OK, If you read my product reviews, you may begin to wonder if I simply rubberstamp everything I test. I’ve looked back at the reviews l’ve done lately and there hasn’t been a single stinker in the bunch. There’s a reason for this. I’ve been shooting for over 40 years and I’ve learned to separate the glam from the real thing. There are dozens of companies that make adequate or inferior products I could evaluate to give mediocre ratings. They send me emails all the time and I just don’t answer them. I’m just not interested in average stuff. I only look at guns, holsters, scopes and other products that I think are a real improvement and deserve recognition. I may sometimes be disappointed but, trust me, I choose carefully.
Having said this, I have to admit, I didn’t search for the XD(M) and I kind of accidentally wound up testing one. I queried a web magazine for a story on the Bianchi Cup and they agreed. Since I wanted to shoot production class this time, they suggested the Springfield Armory XD(M) 5.25″ 9mm and I had one sent to me. They ultimately changed their mind about the story but I still used the XD(M). It was a wonderful choice.
I have a fondness for 1911s because I’m an older shooter. It’s taken me a while to warm up to striker fired pistols but I have to admit, I’m convinced of their value. What I found with the XD(M) was that a striker fired production pistol can shoot as well as a 1911 and is as easy to shoot. My reservations centered mostly on the trigger. Any gunsmith worth his salt can produce a great trigger on a 1911 and I feared the long travel on a striker fired pistol would cause me to have trouble with accuracy. I was wrong.
The XD(M) trigger out of the box was very good, so good I didn’t even look into improving it. The same was true of the accuracy. Off the bench, I could shoot 25 yard, two inch, ten shot, groups with almost every ammunition I tried. Out of the holster and shooting fast, I could get four inch groups at that distance. Unfortunately my performance under pressure at the Bianchi wasn’t quite so stellar.
The only gripes I have about the XD(M) are simple personal preference issues. For me, the front sight is a little too wide, I like to see a little more light on either side. I also thought the angled sides of the slide made it slightly harder to cycle than guns with parallel sides. Those are the only two gripes I had with the gun and I know both issues are simply personal preferences.
The upshot of this is that the XD(M) 5.25 is a great gun in a class of great guns. Having shot the others, I think it holds the lead for the competitive production class shooter. The trigger, the excellent adjustable rear sight, and the inherent accuracy make it a great choice. So I had no choice, I had to give it all fives.
Springfield Armory XD(M) 5.25″ 9mm specifications:
- Caliber: 9x19mm
- Capacity: 19+1
- Barrel: 5.25″ match grade select fit steel, Melonite, fully supported ramp
- Sights: Red fiber optic front (replacement red and green filament included) and fully adjustable target rear
- Sight radius: 7.25″
- Frame: Black polymer
- Slide: Forged steel with lightening cut
- Length: 8.3″
- Height: 5.75″
- Weight with empty magazine: 29 ounces
- Colors: Black and bi-tone
All images copyright Dick Jones