9 REASONS TO LOVE THE NEW HK VP9
Written by Guest Contributor,
in Section Gun Reviews
OPTICS CUT, 17 ROUNDS & MORE
Released 35 years after first pioneering striker-fired handgun design, the Heckler & Koch VP9 has become a favorite of military, law enforcement and civilian gun owners around the world since its introduction in 2014. Now in 2020, HK has updated the popular handgun with new features while retaining those that have made it the company’s most successful pistol design.
To better understand why the pistol has been so successful, let’s take a closer look at nine reasons to love the VP9.
While the HK VP9 is a full-size, semi-auto, striker-fired, polymer-frame pistol chambered in 9mm, its ergonomics, trigger and performance are anything but ordinary and serve as the first three reasons to love the VP9.
Unlike long guns, handguns have many touchpoints between the shooter and the firearm. With this in mind, every detail of the VP9’s 1.32” wide grip was optimized to fit the human hand, including the grip angle, contoured front strap and high rear saddle. The frame can also be customized in 27 different configurations using interchangeable side panels and back straps, all of which feature a smooth but tactile texture.
This emphasis on ergonomics can also be seen with the VP9’s “best-in-class” trigger. Combining a 5.4-pound pull with minimal travel, single-action break and incredibly short reset, the out-of-the-box trigger surpasses those found in even the most fine-tuned race guns. The slightly curved profile also features a familiar middle trigger blade safety.
Once the trigger is pulled, the cold hammer-forged, cannon-grade steel VP9 barrel with polygonal bore ensures both long-term durability and precision accuracy down range. First used in the HK P7 series of pistols, polygonal bore barrels better seal propellant gases behind the bullet, increasing bullet velocity, than traditional land-and-grooves profiles. The 4.09” barrel is also paired with a captive flat recoil spring to reduce felt recoil.
Despite its popularity, Heckler & Koch knew the VP9 could be further improved with modern advancements — and that’s exactly what they did by increasing its capacity, updating its sights and incorporating an optics cut on the slide.
Standing 5.41” tall and 7.34” long, the VP9 is a full-size sidearm, and now it has the capacity to match with 17-round steel magazines. Previously capped at 15 rounds of 9mm, HK engineers were able to modify the magazine’s follower to increase capacity without extending its overall length, giving shooters more firepower for target shooting, competition and self-defense.
While the new magazines may not be visibly noticeable, its sights are. One of the most commonly upgraded parts on a pistol, sights have a direct impact on a shooter’s ability to shoot quickly and accurately. With input from shooters, the VP9’s sights have been upgraded with new metal sights, featuring a high-visibility front sight and serrated black rear sight for a clean sight picture in any light condition.
However, for shooters with deteriorating eyesight or those looking to gain a competitive edge, all new VP9s are also now optics-ready — no milling required. Shipping with a slide cap, shooters interested in mounting a red dot can purchase one of five adapter plates on the HK webstore to accept their specific optic, including the EOTech MRDS, Trijicon RMR, C-More STS2, Leupold DeltaPoint Pro and Vortex Viper. Adapter plates are available for $29.
If its ergonomics, accuracy and modern upgrades weren’t enough, the HK VP9 also possesses features often not seen on other handguns in its price range. What many might consider as “nice to have” features, HK includes as stock.
Making operation of the VP9 easy for both right- and left-handed shooters, all controls are fully ambidextrous, including the slide and magazine release levers. The takedown lever remains on the left side of the frame.
Located on either side of the slide and held in place by the rear sight, ambi charging supports aid shooters, especially those lacking hand strength or dexterity, in racking the slide for quicker reloads and malfunction clearing. These extensions are in addition to angled serrations on the front and rear sides of the slide.
Finally, the VP9’s frame features a molded Picatinny MIL-STD-1913 rail for mounting a shooter’s favorite weapon light, laser and accessories under the barrel.
The closest thing to handgun perfection for an MSRP of just $799, what’s not to love about the new Heckler & Koch VP9?
For more info: www.hk-usa.com, Ph. (706) 568-1906
This article firt appeared on American Handgunner by Joe Kriz