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A Review Of The SIG Sauer P365 SAS

The SIG Sauer P365 SAS 9mm micro-compact pistol.

It seems more and more firearms manufacturers are taking to the ethos of turning a lot of their wares into a “platform”, which is to say there is a base model firearm, and then different variants. As of late, SIG Sauer is taking thinks to Loki-levels of variation with their P365 series of subcompact 9mm pistols. Starting with the P365, the platform now includes the P365XL, the P365X, and the P365 SAS. Out of all the variants, the most unique is the P365 SAS.

No, the SAS acronym isn’t a homage to everyone’s favorite batch of doorkickers from Hereford. In this case it stands for “SIG Anti-Snag System”. In this case, everything about the weapon has been modified to present the slimmest profile possible. There’s no takedown lever (more on that later), the slide stop is a little nub, and the sight is a flush-mounted FT Bullseye sight from Meprolight.

So, how did it run? Let’s just say there’s a bit of a learning curve…

What Is The P365 SAS, Exactly?

As we stated above, the P365 SAS is one of the latest variants of the P365 subcompact 9mm pistol platform from SIG Sauer. With almost every protrusion deleted from the slide and frame, the SIG Anti-Snag System moniker fits this variant appropriately. There’s simply not much on the gun that can catch on an errant piece of clothing during the drawstroke. It’s already a tiny gun at 5.8 inches overall length, but the SIG engineers figured out a way to make it smaller, even. If that makes sense, ha ha.

Beyond that, all the great features of the P365 platform remain the same, with some improvements. Of course, the SIG P365 SAS accepts the 10-round magazines of the other P365 variants, as well as the larger 15-round version. The biggest improvement though, is the ported barrel and slide.

For those of us just getting into the wild and wonderful world of being a Second Amendment Radical, a ported barrel is a simple enhancement to a firearm, where the barrel and slide have 2 (usually) ports milled into them, allowing some of the expanding and burning gunpowder to vent upward from the firearm, giving the weapon a little push downward, further counteracting recoil. It’s no big deal on a heavier gun, but on a smaller gun such as the P365 SAS, it makes a big difference. Those follow-up shots are zingers.

The trigger is decent for a factory one with a 6lb pull weight. It felt a little strange at first since I’m used to lighter triggers, but it’s definitely not a showstopper.

A solid, rough grip completes the package. As a sub-compact carry gun, you want to be able to grip it with authority. I don’t mind the sandpaper feel and neither should you.

To The Range With The SIG Sauer P365 SAS

Out of the box, the SIG Sauer P365 SAS is a great-looking and great-feeling little blaster. But, I will say especially with the Mepro FT Bullseye sight, operating the weapon does take some getting used to. But, if one takes into account the purpose of the SIG Sauer P365 SAS, it all kind of makes sense.

The P365 SAS Is A Defensive Handgun

From the get-go, the P365 line was developed and designed to be a platform for defensive use, especially by citizen users who may not have the option or the desire to carry a full-sized duty pistol for their self-protection. Small and svelte, the P365 SAS fits the bill perfectly. This isn’t something a law enforcement officer, private security agent, or a competitive shooter would use. The target market here is the everyday carry (EDC) market of guys and gals just like you and me. The idea behind the gun is defense. Acquire the threat, neutralize threat, deal with aftermath. The P365 SAS isn’t a gun where you’ll be calling out headshots on a gnat 50 yards downrange.

The ports on the slide leading to the ported barrel.

That Ported Barrel Though

The size of a firearm is usually inversely proportional to the accuracy of said firearm, within reason. It’s why a new shooter can get reasonably accurate with an AR-15 in about 20 minutes, whereas even a 9mm pistol will take a bit longer. The larger frame of a rifle soaks up some of the recoil impulse, leading to more accurate results with less work on the part of the shooter.

Anyways, a big complaint most users have about compact and subcompact pistols is in the recoil department. The preferred adjective is “snappy”.

Though not a new idea, the ported barrel on the SIG P365 SAS does a lot to tame that snap, especially if you’re doing the right thing and using 9mm +P ammunition in the gun. With a box of 9mm NATO-rated (approximately +P) ammo, the SIG P365 SAS became a joy to shoot in terms of recoil. With a firm grip, I didn’t even notice it.

The Meprolight FT Bullseye sight is included standard on the SIG Sauer P365 SAS.

The Mepro FT Bullseye Sight Takes A Little Getting Used To

The Mepro FT Bullseye sight is an interesting little gadget. Meant to take the place of both a standard front sight and rear sight on a pistol, the green tritium/fiber optic illumnated sight provides a single point of focus for the shooter. Place the green dot over the target, press the trigger, and away you go.

However, SIG has chosen to mount the sight flush with the body of the slide on the P365 SAS, leading to a very compact profile for the gun. The trade-off here is that the body of the gun will obscure the target a bit, but remember, the SIG P365 SAS is designed to be a defensive handgun for use out to say, 15 yards max. Needle-like precision is secondary. If you can hit anywhere in a 7-inch circle at those distances, especially if the target is moving, you’re good.

Ironically, with some practice, precision does become an achievable goal. After some quick research, I found myself actually becoming very accurate with this gun, at least to the point of landing repeated hits in rapid succession within the 9 ring on a B27E target at 7 and 15 yards. In slang terms, “minute of bad guy” accuracy is amazing on this gun. The sights work, and they work well after you get used to them.

200 Rounds, Zero Issues

For the purposes of documentation, this firearm wasn’t sent to me by SIG, nor did I purchase it new. It’s a loaner from a friend, and by his estimate, there’s maybe 500 rounds through it. I put another 200 during my testing, mainly of older Winchester 9mm 124gr NATO ammo I had lying around and some standard-pressure 124gr 9mm from Palm Beach Ammunition. Protip, try to run your oldest ammo first just to get it out of “inventory”. Properly-stored ammo lasts awhile, but it’s good to cycle it out regardless.

Anyways, after my decidedly-unscientific 200 round run, I’ll say it’s a solid defensive firearm - you just need to understand that the SIG Sauer P365 SAS is just that, a gun for defense.

There’s Always a “But…”

Of course, no piece is perfect, and neither is the SIG Sauer P365 SAS. While not a showstopper, the recessed controls are, well…different.

Since I’m a nice guy, and thoroughly appreciate the loan of any demo gun sent my way, whether it’s from a friend or a manufacturer, I always take the weapon down and clean it after a range trip.

I’m used to the normal systems of a takedown lever, etc - so the SAS system did take some getting used to. There’s no lever on the gun per se, so a tool is required to rotate the takedown screw clockwise. A penny works, even. But it’s something to consider.

However, one could argue that speed isn’t of the essence when taking down a firearm, and having to use a tool isn’t a showstopper. It takes some getting used to, though.

Another minor change that could prove different is the recessed slide stop. Some of us chamber our pistols by pushing down on the slide stop. It’s not a bad thing, but generally the less wear-prone method is to insert magazine, and do a quick “sling shot” motion to send the slide home. With the SIG P365 SAS, this is the only way.

Small inconveniences? Maybe - but they can be trained for, and it’s no worse than learning the quirks of any other new gun.

The SIG Sauer P365 SAS 9mm Is A Great Pistol

Quirks aside, I’m impressed by this little blaster. While I prefer a full-size pistol for everyday carry, on occasion I can’t dress “loose” and while printing is still “concealed” by Florida law, I’m not in the mood to deal with the issue on the occasions I have to dress differently. Thusly, I could see this firearm being a great option for concealed carry when mode of dress demands a smaller gun. For women and other smaller-statured folk, the compactness lends itself to easier gripping in a less-intimidating package. That ported barrel seals the deal if you’re concerned about accuracy issues in such a tiny firearm.

If you’re looking for a lot of bang in a compact package, the SIG Sauer P365 SAS 9mm is your choice. Get it.

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