I have considerable experience with CZ pistols, from the original CZ 75 to the CZ P-01 and other variants. But nothing prepared me for the experience of handling and firing the newest CZ pistol, the CZ P10-C. It isn’t radical in design and technology, but it is different from anything CZ has done before.
CZ has entered the lucrative polymer frame, striker-fired 9mm market in a big way, and I predict it will make a big splash in the pond—not only with CZ fans, but among all shooters.
The first thing I noticed when hefting the pistol was that that the grip feels good. It isn’t neutral like the Glock in that it fits most hands OK. This one really fit the hand well. The grip angle is excellent. The CZ line is famous for this feel, and it continues in the CZ P10-C. The grip features a swell in mid palm and a well-designed beavertail that makes for a low bore axis. The pistol features three changeable grip straps, so everyone should be able to fire the new pistol.
The grip angle makes for a good natural point. I do not point shoot, but I always aim my pistols. Just the same, this natural heft is good when you are on the move and want to get the sights to the eyes quickly. The low bore centerline also limits muzzle flip. There simply isn’t much leverage for the grip to rise.
This grip also gives the shooter good purchase when firing, and this means the grip is stabilized as the trigger finger presses the trigger straight to the rear. Attention to detail pays off, and this is a well-designed handgun in this regard. The trigger guard is generous and would easily accommodate gloved hand use.
The magazine release/catch and slide stop/lock are fully ambidextrous. It is much easier to design, than later attempt to add a left hand safety. This makes the CZ among a very few truly ambidextrous handguns. The location, shape, and manipulation of these controls are ideal. The finger does not bump into these controls during a firing string, but the controls are easily manipulated quickly under stress.
Trigger compression is important. The trigger must be consistent and smooth but not necessary light. A tight trigger with little play and loose motion is essential for true accuracy. The CZ P10-C trigger breaks at 5.4 pounds on the RCBS trigger gauge. This is slightly lighter than the 5.5-pound Glock standard. It is considerably lighter than the 6.0 pounds found on some Glocks and the Smith and Wesson M&P.
The trigger is controllable because it is consistent. There is a modest take up, and the trigger breaks cleanly. Those who fired the pistol commented on the rapid and audible reset. The pistol features a trigger action similar to the Glock.
Slide energy partially preps the striker while the trigger pulls the striker to the rear to break the sear and send the striker forward to fire the cartridge. The action is free of creep and stacking. It isn’t a SIG P210, but it is better than most striker-fired pistols.
I also examined and studied the firing pin block. This isn’t the common plunger type example, but rather a type known as the rotating drop safety. It is claimed to be more reliable in harsh conditions than the common plunger type. This type of firing pin block may interfere less with the trigger action. The magazines hold 15 9mm Luger cartridges.
The steel slide is well finished with no tool marks and sports a blue finish. The sights are steel and offer an excellent three-dot sight picture. The slide features forward cocking serrations that are readily grasped and effective.
The pistol does not have to be decocked to be taken down, and breaks down with two take down levers. Lock up is standard fare for most modern handguns. The barrel hood locks into the ejection port. The barrel is angled in and out of lockup by angled camming surfaces.
The initial examination showed the pistol has many good features. For example, the pistol features a light rail on the frame to accommodate modern combat lights and lasers. However, the truth is in the firing. This means firing with a good cross section of ammunition including training loads and service loads in different bullet weights. These included the Federal 115-grain Syntech, Federal American Eagle 124-grain FMJ, Federal 124-grain HST, CCI Blazer 115-grain FMJ, Hornady 124-grain XTP +P, Hornady 147-grain XTP, and Browning 147-grain FMJ training load.
I have encountered handguns that refused to operate with one load or another, and a true service-grade handgun cannot be accepted if it does this. I added other loads as the test progressed to test accuracy from the bench rest and a standing barricade firing position. These included the Fiocchi 115-grain Extrema JHP and the Winchester 124-grain PDX.
This wasn’t a one- or two-day test, and the CZ never failed to feed, chamber, fire, or eject with a variety of loads. Like all quality handguns, the CZ preferred some loads to others but accuracy was service grade- inside of four inches at 25 yards from the bench rest, and much better with other loads. After much experience with the Glock, Walther, and Smith and Wesson striker-fired handguns, it appears the CZ is at least as accurate and perhaps more so.
In combat firing, I would rate the CZ P10-C a superior handgun based on the grip shape and the pistol’s low bore axis. The grip definitely fits the hand well and the sights are good combat sights. The trigger action is controllable and muzzle flip limited. Overall, the CZ P10-C is an excellent handgun well worth its price.
Bench Rest Groups, 25 yards, Average of two 5-shot Groups
|Cartridge||Muzzle Velocity||Group Size in Inches|
|Browning 147-grain FMJ||945 fps||2.65|
|Federal American Eagle 124-grain FMJ||1130 fps||3.2|
|Federal 124-grain HST||1211 fps||2.4|
|Fiocchi 115-grain Extrema||1105 fps||1.9|
|SIG Sauer 124-grain V Crown||1216 fps||2.6|
|Hornady 124-grain XTP +P||1242 fps||2.8|
|Hornady 147-grain XTP||960 fps||1.95|
|Winchester 124-grain PDX +P||1230 fps||2.5|
Are you a CZ fan? Have you shot the P10-C? How does it rank among the CZ line? Share your answers or opinions in the comment section.
Bob Campbell is a former peace officer and published author with over 40 years combined shooting and police and security experience. Bob holds a degree in Criminal Justice. Bob is the author of the books, The Handgun in Personal Defense, Holsters for Combat and Concealed Carry, The 1911 Automatic Pistol, The Gun Digest Book of Personal Protection and Home Defense, The Shooters Guide to the 1911, The Hunter and the Hunted, and The Complete Illustrated Manual of Handgun Skills. His latest book is Dealing with the Great Ammo Shortage. He is also a regular contributor to Gun Tests, American Gunsmith, Small Arms Review, Gun Digest, Concealed Carry Magazine, Knife World, Women and Guns, Handloader and other publications. Bob is well-known for his firearm testing.
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