17 Best Subcompact 45 ACP Pistols for CCW – Sep 2022

Kimber Ultra CDP II - Kimber Custom Defense Package

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Now back to the original post on the best 45 ACP carry pistols for CCW…

What is the best sub-compact 1911 45 Officer pistol for sale in 2020?

The good old 230gr hollow point. For some it’s the only logical last line of defense and the best pistol is always .45 ACP. So what are the best subcompact 45 ACP handguns out there?


Despite 9mm making massive ground in recent years, a bigger and heavier bullet is just a better starting point for some. And 45 ACP ballistics tech hasn’t exactly stood still in the last 50 years.


9mm vs 45 ACP Concealed Carry: The War That Never Ends


Stopping Power. There, we said it, once, and we’re done with that tiresome internet debate. You can go have the 9mm vs 45 ACP concealed carry war on the forums. Or in the comments, it would be good for my SEO…


What is a subcompact handgun? The Definition…

Now we have to lay down some markers, because subcompact is a vague term. So a 3.5 inch barrel or less and a total length of 7 inches allows for a variety of options.


Any less and the choice would be dismal, excluding Officer sized 1911s. So that’s our definition of a subcompact handgun for this class. If you were wondering…


The Best Subcompact 45 ACP Handguns For Sale in 2022


Springfield XD-M Elite 3.8. The best subcompact 45 ACP carry pistol for sale.

1. Springfield Armory XD-M Elite Compact


  • Price: $599.99
  • Caliber: .45 ACP Pistol
  • Barrel: 3.8 inch
  • Total Length: 7 inch
  • Weight: 1.5lb
  • Magazine Capacity: 10+1


This is the double stack 45 subcompact you’ve been waiting for with the full 10+1 rounds. So even though the barrel is a fraction too long for this class and it isn’t a true subcompact, this is the best gun here by a mile.


The Springfield Armory XD-M Elite Compact is lighter than the subcompact 1911s here, smaller and that longer match-grade barrel helps tame the round.


It isn’t quite a true sub compact, but the Springfield XDM Elite is still the best subcompact pistol chambered in 45 ACP out there right now. Confusing, but true.


Handgun With Great Ergonomics


The slightly larger size gives this black polymer framed pistol brilliant ergonomics.


The high-quality metal slide gets a hard wearing Black Melonite finish, and even the black synthetic material feels higher grade than some guns we could mention.


Some people scoff at two safety levers. But the Springfield Armory XD Mod 2 Subcompact and this spin-off are supremely popular with Law Enforcement, private security and more, precisely because of them.


A 1911-style grip and trigger blade safety were unique. Now others have started to copy this innovation, but this semi-automatic pistol was and is one of the best. It also cuts down on limpwristing issues as you need a positive grip to shoot.



Good For CCW


It truly is a sub compact handgun and could slip in an IWB holster without printing. 


The Springfield XD-M Elite is a small carry firearm, but the palm swell fits even larger hands. An extended mag capacity can give you a little more real estate to play with, too, and more rounds. Suddenly you’ve got 13+1 rounds in your extended magazine and an absolute weapon…


Until we see a Gen 5 Glock, this is the best 45 Subcompact pistol you can buy. Maybe long after that too.



Springfield Mod 2 Compact 45 ACP for sale, a great concealed 45

Cheaper Springfield 45s Work Well Too


If you can handle carrying a compact pistol, you can benefit from a near ridiculous 13+1 magazine capacity in the 4 inch barrel version. That is enough payoff to mention it here as an all round carry and home defense gun.


And the Compact is basically the same size as an Officer size 1911. So I think it’s legit. It’s basically Glock 19 dimensions and fractions bigger than the XD-M Elite.


You can also find a cheaper Springfield Defender that is our favorite cheap pistol. Both belong with the standout 45 ACP handguns for sale in 2022. As long as you get a variant of the XD Mod 2 subcompact, compact pistol or full size, you’ll love it.


Springfield XD Mod 2 Subcompact is a Class Act

This family of guns have been regular winners with us in recent years. If you chose the Springfield Armory XD Mod 2 subcompact 45 ACP, in any form, then you know your stuff.


They crop up as Springfield XDM, Defender and other names, but look for the basic spec and you’ll be fine. If you’re not fussy about the spec, you can grab a bargain too and save hundreds if you find an older gun or the Springfield Defender.



Kimber Ultra CDP II - Kimber Custom Defense Package for sale, a great compact 1911 for CCW

2. Kimber Ultra CDP – Kimber Custom Defense Package


  • Price: $844.99
  • Caliber: .45 ACP Auto
  • Barrel: 3 inch
  • Total Length: 6.8 inch
  • Weight: 1.6lb


Kimber’s makes boutique guns that could easily qualify as jewelry, as well as personal defense. I mean the Kimber Ultra CDP II is definitely gunporn and one of the more exclusive sub compact 45 ACP pistols for CCW.


It certainly feels like one of the more exclusive carry pistols for sale.



Kimber vs Colt: Close With Custom Guns


Now Kimber vs Colt’s is the battle that defines the 45 carry firearm sector. Indeed you don’t have to look too hard for unkind words, rants even, about the Kimber Micro 9. But the user reviews on the Kimber Ultra CDP II are a different story to the 9mm Kimber Micro.


This is a Kimber Custom gun, which means it gets that extra love and attention at the factory that results in a reliable, sweet-shooting concealed 45 ACP.


Custom Shop Goes to Work on Lightweight Frame


Kimber starts with a KimPro II aluminum frame, marries that to a stainless steel slide and straps some low profile sights up top.


A full length guide rod and recoil spring, two tone Cerakote finish and double-diamond rosewood 1911 grips complete this extravagant look. Even the fiber optic front sight looks like an accent touch.


Under the skin, it’s a single action trigger system that has won rave reviews from pro shooters that can feel subtle differences. In the end, though, these are emotional purchases, as much as a logical choice, and you won’t buy it because of the trigger system.


You’ll buy it because it’s cool, and you will be right. Kimber Custom’s full size pistols are a sight to behold, too. Read about the Kimber Rapide and the best Kimber 1911 pistols here.


3.

Glock 30 Gen 4 - An exceptional 45 ACP concealed carry pistol for sale. Get 10 rounds of 45 ACP in one subcompact handgun.

3. Glock G30


  • Price: $576.99
  • Caliber: 45 Auto (ACP)
  • Total length: 6.97 inch
  • Barrel Length: 3.78 inch
  • Capacity: 10+1
  • Weight: 1.43lb


Conservative minds might argue this is still the best gun here. Glock is a popular handgun in any caliber because it’s a safe option. But this is still the Gen 4, and that isn’t a perfet gun.


If you want a super reliable 45 ACP Sub-compact pistol that goes bang every time you pull the trigger, requires zero maintenance and can be relied on to survive a nuclear winter, then just save time and buy this Glock now.


These are the best 45 concealed carry pistols for the vast majority of people. Law enforcement officers love them as a backup gun, and that’s not just because of Glock’s LEO pricing…


Traditional Glock Handguns Strengths Work Here


We are not big Glock fans here, but this is a specific task. Reliability, accuracy and ease of concealment are Glock’s main strengths.


The overall length of the Glock G30 means the barrel isn’t a major issue. In fact it can help with recoil reduction, muzzle flip and that other small detail – hitting the target.


So we gave the Glock a pass on the longer barrel too. It doesn’t quite fit the rules, by the letter of the law. But then others don’t now either and it’s not quite a compact handgun either…



Gen 4 Glock Handguns Need Mods


The only real downer is this is the Gen 4, which had a notoriously mushy trigger pull. So you may end up replacing a connector plate, or the whole trigger group, to get the best gun possible.


No manual safety either, which is something you can cope with or you can’t.



Major Competitors Missing in Best 45 ACP Class


The Glock doesn’t have to contend with the Sig P320 Compact that is a major thorn in its side in other categories, but is just too big to consider here.


So if you want a shrunken 45 plastic pistol then it’s this or the Springfield.


It’s your EDC, not your safe queen or Facebook profile picture. It doesn’t have to be pretty, it has to be effective. Glocks are still really good at that. Even the Gen 4.


And the Gen 5 could put Glock back on top.


Rock Island Armory BBR 3.1 for sale. Is this the future of the subcompact 45 ACP

4. Rock Island Armory BBR 3.1


  • Price: $549.99
  • Barrel: 3.1 inch
  • Total: 7 inch
  • Weight: 2lb
  • Capacity: 10+1


This is the Holy Grail: the 10-round subcompact 1911 with the double stack mag. It’s also a Rock Island Armory, and that’s a bold strategy.


RIA has taken some massive steps of late and this is the first genuine Officer size 1911 that gives you a full 10 rounds. It’s a cool gun.


Now this hammer-fired BBR 3.1 is an all-metal handgun that still weighs in at just 2lb, even with the additional girth to accommodate the fatter staggered mags.


BBR 3.1 Also Looks Good


You also get quality night sights up top, and sexy grips. It’s a nice gun too.


Technically, it proves my point about the Springfield XD-M Compact, though. This is the same size, and that’s a better gun. That, availability, and just the fact that the Rock Island Armory hasn’t had time to prove its reliability mean its down here for now.


But this could be a future winner.


Smith & Wesson M&P Shield 2.0 - A great concealed carry in 45 ACP Auto. Buy guns online now.

5. Smith & Wesson M&P Shield


  • Price: $500.99
  • Caliber: .45 ACP
  • Barrel: 3.3 inch
  • Overall Length: 6.5 inch
  • Weight: 1.29lb
  • Capacity: 6+1


The Smith & Wesson M&P Shield 2.0 is another multi-caliber star and this personal defense legend is one of the most compelling pistols in 45 ACP.


In fact in this company this might be the micro compact 45 pistol that at least some of you are still looking for.


The Smith &Wesson M&P Shield is a slim, lightweight handgun than is easy to conceal without printing. It has just enough detail on the slide to make it easy to work with at the shooting range.


It also has just enough bullets to send most intruders on their way. The safety on this version of the Smith & Wesson Shield subcompact pistol is a nice touch too. And there’s a loaded chamber indicator.


Smith and Wesson M&P Shield is Great in All Calibers


It’s a black polymer special and is designed not to stand out, but the Smith and Wesson is a great little semi-automatic handgun that has proven itself over the years.


The full-sized version and the Smith & Wesson compact aren’t too shabby as carry guns either, thanks to the lightweight polymer frame. You can buy a Performance Center gun, too, with night sights and all manner of add-ons.


This is the Shield 2.0 and it continues to be a sales sensation for the firearms manufacturer. At this price, it’s certainly one of the best concealed carry pistols here in terms of value, and maybe just outright ability.


S&W 1911 Pro Series 45 ACP Auto. A Performance Center tuned 45 handgun that gives you possibly the best concealed carry 1911.

6. S&W Performance Center SW1911 Pro


  • Price: $1,384.99
  • Caliber: .45 ACP Pistol
  • Barrel: 3 inch
  • Total Length: 6.9 inch
  • Weight: 1.6lb
  • Capacity: 7+1


The latest S&W Performance Center 1911 could be the best Officer-sized 1911 on this list. It might not have the cache of the Colt in this weight class, but technically it’s a match and more.


Supply is limited, demand is high, you know the Covid 19 story of 2021 by now. If you see one of these, don’t sit and think for too long. if it’s out of stock, well we’re doing our best to find more.


In time we might swap them and take the heat. This little beauty from the Smith and Wesson Performance Center is really that good.


This gun gets a full-length guide, oversized extractor and other premium touches. It also packs in one more round than the Colt, which is seriously important. It’s just one more bullet, but it’s also 15% more ammo.


It’s a match for the obvious rival everywhere. The design looks a little more cohesive and aimed at a younger crowd and we could see ourselves carrying one before a Defender.


Glock 36 for sale. It's a rare and expensive treat for those that love them. Get yours today.

7. Glock G36


  • Price: $576.99
  • Caliber: 45 ACP
  • Barrel Length: 3.8 inch
  • Total: 6.75 inch
  • Weight: 1.3lb
  • Capacity: 6+1

Only a true Glock guy can tell you the difference between the Glock 30 and the Glock 36. Basically the G36 is 4 ounces lighter and 0.1 inches thinner and carries less ammo.


The end result is a gun that carries one less round and produces more recoil. The single stack is also harder to find and tends to be more expensive as a result.


Except for those small issues, it’s all win. We’d get the G30, every time. The extra ammo is worth the weight and marginal extra on the hips and an extended mag is easy to source.


Aside from that they’re almost indistinguishable. 2 blocky handguns with a melonite finish slide.



The somber Blued Colt Defender 45 ACP handgun on sale. Get the best price on your concealed carry .45 1911 Officer size here.

8. Colt Defender


  • Price: $1,500.00+
  • Caliber: 45 ACP Auto
  • Barrel Length: 3 inch
  • Total: 6.75 inch
  • Weight: 1.5lb
  • Capacity: 7+1


If you want a subcompact 1911 45 ACP carry pistol, you really should take a look at the Colt Defender and the even more extravagant Colt Defender Combat Elite. If you can find them…


Liam Neeson would struggle to find a Colt Defender these days. And when they do turn up, the pricing is insane, especially for the Combat Elite. That’s why it’s nowhere near the top spot right now.


This isn’t a cheap handgun, but then you have to be really careful with compact 1911 pistols. Don’t cheap out, only a few of them have a stellar reputation for reliability and contained muzzle flip.


Colt struggled when it chopped down the 5 inch cold hammer forged barrel to 4 inches, so we didn’t even get the Colt Defender until 2000. Now it is perhaps the finest of the breed and the Combat Elite is a refined version. So the Combat Elite should be the best here.


Although one or two companies do have something to say about that… And, well, you still have to find one. This search is done for you, some of the prices will make you laugh.


Old School 1911, Shrunk To Fit


It’s a traditional 1911 cut down to size, made from cold hammer forged steel, and it just feels different in the hand. We think the 9mm vs 45 ACP for personal defense is done and relatively dusted.


But personal defense handguns largely come down to the sense of security they impart. If you’re happier with 230gr on your hip, well that’s your call and it’s literally your life. If you want the lighter grain ammunition, you can get a 9mm Defender these days too.


The Series 80 Colt has the internal passive firing pin safety, an important safety feature for a gun that could be pointed directly at your nuts if you appendix carry, and you’re a dude, or identify as one…


Effective, Without Breaking the Bank


Fixed three dot Novak Carry sights are slimline and effective, with that rear sight designed for a smooth draw. This is not a tacticool gun.


You don’t need a strobe light on this, and an RMR would just look wrong without a real solid reason. You do need the deal recoil spring set-up, though, which helps kill muzzle rise in what could obviously be a supremely snappy handgun.



Colt Trigger Pull is Stuff of Legend


The trigger action is legendary, although the Series 70 pistols are generally considered smoother still. It’s a roll, rather than a break, and it will make your shooting technique better by default.


The Dual Spring Recoil System is a big deal for Colt and helps reduce felt recoil. It also extends the life of the recoil springs and contributes to improved reliability.


It’s not quite a Glock in terms of reliability, but then nothing is. For a 1911, if you maintain it well then this is about as good as it gets.


Of course it weighs slightly more than a plastic gun, but for some that additional weight feels like quality. There’s no doubt these steel frame pistols will outlast most polymer framed alternatives.


You can opt for a range of Cerakote finishes, polished metal, blued and more. A range of real wood grips mean it comes in just about every flavor and there’ll be a look to suit your mood. Or something….


What is the best sub-compact 1911 45 Officer pistol for sale in 2020?

9. Ruger SR1911 Officer Style


  • Price: $869.99
  • Barrel: 3.6″
  • Total Length: 7.25″
  • Weight: 1.94lb
  • Capacity: 7+1 Rounds


Ruger might actually deserve to be higher. A triple spring recoil reduction system looks like a real tangible advantage and the standard gun comes with a brushed steel finish that looks just as good as more expensive rivals.


The company then went to town on the finishing touches. The hammer and trigger are skeletonized and those 1911 grips are pure gun porn.


This is a Series 70 1911 Officer size compact pistol with just a little more barrel, without adding too much to the overall weight. We have to be honest this gun is the same length as a Glock 19. But it’s sexier, so much sexier.


A lowered and flared ejection port, a titanium firing pin, checkered mainspring housing and that pronounced memory bump on the beavertail safety show just how far Ruger has gone to incorporate custom handgun touches.


This gun is technically every bit as good as the leading lights. If you can live without the badge snobbery, you’ll save money and arguably finish up with a better gun.


Kahr Arms CW45. A concealed carry 45 ACP legend comes up with innovation, a double action only handgun with a locked breech.

10. Kahr CW45

  • Price: $379.99
  • Barrel: 3.64 inch
  • Overall: 6.32 inch
  • Weight: 1.19lb


Kahr Arms has plugged away at the striker fired 45 ACP cartridge market for a while and it has a devoted following. There’s a lot to like about the Kahr CW45, too, which brings some olde world 1911 technology to the new age with an affordable price.


The single stack Kahr CW45 is a double action only pistol with a locking breech. Some people will love the accessibility and user friendly feel that goes with that. The Kahr CW45 is the point and shoot of the polymer framed pistol world, it’s a soft, none threatening trigger action and recoil is damped too.


Packaging wise, this gun is a minor miracle. We had to give it a pass on the length of the barrel, because the Kahr CW45 actually 3.64 inches. But the whole gun is just 6.32 inches long, so this is a lot of gun in a relatively small footprint. We’re impressed, even though it means the design is a little square.


Narrow Gun, Which Prevents Printing


The width is the maddest thing here. This gun is an inch thick at its widest point and that means it stows like a dream. The longer barrel certainly feels more accurate while range shooting and the stippling fits your hand just right.


You can get high up on the grip, the bore axis of the gun falls into place and recoil fades as if by design.


The Kahr PM45 is the classic 45 ACP polymer frame handgun. That is another multi-caliber pistol that covers everything from 9mm right through to 230gr .45 Cal.


The Kahr is still available on Guns.com and you can pick one up for just over $300. There isn’t much else in that price range at all. We prefer the newer guns, though, and think the Kahr Arms PM45’s time has come and gone now.


Desert Eagle 1911 Undercover 45 ACP. A stylish sub-compact 1911 that is pure gun porn and a custom gun for off-the-peg prices.

11. Magnum Research Desert Eagle 1911 Undercover

  • Price: $1,026.99
  • Barrel: 3 inch
  • Total: 6.85 inch
  • Weight: 1.61lb
  • Capacity: 6+1

Magnum Research, the company behind the infamous full-sized Desert Eagle .50, also does a rather splendid line of 1911 handguns. This subcompact 1911 CCW is absolute gun porn, and the finishing touches hint at a custom gun.


The adjustable rear sights, checkered front and back straps, flared magwell and high-ride beavertail grip safety really do look the part.


The frame is machined from billet aluminum and the slide is carbon-infused steel. The aluminum trigger, skeleton hammer and G10 grips are all quality items and this gun stacks up pretty well against the Colt in the looks department.


This subcompact 1911 has a lot going for it and, like the Desert Eagle .50, we think it’s going to be a sales sensation.


Remington 1911 UltraLight Executive for sale. A stunning subcompact 1911 that costs a fortune. Want the best?

12. Remington 1911 R1 UltraLight Executive


  • Price: $1,046.99
  • Caliber: .45 Cal ACP
  • Barrel: 3.5 inch
  • Overall: 7 inch
  • Weight: 1.75lb
  • Capacity: 7+1


Remington doesn’t get that much love on these pages with its 1911s, but we’ve noticed that personal bias and we’re doing our best to address it.


The truth is that Remington has become a real niche handgun brand, but when you look at the designs and the tech on each individual model then you struggle to see why it isn’t a bigger force generally.


Aluminum Frame

This is an aluminum framed 1911 45 ACP designed to fit into a small footprint, hence the rounded heel for CCW that helps keep a gun with a relatively long barrel stay at 7 inches long exactly. That’s decent packaging for a 45.




You get a match-grade barrel, Tritium sights, a drilled out trigger and hammer and a few other neat touches. The Remington is pretty sexy, too, it has to be said. But we just don’t see them out in the wild. Try one, you might genuinely like it.


A more elegant version of the  Custom Defence Package. The Kimber Aegis is a designer handgun for those that like to look at their gun, as well as shoot it.

13. Kimber Aegis Elite Ultra Compact 1911

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

We went with the Kimber CDP up top, because we think we should. But man the Kimber Aegis Elite Ultra is a pretty little gun.


It’s cheaper, too. Just…


The front sight is an accent touch in itself, as well as providing excellent sights. They sit atop an alloy frame and some of the most seductive 1911 grips in this whole post.


We would still take the CDP, because that’s a full Kimber Custom Shop gun and we get the impression this single stack is a halfway house. It looks like a designer gun, built to a price point.


The Kimber Aegis is achingly beautiful, though, and we could see why you’d choose this as an EDC.



ATI Xtreme Firepower 1911 45 ACP for sale. A budget subcompact 1911 that actually works.

14. ATI Firepower Xtreme Titan 1911

  • Price: $429.99
  • Barrel: 3.1 inch
  • Total: 6.93 inch
  • Weight: 2.2lb
  • Capacity: 7+1


At first glance, the ATI Firepower Xtreme Titan 1911 looks exactly the kind of budget 45 ACP carry pistol you should avoid.


It’s cheap, and it looks like one of those concealed carry pistols you might regret buying in a moment of weakness. When it fails…


But then you see the user reviews of this subcompact pistol. The 4.5 star rating and more than 70 positive reviews show that this is a great gun in the Rock Island Armory mold.


It’s a budget shooter that simply overdelivers on the engineering and gives up a few finishing touches.


The frame is engineered from 4140 Steel, and there’s a stainless steel guide rod and spring. You also get a proper grip safety and frame mounted thumb safety.


The trigger is aluminum and drilled three times for weight saving, while the tech is topped off with real mahogany grips and you get 7+1 rounds in an impossibly small microcompact 1911 package. It’s really a skill.


Cheap Subcompact 45 ACP Caliber Pistol


It’s a kind of fusion recipe with firearms, but ATI has delivered a reliable and solid subcompact 1911 45 ACP for less than $500. We have nothing but admiration for that feat and the user reviews are nothing short of ecstatic for this price range.


Cheap guns that massively overdeliver tend to be the only ones to elicit that mad gun review love. We saw it recently with the Taurus G2C, the DPMS Oracle and this shrunken 1911.


There’s normally a reason for this kind of internet heat, so if you’re in the market for a subcompact pistol then take a good long look at the American Tactical Innovations ATI Firepower Xtreme Titan and get ready for a surprise.


Charter Arms Pitbull 45 ACP, a concealed carry snubnose revolver

15. Charter Arms Pitbull Revolver

  • Price: $481.99
  • Caliber: .45 Cal ACP Auto
  • Barrel: 2.5 inch
  • Total Length: 6.5 inch
  • Weight: 1.38lb


A carry revolver is an interesting choice of compact handgun to begin with. If you then opt for a 45 ACP revolver in your carry holsters, you’re surely just messing with people…


44 Magnum rules the roost when it comes to revolvers, with 357 Magnum a close second. A 45 ACP subcompact pistol is not even on the radar of most serious revolver shooters. It really is a round that was designed for semi auto handguns.


But it works here and it works well in the multi-caliber revolver that is the Charter Arms Pitbull. You can find this handgun in the usual calibers, and oddities like this one and 9mm. Why? Because people buy them and seem to like them.


It’s a large caliber oddity, a curiosity and yet it’s certainly an option if you’re looking for an alternative carry gun and the usual Glock rival pistols just don’t do it for you.

Tanfoglio Witness Polymer Compact 45 ACP for sale. Is this the best new concealed carry 45 ACP subcompact out there?

16. Tanfoglio Witness Polymer

  • Price: $547.99
  • Barrel: 3.6 inch
  • Total Length: 7.3
  • Weight: 1.75lb
  • Capacity: 8+1


Update: We can’t find one right now, but this gun is reappearing as the RIA MAPP Series. If and when the 45 hits the market, this will be right back towards the top.


We’re pushing the very limits of sub-compact, we know. But if you can handle concealing a slightly larger gun, or indeed prefer to, this is a much more complete defensive pistol than most here.


It’s not just us that really like this thing too.


RIA MAPP Series is the Tanfoglio Polymer, Yes…


In fact it so well designed that Rock Island Armory have bought the rights to reproduce it in 9mm form only so far. You should look out for the RIA MAPP Series, as well as the Italian Tanfoglio.


They’re basically the same gun and one should be about $100 cheaper. You can guess which one…


It’s a DA/SA pistol that we think outdoes the Glock in more or less every critical area.


Perfect Carry Gun, From Design to Execution


The ergonomics are world class, borrowing heavily from both 1911s and the company’s competition pistols that have fast achieved legend and Champion status.


The grip design alone makes this gun worth considering and the beveled slide and chopped front are awesome from a quick draw perspective.


A manual frame mounted safety and chunky slide stop is also a nice 1911 touch brought up to date.


You even get a proper Picatinny rail slung under the barrel. That’s rarely a dealbreaker in this class, but it’s nice to have.


This is a great gun. Arguably it’s the finest carry 45 ACP here and only a conservative nature is keeping it from a podium position. It even gets an additional round compared to some. And there’s no denying more bullets do give you more stopping power.


A solid track record of reliability, and everybody else loving it as much as we do, could change that.


Sig Sauer 1911 Ultra-Compact Two Tone pistol for sale. It's a great concealed carry 1911 and a stunning handgun with a high price.

17. Sig 1911 Ultra-Compact


  • Price: $949.99
  • Barrel: 3.3 inch
  • Overall: 6.8 inch
  • Weight: 1.8lb
  • Capacity: 7+1


Most of Sig’s great 1911s don’t even come close to the size restrictions here. But this Sig Ultra Compact 1911, or micro-compact 1911 to give it a more useful name, is an absolutely stellar gun.


Yes it’s expensive, but we covered this before. Making a small 45 ACP Cartridge 1911 cycle reliably is a feat in itself and in review, Sig has earned a nigh-on perfect reputation. It’s one of the few that could challenge the Colt on the absolute basics.


This single action 1911 is simply a shrunken 45 ACP handgun with all the requisite features. They include a thumb safety and a traditional grip back-up gun security system.


Trigger is Crisp and Clean, Like a Winter’s Day

We love it for that, and the near perfect trigger, and a lot of other things. Those real Rosewood grips, the Hard Anodized Finish and Cerakote coated frame are the cherries on a pretty tasty Sig Sauer cake.


Sig Sauer smashed it out the park with the 1911 Ultra-Compact. It isn’t cheap, but it is perfectly formed and finished. If you’re a Sig Sauer fanatic then you already know this, and you’re probably here just to buy one.


We wish we could show you more subcompact pistols from Sig Sauer, but the P229, the compact 1911s and even the plastic fantastic Sig P320 Compact are just too big to fit this particular list. This is the best 45 ACP Subcompact from Sig Sauer that fits the description.

What about the most famous guns that just aren’t here?


Most 45 carry guns are too big for the subcompact class and even we were surprised by just how few of the established 45 ACP subcompact pistols from the likes of Sig Sauer and the likes of the H&K USP Compact came even close to the self-imposed size limit here.


We expected the Springfield Range Officer to star here, as well, but we just couldn’t justify it. It’s not close. So the Springfield Range Officer will have to wait for another post. Along with the Ruger SR45.


And we really did want HK represented here. We like Heckler & Koch, but the USP compact has a 4.4 inch barrel. So yeah, there’s that…


If you want the Sig P320, the H&K USP Compact and the legendary concealed carry pistols, or even a Beretta PX4 Storm in your Alien Gear holster, check out our list of the 25 best compact 45 ACP gun reviews here.


Sig P365 is a great 9mm handgun

Consider the 9mm Alternative

If you’re totally in love with 230gr hollo points, well we understand. But if you just haven’t looked too hard in recent times, well 9mm Luger has come a long way. And the likes of the Sig P365 and Springfield Hellcat have changed the game.

The Sig P365 was the first best-selling micro-compact pistol that slotted in beneath the subcompact pistols we all thought were as small as we ever dared go. A slimline slide width, small footprint and solid capacity mean this is the firearm most people buy these days.

Now the Springfield Hellcat has gone to war with the Sig P365, the Kimber R7 Mako, Beretta APX and lots more. They are State compliant by design and are perfect for slipping unnoticed into a IWB, purse or pocket holster.

So before you buy your cannon, consider a Sig P365 and the competition.

Parts and Accessories

You might want to enjoy shooting sports, or you might just have worn out your Smith & Wesson M&P Shield at the range. So you need parts and accessories. Our favorite suppliers are here:

Get the Best Carry Holsters at the Best Price


Don’t do all this research and spend the money on the right pistol, and then cheap out on your carry holsters. Get the best you can afford from the likes of Alien Gear, Crossbreed Holsters and more.

Try these live links for the best carry holsters in stock right now:

And if you’ve made it this far maybe you want a little extra reading? Try these.



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3 Comments

  1. Pingback: The Guns of John Wick 3 - USA Gun Shop November 18, 2019
  2. Joe Smith October 23, 2020
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