18 Best .45 1911s For $1000


Springfield Armory Mil Spec 1911

The Best 45ACP 1911 for $1000

They’re expensive, they’re heavy and they do like a clean, but we just don’t care. A great 1911 is a work of art, a thing of beauty as much as a firearm, and we love them.

They’re just a part of American history and they’re deeply satisfying things to hold in your hand. The action, the brutality. Don’t say you don’t get it too…

But you can easily spend a fortune on a great 1911 and eventually you have to get into diminishing returns. So what is the best 1911 you can buy for less than $1000?

We have stuck with 45 ACP weapons here, because that’s why a lot of people opt to carry a 1911 in the first place and it makes the list simpler. We have gone for different size guns, though, for variety. We’re weird like that…

Here are our contenders for the best 45 ACP 1911 in the world..

1. Kimber Custom TLE/RL II

  • Price: $931.30
  • Barrel: 5 inch
  • Total: 8.5 inch
  • Weight: 2.5lb
  • Capacity: 7+1

If you want a pure battle pistol, rather than the more competition oriented Colt, then the Kimber Custom TLE/RL II is the best gun here.

This is the standard issue 45 ACP 1911 that the LAPD SWAT team have on their hip, although it is one of a list of approved firearms for actual duty purposes.

Competition Upgrades Work For Everyone

You get a match-grade barrel and bushing, a full length steel guide rod and hi viz Tritium 3 dot night sights. There’s a Picatinny rail underneath for a weapons light.

Now you also feel the steady input of the LAPD’s finest response team. Kimber has tuned the trigger set-up, magwell and all the little details that make the difference when it matters after feedback from the best.

You and me can buy the fruits of their labor and, at less than $1000, you won’t find a finer 1911.

The Colt 1911 Competition for sale. A great starter 1911 for target shooting, general plinking and home defense. Your first Colt?


2. Colt 1911 Competition

  • Price: $945.56
  • Barrel Length: 5″
  • Total Length: 8.5″
  • Weight: 2.25lb
  • Capacity: 8+1 Rounds

I’m still kind of shocked to find a full match-grade full size Colt competition pistol for $1000. In a good way…

That’s because all the things that make the Colt a great target pistol make it awesome as a home defense handgun. I’d sleep easier knowing this hunk of competition spec 1911 is nestled in a gun vault by the bed.

If you’re a 1911 fanatic then you probably had your eye on one of these anyway. Treat yourself and see what 80 years of minor progress feels like in the hand.

Custom Gun Touches, Off The Shelf

Like John Wick, we’re partial to a competition gun because the basic mods are exactly what you would look for in a custom 1911.

Lighter slides, night sights, flared magwells. All that stuff. That’s what you do to a gun. So if Colt has already done the hard yards to create a match-grade pistol that can go straight on to defensive duties, it’s better to buy that gun.

Adjustable Novak fiber optic sights sit up top and Colt has obsessively engineered the weight out of the gun to come up with a lightweight full-size 1911 that is about half a pound lighter than you’d expect.

Flat Shooter Offers Repeatability, Consistency and Security

The dual recoil springs help keep the gun flat and combat muzzle climb better than any slide porting ever could.

A stainless steel, cold hammer forged barrel is national match grade, which is all you’ll ever need in a defensive situation. Basically, the competition mods are minor, and things that help more or less everywhere.

Go into 3 Gun competition and you will upgrade to the Gold Cup Trophy before long. If you just want a cool Colt 1911, and you’re on a budget, this could be the one.

A Stylish Brushed Stainless Finish

The gun is engineered from stainless steel and comes with a brushed matte finish. It’s all business, and we like it.

G10 checkered grips complete the look and an epic, epic gun. At this price, you simply won’t find a better shooting 1911.

We know the Gold Cup Trophy won our 1911s under $2000 post, and this one came very close. This is about as much 1911 as you can reasonably expect for $1,000. If it’s your winner, we can see your point too.

Springfield Armory 19

3. Springfield Armory 1911 Loaded

  • Price: $852.22
  • Barrel: 5 inch
  • Total: 8.6 inch
  • Weight: 2.5lb
  • Capacity: 7+1

The Springfield Armory 1911 Loaded is certainly one of the best pistols for the money and there are people reading this right now that can’t believe it lost to a Colt.

You might be right. On another day this match-grade 1911 could easily have taken the honors. It’s arguably a better all-rounder, but when margins get this tight it really depends on your brand loyalty and personal feel.

There’s a two-piece, full length guide rod, an Armory Kote forged steel frame and the finishing touches include a skeletonized trigger and hammer. Low profile combat sights are part of the package, but we would upgrade those with night sights.

But this is a real solid 1911 under $1000, and it’s a gun you could happily shoot for years to come.

Smith & Wesson 1911E. A great 1911 pistol for less than $1000. This is the top of the line SW1911, before you get to the awesome Performance Center guns.

4. Smith & Wesson SW1911 E Series

  • Price: $851.99
  • Barrel Length: 5″
  • Total Length: 8.7″
  • Weight: 2.5lb
  • Capacity: 8+1 Rounds

This is a beautiful looking gun . We love the matte black finish or the stainless, the slide work and the 5 inch barrel. it’s all perfect, and it’s all yours for slightly more than $1,000.

The glass bead engraving is pretty special.The hammer and trigger are skeletonized, the whole gun weighs in at a respectable 2.43lb and you get 8+1 when it comes to capacity.

The Deluxe Version of the SW1911

The Smith & Wesson SW1911E is the premium production line 1911. It slots in well above the entry level gun, but well below the S&W Performance Center custom guns that star in our best 1911s under $2000 post.

In this price range, though, this is the gun that flies the flag for S&W with checkered wood grips and solid finishing touches from the 1911 parts bin. Is it good enough to hang with the best guns here?

Springfield Armory Range Officer, a great Commander sized 1911 for less than $1000. Buy guns online at your favorite gunbroker now.

5. Springfield Armory Range Officer Champion

  • Price: $779.99
  • Barrel Length: 4.25″
  • Total Length: 7.6″
  • Weight: 1.88lb
  • Capacity: 7+1 Rounds

Is the Springfield Armory Range Officer Champion really that good? Yes, we think it’s every bit a match for the Colt, it has a little more flair when it comes to the design and it’s the handgun we would choose given the two.

OK a lot of this is down to personal preference, but we tried to take that out the equation and look for reviews from owners. You don’t need to look too hard to find Springfield Armory 1911 reviews along the lines of:

The best handgun I own.

The straightest shooting gun in my collection.

Reliable, beautiful and accurate. It goes with me everywhere.

This is high praise indeed for something that is absolutely not a Glock. You get the traditional 1911 limitations. It’s a 7+1, which can leave you feeling a little outgunned, but then you remember the 45 ACP. You only have to hit them once…

This is the compact version that isn’t just cut down. Springfield Armory opted for a lightweight alloy frame, rather than steel, to save a precious few more ounces. The final weight of 1.88lb is competitive, if not mindblowing.

Springfield Armory’s custom works can certainly produce something lighter for you. But expect to pay more than $1000, much more, when you buy your custom gun.

This isn’t much heavier than a polymer service pistol, though, and it’s basically the same size. You can go for a polymer pistol, but the Springfield Armory is a great price, it comes with bags of character and it really isn’t far behind on the firepower stakes. .

The main spring housing is technically a traditional 1911 style, but it does come with Springfield Armory’s patented technology. It has the traditional short military combat trigger and a safety, but you also get the grip safety that should help prevent accidental discharges.

Not everybody loves Springfield Armory, and we get that, but we think this could be the best 1911 for sale right now. in this price band.

Kimber Aegis Elite Ultra Compact 1911 carry pistol. Buy your concealed carry 1911 subcompact today at the world's favorite gunbroker.


6. Kimber Aegis Elite Ultra Compact 1911

  • Price: $862.50
  • Barrel Length: 3″
  • Total Length: 6.8″
  • Weight: 1.56lb
  • Capacity: 7+1 Rounds

Why would you want to conceal carry a 1911? Well some folks just prefer em, is all.

The Kimber packs a solid 7+1 capacity of mule kick 45 ACP into a 6.8 inch overall length. That just about gives you the option of using at as an EDC and some people aren’t too keen on putting striker-fired polymer pistols in their pants.

So if you’re an old-school 1911 guy and want something to slip under your clothes, then the Kimber Aegis Elite Ultra is a total work of art. It might just be the sub-compact 1911 you have been looking for.

It does weigh in at a relatively svelte 1.56lb, so the company has done well to strip the fat and provide a low-key 1911 for your EDC.

Colt Lightweight Commander for sale. One of the best concealed carry 1911 pistols for sale in 2020.

7. Colt Lightweight Commander

  • Price: $800.99
  • Barrel Length: 4.25
  • Total Length: 7.75 inch
  • Weight: 1.84lb
  • Capacity: 9+1

Colt handguns are not cheap, and this compact 1911 is absolutely pushing the $1000 budget to the limit. But it’s worth every cent.

This is the understated, blued version of the classic Commander frame with a 4.25 inch barrel. You get the Dual Spring Recoil system, Colt branded grips and Novak sights on top of a beautifully constructed gun that should last you a lifetime.

You need to maintain your Colt, and you should need Colt parts and accessories from time to time. Chances are you’ll need to have her reblued, too, or live with the patina of your time together.

If you treat it well, though, this can be a gun for life.

Ruger SR1911 Target. A great handgun you have to own if you want to take your 45 ACP shooting to the next level.

10. Ruger SR1911 Target

  • Price: $827.78
  • Barrel Length: 5″
  • Total Length: 8.67″
  • Weight: 2.44lb
  • Capacity: 8+1 Rounds

The Ruger SR1911 is one of the best handguns in history and you simply have to own one once in your life. It isn’t a clever 1911, it’s just a beautiful one that does everything well.

Like several others here, the Ruger SR1911 Target comes with a few choice mods for basic competition shooting. It does come with a unique story.

The frame, barrel and bushing are all machined from the same bar of steel for consistent tolerances throughout the heat cycle. It’s a nice thought, although we’re well into diminishing returns here we still like the obsessive attention to detail.

That’s a perceived quality thing, and it’s clever.

An Iconic 1911 .45 ACP Auto

It’s long and heavy, but this is a proper 1911 for the range. It is also a landmark gun, even in basic form.

You owe it to yourself to have one. You can pick up a simpler Ruger 1911 cheaper than this. But the Target is almost a Ruger custom gun.

It’s a major step up for not much money, and it might set you on your way towards the seriously expensive Ruger 1911s with Koenig parts that are seriously taking the fight to Colt in the 1911s under $2000 category.

Rock Island Armory M1911-A1 Tactical full size pistol. A $500 1911 that shoots straight, true and honest. It isn't pretty, but it is a good gun.

11. Rock Island Armory M1911-A1 Tactical

  • Price: $498.99
  • Caliber: 45 ACP Auto
  • Barrel Length: 5″
  • Total Length: 8.75″
  • Weight: 2.49lb
  • Capacity: 8+1 Rounds

The Rock Island Armory M1911-A1 isn’t just a $1000 1911 that will blow your mind if you give it a chance. You can get this gun and change from $500…

Now it isn’t the prettiest 1911 on this list. Not even close. But Rock Island Armory pistols have a reputation for reliability and durability. This are kind of more important.

This is a Series 70 firing mechanism with that signature skeleton trigger. It’s generally considered to be a match for anything in terms of durability. The last word in elegance and finesse, maybe not so much.

If you want a cheap 1911, well this is the big name in the budget 1911 sector, although the Springfield Mil Spec has now taken the honors in our top $500 1911 pistols post.

Sig Sauer 1911 Target for sale. An elegant 1911 with match grade mods that is a real option for a carry pistol with new sights.

11. Sig Sauer 1911 Target

  • Price: $1029.99
  • Barrel Length: 5″
  • Total Length: 8.7″
  • Weight: 2.6lb
  • Capacity: 8+1 Rounds

At 2.6lb and 8.7 inches long, this full-size Sig Sauer 1911 comes with an 8+1 capacity and a supremely accurate five inch barrel.

It’s a simple, clean gun to look at. Sig Sauer has the This is the People if you want flash. This is just a tack sharp gun for home defense or possibly open carry. It’s too big for a CCW, that’s for sure.

This is a functional gun, it isn’t one for sitting round looking at it. You get a great grip safety/thumb safety combination for the security and safety conscious among you. When you do shoot, though, it’s a prodigiously powerful gun that makes the most of the round.

Taurus PT1911 - One of the cheapest 1911 guns for sale online

12. Taurus PT 1911

  • Price: $584.99
  • Barrel Length: 5″
  • Total Length: 8.75″
  • Weight: 2.44lb
  • Capacity: 8+1 Rounds

This is an affordable 1911 that doesn’t really come with any inherent sacrifice. The blued finish is good enough and you can get an extended clip with 12+1. That is actually pretty cool.

The normal mag is a traditional 1911 8+1 and the Taurus will do everything you want it to. It’s an elegant looking gun, although it isn’t quite in the aesthetic league of the Ruger, the Springfield Armory or the S&W.

You know you’re saving money with this gun, but if you just want a 1911 and you don’t want to break the bank, the Taurus is a solid choice.

What about the Taurus reliability problems you hear about in the corners of the web? Yeah, you probably will have to strip your gun from time to time and effect repairs. If you want a metronome of a 1911, then the Taurus isn’t the safest bet.

13. Rock Island Armory M1911 CS Tactical

  • Price: $499.99
  • Barrel Length: 3.5″
  • Total Length: 7.3″
  • Weight: 2.47lb
  • Capacity: 7+1 Rounds

Yes, we’re going there. Rock Island Armory guns don’t look all that much, but they do make exceedingly good shooting guns. There is nothing fancy here, apart from the price.

The parkerized finish will get its own patina, but this is a very nice compact 1911 that can fit just about anywhere.

You get 7+1 rounds, owners will tell you that the finish isn’t the best, but the gun is an honest and true shooter that never lets them down. That’s the most important thing, not the walnut in the grips.

So if you want a straightforward 1911 that will spit lead all day and doesn’t have to be a prom queen, save your money and get one of these superb guns.

Have a look at the full Rock Island Armory range. You can spend a lot, but don’t. These are good, cheap 1911 handguns.

Desert Eagle 1911 CCW

15. Desert Eagle 1911 3-inch

Price: $889.99

It’s another CCW you can just about get under your clothes, but it’s a cute looking thing. There’s none of the full-blown histrionics you get with Magnum Research’s full-size 50 Cal Desert Eagle. This one is a gun you could actually live with.

It still has the brand cache, so you can show your friends your new gun without feeling like a fool. It isn’t cheap, you can get a full size 1911 for this money and I think that’s the way I’d go, but each to their own!

You get a 6+1 capacity, an 8.6 inch overall length and a fairly hefty 2.44lb. You really have to justify this as an EDC compared to the other, largely striker-fired polymer pistols.

Some people just insist on a hammer-fired 45, though, and we’re happy to help…

The Sig Fastback 1911 Carry Emperor Scorpion 45 ACP for sale. This is an elegant carry gun with some serious tactical 1911 touches.

16. Sig Sauer 1911 Fastback Emperor Scorpion

  • Price: $1049.99
  • Barrel Length: 4.2 inch
  • Overall length: 7.7 inch
  • Weight: 2.43lb

Admit it, this thing looks fantastic. It’s slightly over the $1,000 mark by a crisp $50, but you’ll have to forgive me on that one.

This gun, though, is plain arousing gunporn. The Sig Sauer Emperor Scorpion FDE is absolute gunporn at its finest in every form. The full size gun is awesome too. But I would take one of these, in this color, in a heartbeat.

It’s a Single Action Only 1911 that pays tribute to the original and points to the future. It looks like a custom gun, especially with that FDE polymerized finish that gives it such a different look.

But the checkering on the frame and perfectly engineered safety, artistically skeletonized trigger and hammer and the grip safety all combine to create a gun that could easily sell for several thousand dollars, rather than $1000.

Piranha-textured G10 Magwell grips complete the look of the gun, and as you would expect it fires like a dream. This is an 8+1 handgun and with the rounded heel and slightly lighter weight than the full size gun, it is a carry option.

It’s also a fashion gun, a tribute to the best 1911 battle pistols and just a cool 45 handgun.


17. Remington 1911 R1 Enhanced

  • Price: $741.99
  • Barrel Length: 5 inch
  • Total Length: 8.5 inch
  • Weight: 2.5lb
  • Capacity: 8+1 Rounds

Remington promises a match-grade shooter’s weapon that will serve you just as well in your home.

It’s an 8.5-inch gun, so we’ve given up on CCW here. Instead it’s a spectacular home defense weapon that could be the equalizer when you need it most.

This is a gun I’d want in a bedside biometric safe as a last line of defense. That or an AK-47 under the bed, that works too.

Apart from the shotguns, Remington really doesn’t get much love on these pages. We know that, and we have our reasons. Largely we just don’t think the guns are good enough across the board, but when they are, they really are.

This is a competition spec handgun that is reasonably priced. It wouldn’t quite tempt me away from the Colt or the Sig, but the online gun reviews so far are pretty positive.

The Remington R1 Enhanced is a solid gun that can easily mix it with more expensive rivals on the range. That makes it the best Remington handgun we have seen in a while.

18. Sig Sauer 1911 Ultracompact

  • Price: $889.00
  • Barrel Length: 3.3 inch
  • Total Length: 6.8 inch
  • Weight: 1.75lb
  • Capacity: 7+1 Rounds

It’s small, fits in your pocket or truly conceals without printing and it will deliver 7+1 rounds of 45 ACP when you need it most.

The Sig Sauer 1911 Ultracompact might not be the prettiest gun here, but it could certainly prove one of the most effective. It could be the gun that saves your life and some people carry one of these every single day.

Could this cut down 1911 be your new EDC? Or certainly an optional gun when you need to be discreet?

Order yours now and the answer will probably be yes.

Do you want to blow the budget?

I was just finishing up when these caught my eye. Yes, they go over the top of the $1000 budget, but you’re an adult. You understand this…

So here are a couple more you should consider if you want to spend just a touch more on a great 1911 handgun and not just a good one.

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