Even though they don’t have a sizable army, the Swiss are renowned for having high-quality weapons for those experienced in their use. The SIG P49, first introduced in 1949 and subsequently changed to P210, had a full-length steel slide and frame with a premium barrel and trigger. When using match-grade ammo, the original SIG P210 had a five-shot group requirement of two inches or less at 50 meters. Even at half the distance, this accuracy level is beyond most pistols’ capabilities.
Consequently, the SIG P210 line has won the hearts of countless military arms collectors throughout the years. It’s been over six decades since this pistol was first produced, but it’s still gaining a reputation comparable to that of a great Swiss watch for quality and craftsmanship.
This blog covers five reasons behind the sustained popularity of the SIG P49.
A Proud Heritage
The Swiss Army’s introduction of the P210 was part of a more significant movement toward minor arms modernization immediately following World War II. Since it was getting too expensive to produce, the Swiss wished to modernize their Luger model. Swiss industry had already tried to streamline the Luger’s construction, but the pistol’s roots in the nineteenth century needed more improvement.
Since then, the Swiss company known as SIG (which stands for “Schweizerische Industrie Gesellschaft,” or “Swiss Industrial Corporation”) has manufactured a wide range of firearms for use by the armed forces. A pistol similar to the French M1935 was purchased at first, but it was modified to better suit Swiss requirements and altered to improve accuracy. Even so, the P210 borrowed heavily from the M1935, particularly regarding the recoil spring and locking mechanism.
SIG Sauer, Inc. returned the handgun to the U.S. market as a true “Made in the USA” product. This journey reflects the growth of the SIG brand itself, which went from an industrial company producing weapons for the Swiss Army to a nearly entirely American company.
The P210’s precision over greater distances initially drew many enthusiasts to it. If you need a handgun enabling you to fight an assailant, particularly with a submachine gun or rifle, from 50 to 100 yards away while working on close-protection assignments in some hazardous locations, the P210 is ideal. You can switch to carrying a single Browning Hi-Power and a SIG P210 instead of two Browning Hi-Powers.
It might sound odd due to the accepted knowledge of using the same magazines for backup pistols. However, you can always carry two extra 20-round SAS-style magazines and a spare 13-round magazine for the Browning. The P210 will take three 8-round magazines with no trouble. It is important to note that many prefer factory-made Swiss P210 magazines over aftermarket ones. Genuine SIG magazines have always been pricey and a little challenging to locate.
On a good day, you can hit 2-inch groups at 25 meters, as expected from any other pistol. More importantly, you can manage to maintain at least half of your shots on a silhouette target at 100 meters, which is better than you will do with any other handgun firing at 50 meters.
The P210 Target’s big grips necessitate a substantial slam pad on the magazine. The grips are large, but you won’t find them unpleasant. Nevertheless, you may need to get used to them if you want to carry the P210.
Purists may disagree with Sig’s changes to the P210 controls, but if you’re a right-handed shooter, you find them to be much more comfortable and operate more like a 1911. Similar to 1911, you may also find it challenging to work the safety with just your left hand, and during slide-lock reloads, you have to use your support hand’s thumb to handle the slide release. The safety is also another delight, with scallops that make a pleasant thumb rest possible. It switches on and off with a satisfying click.
Runs Numerous Ammunition Options
The pistol works fine with all of the different types of ammunition. After repeated use, some users report that one of the magazines developed issues when locking back the slide. The magazine has a polymer-backed steel follower. Occasionally, this polymer backer would grab the slide release, trapping the magazine in the pistol.
You can resolve this issue by forcibly moving the slide to the rear, pressing up on the slide release, and lightly scraping the polymer underneath the follower. Also, you frequently yearn for additional ammo after hitting several targets because the gun moves quickly when you’re having fun.
Ideal For Dynamic Drills
The G10 grips and thin profile of the P210 make it simple to maintain a firm grasp on the weapon while participating in vigorous training. Even though the aluminum body may cause a bit more recoil than a solid steel one, it is still easily manageable for sustained on-target shooting. While held in hand, the pistol points accurately, effortlessly aiming at the target as opposed to previous pistol designs in which the user must struggle to align the sights with the target.
The weapon can have anywhere from 400 to 500 bullets fired through it without requiring routine cleaning, and it will still perform beautifully. That is the level of dependability you can anticipate from a P210 and any SIG on the market.
You only have to shoot a few rounds to understand why the SIG P210 is so beloved by its fanbase. The natural accuracy, excellent trigger, and low recoil will have you grinning in no time with satisfaction. Compared to other carry guns, it doesn’t have a cut for a red dot, it can’t hold as much ammo due to its size, it doesn’t have an accessory rail, and it doesn’t have as many slide cuts finish choices as other pistols do.
Yet, the P210 Carry has sufficient functionality for people who value precision and a sophisticated shooting experience. This is a collector’s carry gun, and to paraphrase Obi-Wan Kenobi, it is a beautiful weapon for the progressive era.