Ruger’s big deal at SHOT was, of course, its new American pistol available in either 9x19mm or .45 ACP. This is a continuation of Ruger’s “American” branding, which is really a new market segment that uses sound manufacturing processes in the most efficient manner possible to create functional guns at lunch bucket prices.
American pistol literature states it’s “designed with the latest U.S. Military standards in mind,” so I imagine Ruger will make a run for the next military pistol contract with the American. (Editor’s Note: Per my contacts as of this writting, Ruger has not submitted a pistol for the DOD Modular Handgun Trials) In addition to those standards, though, Ruger has also implemented a “voice of customer” process where various stakeholders can provide design/feature input. Far from being guns “designed by committee,” Ruger has smart decision makers who take that feedback and test it in the determination of the form, function and features of new firearm.
Some of those features seen in the American are a Glock-like trigger safety, a low bore axis for faster follow-up shooting and better recoil management, and a modular wrap-around grip system that lets the user choose between small, medium and large grip on the 9mm, and medium or large on the .45.
Another cool gun from Ruger was the 22/45 Lite. This reminds me very much of a Ruger Mark II pistol with Pac-Lite barrel that came across our desks about 15 years ago when I was at American Rifleman. The 22/45 Lite has the same grip frame as the standard 22/45 that emulates the grip angle of the venerable 1911. The “lite” comes from the feathery anodized aluminum barrel shroud that’s available in in either OD green or blue.
For the wheelgunner, Ruger also came out with the GP100 in .22 Long Rifle. Capacity is 10 rounds and even though it’s a rimfire, this gun retains the centerfire’s triple-locking cylinder that locks into the frame at the front, rear and bottom for more positive alignment and dependable operation shot after shot.
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