What Is a .40 Cal Pistol Good for? – expert answer

Well, 40 caliber pistols are simple guns that can shoot bullets that are of 40 calibers in size, and if you know your guns, then this information should not be new to you. And undoubtedly, that is quite a heavy bullet for a pistol.

However, you do not have to worry as they have been carefully designed to give optimized recoil and a staggering shooting range plus damage. If you want to know more about the .40 cal pistols, then our article is what you need as we are gonna detail what a .40 cal pistol good for is.

Now, if you are a hobbyist or just want to know more about the guns, then we suggest you finish the article.

History of the .40 Cal

History of the .40 Cal

Initially, enforcement units used revolvers as a way to reinforce law and order. However, after the 1986 FBI Miami Shootout, where two officers were shot dead, and five were injured, the FBI realized that they needed a much more powerful and effective firearm to tackle the rapidly growing crime world and their powerful guns.

They tried the 10mm, which had massive recoil, until, they contacted S&W. Smith & Wesson made the .40 cal pistols that offered moderate power and range minus the recoil, making it the optimum option for the enforcement units at that time.

Nevertheless, the forces decided to stick to the 9mms because it suited their specification more.
Besides, in 1990, the S&W debuted in the real world (though it was not available for purchase until several months after the launch).

In short, amongst all the .40 cal pistols, the S&W is still considered one of the best but, there are many more fantastic .40 cal pistols in the ballistics business.

What Is a .40 Cal Pistol Good for?

Well, there is no doubt that the 9mm is way superior to the .40 cal in every way. But that is no reason to give up on them. At the end of the day, these guns offer a generous amount of damage, range, and offer smooth mobility.

Now, S&W .40 cal is a fantastic option when it comes to .40 Cals. Nonetheless, there are several other .40 cal that is way better in every way when compared to the S&W. Besides, after 9mm was introduced, the popularity of the .40 cal hit the ground, and they have been sitting on the shelves of several gun shops.

So, there is a big chance that you might even get these guns at a much more affordable price range in such predicaments. Furthermore, you can also convert your .40 cal into 9mms just by making certain attachments to the barrels. And power-wise, it beats the 9mm by a long shot.

The Best .40 Cal Pistols

Here are some of the best .40 pistols that you should have in your arsenal.

Beretta PX4 Storm/The PX4 Storm Compact

The thing that makes this the best option is its superior round. And the PX4 storm has handsome 14+1, and its compact version gives you 12+1 round capacity. Nevertheless, apart from the high capacity, the gun has several other perks that make it the top of the .40 cal pistol class.

One of those noteworthy features is its rotating barrel, which reduces the recoil. In short, this .40 cal offers you astonishing control and Aim-Down Sight. Also, it offers you optimum safety because of the double-action pull and manual safety features, which decock the lever and prevent you from firing.

Lastly, thanks to the Picatinny rail and straps, the gun has a comfortable feel to it.

Glock 22 and 23

After the PX4, when it comes to higher round capacity, the Glock-22 and the Glock-23 takes the cake. The capacity of the Glock-22 is 15+1, and the 23 has a spectacular round capability. Therefore, this gun is a marvelous option when you want a top-notch .40 cal pistol.

Its holster has been upgraded, which is one of the biggest reasons why the item has amassed such fame in the community. Moreover, the Gen-5 has upgraded all the cons from the Gen-4, which includes high-quality frag mags, offering swift and effortless reloads.

Heckler & Koch USP and USP Compact

Another .40 cal pistol that has been acknowledged as one of the pioneers for the 40 caliber guns is the Heckler & Koch’s USP collection because of its unique and fascinating features.

The gun offers a superior lifespan and can endure the heaviest amount of usage with ease. Plus, it comes with a sizeable round of 13+1, which makes it a reliable choice for swift firing minus the heavy recoil.

Besides, when it comes to the safety of the user and their surroundings, the HK took severe care in providing you the best. It is a dual-action/single-action pistol with a safe frame mounting and a decocking lever that prevents any chances of misfiring.

Hence, if you are a fan of .40 cal guns, then this masterpiece is a fantastic choice that you need in your life.

Sig Sauer P226 and P229

When it comes to world-class .40 cal guns, the Sig Sauer takes the prize as one of the best in the market. Cost-wise, the item might be hefty, but all the remarkable features this one has to offer, make it a must-have for all gun enthusiasts.

Regardless of the price, the gun offers a smooth reload, and grants the users a heavy capacity of 12+1 rounds. And it is a double-action/single-single action that features all the safety features to ensure your security and prevent misfires.


S&W M&P and M&P 2.0

The S&W is the first maker of .40 cal pistols. And their M&P and the M&P 2.0 can be considered as one of the best. Offering a sizeable round limit of 15+1 round (the compact version gives a bullet capacity of 13+1), if you have this one in your arsenal, then get ready to have a fun day at the shooting range!
Also, the gun offers you several other remarkable attributes and functionalities, which should make you fall in love with the S&W.


We do not deny that there are pistols in the recent era that are superior to the .40 cal pistols. However, these guns will always be admired. They offer swift mobility, provide an amazing range, and an excellent alternative for midrange shooting.