Winners at a Glance
Ruger MKIV 22/45 Lite
Smith & Wesson M&P
Volquartsen Black Mamba
Everybody needs the best 22 pistols. They can go all day at the range, you won’t feel the financial pain that even a 9mm would inflict these days, and they all sorts of fun.
The humble 22 has a lot to give. The ammunition is some of the cheapest in the world, is a capable hunting round for varmints and critters and is an invaluable part of your firearms education.
Israel’s State Security famously used them for assassinations, too, but that was kind of a quirky thing. Mossad does a lot of stuff that others might not…
Still, the best 22 Long Rifle pistols will pay for themselves with one day of backyard plinking and will teach you about good technique, basically for free. You have such a wide variety to choose from too.
So what is the best 22lr pistol for sale right now? We think it’s the Reguer Mark 4, but here is the full review of our picks.
1. Ruger Mark IV 22/45 Lite
- Price: $569.99
- Caliber: 22LR
- Barrel Length: 4.4″
- Total: 8.5″
- Weight: 2.2lb
- Magazine Capacity: 10 + 1 Rounds
Price: 2/5 Accuracy: 4.5/5 Capacity: 4/5 Weight: 3/5 Prestige: 5/5
The Ruger Mark IV compact tactical pistol is the stuff of legend and is one of everybody’s favorite range guns.
This is a tactical version with a rail on top for red dot sights that turns it into a real multi-purpose handgun that could be useful if you live in the country nad like real small game hunting.
But there’s a Ruger Mark IV 22lr for everybody. There’s a basic version, a high quality target practice option and a few others that you can see here:
We really like the old Tactical semi auto pistol by the way. This is really just a drilled out and lightened version of that compact tactical handgun you could kind of use for CCW.
It’s easy to handle, you can strip it with the one button takedown mechanism and with the right optics you have a near perfect set-up.
Too many people claim this top rated pistol as their favorite range shooting gun. That can’t be a coincidence.
2. Ruger Wrangler
- Price: $169.99+
- Caliber: 22 Long Rifle
- Action: Double Action/Single Action Revolver
- Barrel length: 4.62 inch
- Total: 10.25 inch
- Weight: 1.875lb
- Magazine capacity: 6
Best 22LR Revolver
Price: 5/5 Accuracy: 4/5 Capacity: 2/5 Weight: 3/5 Prestige: 3/5
Meet the Ruger Wrangler 22LR. It is an authentic Wild West Colt six shooter tribute with the Coyote Tan Cerakote finish. As Liberals would say, there’s a lot to unpack here…
But none of it really matters.
What does matter is that the aluminum alloy frame Ruger Wrangler 22LR fits the basic profile of the old Colt Single Action Army in terms of size and shape. It is also cheap, fun and reliable, with a sweet trigger pull.
The Wrangler 22LR rimfire handgun is also probably the best selling new arrival on this list. It’s also the best 22lr revolver if you’re just looking for a fun wheelgun with no real purpose in life. Lots of you are.
3. Smith & Wesson M&P 22 Compact
- Price: $399.99
- Barrel length: 3.56″
- Magazine capacity: 10+1
- Weight: 0.94lb
Best striker fired 22LR
Price: 3/5 Accuracy: 3.5/5 Capacity: 4/5 Weight: 5/5 Prestige: 4/5
This is another 22 trainer if you rock a Smith and Wesson M&P Shield as your every day carry. The S&W M&P 22 Compact 22lr rimfire semi auto pistol will feel familiar enough to make it invaluable as a training aid while you plink away with cheap ammunition.
You get 10+1 capacity, ambidextrous manual safety and you can choose an S&W model with a threaded barrel that is both suppressor-ready and seriously tacticool.
It’s a high price, high spec handgun that is also the only 22 pistol you should ever need. This S&W model is a great training tool and could really be the best 22lr pistol overall if you don’t dig the Ruger.
4. Sig Sauer P322
- Price: $399.99
- Barrel length: 4″
- Total: 7″
- Magazine capacity: 20+1
- Weight: 1.1lb
This Sig P322 is clearly an evolution of the Sig P320, and that is a good thing.
Sig conquered the world with the P320 compact has been a stalwart in our 9mm compact CCW features for years. That means a lot of research and development went into this gun and now we get the best rimfire pistol.
This Sig P322 looks a simplified version, although it is an optics ready pistol with a fiber optic front sight. All the controls are present and correct and you get that near perfect shape, slide serrations and grip from the the best 9mm pistols, as well as that high capacity magazine.
You also get a threaded barrel adapter, so the Sig P322 is ready for a suppressor right out the box on what is the favorite 22lr handgun for lots of folks.
5. American Tactical Imports GSG Firefly
- Price: $218.99
- Barrel: 4 inch
- Total: 7.2 inch
- Capacity: 10+1
- Weight: 1.53lb
The ATI GSG Firefly is actually a pretty faithful recreation of one of the most famous 22 pistols and revolvers of all time, the Sig Mosquito. Now that was the best pistol on all kinds of scales.
This icon of the 22LR rimfire pistol world was discontinued back in 2013. Before then, the German company had one of the best 22 pistols of all time on its hands.
Now German company GSG bought the license and created a budget version of the Sig Mosquito 22lr rimfire pistol that will cost you a less than $200. With the help of plastic AR-15 guys ATI, that gives you an all-metal suppressor ready tactical handgun with a threaded barrel.
That will prepare you for a full-sized 1911 or Sig P229, without the ammo costs or hard recoil. You can use a number of muzzle devices, too, on the threaded barrel of these super reliable firearms. It’s also great to practise shooting techniques and the trigger pull makes this a favorite 22lr handgun.
The likes of the ATI GSG Firefly are a great option for novices and old hands alike. This is great practise if you own a new Sig P229 or any of the variants as home pistols. And it is fun to plink with.
6. Glock G44
- Price: $359.99
- Barrel: 4.02″
- Total: 7.28″
- Capacity: 10+1
- Weight: 0.915lb
The Glock G44 is a great trainer gun and some might say it’s the best 22 pistol, but we’re not Glock fanboys round these parts.
We do accept, though, that the Glock G44 is a great little pistol that is fun at the range, even though it’s no match for the competition pistols.
A responsible gun owner practises, and this Glock 44 22LR makes it easier, and does so at an affordable price that won’t break the bank.
7. Volquartsen Black Mamba
- Price: $1,425.99
- Barrel: 6″
- Capacity: 10+1
- Weight: 2lb
The undisputed king of 22lr competition pistols, the Volquartsen Black Mamba is as awesome as it is expensive.
The Black Mamba target pistol was a Ruger Mark 4 back in the day, but these are full custom competition pistols that have been given the full treatment and is obviously a tack driver.
You could use it for small game hunting, too, but this is really a high end target pistol.
It’s about as extreme as you’re ever likely to get when it comes to 22LR competition pistols, and we love the Black Mamba for that.
8. Taurus TX22 22LR
- Price: $271.40
- Barrel: 4.1″
- Total: 7″
- Capacity: 16+1
- Weight: 1.1lb
Taurus has done good work in the polymer frame pistols sector recently with the Taurus G2 and G3 models.
The new model Taurus TX22 compact 22lr pistol has made a similar splash in the best 22LR handgun market.
Now there isn’t anything really groundbreaking here. Just a manual thumb safety, which is nice, and a relatively simple compact tactical pistol at an affordable price. It’s more of a practise gun than the real thing, but it’s awesome.
The polymer grip with interchangeable backstraps is probably the highlight and comes with a neat set of angles that are mirrored in the trigger guard, as well as a massive amount of the best 22LR ammo.
It might be the best 22LR pistol at this affordable price point.
9. Kel Tec P17 22LR Pistol
- Price: $221.99
- Barrel: 3.9″
- Capacity: 16+1
- Weight: 0.8lb
The company has a range of 22 pistols and we like one or two others more, but the KelTec P17 22LR pistol is the best selling handgun chambered in 22.
It is a simple, low budget pistol that is ideal for range shooting, but you can trade up to the high capacity Kel Tec CP33 that is a lot of fun. But we had to make choices and there are feeding issues with the Kel Tec CP33 that means we’ll save that for another day.
If you’re prepared to step in to 22WMR then the Kel-Tec PMR is a great gun with a serious following.
You can get this 2LR black or Flat Dark Earth, too.
10. Walther PPQ M2 22
- Price: $369.99
- Barrel: 5″
- Total: 8.1″
- Capacity: 12+1
- Weight: 1.19lb
Do you want a 22 that looks and feels like a standard striker-fire polymer pistol? If you’re looking for a training weapon, then the answer should really be yes if your everyday carry is one of many plastic fantastics that include the Springfield Armory XDMOD2 and Glock 19 alike.
The striker fired Walther PPQ has a 5″ barrel and a high standard sight with an orange fiber. So for firearms training, particularly with the quick draw aspect, and sight acquisition, these popular models are a much more useful 22 handgun.
It will help you with your firearms training drills, which every responsible gun owner does, and is a total tack driver.
Some people still like the smaller Walther P22 rimfire pistols on the market, but honestly these are newer, better, more representative rimfire handguns to train with. Look out for the Walter PPK 22 LR later on (spoiler alert etc…). But honestly we think the Walther P22 has had its day.
This matte black plastic fantastic with the deep slide serrations is the future. And the full sized 9mm pistols are amazing.
Junior Version of the Grown Up 9mm
The slide comes with the right amount of serrations, front and rear, so you can handle the Walther P22 just like you would a larger caliber pistol.
Spend two or three days perfecting your technique, and these guns pay for themselves with the money you save on cheap ammunition.
I guess we’re saying buy a Walther P22, yeah.
11. Ruger LCP ii Lite Rack
- Price: $328.99
- Barrel: 2.75 inch
- Total: 6.5 inch
- Weight: 0.7lb
The polymer framed LCP is a legend in 380 Auto striker fired pistol circles. And quite rightly so.
The Ruger Lite Rack isn’t a range toy, or a training gun for new shooters. The Ruger is specifically sold as carry handguns for those that simply cannot take the recoil of 9mm, or 380 ACP.
But on these shores, arthritis sufferers, the elderly and simply small frame people and women might opt for this 10-round pistol that will only hurt the opposition.
A non lethal pistol for self defense is also becoming a thing in today’s world. And some people need a pocket vermin gun for when animals go rogue then you have your Lite 22LR.
In short, the little Ruger has a place in this world. And that might be in your underwear, apparently…
12. Heritage Rough Rider
- RRP: $169.99
- Barel: 6.5″
- Total: 11.75″
- Weight: 2lb
We had to have at least one proper cowboy revolver and here it is, the Heritage Manufacturing Rough Rider.
It’s cheap, simple and a great little gun. Is this 22lr revolver going to be as accurate as the Ruger at 50 feet? Probably not, but then it does come with real old world character.
This is an 11.85-inch gun, too, so it is one of the biggest here. It weighs in at 2lb, you get imitation Mother of Pearl grips, a proper blued metal finish and a great gun that will put a smile on your face. You also get a thoroughly modern transfer bar safety mechanism with the Heritage Rough Rider.
This affordable cowboy gun you can order today on your credit card is a schoolboy fantasy made real. So enjoy it without breaking the bank.
Now there are weird variants of the Heritage Rough Rider, including a 16-inch barrel version and another with a 1-inch barrel and a bird’s head grip.
The Heritage Barkeep is beyond an oddity, but that rimfire revolver is a fun little thing to have in your collection.
Of course you can opt for a Rock Island Armory too.
13. Ruger SR22 Rimfire
- RRP: $448.99
- Barel length: 3.5″
- Total: 6.4″
- Capacity: 10+1 Rounds
- Weight: 1.09lb
The budget friendly Ruger SR22 is here by popular demand. Having given the win to the Ruger Mk4, we were going to leave this fairly straightforward, hammer-fired, plastic training pistol off this list.
So, here it is. A solid little hammer fired pistol with a matte black finish. That means it is useful for drills, shooting skills, backyard plinking and simply gun owners getting your eye in.
Do quick draw drills, shot grouping and more with a Ruger SR22, before you move up to your 9mm.
You get a manual thumb safety, neat magazine release and a rail for a laser or light. Also, you could mount a dryfire training system on there and
A Tool, Not Just a Toy
A decocking lever and a three-dot sighting system, together with an adjustable rear sight, are nice touches on these popular models, as is the aluminum slide. This is a good rimfire for
14. Browning Buck Mark Challenge
- RRP: $552.99
- Barrel length: 7.5″
- Total: 11.3″
- Capacity: 10+1 Rounds
- Weight: 2.5lb
Browning has taken the traditional pistol design and brought it up to date with a look more in line with modern semi-automatic pistol with a sporting flavor for the sheeting range.
The Buck Mark series has some rosewood and blued nostalgia to it though, but this is a high-tech competition 22 pistol at heart and was arguably the best pistol for a long time until Ruger raised its game.
The Browning BuckMark series has evolved into a model line-up in its own right. Now you can get the Camper, Contour, Plus, Challenge, Hunter and there may just be more.
The Browning Buckmark single action pistol is milled from a single piece of aircraft-grade aluminum billet. This has become the watchword for precision engineering, reliability and consistency.
Adjustable sights at the rear and a fiber optic front sight are ideal for competition, and every touch point generally has a purpose. There are pros and cons, but the Browning Buckmark has a devoted following for a reason.
What is the Best 22 Ammo?
We did a massive deep dive into the best 22LR ammo here.
Again we’re sending you to Palmetto State Armory first, the rest second. Lucky Gunner has some great handgun ammo deals in bulk. Rifle ammo, too, of course, and rimfire ammo for your 22LR handguns, rifles, shotguns etc. So look there too when you buy a gun online and buy bulk ammo.
Remember to organize the price low to high to get the best deals, but also the companies have some solid recommendations.
- Firearms Depot – 22LR ammo, rifle ammo, rimfire ammo, shotgun ammo, 9mm ammo.
- Palmetto State Armory – Great deals on handgun ammo, bulk ammo and gun parts. Great daily deals.
Where to Buy a 22lr
The best gun stores for 22 firearms & handguns include Palmetto State Armory and Guns.com with daily deals.
Now it’s not hard to buy one, but you can still save a lot of money if you go to the right places like Palmetto State Armory. Guns.com has a lot of great deals and hard to find firearms, handguns, rifles, shotguns & single shot weapons.
But Palmetto State Armory is the one for budget gun options.
They have gift cards as well, so you can sort a friend out this Christmas.
Now we know Brownells has solid deals, too, and we will often point you to Primary Arms. But it’s just that with these particular weapons, PSA is the runaway winner.
What About the best 22LR Rifles?
You can have a real long range precision rifle, a Scout rifle, a purpose built range target shooters for recreational shooting at the shooting range with a cold hammer forged barrel through to compact tactical rifles with scopes & optics.
Standard models include the classic lever-action and bolt-action rifles you know and love, and a Scout rifle, and a training tool for law enforcement types.
But 22 precision rifle options are almost as good as the long range sniper rifles we have elsewhere shooting bigger ammo. Indeed you get some of the same models.
The rimfire Ruger Precision rifle is the most famous, but you can get a Scout rifle from Steyr with big ammo and big ambitions. Get red dot sights, gun cleaning, gun parts, accessories & gun cases when you buy a gun online.
- The top 22 rifles on sale in 2022. A precision rifle or an AR-22? We got guns, gear, accessories.
- 9 leading bolt action 22s on the market. Get a precision rifle, wide variety of barrel lengths for long range.
We can find you a 22 single shot pistol, too, if you’re the kind of person who wants a single shot pistol while you’re learning to shoot. Get a gun cleaning kit too, accessories, gun cases, gun parts, air guns, shotgun ammo etc.
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