SIG SAUER Elite Performance Ammunition ~ Product Review

by Dr. Jim and Mary Clary
SIG Sauer Elite Performance Ammunition range testing and review.

SIG SAUER Elite Performance Ammunition (Illustration courtesy of SIG SAUER, Inc.)
SIG SAUER Elite Performance Ammunition (Illustration courtesy of SIG SAUER, Inc.)
AmmoLand Gun News
AmmoLand Gun News

United States -(AmmoLand.com)- We don't very often test ammunition because we reload all of the pistol and rifle calibers that we shoot.

Our personal prejudice tells us that no factory ammunition can equal our reloads. OK, we'll admit it…. we are pretty proud of our reloads.

SIG Sauer Elite Performance Ammunition

Shannon Jackson, who works with SIG SAUER, gave us a call and asked if we would try out the new SIG SAUER Elite Performance Ammunition. Shannon, who is also a shooter, told us that the SIG Elite Performance ammo will perform as well as our custom reloads. Well, that was a “challenge” we could not resist. So, we asked her to send us 100 rounds each of their FMJ and JHP (V-Crown) ammo in our primary calibers: 40 S&W, 45 ACP, 9mm Luger and .357 Magnum.

SIG SAUER manufactures their own ammunition. They do not “outsource” and “license” as so many other major companies do. The SIG Sauer facility at Eubank, Kentucky is state-of-the-art; however, with the ever-increasing demand for their SIG Sauer Elite Performance Ammunition, they are relocating to a larger facility in Jacksonville, Arkansas. The new 70,000 square-foot facility will have enough room for expansion, as the market demands, and allow for the addition of even more state-of-the-art equipment.

It will also include a larger ballistics testing laboratory with their R&D personnel onsite for optimum efficiency.

Below are the specs for each of the rounds and the pistols that we used for our tests. As usual, we did our shooting at 25 yards, using the Caldwell Pistolero Handgun Rest. We used Hoppe's 25 yard slow-fire, Bullseye Pistol Targets, firing multiple five-shot groups for record.

SIG SAUER Elite Performance Ammunition
SIG SAUER Elite Performance Ammunition

The SIG V-Crown bullet is proprietary with the company and utilizes a stacked hollow point cavity. Tests by independent ballistic experts have confirmed that this design provides maximum weight retention and virtually perfect expansion. That translates into significant stopping power.

During our tests we found that all rounds fed smoothly from the magazines and cycled flawlessly. The Elite Performance SIG V-Crown ammo utilizes DUCTA–BRIGHT 7A coated brass cases and although we are not privy to the technical aspects of this process, it does provide an enhanced lubricity which accounts for the flawless feed in our semi-automatics. The Elite Performance rounds are very accurate. Our groups were consistent and very symmetrical, not ragged or strung out. The following are our results:

SIG Sauer Elite Performance Ammunition – 40 S&W (Springfield Model XDM )

  • 180 gr. FMJ @ 985 fps
  • 180 gr JHP (V-Crown) @ 985 fps
  • SIG 180 grain JHP – Smallest group 1.0″; largest group 1.75″;
  • Mean group size = 1.5″
  • SIG180 grain FMJ – Smallest group 1.75″; largest group 2.75″;
  • Mean group size = 2.0″

SIG Sauer Elite Performance Ammunition – 45 A.C.P. (Colt Gold Cup Series 80 MK IV)

  • 230 gr. FMJ @ 850 fps
  • 200 gr. JHP (V-Crown) @ 918 fps
  • SIG 230 gr. FMJ & 200 gr JHP: Smallest group = 1.50″; Largest group = 2.0″;
  • Mean average group size = 1.75″

SIG Sauer Elite Performance Ammunition – 9 mm Luger (Springfield Model XD-9)

  • 115 gr. FMJ @ 1185 fps
  • 115 gr. JHP (V-Crown) @1185 fps
  • SIG 115 gr. FMJ & 115 gr JHP: Smallest group 1.25″; largest group 1.75″;
  • Mean group size = 1.5″

SIG Sauer Elite Performance Ammunition – .357 Magnum (Smith & Wesson, Model 19-2)

  • 125 gr. FMJ @ 1450 fps
  • 125 gr. JHP (V-Crown) @ 1450 fps
  • SIG 125 gr. FMJ: Smallest group = 1.75″; Largest group = 2.50″;
  • Mean average group size = 2.0″
  • SIG 125 grain JHP: Smallest group = 1.125″; Largest group = 2.25″;
  • Mean average group size = 1.75″

Switching from target ammunition (FMJ) to defensive carry ammunition (JHP) has presented problems in the past, as the two bullet types do not have the same ballistics. SIG's goal with their Elite Performance Ammunition line was to produce V-Crown and FMJ rounds that were almost identical in performance. In that way, switching from the range to “active duty” was not a problem. Given our results above, it should be apparent that SIG has achieved their goal.

After firing 800 rounds, we didn't experience a single “flier“. That is not to say that you wouldn't get one…. but, we did not. This ammunition is the cleanest that we have ever shot. There was substantially less fouling in the barrels of our test pistols, even when compared to our own reloads.

We are not sure what powder they are using, but it is really good. We wouldn't mind getting some of that stuff for our own reloads.

The Elite Performance Ammunition exceeded our expectations. We have to admit that it was as good as our custom reloads…. and that is saying a lot. If we did not reload, this is the ammunition we would get for home defense and/or concealed carry. If you try it, you will like it and might never want to feed your favorite pistol anything else. SIG SAUER offers loads in a variety of semi-auto calibers that we did not test in addition to revolver and rifle ammunition.

SIG SAUER Elite Performance V-Crown Ammunition
SIG SAUER Elite Performance V-Crown Ammunition

Our friends have asked us whether we will keep reloading after shooting the SIG Elite. Well, of course we will; however, we intend to “lay in” a supply of the Elite Performance Ammunition…. just in case.

We would like to thank Shannon Jackson for “turning us on” to this ammunition and special thanks to Dan Powers, President of the Sig Sauer Ammunition Division, for providing us with sufficient quantities to conduct our tests.

About Jim and Mary Clary:

Jim and Mary Clary have co-authored over three hundred and fifty articles, (and counting) on shooting and hunting. You can read many of them on AmmoLand News.

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arielRogerEdTyler H.Keith Pollard Recent comment authors
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ariel
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ariel

This is defensive ammo, yet there’s no penetration and expansion data whatsoever here. Useless article for defensive purposes.

Tyler H.
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Tyler H.

Just for fun, i put 10 rounds of this ammunition through my Sig P229 Legion at 75 yards. With only about 1 second in between shots i had a group that was within 12 inches or so. I would definitely recommend this ammunition as far as accuracy.

Keith Pollard
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Keith Pollard

Can the SIG cases be used for reloads? They are silver colored which typically means they are not brass.

Ed
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Ed

Probably nickel plated brass. Very typical in premium ammo.

Roger
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Roger

It is nickel plated brass and it is reloadable.

Rob
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Rob

I have a lot of this in 10mm Auto, 1250 fps (5″ test barrel) perhaps 1350 in my G20 with a 6.6″ LWD barrel… Looking at 624 ft-# PLUS ME Pretty Impressive! I was shooting better groups with this over other ammo (still need to try my Underwood) and my son got “one ragged hole” @10yds (it was originally his gun) with 5 shots! TWICE! So this is very god, hard hitting ammo, and I was getting it for around 55¢/rd when it first came out at Academy… So I have a LOT of It! 😉 I like to carry… Read more »

Leighton Cavendish
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Leighton Cavendish

Just bought 5 boxes of the 9mm 124g at a local (Orlando) Academy…50 rounds for $21.99

Mark
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Mark

It is made in conjunction with Sierra Bullets for SIG. Says so on the box

Eric_CA
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Eric_CA

I bought a box of 9 mm at the Raahauge’s gun show last month for self defense purposes. I hope I never have to use it.

Donald Silvernail
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Donald Silvernail

Why is it that, of all the cartridges tested, only the .45ACP ammo had two different bullet weights (230gr. FMJ & 200gr. JHP)? That would seem to work against the goal of having the same point of impact for practice and carry ammo.

Preston
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Preston

This is the only Self Defense Ammo I buy for my .40 S&W. Great expansion, not hard on the wallet, and I like that they do not outsource. I will continue to buy this ammo and trust it with my life.

George Bradley
Guest
George Bradley

Just fired 15 of the Sig Performance Elite FMJ 9mm through my Ruger American 9mm pistol just after cleaning the pistol. They were all over the place. I’m not sure if it is me or the gun. I’m not blaming the ammo. We have used this ammo in other pistols. I tend to like it. Please advise if you have any suggestions.

Thanks,
George Bradley
Lincolnton, NC

Josey Wales
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Josey Wales

GEO—I just got a RAP. All the ammo I put thru it is all over the map. Not one of the different loads I put thru it are consistent in shot placement. My XDm’s put everything I shoot nice and tight with the occasional user error. How long have you had you’re RAP?

George Bradley
Guest
George Bradley

Josey,
I bought the Ruger American 9mm pistol in early February. It tends to be all over the target no matter what ammo I use. I don’t know what’s going on with it. When I go back to the range I’ll get one of their guys to shoot it and see if they can do any better. I have a Ruger MK III which is very accurate (of course it is a different animal).
George

Josey Wales
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Josey Wales

GEO- I’ve had all my friends shoot mine with same result. At least it’s not just me lol. Let me know your results from the range. I’ve noticed a lot of barrel movement (when field stripped) even with guide rod/spring in place; it’s not significant movement but compared to my other weapons it’s noticeable. The barrel when seated and guide rod/ spring holding it in place does not move at all on my other handguns. If you would, see if yours does same when detached and compare it to other handguns you may have. Although slight, it may be enough… Read more »

George Bradley
Guest
George Bradley

Josey,
When I take the slide off I can push the back end of the barrel sideways a little bit. My wife’s Glock 43 seems to be a little snugger in that regard.
Thanks,
George