SHOT Show 2014 Special Edition Day 1: New Handguns

Cheaper Than Dirt! staffers covering the 2014 SHOT Show in Las Vegas have filed their first reports on new handguns introduced at the show. Manufacturers are offering an interesting mix of new handguns this year, running the gamut from several .22 rimfire models through dedicated competition guns.

You’ll also see a number of new compact concealed-carry pistols, plenty of 1911 models, and more than a few new polymer-framed guns—including those designed specifically for use by officers of the law. In this edition are details about SIG Sauer‘s new P320 Modular Pistol for LE use, the .380 ACP P290RS-380, and M11-A1 Desert, which is built on an alloy frame using polymer grip panels with a stainless-steel slide. From Auto-Ordnance, there’s the reintroduction of the Thompson Custom 1911TC, and be sure to check out Mossberg‘s International 715P semi-auto pistol, a synthetic-stocked MSR tactical-style platform with no buttstock, just a pistol grip. And MasterPiece Arms unveiled its new MPA935SST Defender Semi-Auto.

SIG Sauer

Designed for law-enforcement use, the SIG Sauer P320 Modular Pistol allows departments to take a basic pistol and, through the use of interchangeable grips, frame shells with steel inserts, and different barrels and slides, modify one basic model to full-size duty configuration or compact and sub-compact models for plainclothes or back-up use.

SIG Sauer P290RS-380 .380 ACP pistol with pink lower
SIG Sauer P290RS-380 .380 ACP

Available in 9mm, .357 SIG, .40 S&W and .45 ACP,  the base pistol features a polymer frame with a 1913 rail and Nitron-finished slide equipped with Siglite Night Sights. The striker-fired operating action produces a trigger pull of 5.5 to 6.5 pounds. Ready for service as is, SIG offers the P320 in three complete pistol models (SRP: $713 for each) that can be modified to any of the other model configurations. The full-size model features a 4.7-inch barrel and weighs in at 29.4 ounces, empty. Overall length is 8 inches, width is 1.4 inches, and height is 5.5 inches. Magazine capacity in this model is 17-round in 9mm, 14-round .357 SIG or .40 S&W and 10-round .45 ACP. The Carry model features a 3.9-inch barrel and the empty weight is 26.9 ounces. Overall length is 7.2 inches, width is 1.3 inches (using the standard grip), and height is 5.1 inches. Magazine capacity is 15 rounds in 9mm, 13 rounds in .357 SIG and .40 S&W and 9 rounds in .45 ACP. The Sub-Compact model features a 3.6-inch barrel and an empty weight of 24.9 ounces. Overall width is 1.1 inches, length is 6.7 inches, and height is 4.7 inches. Capacity is 12 rounds in 9mm, 10 rounds in .357 SIG and .40 S&W, and 6 rounds in .45 ACP. The SIG Sauer P290 RS-380 (SRP: $570) is a .380 ACP addition to the sub-compact line. Built on a polymer frame, it features a 2.9-inch barrel and weighs in at 17.5 ounces. It uses a DOA action with repeat-strike capability, and SIG claims a trigger pull of 9 pounds. Siglite Night Sights are included.

SIG Sauer M11-A1 Desert pistol
SIG Sauer M11-A1 Desert

The M11-A1 Desert (SRP: $1,221) is built on an alloy frame using polymer grip panels with a stainless-steel slide. Frame and slide are coated in flat dark earth Cerakote, and internal parts are corrosion resistant. Chambered for 9mm with a 15-round magazine capacity (it ships with three 15-round magazines), it uses a traditional DA/SA operating trigger system. SIG states the DA pull is 10 pounds and the SA pull is 4.4 pounds with a short reset trigger. Barrel length is 3.9 inches. Overall length is 7.1 inches and width is 1.5 inches. Empty weight is 32 ounces. Siglite Night Sights are standard, and this model does not sport an accessory rail. The MK-25 Desert shares all the features of the M11-A1 Desert except that it uses a 4.4-inch barrel, weighs 34.4 ounces, and has a 1913 rail on the dust cover. SRP: $1,213. The 1911 Railed-Nickel Compact (1911CO-45-NI) shares all of the features of the full-size model except it is a Commander-size gun with a 4.2-inch barrel. It uses seven-round magazines and does not have a rail on the dust cover. Empty weight is 35.5 ounces, the length is 7.7 inches, height is 4.8 inches, and the overall width is 1.4 inches. SRP: $1,185.


The 2014 SHOT Show will see the reintroduction of the Thompson Custom 1911TC. Although it debuted in 2008 with a limited production run of just 100 units, production was halted after the 2008 presidential elections in order to best utilize existing Auto-Ordnance production facilities to meet the high demand for concealed-carry pistols. A revamping of production facilities, including the installation of high-precision machinery, has allowed production of the 1911TC to resume—and at a reduced cost over the original models.

Auto-Ordnance Thompson Custom 1911TC pistol with chrome finish
Auto-Ordnance Thompson Custom 1911TC

The Thompson Custom 1911TC (SRP: $813) is chambered for .45 ACP in a full-size 5-inch barrel 1911. Overall length is 8.5 inches; empty weight is 39 ounces. The frame is constructed from 420 stainless-steel casting, the slide from solid stainless-steel billet. The 1911TC features black low-profile front and rear sights that are dovetailed into the slide. The ejection port is flared, and the slide has front and rear cocking serrations that are machined with a slight angle. The mainspring housing is checkered, and the front strap is machine-checkered at 20 lpi. Additional features include an adjustable trigger, combat hammer, full-length recoil guide rod, extended beavertail grip safety, extended magazine release button, single side-checkered slide-stop lever and checkered laminated grip panels. A matte finish with laser-engraved markings complete the package—including the distinctive Thompson bullet logo on the slide and a bullet inlay on the grip panel. It ships with one 7-round magazine.


The International 715P semi-auto pistol is a synthetic-stocked MSR tactical-style platform, with no buttstock and just a pistol grip, but it is chambered for .22 LR with a 6-inch 1:16-inch-twist barrel that sports an A2-style flash hider. Feeding from a detachable magazine, standard features include an upper Picatinny rail with a short, ventilated quad rail on the forearm. Rail-mounted, removable and adjustable iron sights are standard on all models. Empty weight is 3 pounds with iron sights, 3.5 pounds with the UTG 1x30mm red-dot sight. The 715P will be available in five models for 2014.

International 715P semi-auto pistol
International 715P semi-auto pistol

The Model 37235 is the basic iron-sighted pistol with a 25-round magazine (a magazine loader is included). The Model 37236 is the same pistol, but with a 10-round magazine (to comply with regulations in certain states) that has the same profile as the 25-round magazine. The Model 37251 is the base gun with a 25-round magazine. Additional features include a UTG 1x30mm electronic red-dot sight that sits high enough above the iron sights for unobstructed aiming. The UTG sight is adjustable for windage and elevation and allows the shooter to choose between red or green illumination. The Model 37252 is the UTG-equipped pistol—identical to the 37251—but with the state-mandated 10-round magazine. The above four pistols are finished in a black matte. For those who prefer camo, the Model 37237 joins the Duck Commander line with a covering of Realtree Max-5 camo. It sports the UTG sight and 25-round magazines.

MasterPiece Arms

MasterPiece Arms unveiled the new MPA935SST Defender Semi-Auto pistol today in Las Vegas. Based on the standard MAC design, the new MPA935SST will be available in an 8-inch fixed barrel pistol. Offered in 9mm with 30-round magazines standard, the MPA935SST will feature a threaded barrel with .5×28 tpi threads making it suppressor ready The MPA935SST Defender Semi-Auto will come with adjustable front and rear sights, a side-cocker, scope mount, short handguard and angled foregrip. The MPA935SST also comes with a quick-release magazine catch, a pistol grip cover, barrel extension, plastic case and hammer with disconnect. MSRP will be $675.99.

MasterPiece Arms MPA935SST Defender 9mm Pistol
MasterPiece Arms MPA935SST Defender 9mm Pistol


Our staff articles are supplemented with reporting by SHOT Business Daily, reprinted with permission. SHOT Daily, produced by The Bonnier Corporation and the National Shooting Sports Foundation, covers all facets of the yearly firearms-industry show. To view a 2014 digital version of SHOT Daily, click here.

The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (3)

  1. The M11 Desert, that someone referred to as an MK 25 is just Sig’s new version or the P 226 Navy that they have discontinued. I know because I bought one new about 3-4 years ago.

  2. I’ve read many comments on how disappointed everyone is that the Glock 42 is “just” a .380 when everyone wanted a 9mm. If I were Glock I think I’d do the same thing, release a new design for “user acceptance testing” in a lower power first. They get plenty of publicity, if a recall is needed then it’s “only a backup gun”, and another “new” pistol can be released next year with all the “Gen2” features the pistol needs.
    So buy it, try it, break it. I would bet on a slim 9mm in the near future. (btw; I do not work for Glock)

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