By: American Rifleman Staff
After nearly five years of development, Beretta is finally bringing its APX pistol to the civilian market. The semi-automatic marks something of a departure for the company, as it stands as the first full-size striker-fired pistol in the venerable Italian firm’s nearly 500-year history.
Beretta’s entrant into the U.S. Army’s recently concluded XM17 Modular Handgun System (MHS) program, the APX was designed for duty use by military and law enforcement operators, however, the handgun will fit right in on the commercial home-defense market. American Rifleman’s Kelly Young had the opportunity to put the APX through its paces last week at The O’Gara Group’s tactical training facilities in Montross, Va.
A polymer-frame pistol standing 7.56” long and 5.6” tall with a 4.25” barrel, the APX weighs 27 ozs. with an empty magazine. Utilizing a tilt-barrel, locked breech operating system, the new gun is chambered in 9 mm Luger and .40 S&W, with standard magazine capacities of 17 and 15 rounds, respectively. Bilateral slide locks and a reversible magazine-release button mean the APX can quickly be converted for left-handed use, and a replaceable backstrap system offers three different grip-circumference options. Sights on the gun follow the modern three-dot pattern.
Similar to the SIG P250 and P320, the APX utilizes a removable chassis (which for paperwork purposes is considered the serialized part) that allows the heart of the gun to be easily transferred into alternate frames—and Beretta is offering black, gray, Flat Dark Earth and Olive Drab Green frames for this purpose. The APX’s fiberglass-reinforced polymer frames also have a three-slot MIL-STD 1913 Picatinny rail segment molded into its dustcover.
In addition to a trigger safety and a firing pin block safety, the APX also features a striker deactivation button. Located near the beavertail on either side of the frame, this button allows the pistol to be field-stripped without pulling the trigger.