an ambi mag release is almost never seen except on larger handguns.  These could be important features for anyone looking to pick up a 738 TCP.

The pistol holds six rounds in the magazine, with an additional eight-round magazine available.  The extended magazine adds a little length to the grip of the gun, which may make it harder to conceal, but easier to hold on to.  The TCP has a 3.3″ barrel and an overall length of 5.19″.  That’s pretty small stuff.

I hope you like double action only (DAO) pistols, because that is what you are getting with this handgun.  The trigger pull was long and moderately heavy.  I would have liked it a lot more with a shorter trigger pull with the same weight.  Others may disagree with this assessment since the Taurus 738 TCP is designed to be a pocket gun.

The TCP is the lightest gun that Taurus currently offers, weighing only 10.2 ounces with a blued or stainless steel slide, and a mere nine ounces (!) with a titanium slide.  The titanium slide version is so light, you might actually forget you are carrying it.  Those weights are unloaded, by the way.

 

The Taurus TCP will be manufactured here in the United States. Taurus makes most of their guns in Brazil, but small guns like the 738 TCP can be difficult to import.  In many ways, it makes sense for the company to invest in manufacturing here in the US.  Not all parts have to be made in the USA, and many may be made in Brazil, with the serial numbered part being made in-country.

The Taurus rep on the show floor said pricing would be “around $300” with the titanium model “about $100 more.”  Ultimately, street prices are almost always cheaper, and Taurus handguns tend to be very competitive on price.  I would expect this to be a sub-$300 gun at the end of the day.  Time will tell.

738 TCP

Stainless Steel 738

White TCP from 2014 SHOT Show

Taurus TCP White

Taurus is now selling white versions of the TCP pistol.  The new guns retain all of the standard features of the original TCP guns, but with a white frame and with either a stainless finished or white slide.  Don’t drop it in the snow.

Taurus TCP (white) Specifications

caliber.380 ACP
magazine capacity6
actionDAO
weight (unloaded)10.2 oz
barrel length2.84"
MSRPnot announced

Taurus already make the TCP with a pink frame, so white makes a third frame color option in the line.  Although an MSRP is not listed other models of TCP retail for $355.66.  I would expect this gun to be the same. This new model was introduced at the 2014 SHOT Show in Las Vegas.

Taurus TCP White stainless

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.

109 replies on “Taurus 738 TCP: .380 ACP Pistol Takes Aim at the Ruger LCP”

well i read every post here, and after 2 year of post on here it seems the Taurus tcp has alot of issues,and after 2 yrs Taurus still hasnt fixed this gun to fire more than a few clips or rounds….and after all of YOU have sent the guns back (some as many as 6 times) you would think taurus would have fixed or remade the gun by now…i wouldnt want one if it was free after reading all of this, Im gonna look at the Ruger lcp reviews and figure out what thats all about..i will keep ya posted

We purchased 2 Tarus PT 738 TCP’s . New , $199 ea. w/ life time W. , size and price ( $100 less than the Ruger ) , and reliability . Great value , very pleased !!!!!!

I have a Taurus Tcp 738 .380. I am overall happy with the gun. It’s Pink and SS. I have some miss feed issues when firing several rounds and when loading it the first time after unloading and/or cleaning, it will jam up a bit, and I often find I have to slap the magazine to get it to seat properly and load. I haven’t had any issues with the trigger pull or actually firing the gun as if I would be in a situation where it would be needed. Both myself and my boyfriend served in the Marines. We train just like we would perform. It is my daily carry piece and fits a slender female without bulk at the hip.

My wife wanted the Taurus LCP .380 in pink as her first gun, she had shot my guns enough and wanted a gun of her own. We had shot .380s before and she loved the look of the gun and it fit in her hands. The gun was small for me, my pinky couldn’t even wrap around the grip of the gun.
I shot the gun initially, and after the second round I put the gun down on the bench and gave her a disappointing look and as I left the bench I said, “Your probably not going to like that at all.” and as sure as the day is long, after she shot one round, she put the gun on the bench and stepped away.
The recoil was so intense, it made my 357 magnum’s recoil feel like nothing. It jammed more times than it fired a round. I am not one to waste money, and I wasn’t going to toss the remaining rounds of ammo in the trash, so reluctantly I shot the remaining rounds through the gun.
We cleaned the gun, sold it at a gun show the next week, and never looked back.

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