17 Best $1000 1911 Pistols – 45 ACP – 2024


Springfield Armory Mil Spec 1911

Last updated February 6th 2024

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Winners at a Glance

If you have about $1000 to spend then the Kimber Custom TLE is the best 1911 at this price point. There are plenty of choices, though.

Kimber Custom TLE

Kimber Custom TLE

  • Overall Winner
Colt Series 70

Colt Series 70

  • Best Classic 1911
Springfield Armory Loaded

Springfield Armory Loaded

  • Best Big Box Deal
Smith & Wesson SW1911

Smith & Wesson SW1911

  • Best Seller
Rock Island Armory BBR 3.1

Rock Island Armory BBR 3.1

  • Best Double Stack CCW 1911


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 part of American history and deeply satisfying things to hold in your hand.

The action, the brutality, the engineering. The smell of gun oil. Don’t say you don’t get it too…

Here are our contenders for the best 45 ACP $1000 1911 in the world.

The Kimber Custom TLE II is a great pistol for just about $1000. Get yours here.

1. Kimber Custom TLE II

  • Price: $995.99
  • Barrel: 5 inch
  • Total: 8.5 inch
  • Weight: 2.5lb
  • Capacity: 7+1

Best Overall


If you want a pure battle pistol, then the Kimber Custom TLE/RL II might be the best gun here.

This is the standard issue 45 ACP 1911 that the LAPD SWAT team have on their hip.

Competition Upgrades Work For Everyone

You get a high quality Government model, 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.

Premium features include 30LPI front strap checkering for a firm grip and a flat top slide for a smooth draw and better handling. And a full length guide rod in fine steel and a roughly match grade barrel.

Kimber don’t just make the best $1000 1911 pistols, revolvers are their thing too. Check them out here.

Colt Series 70 Government pistol. A great starter 1911 for $1000 that will make sure you shoot straight and true.

2. Colt Series 70 Government Model

  • Price: $907.99
  • Barrel: 5 inch
  • Weight: 2.5lb

Best Classic 1911


This is the genre defining Colt Series 70 M1911. It’s the one that started it all.

We could just have squeezed you into a competition pistol for the $1000, but this is a purer experience. It’s a classic tribute to the standard issue Colt Government M1911 models that were handed out to servicemen and law enforcement alike.

So nothing is really skeletonized and this is as basic a 1911 as you’ll see. But this is tried and trusted tech refined over a century. What’s not to love here with this Series 70 Colt Government?

Springfield Armory Loaded 1911 handgun

3. Springfield Armory Loaded

  • Price: $950.00
  • Barrel: 5 inch
  • Total: 8.6 inch
  • Weight: 2.5lb
  • Capacity: 7+1

Best Big Box Brand


The Springfield 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 Kimber.

You might be right. On another day this match-grade Springfield Loaded 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 as to which are the best 1911 pistols for $1000.

If you’re looking to find 1911s like the Springfield Range Officer or TRP Operator, well you still can. Officially they are discontinued and the Springfield Range Officer in particular is getting harder and harder to source. But if you see a Springfield Range Officer, grab it. They’re awesome.

There’s a high quality Armory Kote forged steel frame. The finishing touches include a skeletonized trigger and hammer, a flat mainspring housing and beavertail grip safety with a memory bump. Low profile combat sights are part of the package, but we would upgrade to night sights.

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: $982.99
  • Barrel: 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, flared and lowered ejection port and the 5″ barrel. It’s all perfect, and it’s all yours for slightly more than $1,000.

The glass bead engraving on the Smith and Wesson slide is pretty special. As is the checkered front strap in this price range.

The hammer and single action trigger are skeletonized, the whole gun weighs in at a respectable 2.43lb and you get 8+1 when it comes to capacity with the single stack magazine.

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 limited edition guns that star in our best 1911s under $2000 post.

In this price range, though, this is the gun that flies the flag for Smith and Wesson with checkered wood grips and solid finishing touches from the 1911 parts bin. Is it good enough to hang with the best guns here? Kind of, yeah, and the gun deals are great…

Get the right price range and the S&W is one of the best 1911 pistols on this list.

Rock Island BBR 3.10. A great 45 CCW pistol that is easy to conceal and carry anywhere. The new breed of concealed subcompact 1911.

5. Rock Island Armory BBR 3.10

  • Price: $605.99
  • Barrel: 3.1″
  • Total Length: 6.8″
  • Weight: 2lb
  • Capacity: 10+1 Rounds

Rock Island has put another cat amongst the pigeons with this truly exceptional 45 ACP sub-compact 1911 on a budget.

It’s cheap, but they’re always cheap. The real kicker here is the double stack magazine capacity. This gun holds 10+1 rounds of 45 ACP.

That’s freaking amazing high capacity.

This concealed carry handgun has about as small a footprint as you can get in a subcompact 1911 that still actually works in the palm of your hand. And the company has gone for it with the capacity. If it was any other marque, you’d already be buying it. You should…

Simple rubber grips, a black parkerized stainless steel slide and a 2lb weight are all great. But it’s the price range and legendary capacity that marks the Rock Island BBR 3.1 double stack 1911 apart.

These have the potential to be great guns.

Colt 1911 Competition now comes with a blued finish that keeps the costs down to almost $1000. Get yours today.

6. Colt 1911 Competition

  • Price: $980.99
  • Barrel: 5″
  • Total Length: 8.5″
  • Weight: 2.25lb
  • Capacity: 8+1 Rounds

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

That’s because all the things that make the Colt a great target pistol make it awesome everywhere else.

A lighter slide, adjustable night sights, flared magwell, it’s all there.

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

The dual recoil springs help keep the gun flat and combat muzzle climb. A cold hammer forged barrel is a national match grade barrel, which is all you’ll ever need in a defensive situation.

Basically, the competition mods are minor on this mattte black finish pistol.

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

The Colt Combat Elite line is another you might like. If you can find them…

For th best 1911 pistols with perfect fit and finish, check our list of the best Colts for sale here.

Ruger 1911 Commander Style pistol on sale for about $900. Get yours today and buy guns online for the best prices here.

7. Ruger SR1911 Commander

  • Price: $917.99
  • Barrel: 4.25″
  • Total Length: 8″
  • Weight: 2.27lb
  • Capacity: 7+1 Rounds

The SR1911 is one of the best 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 Commander Style comes with a few choice mods for basic concealed carry duties. It is also a great price for a home defense handgun.

It’s never the winner, but this is always one of the best 1911 pistols on any list. That’s the sign of a great gun.

Springfield Armory Defender 1911, a cheap 1911 handgun

8. Springfield Armory Mil Spec

  • Price: $647.99
  • Barrel: 5 inch
  • Total: 2.4lb
  • Capacity: 7+1

The Springfield Armory Mil Spec 1911 Defender series is the entry-level 1911 and a deliebrate step below the Loaded model.

It’s a spur hammer, fixed sights and absolutely basic trim everywhere. This is a real tribute to the old GI handguns.

The basics are really good and this Springfield Mil Spec, although the fit and finish is deliberately low end, and it is a popular handgun for home defense.

It is definitely one of the best 1911 pistols on a budget too.

Magnum Research Desert Eagle 1911 U Series. A subcompact 1911 that's ideal for concealed carry and a real Colt rival.

9. Desert Eagle 1911 Undercover

  • Price: $945.99
  • Barrel: 3″
  • Total Length: 6.85″
  • Weight: 1.6lb
  • Capacity: 6+1 Rounds

It’s another concealed carry 1911 you can get under your clothes, and it’s a cute looking thing. There’s none of the full-blown histrionics you get with the Magnum Research 50 Cal Desert Eagle, but this one is a gun you could actually live with as a concealed carry handgun.

You get a 6+1 capacity, a 6.85 inch overall length and a fairly hefty 1.6lb. You really have to justify this as an EDC compared to the other, largely striker-fired polymer pistols, but lots of people do.

A new Defender-sized 1911 will always get a healthy dose of side-eye, because they’re so difficult to get right. Magnum Research has spent its life harnessing too much power in one handgun, though, and we think it can do this.

This is a relative newcomer to the sub-compact 1911 fold, but it’s a real contender and a great small gun with a checkered front strap for a firm grip and a sweet single action trigger pull.

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.

10. Rock Island Armory GI Standard

  • Price: $438.99
  • Caliber: 45 ACP Auto
  • Barrel: 5″
  • Total Length: 8.75″
  • Weight: 2.56lb
  • Capacity: 8+1 Rounds

The Rock Island Armory is a solid entry level 1911 on a full size frame that will blow your mind if you give it a chance.

You can get this gun and change from $500, which is kind of amazing.

They’re evolving beyond just being the best budget 1911s these days. There are genuinely innovative and interesting pistols on pure merit, but this is the basic foundation.

Now it isn’t the prettiest Government model 1911 on this list. Not even close. But these Rock Island semi-auto pistols have a reputation for reliability and durability. Those are kind of more important.

This is a Series 70 firing mechanism with that signature skeleton trigger and 5 inch barrel. It’s generally considered to be a match for anything in terms of durability. The last word in elegance and finesse with the parkerized finish and low drag rear sight, maybe not so much.

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

11. Colt Commander

  • Price: $1,014.99
  • Barrel: 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 and these are great guns.

This is the understated, blued version of the classic Colt Commander 45 ACP with a 4.25 inch barrel and stainless frame. You get the Dual Spring Recoil system, Colt branded grips and Novak sights on top of a beautifully constructed semi-auto pistol that should last you a lifetime.

In terms of weight and ease of concealment, it’s right on the limits of what most of us call a concealed carry pistol these days. But some people won’t carry anything else.

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. There are plenty of Limited Edition guns for sale, too, including the Wiley Clapp and a variety of lightweight custom 1911s. Of course there is the ultimate perversion, the compact 9mm that is actually really good.

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

12. Kimber Aegis Elite Ultra Compact 1911

  • Price: $1,104.00
  • Barrel: 3″
  • Total Length: 6.8″
  • Weight: 1.56lb
  • Capacity: 7+1 Rounds

If you want a dress gun, then the Kimber Aegis is basically the blinged out version of the small Kimbers we would recommend first. So it’s agreat gun to go with your Sunday best, if you want to spend a little more on a designer look.

The Kimber Ultra Compact concealed carry pistol packs a solid 7+1 capacity of mule kick 45 ACP into a 6.8 inch overall length and an aluminum frame with fiber optic front sight and jewel like fit and finish.

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 Compact is a total work of art. It might just be the sub-compact 1911 with an alloy frame 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.It also looks fantastic with one of the new micro red dot sights up top, if the fiber optic front sight isn’t enough.

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

13. Taurus PT1911

  • Price: $549.99
  • Barrel: 5″
  • Total Length: 8.75″
  • Weight: 2.44lb
  • Capacity: 8+1 Rounds

The Taurus PT1911 pistols are budget 1911s that don’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 1911s will do everything you need. It’s an elegant looking gun, despite the parkerized finish, although it isn’t quite in the aesthetic league of the Ruger, the Springfield 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 1911s are a solid choice with a solid stainless steel frame and slide.

The Taurus Security System means you can render the semi automatic pistol inoperable with a special key, too. For many responsible gun owners, or people with families, the Taurus Security System is an increasingly attractive feature.

Auto Ordnance M1911A1 pistol for sale. A classic 1911, nothing too fancy

14. Auto Ordnance Thompson M1911A1

  • Price: $596.99
  • Caliber: 45 ACP Auto
  • Barrel: 5 inch
  • Total: 8.5 inch
  • Weight: 2.44lb
  • Capacity: 7+1

Auto Ordnance used to be one of the main players in the firearms industry, but times change. Now the company is a shadow of its former self, but it still has a solid reputation for its basic 1911 .45 Auto handguns and replica Tommy Guns.

This is pretty much a faithful recreation of the classic single stack Series 80 handgun. There are some special editions, but they’re largely engraved versions of this gun. Save your money, get the basic handgun and have fun.

It’s a great 1911 for beginners if you find the right gun deals. But at the current price point, there are better choices.

Ivre Johnson Arms Eagle. A great choice for a starter 1911.

15. Iver Johnson Arms Eagle

  • Price: $738.99
  • Barrel: 5″
  • Total Length: 8″
  • Weight: 2.5lb
  • Capacity: 8+1 Rounds

The single action Iver Johnson Arms Eagle might have just been another off brand pistol a year or so ago.

But now the company is starting to gain a reputation for producing a great gun for the right price. Now you can buy the Iver Johnson Eagle XL long slide, a commander version and this government sized gun.,

There are other options we would go for first. But you won’t be disappointed if you do decide to pull the trigger on an Iver Johnson 1911.

These are fast cementing their reputation among the best budget 1911s. Load them with the right 45 ACP hollow point ammunition and they’ll do the job.

Sig STX 1911 on sale now

16. Sig Sauer STX

  • Price: $1,170.99
  • Barrel: 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 STX comes with an 8+1 capacity and a supremely accurate five inch barrel.

It’s a simple, clean gun to look at. Sig has the This is the People if you want flash. This is just tack sharp.

This is a functional gun, it isn’t one for sitting round looking at it. You get an ambidextrous thumb safety for the security and safety conscious among you.

Colt Delta Elite 10mm. An alternative to 45 ACP and a gun you might want s an insurance policy.

17. Colt Delta Elite

  • Price: $1,538.99
  • Caliber: 10mm
  • Barrel Length: 5″
  • Total Length: 8.58″
  • Weight: 2lb
  • Capacity: 8+1 Rounds

It is the wrong caliber and it is too much money, and yet still we find that you want to hear about the Colt Delta Elite.

10mm vs 45 ACP is a much more interesting debate than 9mm vs 45 ACP. Especially when this is the gun the FBI commissioned as a step up from the 9mm service weapons that failed so dismally in Dade, Florida.

Also, 10mm is a legit insurance policy if you’re worried about 45 ACP running dry. And that is a legitimate thing. If that’s a thought for you, the Colt is a fantastic 10mm pistol, and you don’t need to be Special Operations to have one.

The extended beavertail grip safety is there, the ambidextrous thumb safety, double diamond G10 grip panels, flared ejection port, all that stuff. You can get red dot sights on there and go hunting, or use it for defensive duties with the low drag rear sight and fixed front sights.

The 10mm Colt is one of the best sellers for a reason and it’s a great choice for a one handgun home.

Do You Want a Cheaper 1911?

We did a separate post with a lower bar price tag, because $500 handguns tend to attract a different crowd. Some of you would view a $500 1911 with a healthy dose of side eye.

So if you want a cheaper 1911 at about the $500 price point, then go here.

Do you want to blow the budget?

1911s can get really expensive. In fact there are levels, layers of 1911 ownership. As these examples clearly prove…

Colt Gold Cup Trophy 45 ACP 1911. A great gun.

1. Colt Gold Cup Trophy

  • Price: $1,900+

The Gold Cup Trophy is our champion 1911 under $2000 and the Gold Cup National Match is another standout handgun.

So if you came here looking for the Colt Cold Cup Trophy or Colt Gold Cup National Match Colt competition pistol, then you’re going to have to take a look here.

Dan Wesson Valor, one of the best new breed of 1911 pistols

2. Dan Wesson Valor

  • Price: $1,938.99

The Dan Wesson Valor is one of the sweetest shooting 1911s you can buy at any price.

A combat 1911 with competition touches including a flat trigger, extended beavertail, ambidextrous safety, adjustable sights, skeletonized trigger and extended mag make for one of the best 1911 Government models on the market.

The Dan Wesson Bruin is another top notch model to consider, and the double stack Dan Wesson DWX.

Wilson Combat CQB 45 ACP.

3. Wilson Combat CQB Tactical

  • Price: $3,550

The Wilson Combat CQB Tactical is still the company’s flagship model and the best seller.

We have a list of the best Wilson Combat pistols for you here, which is a more complete buyer’s guide. And the Wilson Combat CQB Tactical will always be near the top…

You get G10 grips, adjustable rear sights, extended beavertail, front strap checkering and a whole host of other performance features with your Wilson Combat handgun. And you also know you have the best of the best in your hand when it counts.

Les Baer Custom premier II handgun.

4. Les Baer 1911 Premier II

  • Price: $3,248.99

Les Baer Premier II handguns are pretty much a benchmark for the industry. They’re that good.

The Les Baer Custom Carry is another absolute winner as well. Every Les Baer comes with a hand fitted frame, G10 grips and just about everything else, and you can feel that in every trigger pull through the break in period and beyond.

Now the price tag is high, but the Les Baer is worth it.

Nighthawk Fire Hawk, a massively expensive gun you still want.

5. Nighthawk Custom Fire Hawk

  • Price: $4,799.99

The Nighthawk Custom Fire Hawk is basically peak engineering and craftsmanship, with a seriously eye watering price tag.

One gunsmith puts the Nighthawk Custom Fire Hawk together, starting with a bare perfectly finished frame and working all the way up to that single port compensator.

We love the NIghthawk Custom Fire Hawk, but we accept the price is delulu.

Vickers Tactical Master Class?

The Vickers Tactical Master Class is a semi custom Springfield 1911 developed with legendary special forces combat veteran Larry Vickers. The Vickers is an elite pistol that comes with a Wilson Combat ambidextrous safety, Vickers sights and woven front checkering.

It’s pretty minor stuff, honestly, and although the fit and finish is perfect, we’re not sure Larry Vickers has got this one right.

Where to Buy 45 ACP Ammo?

You can have the best pistols & revolvers, but they’re nothing without the right ammunition. You can check out a full review of the best 45 ACP hollow points and Full Metal Jacket ammo here.

But also you want the best places to buy ammo as well, right? We got you, hollow pints, Fluid Monolithic Transfer and FMJ are here.

John Wick 3, is this the gun? STI 2011 John Wick Combat Master Package For Sale

Where to Buy 1911 45 Ammo, Parts & Accessories

The one thing you know is that a 1911 requires proper maintenance. This isn’t a Glock and that forged frame and slide need work and gun oil. If you want an easier semi-auto pistol, then go striker-fired. If you want a 1911, get familiar with your toolkit and a good gun cleaning supplies.

Do if you’re looking for a cleaning kit, or spare parts and semi custom 1911 upgrades, or a double stack 1911, then we have some useful people for you to meet.

  • Primary Arms: Custom parts, guns, cleaning supplies and hidden safes and also stellar customer service.
  • Guns.com – Revolvers, shotguns and rifles, handguns pistols etc.

Looking for high-quality 1911 ammo? Then we got you covered as well. Try these sources:

What Else Can We Sell You?

We can give you semi auto shotguns, best deals on subcompact 9mm handguns for conceal carry, lots of stuff. And as you’ve seen we can find high quality 1911s.

If you need front and rear sights we can help. A new firing pin? Yup. Next rifle parts, shotgun parts, 1911 parts, best Glock parts, a crisp trigger job? Spotting scopes, too, yes.

Also we can sell you lever action rifles. What do you need? Let us know at the main email address and we’re sure we can help you.


  • Nick Hall

    Nick is a lifelong gun enthusiast who has a simple mission. He wants to find the best deals for guns online and help you make the best choices with weapons your life may depend on one day.Nick won a minor league shooting competition at the age of 11 and it all went from there. Now he runs one of the biggest firearms websites on the net and his work has featured in Playboy US, Tatler Asia, Forbes and a whole host of national magazines and websites.

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