SIG Sauer Elite ammunition has made a big splash in the market in a relatively short time. These loads exhibit good quality and reliability. SIG’s hollow point load features a remarkable new design, the V Crown hollow point.
I have tested the majority of the loadings available with good results. These loads have exhibited good to excellent accuracy. I have had no issues with function. All loads have fed, chambered, fired, and ejected normally. SIG recently introduced an addition to the Elite ammunition line.
The high performance M17 9mm +P load is named for the new U.S. Army pistol, SIG’s M17. These loads are useful for any quality 9mm handgun. The ammunition is billed as military grade. As far as reliability and performance, they meet the grade. SIG has offered both the new 9mm V Crown in 115-, 124- and 147-grain weights and training ammunition in the same weight. These are good loads that provide good performance. The balance of expansion and penetration is good.
+P loads increase the pressure of the 9mm cartridge by several thousand PSI. They also increase velocity. This means that a hollow point bullet will be forced to expand to a greater degree. The +P load may not be well suited to a pocket pistol, but a compact pistol such as the Glock 19 is often a good match for the 9mm +P. The new V Crown 124-grain +P is rated at 1,198 fps. The 124-grain FMJ is marked NATO and Military Grade. This load is also designed to break 1,198 fps, making for a good training load for use with the +P V Crown.
It is important to realize that different handguns will exhibit different velocity. As an example, the standard 1,198 fps may hold steady in a four-inch barrel Glock 19 but be less in the Glock 43. However, the advantage of the +P loading will always be there compared to a standard pressure load. The 124-grain V Crown holds together at this great velocity and retains 100 percent of its weight per my testing.
The 124-grain NATO M17 load is a full metal jacket load that doesn’t expand. If you have a need for extreme penetration or defense against the largest animals, then this is a load worth considering. It is a true, NATO-type loading—perhaps even stronger than some 9mm NATO loads. Is intended as a practice load for the V Crown defense load. These loads reflect considerable research and strike the same point of aim.
I used one of my favorite carry guns for the test. The Glock 34 offers excellent accuracy and is easy enough to use well. Recoil with the heaviest loads is mild. I began with the SIG M17 9mm 124-grain FMJ loading. I had a surprise when I ran the loads over the RCBS Ammomaster chronograph.
From the 5.3-inch Glock 34 barrel, the 124-grain full metal jacket M17 load clocked 1,270 fps. This is a strong load that really lit up the steel plates. I hope I have the opportunity to test this loading at long range soon.
I fired the 124-grain V Crown JHP over the chronograph first. Average velocity from the Glock 34 is a strong 1,216 fps. Firing at a target with half a magazine of the V Crown and half FMJ, the group was a single cohesive group of 9mm perforations. Combat accuracy firing off hand is good. As for absolute accuracy I fired the Glock 34 from a solid benchrest at a long 20 yards. Each load was fired for five-shot groups. The average of three groups for each load was 2.0 inches. The Glock 34 is accurate but only as long as it is fed good quality ammunition. These loads are accurate enough for competition, personal defense, or small game hunting.
I fired the 124-grain V Crown +P into water for expansion testing. The bullet penetrated about 18 inches of water and expanded consistently to .61 inch. This is excellent performance. The SIG 124-grain V Crown is a viable loading well worth your study.
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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