Remington stepped onto the SHOT Show floor with gusto touting their new R51 handgun. We anxiously got our hands on the already famous pistol to see if the feel of the gun lived up to the hype. Its smooth lines and tiny size make it perfect for concealed carry, while offering more than adequate firepower in the wisely chosen 9mm Luger caliber. Aside from sharing some looks with the much older Model 51, the new R51 looks akin to a circa 1950′s sci-fi movie prop—but in a good way!
When I picked up the R51, it fit snugly in my hand while feeling better than most compact concealable pocket pistols. My pinky didn’t fall off the end of the grip and the sights were easy to see. The gun is considerably thin, while not feeling like I’m holding an uncomfortable wafer-thin piece of cardboard. When I wrapped my palm around the gun, the grip safety actuated while activating the Crimson Trace laser simultaneously. The slide was easy to move open and after checking to make sure the chamber was clear, I gave the trigger a slight tug and it broke very cleanly. It reminded me of a quality 1911 trigger. The reset was short so follow up shots would be very fast. It is a far cry from those long, creaky double-action trigger pulls you usually get in concealable handguns.
Even though Remington is just beginning to dip their toe into the concealed carry market, it looks like they found themselves a winner. As long as they can keep up with demand, we may see quite of few of these R51s around the range in months to come. I have a feeling I’ll be breaking open my wallet when the time comes.