16 Best Full Size 9mm Pistols – Sep’ 2023

CZ Shadow Tactical Sport

Last updated September 11th 2023

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Winners at a Glance

We think the CZ Shadow 2 i the best full size 9mm handgun on sale. But there are options, depending on your budget and priorities.

CZ Shadow 2

CZ Shadow 2

  • Overall Winner
Best Price
Glock 34 MOS

Glock 34 MOS

  • Best striker fired pistol
Best Price
Colt Gold Cup Trophy

Colt Gold Cup Trophy

  • Best 1911
Best Price
Walther PDP

Walther PDP

  • Best Glock Alternative
Best Price
Rock Island Armory TAC FSHC

Rock Island Armory TAC FSHC

  • Best Double Stack 1911
Best Price
Wilson Combat EDC9 XL

Wilson Combat EDC9 XL

  • Best Custom 1911
Best Price

A full size 9mm pistol is often the jewel in your collection. It’s the no-compromise option, simply the best pistol for sending bullets downrange, or somewhere more serious.

Now capacity is a personal thing, but we think projectile technology has closed the gap to such an extent that for the best home defense pistols, 9mm is the one to go for.

Why? It’s true that most self-defense encounters result in just two shots being fired. But having the option to lay down covering fire, or to simply have more shots in the clip when your heart is racing and you need all the help you can get, can only be a good thing.

Large Handguns Welcome

We don’t have many rules for this 9mm handgun competition, we just decided that the barrel had to be close to 5 inches and that was it.

In many ways, the longest barrel is the purest form for a handgun. Freed from the constraints of Conceal Carry, you can actually have the big proportions and the big capacity – if your State allows it.

What is the best full size 9mm pistol for sale in 2023? The CZ Shadow 2 is our top pick, but there are lots of other option to consider.

CZ Shadow 2, buy yours today

1. CZ Shadow 2 Optic Ready

  • Price: $1,399.99
  • Caliber: 9mm Luger
  • Barrel Length: 4.89 inch
  • Total Length: 8.53 inch
  • Weight: 2.9lb
  • Standard capacity: 17+1 Rounds.

The first CZ Shadow SP-01 was a sales sensation. The second generation has just smashed it out the park.

This is a competition shooter at its core, but, well, it’s yours. Even if you just want home defense then the range champion really isn’t a bad place to start.

A Proper Metal Pistol

It’s a proper full sized metal pistol that just feels big and heavy in a good way when you pull the trigger.

It’s bigger than the CZ Accu-Shadow, it’s almost three pounds of pistol and that is heavier than a lot of 1911s. But then you start to look at the spec sheet and a little extra weight becomes worth it, if just to squash felt recoil.

17+1 rounds as standard in the double stack magazine should be enough to see off pretty much any threat. And Hickock himself says this is a gun that almost won’t let you miss.

Next Gen 9mm Pistol

The CZ offers a DA/SA trigger in the Browning HI-Power tradition. You can keep it cocked and locked in your gun safe. That flexibility gives the CZ hammer fired pistols a real competitive edge over a 1911, before you get into the additional capacity of the 9mm Luger rounds.

The CZ Shadow 2 has become a sport shooting legend, but all the things that competitive shooters love mean it’s a great gun to have for home defense too. It is easily one of the best 9mm handguns in every discipline and has been for a while.

Glock 34 MOS FS Gen 5 - A great home defense handgun. Buy guns online now

2. Glock 34 MOS FS

  • Price: $709.99
  • Caliber: 9mm Luger
  • Barrel: 5.31 inch
  • Total length: 8.74 inch
  • Weight: 1.62lb
  • Capacity: 17+1

We’re not big Glock pistols fanboys here, but we do have to accept that the G34 MOS FS Gen 5 is an exceptional handgun that is an absolute tack driver of a 9mm and incredibly easy to shoot.

It follows the Glock pistols design language. So, the Glock 34 Gen 5 is a blocky, snag-free and simple polymer frame pistol that is great and consistent at the target shooting range.

The snag-free element shouldn’t be so important with a big 9mm for sale, though. This semi-automatic pistol will probably live in a safe or gun vault, not an IWB holster.

Of course, that striker-fired simplicity means it’s still a monster for home defense, especially with a red dot up top. If you like that famous Glock grip angle.

The front serrations give you options and do have an impact on the aesthetics. The Glock 34 Gen 5 looks more balanced, almost pretty.

Get the buyer’s guide on the best Glocks here.

Colt Gold Cup Trophy 9mm - One of the best pistols for sale in 2023. 9mm never looked quite this good.

3. Colt Gold Cup Trophy 1911

  • Price: $1,813.99
  • Caliber: 9mm Luger
  • Barrel: 5 inch
  • Total Length: 8.5
  • Weight: 2.3lb
  • Capacity: 9+1

You might hear that Colts aren’t quite what they used to be, and there may be some truth in that. But this is still one of the best off-the-peg competition shooting 9mm firearms in the world today.

You could take it into the white heat of battle tomorrow. The Colt is a serious value proposition, then, for keen enthusiasts looking to cross over to competition.

The Colt 1911 Competition 9mm is half the price, but the Gold Cup is twice the weapon. It is a Series 80, a direct descendant of the original 1911. You get a National Match grade barrel, drilled trigger, extended beavertail, chunky manual safety and crisp trigger pull that you have come to expect from Colt.

If you want to spend less, or more, then here’s a post on the 12 best Colt 1911s for sale in 2023.

Walther PDP, finally a contender from Walther

4. Walther PDP

  • Price: $649.00
  • Caliber: 9mm Luger
  • Barrel length: 4.5″
  • Total: 8″
  • Weight: 1.58lb
  • Capacity: 18+1

Walther has its own devoted following that will swear this gun should be above the Glock, and it’s certainly that kind of gun. This is an in-house, custom gun created by the very best engineers at a large and established firearms company.

Sometimes that is much better than a third party tuner throwing half the gun away and charging handsomely for the privilege.

The full sized Walther PDP is a pretty thing, we’ll give it that, and we love the grip texture. Performance wise, it is up there with the best in the world as well.

The HK VP9L is the spiritual successor to John Wick's HK P30L. Get your HK Long Slide pistol here.

5. H&K VP9 L

  • Price: $998.99
  • Caliber: 9mm Luger
  • Barrel: 5.2 inch
  • Weight: 2.19lb
  • Capacity: 20+1

The H&K VP9 long slide is the spiritual successor to the P30L that became a global sensation in the hands of John Wick. If it was cheaper, it might be the winner. But HK rarely are cheaper…

The optic ready Heckler & Koch really does look like a custom Glock and then a whole lot more besides. If you want a wild looking plastic pistol, then the custom porting on show, the grip texture and the capacity alone turn this into a real contender.

An extended mag gives a lot of rounds and make this one of the best home defense weapons.

RIA Tac Ultra FS HC 9mm. The ultimate 1911 chambered in 9mm? On paper, yes! Get one here.

6. Rock Island Armory Tac Ultra FSHC

  • Price: $828.99
  • Caliber: 9mm
  • Barrel Length: 5 inch
  • Total Length: 8.6 inch
  • Weight: 2.4lb
  • Capacity: 17+1

The Rock Island Armory 1911 is fast attaining cult status in these parts in a range of calibers and frame sizes. This is the best budget 2011 that works and that makes it one of the best 9mm pistols by default.

The wild popularity of the Rock Island Armory means that availability is tough and price reflect that.

But taken on its own merit, this 1911, or 2011, is the best 9mm pistol that really can match up to more expensive hardware. Of course you can buy a single stack 9mm 1911 from RIA.

Take a peak at the RIA BBR 3.1 45 ACP in our subcompact 1911s post.

Springfield Armory XD-M Elite Precision. A match-grade polymer pistol that is a great home defense option too.

7. Springfield Armory XD-M Elite Precision

  • Price: $518.99
  • Barrel: 5.25 inch
  • Total: 8.3
  • Weight: 1.88lb
  • Capacity: 22+1 Rounds

The company makes one of our favorite CCW pistols in the world and the 4.5″ barrel version of the polymer framed XD is technically the near-perfect firearm. This longer barrel turns it into a total tack driver with insane capacity.

This 9mm handgun is accurate, seriously accurate. You get 22+1 rounds if you take the extended mag, and you should, it’s lightweight, pared down and clean.

It isn’t quite as monolithic as the Glock, but it is definitely understated and every piece of the form has followed the function. The grip modules are just better as well.

Narrow, Large, Best 9mm Pistol

This polymer framed pistol is slim enough to conceal, those fiber optic night sights up top give a hint at the serious engineering underneath and this might just be the best compromise gun here.

We do really like the compact pistol, too, with its 3.8″ barrel, especially with red dots up top.

Wilson Combat EDC XL 9mm handgun

8. Wilson Combat EDC X9L

  • Price: $3,315.99
  • Caliber: 9mm
  • Barrel: 5 inch
  • Total: 8.6 inch
  • Weight: 2.4lb
  • Capacity: 15+1

This is just a perfect, cohesive, well designed handgun. Are these the best 9mm pistols out there right now? It’s close…

Of course the long-barrel version and full sized frame do conflict just ever so slightly with the EDC concept generally, because, well, you can’t really use this 9mm pistol as an EDC or for home defense. Especially with red dot sights taking over from the adjustable rear sight on this full size frame.

You can, but don’t kid yourself that this is a concealed carry pistol anymore. For that you need the shorter barrel handgun options and you can also buy single stack pistols.

Sig Sauer X-FIVE Legion, just $1019.99 - A tuned Sig P320, what's not to love?.

9. Sig Sauer P320 X-FIVE Legion

  • Price: $999.99
  • Caliber: 9mm Luger
  • Barrel Length: 5 inch
  • Total Length: 8 inch
  • Weight: 1.84lb
  • Capacity: 17+1 rounds.

We love the carry Sig Sauer P320 XCompact and recommend it as an EDC. But the P320 X-FIVE is something else entirely.

It’s like a custom Sig, produced in-house with the manufacturer’s own R&D team behind it. This is a great home defense handgun.

The five inch bull barrel is stainless steel and cold hammer forged. It also comes with a totally reworked and ported slide with the fiber optic Tritium front sight that really does look like a technical improvement.

50% less muzzle flip and a 30% lighter trigger, complete with flat face trigger, full length stainless steel guide rod and a 14lb 1911 style recoil spring to soak up the force of sending 9mm ammunition downrange in the best 9mm pistols.

You get 21+1 rounds if you go for the extended mag, which goes some way to balancing that long barrel as well and you can put red dot sights up there to transform the gun.

Beretta 92FS, one of the classic 9mm pistols

10. Beretta 92FS

  • Price: $699.99
  • Barrel: 4.9″
  • Total Length: 8.5″
  • Weight: 2.2lb

The Beretta 92FS is a classic steel service sidearm, with a staggered magazine with 15+1 rounds. And it is one of the best hammer fired pistols of all time.

The US Military even rock this double action/single action trigger pull Italian gun where it is known as the M9. Bruce Willis had one in Die Hard. It also got a starring role in Lethal Weapon, Terminator and many more iconic films.

In fact, along with the Glock, this sidearm that is standard issue for military and law enforcement around the country has been on the silver screen more than most of Hollywood’s biggest stars.

The open slide design, manual safety, magazine capaity and more mark this Wonder 9 apart from the competition. That and the decades of military service, and some movies…

ZEV Technologies OZ9 Competition. One of the best 9mm handguns. An all metal Glock with a heavy price tag.

11. ZEV Technologies OZ9 Combat

  • Price: $1,222.99
  • Barrel: 4.5 inch
  • Total Length: 8.5 inch
  • Weight: 1.75lb
  • Capacity: 15+1

Essentially this is the culmination of all ZEV Tech’s hard work tuning custom Glocks that include the iconic G34 Dragonfly. It’s built around a forged aluminum frame.

Yes, this is the all metal Glock we have been waiting for.

The gun shoots like a custom Glock 34, but better. So yes, of course it’s good. ZEV Technologies have consistently impressed us with their high quality parts. Now they have blown us away with the first custom gun, the ZEV Tech OZ9.

That was always a target shooting specialist for the shooting range and this handgun is better in every conceivable way. Except for the weight, and the price. So there are pros and cons, but mostly pros.

S&W M&P 2.0. Pistol FDE polymer pistol is a legend for a reason. Buy your Smith and Wesson online now.

12. Smith & Wesson M&P Pro 2.0 9mm

  • Price: $726.99
  • Barrel: 5″
  • Total length: 8.3″
  • Weight: 1.68lb
  • Capacity: 17+1 Rounds

The S&W M&P striker fired pistol is easily a match for the Sig, if the S&W M&P fits your particular hand like a glove. That’s basically the big difference at this level, personal feel rather than technical differences.

But the Smith & Wesson MP9 Shield is a great gun for concealed carry 9mm on this list, at least in Shield EZ 9mm form, thanks to a lightweight polymer frame and low profile dot sights.

The full size, compact and sub-compact S&W M&P are all great guns now and law enforcement is abandoning Glock for this pistol en masse.

Sig P226 Legion

13. Sig Sauer P226 Legion

  • Price: $1,099.99
  • Barrel length: 4.4 inch
  • Total: 8 inch
  • Weight: 2.12lb
  • Capacity: 15+1

The Sig Sauer P226 is one of the all-time legends. We could have got clever with a threaded version to go for 5 inches, but the P226 Legion is the one you want.

Maybe an SAO version…

The Sig comes with a stainless steel slide that has evolved into the perfect companion. Practiced hands can manipulate the slide and even strip this weapon in their sleep.

The police trust this pistol with their lives every day, and it’s an excellent choice for home defense.

CZ 75 B - A great Wonder 9 pistol that you can buy right now. Get the Eastern European master, cheap.

14. CZ 75 B

  • Price: $655.99
  • Barrel: 4.6″
  • Total Length: 8.1″
  • Weight: 2.2lb
  • Capacity: 16+1

We know we already covered the more expensive CZ Shadow. This is a cheap 9mm and it deserves to be by its side.

The CZ 75 B is the direct inspiration for several of the best guns on this list, including the winner. Without it, they simply would not have turned out that way. You can get all that heritage and prestige for less than the price of a decent 1911.

The CZ 75 B is a break from the polymer frame, striker-fired routine. This really is a grown up metal handgun with a proper hammer fired 9mm action and everything.

Canik TP9 SFX. A fantastic target shooter.

15. Canik TP9 SFX

  • Price: $499.99
  • Barrel: 5.2″
  • Total Length: 8.27″
  • Weight: 1.83lb
  • Capacity: 20 + 1 Rounds

We could show you the stock Canik TP9SF striker fired pistol, but all that really brings to the table is a low-budget price tag.

So, if you just want discount 9mm striker fired pistols, start there with the Canik TP9SF. There are pros and cons to that pistol. This one? Not so much.

The Canik SFX is a different animal. It’s a competitive target shooters’ 9mm and that means it’s perfectly equipped for home defense and it’s a service pistol plus that military, police and more use on the daily. An accessor rail underneath helps mount lights & lasers too.

So far, Canik has relied on the cut price offerings to fly the flag for the Turkish manufacturer that is tied in with Century Arms. But this Canik is a step in the right direction, a step upmarket. This is a semi-auto that sells on quality, not price. Although it is still a bargain…

Palmetto state Armory Dagger with RMR cuts and a threaded barrel for just $370.

16. Palmetto State Armory Dagger

  • Price: $369.99
  • Barrel: 4.5 + thread
  • Total: 7.15 inch
  • Weight: 1.4lb
  • Capacity: 17+1

Palmetto State Armory made its name with low budget rifles and AR pistols before turning its attention to the world of 9mm firearms with the Palmetto State Armory Dagger.

After some initial issues, the PSA Dagger has emerged as one of the finest custom Glock clones on the market. certainly for the money.

Great Pistol for a Bargain price

This is the ‘full’ version with a 4.5 inch barrel, and a barrel thread to make it work. Much more remarkably, you get a slide that is ready for an RMR, and more or less a custom Glock, for less than $400.

Let’s face it, the PSA Dagger is so cheap you can forgive the odd rough edge. That’s what you get, but you also get a reliable and solid polymer pistol for crazy cheap money.

That’s what the company does, and we salute them for it.

Looking For Something Smaller?

Now you have selected your big handgun, you might want something smaller to go with it. Like a fancy wine pairing…

Springfield Armory Hellcat 9mm pistol for sale. A new 9mm Micro compact and a Sig P365 rival

1. Springfield Hellcat

  • Price: $549.99

The Springfield Hellcat is one of the best concealed carry pistols on sale in 2023.

This 9mm micro compact handgun comes with insane double stack magazine capacity and impossibly small dimensions for such a complete handgun.

It is optics ready, available as a larger pro and Springfield Hellcat RDP Rapid Defense Package with a compensator. And the Springfield Hellcat is also a constant thorn in the side of the Sig Sauer P365, which was formerly the concealed carry champion of the world.

Read the full review here.

Sig Sauer P320 Compact With Manual Safety the best EDC

2. Sig P320 Compact

  • Price: $560.99

The Sig P320 Compact has evolved into a model line and you might want to look at the more expensive Sig P320 X pistols that have a number of performance features.

Now the mainstream Sig P320 is still a great gun, despite the occasional accidental discharge. It has taken the fight to the competition and even the carry Sig Sauer P365 XL from its own stable.

From a concealed carry gun to a service pistol and home defense star, the Sig P320 can do it all.

Palmetto State Armory Dagger

3. Palmetto State Armory Dagger Compact

  • Price: $299.99

The Palmetto State Armory Dagger Compact 9mm pistol is basically an evolved Glock clone built to a budget. It has proved to be a sales sensation.

With the cost of living killing us all, the Palmetto State Armory Dagger is a welcome chance to save money without really paying ny intangible price. This is a good gun.

You can get a PSA Dagger Compact with slide cuts, fiber optic night sights, an optics ready version, pretty much anything is on the table.

Taurus G2C, the best budget concealed carry for sale in 2023
4. Taurus G2C

4. Taurus G2C

  • Price: 250.99

The Taurus G2C is the best budget sub compact 9mm we can find right now. Although the Taurus GX4 is a better gun, the Taurus G2C is really cheap. And that counts.

It’s the highest capacity in its class, comes with an accessory rail, full length guide rod and is one of the best 9mm pistols on the market.

Sig P365 NItron with manual safety

5. Sig P365

  • Price: $549.99

The Sig P365 is the benchmark of this micro 9mm class and continues to feature at the head of the list in almost any category.

So if you don’t have a Sig P365, get the best concealed carry pistol in many people’s eyes.

Taurus G3C on sale now.

6. Taurus G3C

  • Price: $243.16

The Taurus G3C is another niche model from the company and honestly you need a full review to decided between this, the G2C and GX4.

But the Taurus G3C can be an option, if the gun deals are right on that given day. The Taurus G3C is the shorter subcompact version of the compact G3 and the grip modules are elegant.

16 Best Full Size 9mm Pistols – Sep’ 2023

7. Ruger Security 9

  • Price: $322.99

The Ruger Security 9 is a quality compact pistol that won’t break the bank and comes with solid magazine capacity.

With the Ruger Security 9, you get basic sights, good ergonomics, a nice grip angle and an accessory rail.

We like the Ruger Security 9. It’s a solid pistol with deep cut slide serrations and a reputation for reliability and accuracy.

S&W M&P Shield Plus. A fantastic concealed carry pistol with a high capacity magazine

8. S&W M&P Shield

  • Price: $440.00

The S&W M&P Shield Plus is another great concealed carry that easily matches up to the likes of the Glock G43x and Sig P365 in terms of magazine capacity and ergonomics.

Now the S&W M&P Shield Plus is a major update on the old gun, so it is starting to feel just a touch dated. But the performance features are really a match for anything on the market.

Plenty of police use the Smith and Wesson M&P Shield as a back up, or the bigger guns as a main duty gun. They’re easy to conceal and great guns.

Parts & Accessories

If you want a threaded barrel for your Springfield Hellcat for plinking at the gun range, Sig P365, Sig P320 full size with a 5 inch barrel, or a Glock 17 Gen 3, we can help. Lights and lasers for your S&W M&P Shield, we got the aftermarket support for the big names.

How about a new grip module for your Palmetto State Armory Dagger pistols, revolvers, all that. Or an extended magazine release. We can help with top picks and a buyers guide.

Both PSA and Primary Arms are our main go to people for spares for handguns and a gun cleaning kit, full sized 9mm Luger through to sub-compact 1911 and micro compact 9mm. Check them out here.

Iron sights for your cheap AR-15? Shooting targets and focusing on follow up shots? Why not. We have the best range of spares…

Optics, scopes, lights, lasers, night vision? Sure, why not? Night vision is a bit John Rambo, but there’s a time and a place for it. Night. Mostly… There will be a buyers guide for that too. And optics, scopes, shooting targets, even a cleaning kit etc. One day. Or night.

Check out these links

Which Gun Store is the Best?

We honestly think this is the best gun store in America, because it’s a price picker for the other best gun stores. But if you want to see more, check here.

We don’t do gift cards. So don’t ask us about your gift card balance, or gift cards generally, we guess…

We pretend to have customer service at this special address. But it’s really just me and a few writers. So don’t expect massive amounts of customer service is what we’re saying, but perhaps a touch of customer support. We’re just giving you the 9mm handguns, rifles, shotguns, 9mm full size, compact 9mm and bullpup.

Check your local gun laws before you order and keep an eye out for new gun laws.


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