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1911s Handguns News SHOT Show 2014

The Best New 1911s for 2014

by Brad Fitzpatrick   |  January 23rd, 2014 24

John M. Browning was a brilliant gun designer, and his genius was once again illustrated at the 2014 SHOT Show. Browning’s designs still show up everywhere—from modern versions of the 1873 Winchester rifle, to combat pistols and even an updated iteration of his “Humpback” Auto-5 shotgun.

Of all Browning’s creations, one stands out as the most enduring and the most successful—the 1911 semi-automatic pistol.

In a market dominated by high-tech polymer pistols, dozens of new 1911s are introduced every year; ranging in price from a few hundred to several thousand dollars. The emergence of new technology begs the question: Why has this 103-year-old design endured?

There’s no single answer why the 1911 endures the test of time—but superb design, accuracy and handling are good places to begin.

This year, we were introduced to several new 1911s of varying quality and price. No matter what type of 1911 you’re looking for, you could probably find exactly what you want at this year’s SHOT Show.

Check out our list of the best new 1911s for 2014.

  • Sashen Jadunandan

    What is best for my 1911 chroming or cerakote please advise which is more durable ?

    • tyler

      Cerakote is more durable…chrome plating will scratch and mar like an SOB if you use it at all.. Better to cerakote than chrome plate for the wanted outcome of most durable.

      experience: licensed gunsmith, precision rifle builder, cerakote application specialist

  • Gabe

    Only 2 of them priced at less than $1000. One a .22, and one barely less than a grand. Give me a $500 polymer framed Glock, XD, or M&P that will perform as well, and carry more comfortably.

    • Richard C. Johnson

      For a protection weapon, I agree. I personally carry a G22. But, there is something to be said for having a nice 1911 in your collection.

      • nadadhimmi

        If it’s 3’30 AM, I’m sleepy, surprised and somebody is in the house, I want my 1911.

    • nadadhimmi

      You are wrong. My G22 doesn’t carry nearly as comfortably as any 1911. It has other attributes, but carry and accuracy aren’t among them.

      • Richard C. Johnson

        I wear a Blackhawk holster in the horizontal position in my right rear belt line. I rarely feel it when seated. As far as accuracy, that comes down to practice. During speed drills at 25′ I am almost always in the 5 ring. On a 5×5 drill ( 5 shot, in 5 positions ), It takes me 2 mags to complete. The 1911 guys take 3.

  • Ron Larimer

    You left out the RIA .22TCM why?

    • Steve

      Agreed. I now have 2 RIA .45 1911s and couldn’t be happier. Shoots better than my Kimber

  • HK_USP_45

    Why anyone would pay that much for a 1911 is beyond me. $3000-5000? Are you kidding me? Maybe if you’re a collector, and it’s an original WWI piece, but for these? $3000 is enough to arm 2 people each with a Glock and an AR. If I really want a 1911, I would stick with a Ruger SR1911, it’s an excellent gun for the money. But if I really want a fighting gun — there are so many better choices that are more reliable and higher capacity. Glock, HK, FNH, SA, Beretta, CZ. They all make better fighting guns. The 1911 is one of the all time classics, and it dominated the battlefield — at a time when most armies carried 6 shot revolvers. It even did well as a side arm up into WWII, and even Vietnam. But handguns have come so far since then. If I were to choose a combat gun, or a carry gun, I don’t even think the 1911 would make my top 10. At these prices, I wouldn’t even own one, let alone choose one to carry.

    • Anonymous

      Sounds like you think that the 1911 has become obsolete… you do realize that the USMC recently picked a 1911 as their new close quarters pistol?

      • HK_USP_45

        It’s obsolete for a combat pistol. I wouldn’t choose the military (ESPECIALLY the Marines, who tend to be “old school.”) as your example of “forward thinking” in small arms design. Once again, when every other modern army in the world is choosing polymer pistols such as Glocks, HKs, FNs, etc, we go BACKWARDS. Historically, this is what our military does. Rarely have we ever chosen a forward thinking weapon design. I can think of the M16, and the M1 Garand. That’s about it. Oh, and the 1911 was forward thinking. The FIRST time we adopted it — 102 years ago.

      • Richard C. Johnson

        Lets put that into perspective. The Marine Corps Marksman team at Quantico chose that weapon, not the Corps. As of this posting, the Beretta M9 is still standard issue.

      • David

        1911 is obsolete.
        I own a Colt MKIV and love to shoot It BUT as a combat pistol it’s at the bottom of the list. The USMC has a contract for nostalgia and outfits the shooting team with it. Everyday ground pounding grunts have the M9 and a lucky few have glock17s. Again 1911 obsolete, fun gun, and damn fine competition pistol. No longer a combat weapon.

        3rd generation USMC grunt, with a son currently serving and lucky enough to be carrying the glock.

  • SCfromNY

    Like others, I understand the interest in custom $3000 -$5000 1911s but how many who have them carry them on a regular basis? Shoot them in matches? If I had a boatload of money I would take a Porsche over a Camaro SS. However a Honda Accord would work also. Under a grand I would buy a S&W “E” series or Ruger, around a grand SA or Kimber if I didn’t want to shoot JHPs, around $1500 Dan Wesson and a little bump for Les Baer after that IMO very few of us will make use of the guns abilities. I rather have a S&W and a H&K than a Wilson. My opinion only.

  • al

    I have about dozen 1911’s…from Norinco’s to Kimber, Les Baer and a bunch of others…Guess what? They all shoot the same…great. Except for a Rock Island thing that was a piece of junk, I never sold any of them. I usually grab the Norinco in the daytime and either the Kimber or Taurus at night because they have lasers. I’ve put a lot of rounds through all of them and the cheapest one shoots just as straight as the most expensive. With match ammo, the Les Baer is a bit better, but all will shoot minute of burglar.

  • ColtCommander100yearsofservice

    I can’t believe springfield armory inc. made the list. Really?? An “All American Gun” assembled in Brazil with parts made in Taiwan at Armstec inc. Springfield Armory Inc. charges made in America prices for made in china quality. People that buy Springfield Armory Inc. don’t research their firearms or like made in china quality.

  • James Berry


  • Patriot

    So a bunch of new 1911’s in 9 mm? How ground breaking. Pft

  • DigitalSmoke

    no mc operator or colt rail gun?

    sorry guys this list is sponsored. the top 1911’s should always include those which where submitted for military trials.

  • John Browning

    this list is garbage, no Wilson Supergrade, Nighthawk, or Baer Specials, the author and editors should be fired.

  • RobGoetzSr

    Colt Gold Cups (one Bullseye Match and one Combat Match) from the Colt Custom Shop and a Mark Krebs Custom for IPSC are my favorites. Problem with Gold Cups are the front sights are not dovetailed. Wonder if the Flat Rib of the Gold Cups are why Colt did not opt to do it this way? In either case, all 3 are good shooters and well worth the expenditure..

  • sam

    I have a 1911 sig and just found a company called dragon fire for after market parts. they have a piston spring that makes the 45 act like a 9mm. improving accuracy and makes the recoil down to almost nothing. also picked up a compensator that takes the place of the frount bushing. they also make barrows . you got to check it out. I am getting 3 inch groups at 25 yards.

  • Barton McLaine

    June 3rd, 1970 an old, wobbly,WWII leftover, 1911 saved my life. There is no better pistol since then.

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