Springfield XDE 9mm – A Great Gun Discontinued

The XDE is worth a look.

We usually look to publicize the best and newest handguns. The XDE is now out of print. The thing is it is a great gun and you will be able to find one at a deep discount if you look. I don’t usually recommend seeking out out of print guns but this is a pistol that offers excellent performance. The XDE 9mm is comparable to the SIG P225 single stack in one way and handles like a 1911 9mm in other ways. The XDE is in most ways a hammer fired XD pistol. E denotes an exposed hammer. The double action first shot pistol still has a following and Springfield chose to offer this handgun to fans of the DA/SA action type. Often hammer fired guns are re-designed for striker fire. The XDE is unique as far as I am able to research, a striker fired gun converted to hammer fired action.

The XDE is actually a selective double action handgun. The first shot is a long pull of the trigger. The trigger both cocks and drop the hammer-there is a transfer bar at work here- and after the first shot is fired the recoiling slide cocks the hammer for subsequent single action shots. However the pistol may be carried hammer to the rear and safety on in 1911/Browning High Power style. This is similar to the CZ 75’s operation in the CZs original form. I think the real advantage of the manual safety is in tactical movement. You may carry the XDE safety on or safety off and hammer down. After the first DA shot if you are moving you don’t wish to decock and run through a DA pull again. Simply place the safety on. If you wish, of course, safety on and hammer back is viable for carry. Hammer down safety on or hammer down and safety off or hammer cocked and safety on are all viable. The hammer may be safely lowered from full cock by pressing the safety downward. There is a decocker function in the safety’s operation.

My pistol is the full size version with 4.5 inch barrel. The XDE weighs in at 29 ounces. The magazines hold eight and nine rounds respectively. While this may seem a light load in modern handguns the slim grip makes for great handling and an easy fit for small to average size hands. The finish is dark Melonite a corrosion resistant finish. The grip frame is nicely checkering providing a good balance of abrasion and adhesion. The pistol features a loaded chamber indicator. This is a hammer fired handgun with a polymer frame. The pistol field strips easily in XD fashion using a take down lever. The controls are nicely shaped and placed. Not too large and certainly not too small.

The full size pistol isn’t short or compact but it is thin and easily concealed. Quite a few shooters are not comfortable with striker fired guns or a single action cocked and locked handgun. The XDE offers a desirable choice for those shooters with little compromise in speed. At only one inch wide the XDE is easily concealed. The nine round magazine is well made of good material. The frame features a light rail for mounting combat lights. The sights are well suited to personal defense. The pistol was fired with Black Hills Ammunition 115 grain FMJ and Black Hills Ammunition 115 grain EXP. The Extra Power EXP is as hot as possible without going into +P territory, a good spot for a defensive 9mm loading. The double action trigger is smoot breaking at 11.1 pounds on the Lyman digital gauge. Single action is much lighter at 5.6 pounds and crisp, better than many DA/SA guns.

Firing from 7 yards and working the DA trigger good hits were taken on a man sized target. The transition to single action fire isn’t difficult to manage. At 10 yards I used only SA fire and riddled the X ring. Moving to 15 yards I fired two groups, one with each load, from a solid standing braced barricade. The average of two groups was 2.0 inch. There were no malfunctions of any type. The pistol is pleasant to fire with good handling and modest recoil. With the pistols currently out of production and some discounted to reduce inventory the XDE is worth a look.