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Top 10 Best 1911 Pistols For The Money 2023 Reviews & Buying Guide

With the amount of 1911 pistols on offer today there is certainly a valid question certainly to be asked:

Which are the best 1911 pistols for the money?

So, we decided to dig deep into this topic in order to find the answer.

As well as covering the 1911’s history, we will look at which types of shooters use this weapon. From there, we will review 10 of the top rated 1911’s out there and then give some buying tips for you to consider before purchase.

So, without further ado, let’s get started…

A Brief Overview – The Rich & Illustrious History Of The 1911

This section does not intend to go into the entire history of the 1911 pistol. Rather, it is a brief overview. It will point out its origination and highlight why this is the most popular handgun to ever grace military and civilian hands in the USA.

A long-lasting, lingering love affair

The original 1911 pistol was designed by the legendary firearms designer John Browning. At the time, he could not have conceived what impact his creation would have on generations of military and civilian shooters. One thing is for sure; countless 1911 users down the years will testify to its use and efficiency.

The popularity of the 1911 handgun remains strong to this day and certainly shows no signs of wavering. This is undoubtedly a long lasting love affair that will linger.

best 1911 pistols reviews
Photo by Rezz Guns
He was much, much more

Many will quite rightly remember John Browning for the 1911 pistol design. However, it should be noted that this prolific firearms designer was much more to the firearms world. He invented a host of other military and civilian firearms, cartridges, and mechanisms for guns. Indeed, during his lifetime, this proud American amassed a total of 128 firearm patents.

A weapon that saw action between 1911 and 1985

The M1911 design is a single-action, semi-automatic handgun. It is magazine-fed and comes with a recoil-operated pistol chamber. This sidearm was the standard-issue for U.S. Armed Forces for 75 years (between 1911-1986). The M1911 was prominent in many conflicts. Significant examples being:

  • World War I and II.
  • The Korean War.
  • Vietnam War.

In 1985 the US Military adopted the 9mm M9 pistol. Their hope was that this change would achieve greater ammunition interoperability with their allies in NATO. However, this proved to be a painful lesson. One that gun experts and veterans had cautioned about. The fact is, the 9mm ball cartridge is no more potent than when it first saw the light of day in 1902. It is certainly less effective than the 1911’s firepower and potency.

Due to its popularity, the M1911 was never completely phased out by the U.S. Military. It is still the case that some special operation troops still use this highly effective pistol today.

How popular?

The 1911 is the most frequently copied pistol design in the world. It is certainly the most recognized and most used semi-automatic pistol on the planet. Many experienced shooters maintain it is the best pistol ever produced.

It’s highly effective original design has remained the blueprint for 1911 production to this very day. The continuing popularity and respect for the 1911 pistol design makes one thing very clear:

The best 1911 manufacturers around the world remain keen to produce their own version of the pistol.

Why? Because the iconic design continues to foster a vibrant and lucrative market sector. One that many manufacturers are keen to exploit.

Who Uses The 1911?

Looking at a cross-section of shooters, it may be easier to define which groups do not use the 1911. Just take a glance in the cabinets of gun enthusiasts and collectors, you’ll likely see at least one 1911 pistol. Respected gun shops always display a selection, and firearm aficionados are quite likely to have one in their gun safe or about their person.

This is because the best 1911 pistol designs are accurate, reliable, and pleasant on the eyes.

Many of the major shooting sports allow a class for shooting 1911 style pistols. You can be assured that even though the original design is well over 100 years old, it’s not going anywhere, anytime soon.

best 1911 pistols

1911 pistol use covers a wide brief

As can be seen, a wide section of users find this handgun perfectly meets their needs. This includes everyday shooters, hunters, and anyone who is looking for a trustworthy gun in terms of personal protection. You can also consider tactical use. Military and Law enforcement organizations throughout the United States and countries across the globe still use the M1911A1 or modified versions of it.

From a U.S. point of view, this includes, but is certainly not limited to:

  • The Marine Corps Special Operations Command.
  • LAPD SWAT and S.I.S.
  • The FBI Hostage Rescue Team.
  • Some FBI SWAT teams.

In terms of civilian use, pistols from the best 1911 manufacturers have been protecting the general public for generations. They offer comfortable concealed-carry and can be quickly brought into action for self-defense should the need ever arise.

Many home-owners have benefitted from high capacity 1911 pistols for home defense purposes. They have been used in countless situations where it has been necessary to protect family, property, and belongings.

Best 1911 Pistols For The Money – 10 That Are Worthy Of Mention

Selecting the best 1911 pistol on the market has been a difficult task. There is a wide swathe of manufacturers and different models out there. In truth, there are more options than you can shake a stick at! Therefore, our selections take into account different types of use and a shooter’s budget. Hopefully, you will find something here that meets your needs and price point.

While this has been a tricky selection process, it has certainly been an interesting one. So, here’s our pick of 10 that we feel are really worthy of mention.

1911 Pistol

Top 10 Best 1911 Pistols On The Market 2023 Reviews

1 Rock Island Armory – M1911-A2 FS 5IN 9MM

Rock Island Armory (RIA) firearms are designed and manufactured by Armscor in the Philippines. Armscor first opened its US office in 1985. Since then, they have grown into an established provider of pistols, rifles, shotguns, and ammunition for the US market.

RIA are best known for their 1911 series pistols. The quality and keen pricing of their handguns certainly places them in the best 1911 under $1000 category. The model we are reviewing shows exactly why. It offers a stylish design and flexibility of the ammo you wish to use.

Built to last…

Their M1911-A2 model is constructed from quality 4140 Ordnance steel. From there, it is refined through a professionally managed hand-fitting process and finished with a durable parkerized coating. This quality manufacture means you are buying into a well-priced 1911 pistol that is built to last.

Choice of calibers is yours…

It has been built to drive original Armscor 22 TCM cartridge, but that is not all. It also comes with a drop-in 9mm accessory barrel to make it one of Rock Island Armory’s most versatile tactical pistols.

Power with a surprisingly light recoil…

The 5-inch barrel delivers penetrating impact with a surprisingly light recoil. You then add into the mix a double stack magazine well of 17-round capacity. This combination affords high-velocity payload and makes it suitable for any shooter looking to gain a tactical advantage.

It is a neatly designed 1911 pistol that comes with a skeletonized hammer and trigger for smooth operation. In terms of sights, you get an adjustable over-travel stop, low-profile 2-dot LPA rear sight, and a high-visibility fiber optic front sight.

Battle ready grips…

When you are ready to put this best 1911 under $1000 pistol to the test, the battle-ready G10 tactical grips will do the job. And the pistol is finished off with well-engineered front & rear CNC angle grooves. It also comes with a full length under Picatinny rail, which means accessories of your choice can be added.

Specifications at a glance

Here’s what you get from this high capacity 1911 pistol:

  • Caliber – 22 TCM / 9mm Luger.
  • Capacity – 17+1 rounds.
  • Sights – Front sight = Dovetail Fiber-Optic. – Rear sight = Adjustable LPA MPS1-Type.
  • Weight – Unloaded = 3 lbs. – Loaded = 3.62 lbs.
  • Overall length = 8.5 inches.
  • Width = 1.41 inches.
  • Height = 5.5 inches.
  • Grips – G10.
  • Finish – The Frame and Slide are Parkerized.
  • Barrel – 5 inches.
  • Magazine type – Removable.
  • Groves – 6 Grooves.
  • Trigger Pull – 4-6 lbs.
  • Length of Twist – 1 in 16 inch.
  • Action Type – Single Action.
  • Firing system – Series 70 Type.


  • Choice of 22 TCM or 9mm barrel.
  • High capacity 1911 magazines.
  • Fully parkerized finish.
  • Design is pleasing on the eye.


  • Some accuracy concerns.
  • Thumb safety feature not the best.

2 Springfield Armory® 1911 Pistols

When considering the best 1911 manufacturers, Springfield Armory must be up there. They have been producing 1911 semi-automatic pistols for decades. Their first foray into the 1911 manufacturing process began in 1985, and since then, they have not looked back. Quality, coupled with popularity, has seen a wide variety of best 1911 pistol models being released.

Springfield really does offer something to fit the needs of every type of shooter. A point in case here is their “loaded” series. This range comes with modern-day improvements that go with current demands.

Why choose a Springfield 1911?

Just five points on this before we get into what is on offer.

  • Who produces the best 1911 pistols? Springfield surely stands among the echelon of the best firearms manufacturers.
  • The Springfield 1911 design is battle-proven.
  • Their 1911’s are constructed for durability and reliable performance.
  • Choose your use – For duty, personal protection, or competition – There is a model out there for you.
  • Good shooting experience, whether you are in the field, on the range or at home.
They offer a good selection of 1911 pistols

Depending upon your personal choice, you have a choice of 1911’s on offer. Springfield offers models in 9mm Luger and .45 auto calibers. The model we will look at is their 1911 EMP (Enhanced Micro Pistol) Lightweight Champion. This is their 9mm Luger version.

It has a barrel length of 4 inches, an overall length of 7.5 inches, and weighs in at just under 1.94 lbs (31 oz.). You get a 10+1-round high capacity magazine, and the two-tone finish gives a Cocobolo Double-Diamond Cross Cannon grip. And since its release in 2007, the Springfield EMP has been seen as a real game changer for shooters interested in the sub-compact market.

Sized to your advantage…

It has slightly smaller dimensions than a typically designed ‘officer’ sized gun. This really does give shooters and advantage in terms of increased comfort, control, and speed of use.

You are buying into a high-quality product that includes 3-dot illuminated sights. It also gives the shooter solid safety functionality and a barrel that is manufactured to match grade.

Without a doubt, this has to be placed in the best 1911 pistol on the market category.


  • Compact, durable, high-quality manufacture.
  • Original leader in the sub-compact 1911 market.
  • Versatile – Good for duty, defense, and concealed carry.
  • 4-inch barrel length.
  • Accurate, comfortable to handle.
  • Lightweight.
  • Easily concealable.


  • Cocobolo wood grips will scratch after time.
  • Lots of ‘Springfield’ logos visible (This does not affect the performance!)

3 Remington 1911 r1 .45 ACP Pistol

We are looking at yet another of the best 1911 manufacturers in this next review. Remington has vast experience when it comes to producing 1911 pistols. Indeed, they were one of the first companies that Colt turned to when help was needed to ramp up production during the war years.

Solid build – very upgradable…

Made from quality stainless steel, you are getting a very attractive looking pistol. Surely this stylish design needs placing in the best 1911 under $1000 category. The caliber is .45 auto, it comes with a 5-inch barrel, and you get a capacity of 7+1-rounds.

Levels of performance, thanks to precision…

This is among the top rated 1911 .45 pistols due to its stylish, robust, and reliable build. But, there is far more on offer. It comes with additions that make this best 1911 pistol suitable for use in today’s world. Examples being, a match-grade stainless steel barrel and bushing that is precision-fit to ensure ‘out-of-the-box’ accuracy.

The precision continues with the gun’s frame and slide that has been designed to ensure smooth cycling. As for the three dot dovetail sight system, this allows the shooter to achieve rapid target acquisition.

Crisp and clean…

The final precision feature to be mentioned relates to the trigger pull. This is crisp and clean to deliver added precision whenever this 1911 is used.

A snapshot of what is on offer
  • Action – Single.
  • Caliber / Gauge – 45 ACP.
  • Capacity – 7+1 rounds.
  • Sight – 3-Dot.
  • Slide – Highly polished stainless steel.
  • Barrel – 5 inch, stainless steel.
  • Frame – Stainless steel with high polish finish.
  • Grip type – White synthetic pearl.
  • Weight – 38.5 oz.

Accessorize to your heart’s content…

Top rated 1911 .45 pistols allow for accessories to be added. The Remington R1 makes this particularly appealing. Its flexibility allows for a wide range of accessories to be added. There is an excellent choice to meet your needs.

A multipurpose 1911 to be reckoned with…

Whatever you are looking to get from top rated 1911 .45 pistols, this Remington is capable of providing. It’s crisp trigger, and fiber optic front sight means easy target acquisition and accuracy. It also includes front/rear slide serrations, and the slide and frame are precision-machined.

To assist in ease of use, the large serrations certainly help. As we have mentioned, this is a modern design pistol for modern time use.


  • Designed with the modern-day 1911 shooter in mind.
  • Eye-catching design and features.
  • Large serrations.
  • Very open to customization.


  • On the heavy side.
  • Trigger on the short side for some.
  • Very much ‘general purpose’ not specific, but this could very well be a ‘Pro’ for many.

4 Colt 1911 Delta Elite Government 10mm 8+1

Who makes the best 1911 pistols? There are perhaps other contenders out there, but in terms of originality, design, and style, many shooters would plump for Colt. They are synonymous with the term “best 1911 manufacturers” and, as a company has been making 1911’s since the first year of production.

Colt has continuously released different formats and quality versions of this classic pistol, and their Delta Elite model offers real style.

Classic 10mm 1911 platform…

If a classic, best 1911 pistol for the money is what you are after, then please take a close look at this Colt Delta Elite. The company was instrumental in pioneering the adaptation of a combat pistol to the highly potent 10mm cartridge. This is seen in the fact that Colt was the first company to successfully produce a 10mm caliber pistol in the U.S.A.


First, let’s take a look at the specs. We will then point out some features that put this model up there as the best 1911 pistol design.

  • Type – Semi-Auto. Hammer Fired.
  • Action – Single.
  • Caliber/Gauge – 10mm Auto.
  • Capacity – 8+1-Round.
  • Magazine type – Removable.
  • Front sight – Novak White Dot.
  • Rear sight – Novak Low Mount Carry.
  • Barrel/Receiver/Frame – All made from Stainless Steel.
  • Stock – Made from wood.
  • Slide – Black.
  • Muzzle – Plain.
  • Safety – Thumb, Firing Pin.
  • Grip Type – Black Composite with Delta Medallion.
  • Dimensions:
  • Barrel length – 5 inches.
  • Overall length – 8 ½ inches.
  • Weight – 35 oz. (2.18 lbs).

Features worthy of mention include genuine Novak white dot sights. And quality stainless steel is used in manufacturing. This ensures both robustness and classic styling. While the safe use of this best 1911 pistol is enhanced through an upswept ‘beavertail’ grip safety and an extended thumb safety.

There is an enhanced hammer and wide slide serrations that help with increased grip. You also benefit from a lowered/flared ejection port to ensure smooth cycling.

Need to mount a light or laser?

The standard version of the Colt Delta Elite we are reviewing comes with a 5-inch barrel. However, for those who want to mount a light or laser below the barrel, it is possible to go for the rail gun version. It will cost a couple of hundred dollars more but gives this added option.

How powerful?

You are buying into near .41 Magnum ballistics. This means hunters will be at home with this powerful pistol. It is more than capable of bringing down medium-sized game. And for those using it for self-defense purposes will be confident that when a target is hit, it will stay hit.

There is no doubt that the highly regarded 10mm cartridge outperforms the majority of alternative self-defense cartridges. This is shown by the fact that many tactical shooters have long seen the Colt Delta Elite as a favorite.

A word of caution on recoil…

The 10mm recoil will be noticed. This means that any shooters who have used .45 ACP or .40 S&W and have been bothered about recoil should stay away from the more noticeable 10mm recoil.


  • Timeless classic design.
  • True quality.
  • Power from the 10mm cartridge.
  • Ideal 1911 for hunters, self-defense and tactical users.
  • Good safety features.
  • Rail-gun model is available.


  • On the heavier side.
  • Recoil may be too much for some shooters.

5 Springfield Armory – 1911 TRP Operator 10MM 6″ Black Adjustable NS

Our next review stays with power and one of the best 1911 manufacturers out there. Springfield Armory has learned a thing or two about 1911 pistol production over the last 3.5 decades. This model offers power through its 10mm cartridge capability.

Their best 1911 pistol offering to date

There is no doubt you will be paying more for the pleasure of owning a handgun that many would place in the best 1911 pistol on the market category. However, by doing so, you really are buying into a solid, stylish, and very powerful weapon.

A longer barrel has its benefits

The Springfield TRP Operator is a 10mm semi-auto 1911 pistol with a capacity of 8+1-rounds and removable magazine. But it is certainly not the smallest or lightest 1911 out there. Having said this, it simply has to be rated as one of the most accurate and powerful.

Coming with a barrel length of 6 inches and an overall length of 9.6 inches. This best rated 1911 pistol comes in at a fairly hefty 44.8 ozs (2.8lbs). The 6-inch match-grade stainless steel barrel is designed to give increased velocity, greater accuracy, and longer sight radius. All of this leads to a 10mm shooting experience with less recoil.

Optimized to reduce recoil…

We have just touched on it, but the design of this best 1911 pistol has been designed with a feature that is worthy of further mention. The recoil, when using 10mm ammo, can give a fair kick. Springfield Armory has approached this issue by designing the TRP Operator with a heavier slide and barrel combination. This is then paired with just the right type of springs.

The result?

A design that works effectively to reduce 10mm recoil.

Night sights and two speed trigger are included, and it comes with 3-dot tritium night sights and the Springfield Armory (SA) Gen 2 Speed trigger. This trigger offers a 4.5-5-lbs ‘pull’. As for the quality G10 VZ grips. These will hand-secure your pistol regardless of the weather conditions you are using it in. Fit for purpose as is, but an accessory rail is also yours

There really is no immediate (or future!) need to add accessories to this best 1911 pistol. It is fully ready to go out of the box. However, if the need for accessorizing does arise, the included accessory rail is at your service. In this respect, one thing is certain:

Due to the popularity of the 1911, there is no shortage of accessories out there for you to choose from.


  • Top-notch design.
  • Power with 10mm – Yet reduced recoil.
  • 6-inch barrel has advantages.
  • Night sights included.
  • Accessory rail included.
  • Secure G10 VZ grips.


  • Due to design, larger and heavier than other 1911 versions.
  • Moving up the price bracket.

6 Colt – Gold Cup National Match 5in 45 ACP Blue 8+1RD

We stay among elite company. As previously mentioned, Colt unquestionably makes some of the best 1911 pistols for the money. Those sport and competition shooters in search of top rated 1911 .45 pistols, please read on!

Stylish design, attractive looks…

This Colt Gold Cup National Match model has a design and look that will certainly attract: Not just owners, but onlookers as well.

‘The’ premier target pistol

Any shooter involved in target competitions will be aware of the Colt Gold Cup model. It was first introduced as far back as the 1950s. Today’s upgraded version has to be seen as the best 1911 pistol for target shooting competitors.

Why do competition shooters love this pistol?

It is thoroughly tried, tested, and completely at home in the competition shooting market. You are getting one of the best 1911 pistols for the money, which combines classic looks and accuracy. Put quite simply; it is the definitive standard for competitive guns.

Finished in the classic Colt blue with a wooden stock, it comes with a 5-inch barrel. The pistol’s overall length is 8.5 inches, and it weighs in at 37.12 oz. (2.32 lbs.). You also get 2 x 8-round removable magazines with your purchase. Featured 25 LPI (lines per inch) checkering shows on the front and back straps, and you get an extended magazine well.

Superb for target practice…

Combine this with the national match grade barrel and adjustable wide trigger, then add sights that offer flexibility: The rear sight is fully adjustable, the front sight is fiber optic. Result? You have the best 1911 target pistol to be reckoned with.

Many other refinements come as standard in the extremely high quality, precise Colt manufacturing process. This all goes to give stellar accuracy.

Compete with the best…

This Colt Gold National Match 1911 tops the tree when it comes to top rated 1911 .45 pistols. And those interested in performing well at competitions would be wise to take a long look at it. We have to class this as the best 1911 pistol for sports shooting from a renowned company that makes some of the best 1911 target pistols for the money out there.


  • Classic design from the 1950s to the current day and beyond.
  • Quality through and through.
  • ‘The’ definitive standard for competition shooting.
  • Adjustable rear sight. Fiber optic front sight.
  • Accurate, flexible.


  • Designed with the competition shooter in mind (Not a ‘con’ if you are a competition shooter!).
  • Not the cheapest 1911 out there.

7 Sig Sauer 1911 STX Full Size Pistol .45 ACP

The list of best 1911 manufacturers just keeps on rolling! Our next offering is from Sig Sauer. The company certainly offer a different style and design for the best 1911 pistol models produced. You have a range of individually identifiable finishes, a modern look to the classic style, and commemorative issues to choose from.

In terms of small arms manufacturers, they have to be classed up there with the best 1911 manufacturers. Their best 1911 pistol choice offers handguns that will last a shooter a lifetime.

We will take a look at the Sig Sauer 1911 STX full size pistol .45 ACP model.

So, let’s first furnish you with a few key specs. We will then explain why this model comes in the top rated 1911 .45 pistols category.

  • Caliber – 45 ACP.
  • Action type – SAO (Single Action Only).
  • Trigger pull – 5 lbs.
  • Barrel length – 5.0 inches.
  • Length – 8.7 inches.
  • Height – 5.7 inches.
  • Width – 1.4 inches.
  • Sights – Adjustable combat night sights.
  • Sight radius – 6.5 inches.
  • Magazine capacity – 8 rounds.
  • Weight (with magazine) – 41.6 oz (2.6 lbs).
Stylish finish with lots going for it….

Coming with a stylish two-tone finish, this 1911 is loaded with features. Its Nitron finished slide blends perfectly with the natural, high-quality stainless frame. These features are set off by attractive burled Maple custom wood grips. You get polished cocking serrations and a Flat Top. All of these features go to enhance the pistol’s stylish two-tone aspect.

Adjustable combat night sights top off the slide while the frame comes with a wide magazine well. This has been designed to give rapid, smooth reloads.

Quality from start to finish…

Quality stainless steel has been used in frame and slide production. Both features are machined to strict tolerances before being hand-fitted. This shows the determination of SIG to achieve top performance and reliability.

On the frame, you get a front strap with 25-line per inch checkering. As for the mainspring housing, this comes with 20-line per inch design. Before release, the frame and the slide are dehorned. This is to ensure comfortable full-size carry. Top rated 1911 .45 pistols in this price range do not come with better internal parts. All are of premium quality and include a match grade barrel along with hammer/sear set and trigger.

Safety comes as a major consideration…

Safety-wise you have a Beavertail grip safety feature with speed bump. There is also an extended ambidextrous thumb safety, firing pin safety, and then a hammer intercept notch. The complete weapon package is shipped in a plastic gun case that comes with a cable lock.


  • Highly durable, built to last a lifetime.
  • Frame and slide made from quality stainless steel.
  • Full size, 1911 .45 Auto.
  • Internal parts are hand-fitted.
  • Traditional GI guide rod included in the build.
  • Complete with 2 x 8-round quality steel magazines.
  • Excellent value for money.


  • Trigger pull quite heavy at 5 lb.
  • Trigger requires time to break-in.

8 Kimber MFG. – 1911 Amethyst Ultra II 9 MM 3IN 9MM Stainless 7+1RD

Kimber is seen as one of the best 1911 manufacturers in the mid-to-higher level of design. A wide choice of designs means large-frame to compact models are on offer. Their 1911’s are classed as “custom made.” This is due to the fact that many features are machined to high tolerances and then fitted together by hand.

Compact, stylish…

The model we are reviewing is the Kimber 1911 Amethyst Ultra 11. This single action pistol fires 9mm Luger cartridges and has a capacity of 7+1 round. A combination of stainless steel, along with its aluminum frame, is enhanced with an amethyst purple slide. This certainly attracts the eye. You are also getting additional controls and safety features included.

It gets its lightweight compactness comes from the fact the barrel is only 3 inches in length. The total length of the pistol comes in at 6.8 inches, and it weighs in at just 21.52 oz (1.57 lbs). The stock material consists of G10 grips. For accurate sighting, you get both front and rear illuminated sights that are classed as night sights.

A popular choice for women…

Female shooters looking for a sub-compact, stylish looking 1911 pistol have taken to this model. With its stylish looks, well-constructed design, and effectiveness, it is easy to see why.

“Carry Melt” treatment

Kimber complete their “Carry Melt” treatment on this and other pistols. This method works to reduce any sharp edges on the gun’s exterior surface. The result? It minimizes the chances of snagging on clothes and allows for a faster draw.

Kimber’s 1911 Amethyst Ultra should be considered for those looking at an effective, compact, and easily carry-concealed pistol.


  • A sub-compact 1911 to be reckoned with.
  • Lightweight.
  • Ease of concealed carry.
  • Style and quality.
  • Attractive on the eye.
  • Smooth exterior minimizes any possible snagging.
  • Custom fit parts.
  • Front & Rear illuminated night sights included.


  • Only includes a single magazine.
  • On the small side for some shooters.

9 Auto Ordnance – 1911A1 5IN 45 ACP Matte Black 7+1RD

Heads-up to any shooter looking for a very low-priced take on the original 1911 pistol design. This offering from Thompson Auto Ordnance is certainly worthy of note. Steel construction, matte black finish, and a 5-inch barrel come with brown checkered plastic grips. For the price paid, you get a very satisfactory shooting experience.

A low, attractively priced take on the original 1911 design…

Coming in at well under the $1000 mark, it is a good choice for shooters on a tight budget. It is also worthy of consideration for shooters looking at their first 1911 pistol derivative. And we would certainly class this in the best 1911 under $1000 category.

Chambered in .45 ACP, you get 1 x 7+1 capacity. On purchase, you get one magazine included. It is single action only with a trigger pull of just over 6 lbs, which may be too heavy for some. The all-steel construction includes GI Specs and features.

Sights and Dimensions…

This Series 80 1911 semi-automatic handgun comes with low profile sights. These are presented in traditional military style. The front blade sight is staked into the slide. The rear sight is dovetailed and drift adjustable for windage. As mentioned, the barrel is 5 inches. This is throated from the 4 to 8 o’clock positions

Those familiar with the original GI Model 1911A1 will note this design did not have a throated barrel.

Dimension-wise it has an overall length of 8.5 inches, and its height from the lanyard loop to the top of the rear sight is 5.5 inches. Unloaded, it weighs in at 39 oz. (2.43 lbs).


  • Very low price.
  • Solid option for those on a tight budget.
  • Low profile sights – Rear adjustable.


  • Not based exactly around 1911 configuration.
  • Heavy trigger pull – 6lbs+
  • On the heavy side for some.

10 Wilson Combat – 1911 CQB Full Size

It’s time to finish off our best 1911 pistols for the money reviews. We do so with quality and a pistol that shooters will need to dig deep into that bank balance for. But, boy, do you get your money’s worth.

Wilson Combat started out making highly popular magazines and aftermarket upgrade parts for 1911’s. This should tell you that they know a thing or two about what works best to create a best 1911 pistol design. The company now complete the whole pistol manufacturing process themselves.

It does have to be said that they have worked tirelessly to carve out a sterling name for themselves in this niche. And Wilson Combat has to be seen as one of the very best 1911 pistol manufacturers in operation today.

Choice and quality from the get-go…

This pistol is seen as the standard-bearer of the companies CQB family. The 1911 CQB Full Size pistol gives a choice of either 45 Auto (ACP) or 9mm Luger. The former has a capacity of 10+1 rounds, the latter 8+1 round. Very high quality G10 diagonal flat-bottom grips are yours. This pistol also has a battlesight with fiber optic front sight.

You get a 5-inch match grade, hand fitted barrel. In terms of dimensions, the overall pistol length is 8.7 inches, its height is 5.6 inches, and width is 1.3 inches. The Sight Radius is 6.6 inches while in terms of weight, it is 40.4 oz (2.52 lbs) unloaded and 48.8 oz (3.05 lbs) fully loaded.

Take a look at the quality…

You are buying into a weapon that will serve multiple purposes. Be that tactical use, for home or self-defense protection, competition use, or daily carry. This best 1911 pistol does the job and more.

For a serious price, you are getting serious quality that includes:

  • Full-Size Carbon Steel Frame.
  • 5-inch match grade hand fitted barrel.
  • 5-inch Carbon Steel Slide.
  • G10 Starburst Grips
  • High-Cut Checkered Front-Strap.
  • Wilson Combat trademarked High-Ride Bullet Proof Beavertail Grip Safety.
  • Wilson Combat trademarked Ambidextrous Thumb Safety.
  • Specifically contoured magazine well.
  • A crisp trigger pull of between 3 ½ – 4 ½ lbs.
Pure fighting gun design…

Many shooters will agree, this best 1911 pistol on the market gives no air of “flashness.” It has been designed as a fighting gun. In this respect, it simply oozes quality, accuracy, and reliability. This is regardless of the amount and number of different rounds you put through it.

If budget is no issue, then shooters should take a very long look at the Wilson Combat 1911 CQB Full size pistol.


  • Oozes quality.
  • Highly reliable.
  • Extremely well-built.
  • Very accurate.
  • Real fighting gun design.
  • Meets the needs of the modern shooter.


  • Price may be out of the reach of many.

Best 1911 Pistols Buying Considerations – What Are You Looking For?

It is very easy for confusion to reign when looking for the best 1911 pistols for the money. We say this because it is a very subjective issue. What is right for you, your personal circumstances, budget, and what you want the best 1911 pistol for will very much dictate the best 1911 manufacturers for your needs.

Before purchasing, take the following into account. This will certainly help you narrow down your choice:

Do Your Research

It is very important to read about the different 1911’s available. Understanding the makes, models, features, and available accessories will help you make an informed choice. This type of research will also help determine:

1911 pistols review

Type Of Use

Ask yourself what type of role(s) do you want a 1911 pistol to fill. Examples here are:

  • Are you looking for a multipurpose pistol that will fit different situations and activities?
  • Do you have in mind a specific use for your 1911 pistol?
  • Will it be used for hunting? If so, get something that will be powerful enough to down the prey you are after. i.e., the best 1911 pistol in 10mm Auto cartridge.
  • Will it be for the occasional, enjoyable range visit?
  • Do you need a compact pistol that is easy to conceal? – There is an excellent choice of 1911’s for this purpose. Consider weight, size, and firepower. 9mm and .45 caliber are popular in this category.
  • Are you looking for a serious competition shooting 1911 pistol?
  • Is it specifically for home-defense purposes? Top rated 1911 .45 pistols of full size with a rail for light attachment are an excellent example. This type of pistol affords proven stopping power. It also alleviates the risk of penetrating interior drywalls or doors. The attachment of a light to the front of the pistol will also help to reduce recoil.
  • Is the 1911 pistol you are after destined to be for your collection of weapons?

Hopefully, the above examples of use for a 1911 pistol will show you that this really is a gun for all seasons, all occasions, and a wide variety of shooting situations.


Depending on what budget you have, or what you are prepared to spend on a 1911 pistol will very much dictate the quality of weapon. There are models out there in every price range. These start at around $500 and go well up into the $1000’s.

Don’t overstretch yourself financially. However, if you are close to having the amount required for a higher-end 1911, be patient and save those $$$.

The delay in getting your hands on a pistol from one of the best 1911 manufacturers out there will be more than made up by the additional quality you get.

So What Are The Best 1911 Pistols For The Money?

It’s a tough call to identify one handgun from our best 1911 pistols for the money reviews. This is because it really does depend on your personal needs and use.

To ease our pain on a very close run thing, we first give a choice for those without budget constraints. Then we follow this up with a best 1911 pistol that is far more middle-of-the road in terms of price but certainly NOT in quality.

Those with no budget constraints should go for the…

It really does give everything and more. Purchasing this best 1911 pistol means you are buying into a finely crafted pistol that will last a lifetime.

However, reality is a strong factor when it comes to firearms purchase. This tells us that a mid-price range is where many shooters will sensibly be aiming. In this respect, we go for the…

This pistol is highly durable and built to last a lifetime. You are getting a frame and slide manufactured from quality stainless steel and internal hand-fitted parts. There is a traditional GI guide rod included in the build, and 2 x 8-round high-quality steel magazines come with your purchase.

All-in-all, a very fair price for such a high quality 1911 pistol.

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