Springfield Armory XD 40 Review
Those folks looking for a full-size .40 may wonder if the Springfield Armory XD 40 is for them. In this Springfield XD 40 review, we'll go over what this gun has to offer.
The XD 40 is a pretty basic pistol, so you'll know right away whether it's the one for you when you handle one or - better yet - shoot one, as handling and shooting a gun is the best way to tell if its suited for you. That said, let's get into the details.
Basic Is As Basic Does: Springfield XD 40
The Springfield XD 40 is the .40 S&W variant of the XD pistol and at that, the entry-level model in the XD family of guns. "XD" stands for "Extreme Duty," as these pistols are just like the polymer workhorse guns made by so many other gun companies.
The XD is made in Croatia, by the arms maker HS Produkt. Springfield Armory imports them and stamps "Springfield Armory" on the slide. This is, of course, not news; everyone and their brother knows Springfield Armory doesn't make the HD series in-house. Their 1911s, however, are another story.
The XD line is fairly bare-bones, with relatively few perks. However, it does come decently appointed for a workhorse gun. In other words, don't expect a custom shop gun. Instead, it's more that the XD40 has some nice touches here and there that make it a little more ergonomic, but other than that it's meat and potatoes.
XD 40 Review
The gist of this Springfield XD 40 review is that you'll be sorely disappointed If you expect a Cadillac. However, if you're after just what you need and nothing you don't, you'll find some pleasantly surprising details.
The sights are 3-dot, but are dovetailed so they can be drift-adjusted or replaced if so desired. The backstrap isn't swappable, but the mainspring housing has a pleasant palmswell reminiscent of that on the Browning Hi Power and guns that copied it like the CZ-75 and S&W Model 39, so it's comfortable to hold.
The plastic of the frame doesn't feel the most premium, but this is a workhorse gun so you wouldn't expect it anyway. However, the stippling is aggressive enough for a good grip in most conditions.
The backstrap is decently long, allowing for a good high grip on the pistol. This makes for easier shooting. It also facilitates easy deactivation of the grip safety, for those wondering; the gun is set up to carry safely but to get into action easily. The trigger guard has a slight undercut and relief grooves are cut into the grip for the thumb on both sides, allowing right- or left-handed shooters to easily index the thumb on the grip.
A loaded chamber indicator is located at the rear of the chamber on top of the slide, and there's a striker indicator a la Walther on the back of the slide. Looking at pictures, it almost appears the slide rides inside the frame but it doesn't - the slide has a shelf machined into it, giving that appearance.
The slide has forward and rear cocking serrations, which are definitely grippy enough for government work. The polymer frame also features an accessory rail, should you desire a laser/light of some sort.
The trigger is a bifurcated lever, with a passive trigger safety system buttressed by a grip safety. Naturally, it has a firing pin block safety as well, so it has a lot of safety features in place and further guards against any mishaps with the grip safety.
The trigger pull weight is around 6 lbs for most pistols. The trigger is usable, if nothing else. There's a long mushy take-up with no weight to it and a hard stack at the very end, typical of most striker guns. The reset is decently tactile.
The gun ships with two magazines, which hold 12+1 of .40 S&W. You can get the gun in black, black, black or - for those desiring a more tactical gun - in black. MSRP is $508, but you can expect to shell out more like $450 in stores. Maybe less if there's a sale on.
Springfield XD 40 Dimensions
The Springfield XD 40 is a service-size pistol, definitely a full-size gun. Could it be used for daily carry? If you wanted to, you could, though there are other .40 S&W pistols that might be better suited (if you're determined to carry 10mm Light) and certainly Springfield pistols such as the XD-E, XDS and XD Mod 2 Subcompact that are a bit better suited to carry overall.
In overall size, it's definitely a full-size gun but runs close to a compact in size; more on that in a moment. The XD 40 has a 4-inch barrel. Overall dimensions are 7.3 inches long by 5.5 inches in height by 1.2 inches in width.
It is, however, not the lightest polymer pistol as it is 30 ounces in weight, which is actually one of the heaviest of the poly striker guns. In fact, there are even lightweight Commander 1911 pistols that weigh less. Where is the heft, you ask? The slide. The gun is very top heavy, though a full magazine will balance it out.
While it is a full-size, it's actually closer in size to the Glock 23 rather than the Glock 22, the full-size .40 S&W Glock pistol. The G23 also has a 4-inch barrel, and otherwise is almost the same in dimension though is a half-inch shorter in height despite carrying 1 more round in the magazine and being nearly 7 ounces lighter.
So, it's light enough (ish) and compact enough to be used as a daily carry gun - and more people do than you might think - though it isn't the smallest or lightest.
Shooting The Springfield XD 40
Telling a person what a gun shoots like just gives you a picture of what the person writing the review felt; you'll have to do your own Springfield XD 40 review at the range to find out for yourself. You might think something totally different.
However, this is where the weight of the slide becomes a benefit. Striker guns usually have a higher bore height than their hammer-fired counterparts, which can torque the wrist pretty hard with the .40 S&W round. The cast-iron slide of the XD 40 tames that very well, which means that follow-up shots will come faster than with lightweight carry pistols.
You see, what the plastic fantastic crowd doesn't always credit older pistol designs with is easier recoil management with a heavier gun. Sure, the 1911 has low capacity despite being so beefy that it should just be called the Black Angus. However, shooting .45 ACP sure is easy as a result. With the XD 40, you get a bit of the best of both worlds.
So, it's a very basic pistol with a few nice touches. It has one of the most logical safety systems on any handgun. It's definitely accurate, and shoots rather pretty easily for a .40 S&W. It isn't a world-beater by any stretch; there are some much nicer guns out there. However, what you get is performance for value, and in that regard it's a very good buy.