S&W Performance Center Pro Series 9mm SW1911

YouTube personality, Graham Baates, gives us a video breakdown and review of the S&W Pro Series 9mm 1911.

S&W Pro Series 9mm 1911

U.S.A. – -(Ammoland.com)- 9mm 1911s have always been a touchy spot.  Some see it as sacrilege, others going into flashbacks of reliability and magazine issues.  So how does one from Smith & Wesson's Performance Center do?  Pardon the pun, but I aimed to find out.

The Pro Series is a balance between Smith & Wesson's main production models and the full-on competition models from the Performance Center.  Think of it like the premium versions of a car.  A little tuned up and with nicer amenities, but not nearly as expensive or difficult to find as a full-on custom.  In the case of the SW1911examined here it means a handgun with premium features that is still a viable option for everyday carry.

I was curious.  I had both heard of and experienced challenges with 9mm 1911s.  The Pro Series SW1911 costs multiple times more than a Shield, but offers the same 8+1 capacity.  So why make it at all?  Because reasons, that's why.  Folks like the 1911.  No matter what you do to a polymer-framed, striker-fired gun it will never feel the same as an all-metal 1911.  Keeping in mind that this is a carry model Smith & Wesson made the frame from their Scandium Alloy which resulted in just under 8oz added in weight when compared to the M&P Shield.  For many that's worth it.

Take a closer look at the build quality in the video below:

Aside from the Pro Series and Performance Center names what warrants the $1,330 price tag?  Description and specifications can be seen below and are taken directly from the product webpage.

Features

  • Oversized external extractor
  • 3-hole curved trigger with overtravel stop
  • Full length guide rod
  • Round butt frame
  • Grip safety
  • Ambidextrous Thumb Safety

Specifications

  • SKU: 178053
  • Model: PERFORMANCE CENTER® SW1911 PRO SERIES® 9mm
  • Caliber: 9mm
  • Capacity: 8+1
  • Barrel Length: 3″ / 7.6 cm
  • Overall Length: 6.9″
  • Front Sight: Dovetail White Dot
  • Rear Sight: Fixed White 2-Dot
  • Action: Single Action
  • Grip: Fully Stippled Synthetic
  • Weight: 26.2 oz / 742.8g
  • Barrel Material: Stainless Steel
  • Slide Material: Stainless Steel
  • Frame Material: Scandium Alloy

To see how the Pro Series 9mm SW1911 would perform I hit the range for our standard test battery.  Full-Mag +1 because sadly some guns can't run that way starts the test.  Next we ask, “What's for Dinner?” and try a variety of loads from 165gr down to 65gr including some steel and aluminum cases.  It wraps up with a practical field accuracy test of five shots from seven yards using Nosler 115gr Match.

Results can be seen in the video below:

As one would hope, the SW1911 Pro Series 9mm performed flawlessly. Is this the cheap-o anyone can grab and keep on hand for self defense?  No.  Is it a functioning, reliable 9mm 1911? Yes.  I'm sure some will scoff at the price tag and that's ok.  Not every gun is for everyone, just like not every car is for everyone.  I prefer to celebrate diversity and experience as much as I can.  In the case of this pistol, I can say my expectation of what a 9mm 1911 can be have been raised.


About Graham Baates  G B Guns

“Graham Baates” is a pen name used by a 15-year active Army veteran who spent most of his time in the tactical side of the Intelligence community including tours in Afghanistan and Iraq. Post-Army Graham spent some time in the 3-Gun circuit before becoming a full-time NRA Certified defensive handgun instructor and now works as an industry writer while curating a YouTube channel on the side. Visit Graham on Youtube .

  • 7 thoughts on “S&W Performance Center Pro Series 9mm SW1911

    1. In That Note Yes. Story Here Is That I Said That In The Narration, Realized That It Was Wrong, Then “corrected” It With A Note That Somehow Says The Exact Same Thing. Guess My Mind Got Locked In There.

    2. So once again S&W builds a decent gun and tries to rely on the Performance Center logo to gouge the hell out of the American consumer. That’s why I can’t stand this company and don’t purchase their products. This is why they’ll soon go bankrupt. They’d rather go belly up than offer a decent product at a value price. Springfield, Rock Island, ATI, Shooters Arms Manufacturing, Citadel all offer good 1911’s at a value price but S&W would rather stick it to you.

      1. RIA, ATI, SAM and Citadel are not even close to the same class.

        Springfield is decent, though I have kept only one out of the seven I’ve owned. All were disasters out of the box that Springfield Customer Service had to fix. I do like my EMP, which directly competes with this gun. It was more expensive than the SW1911 Pro Series by $350. I see them for $800-900 online.

    3. I have this gun in .45 ACP and cannot say enough good things about it. I like the way it shoots and handles in general. As far as 9mm, I am not a fan of that caliber. That being said, if you choose that flavor, this gun will dish it up nicely. I carried a gov’t model as a medic on a SAR/Recon team back in the early 70’s, so I have a thing for 1911’s. I have more than one 1911, but my Smith Pro Series is definitely my go to all-purpose EDC.

    4. Sorry, but I can buy a whole lot of ammo (even that expensive stuff!) for the large difference between what that critter costs and what I paid for my Performance Center Shield. NOT knocking it by any means but for me the cost is not merited. Now if I had an unlimited budget (and a bigger gun safe) – maybe.

    5. I recently purchased the SW 1911 PC Pro Series 9MM. WOW! Although my other half gulped at the price, I continued. Out of the box at the range it was PERFECT. I loaded both Mags with 5 rounds of 115 gr FMJ rounds and hit the bullsyeye 8 out of 10. Reloaded 2 more times and went 20 for 20. This gun is fantastic and easy to shot and hit what you are aiming at. It is now my EDC. I carry it in a Cardini 4 in 1 made for the Shield 9MM which I was carrying. It is absolutely a Superb Gun and of High Quality. LOVE IT PS – If I save enough money I will get one as a back up to the 1st.

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