Best 45 ACP Pistols

A Comprehensive Guide

You want the best protection for you and your loved ones but don’t know where to start when looking for a handgun. It can be tough to decide which gun is right for you, especially when there are so many options on the market. Well, to help you out, we’ve researched for you. In this article, we’ll introduce you to the best 45 ACP pistols on the market today. We’ll tell you what makes each pistol unique and why we think it’s worth your consideration.

Smith & Wesson M&P 45 Shield W/Safety 45cp 3.3" 6+1

$505.00 in stock
Last update was on: May 12, 2022 1:40 am

The Smith & Wesson M&P Shield .45 ACP with thumb safety personifies the reality that we live in an uncertain world. The good news is the M&P Shield is an easy to conceal pistol that offers professional grade features with simple operation and reliable performance day or night. Smith & Wesson...

The 45 ACP is one of the most popular handgun cartridges globally. John Browning designed it in 1904 for use in his prototype Colt semi-automatic pistol. It’s a big 230-grain bullet that delivers a big punch and is known for its heavy recoil and stopping power. Today there are many options available on the market for 45 ACP pistols. They come in all shapes and sizes and can be found at prices ranging from about $200 to over $3,000. They also vary in terms of weight and design.

Table of Contents

If you are in a hurry to purchase the best 45 ACP pistols, and you want to make the best decision, here are our top 3 picks:

Top 3 Best 45 ACP Pistols

The Smith & Wesson M&P Shield .45 ACP with thumb safety personifies the reality that we live in an uncertain world. The good news is the M&P Shield is an easy to conceal pistol that offers professional grade features with simple operation and reliable performance day or night. Smith & Wesson...
in stock
Smith & Wesson M&P 45 Shield W/Safety 45cp 3.3" 6+1
The Ultra Carry II (Two-Tone) is a hallmark of Kimber quality, complete with a brushed-polished carbon slide, aluminum frame and smooth/checkered rosewood grips.
out of stock
Chambered in 45 ACP, this Glock G21 Gen 4 is a semi-automatic handgun that delivers remarkable accuracy alongside light recoil. It is built on Glock's signature polymer frame. The Modular Backstrap system allows the user to customize the grip to accommodate any hand size, while the reversible...
out of stock

In this article, we will explore what makes each pistol special. By the end, we hope that you’ll feel better equipped to make the right choice for yourself. Let’s start.

5 Best 45 ACP Pistols (Ranked And Reviewed)

1. Smith & Wesson M&P45 Shield


Smith and Wesson (S&W) is one of the world’s best-known gun manufacturers. They’ve been producing firearms since 1852, which has resulted in a large variety of handguns. From small personal protection revolvers to powerful hunting rifles, the experienced company has something that will fit your needs. The M&P45 Shield is an excellent choice for self-defense. It’s small and lightweight, so you’ll have no trouble carrying it wherever you go. Its compact size makes it easy to conceal yet still big enough to fit your whole hand on the grip. The M&P45 Shield has a polymer frame with a stainless-steel slide, which reduces the gun’s weight while maintaining durability.


It comes with an Armornite finish that is corrosion-resistant and provides a low glare. In addition, the M&P45 Shield comes with a variety of safety features, including an ambidextrous manual thumb safety and internal trigger bar interlock. This model has many features that make it stand out among the best 45 ACP pistols. It’s easy to use and fun to shoot, too. The grip is textured for better grip in the hands, and its small size makes it an excellent choice for concealed carry.



2. GLOCK 21 Gen 4 45 ACP


The Glock 21 is a recoil-operated, semi-automatic .45 caliber pistol. It has the classic boxy look of many other Glocks. The 21 is one of Glock’s more powerful pistols, offering better protection against violent suspects or dangerous animals. It fires the popular .45 Auto cartridge from a high-capacity 13-round magazine. It has a good trigger pull, which is smooth with only a little takeup. The factory sights are excellent, with the standard three-dot configuration that is very intuitive for most shooters.


The rear notch of the steel slide is slightly rounded to help reduce glare in bright conditions, mainly when aimed at light-colored or shiny surfaces. It has a reversible magazine catch, making it easy to switch for left-handed shooters. This is an excellent pistol with a solid feel and comfortable grip, making it an ideal choice for self-defense. The grip feels good in the hands and allows for a comfortable hold. It’s accurate, reliable, and well made.





Kimber is a well-known and popular gun brand. This model by Kimber is compact, lightweight, and easy to conceal. It’s chambered in the powerful .45 ACP cartridge. The model comes with a fixed three-dot night sight which is easy to use for accurate shooting. The Kimber features a durable aluminum frame and steel slide. It has good ergonomics, making it comfortable to hold and shoot. The grip is checkered for extra grip, which helps shoot in wet conditions. It has the Kimber logo on the grips. The trigger pull is light and smooth, making it easy to shoot accurately. It has a three-hole aluminum trigger which is factory set to provide about 4-5 lbs of pull. The aluminum frame makes this gun lightweight, while the full-length guide rod helps keep recoil to a minimum. This firearm has served time in harm’s way, making it a good choice for personal protection.




4. Rock Island Gi Standard Pistol


This model is a GI-style pistol chambered in .45 ACP. It features a parkerized finish that gives it an attractive look and offers extra protection against wear and tear. This weapon is ideal for self-defense or home defense since it’s chambered for the .45 ACP cartridge. The grip is rubber and provides a comfortable hold even after hours of shooting. This firearm is reliable and will fire every time it’s used. It has a 5-inch long parkerized steel barrel which reduces muzzle flash and helps to keep the gun lightweight. It also comes with GI-style fixed sights that offer excellent accuracy and quick target acquisition. The front sight is mounted onto the slide while the rear sight is mounted on the dovetails.


This model is equipped with a military appearance and has rubber grips which make it easy to hold and use comfortably. The gun has a standard GI trigger with a four to six-pound pull. It is lightweight, easy to carry around all day, and comfortable to shoot, especially for people who don’t have experience handling pistols. The affordable price range makes it suitable for people who want a cheap gun without compromising quality. This model is made in the USA and tested for reliability and durability. The manufacturer uses high-grade components to make this pistol, which means it won’t break easily after consecutive usage making it good for everyday carry.





This combat pistol is chambered for the .45 ACP cartridge, making it ideal for self-defense. The stainless steel parts add to this weapon’s durability, which means it can withstand repeated use without getting damaged easily. This firearm also features a polished feed ramp and a stainless steel frame and slide, making it reliable and durable. The grip is made of rubber and will provide a comfortable hold even after continuous use. The gun also comes with ambidextrous safety levers, an extended beavertail grip, and a skeletonized trigger to ensure better usability for both left-handed and right-handed users. The SDS Imports SS45 is a combat pistol perfect for concealed carrying even for long periods.


The stainless steel frame provides this firearm with extra durability while still keeping it light. It also allows for better heat dissipation which makes it a durable gun. This pistol has a lowered and flared ejection port, improving the weapon’s function and safe handling. The Novak-style three-dot fixed sights allow quick target acquisition while keeping the firearm’s profile low. It holds eight rounds in its magazine and has a 4.25-inch stainless steel barrel with polished feed ramp and stainless steel finish making it an excellent firearm for self-defense.




What To Consider While Buying The Best 45 ACP Pistols?

The market is saturated with all kinds of firearms. To help you out, here are some things to look for when buying one 45 ACP pistol for yourself:

Safety Features

You should prioritize safety above all. Check the firearm to ensure its safe and easy handling; if not, go for another model. There should be safeties to prevent accidental discharges while the gun is in your bag. Ensure that the firearm cannot be fired when there’s a magazine inside it. There are many safety features like grip safety, trigger safety, and others that come with a 45 ACP pistol; make sure you know all of them.


Nothing is more important than your budget. Ideally, you should pay the price for a product commensurate with its value. The 45 ACP pistol’s cost will vary depending on many factors such as materials used to make it, brand name, etc. When buying, make sure you set your price range and look for firearms within your budget. Be ready to spend on necessary accessories that come with it, like magazines or holsters. A cheap model may be affordable, but sometimes it’s worth spending some extra money on a dependable firearm.

Type of 45 ACP Pistols

There are many handguns in the market—revolvers, semi-automatics, etc. It’s up to you to decide which one suits you better. You can choose between a pocket pistol or a belt-fed pistol, but it’s best to know your purpose for buying the firearm. For instance, if you want to carry your handgun every day, choose one that has smaller dimensions and is lightweight. If you’re going to use it as a home defense firearm, choose one that has a greater capacity and is larger in size.

Customer Reviews

You can learn more about the product from those who have used it before. Go online and read the customer reviews of 45 ACP pistol models. It’s best to get a review from an expert or a trusted source. Many websites will provide a customer review for their products; getting one from these sites will help you weigh the pros and cons of owning one 45 ACP pistol. Lastly, do the research yourself. You might want to check them out before buying your first 45 ACP pistol.


The best 45 ACP pistols have excellent grip safety features and are affordable. They also have lightweight materials, durable construction, high capacity magazine, high accuracy range, and ease of operation.

It is essential to know how to safely and securely store your gun when not in use. It should also be far from children or anyone that shouldn’t have access to your firearm. While carrying your firearm, you can keep it in an appropriate holster. If you are not carrying your gun, lock it securely in a storage container. Then place the container in a secured area out of reach from children.

Look after your 45 ACP pistol in the same way you would look after any other firearm; clean it daily, keep it dry when storing, and make sure to use your 45 ACP handgun safely.


The 45 ACP pistol is an outstanding firearm that can be concealed easily, has high accuracy range, and is lightweight. When buying your first 45 ACP pistol, choose one with safety features for added protection. Make sure to check the firearm before buying it, so you know for sure if it’s perfect for you. We hope our in-depth review of the five best 45 ACP pistols has given you a better understanding of what to look for when shopping for one. Thank you for reading our article. Happy shooting.

Author Profile

Gabriel Tackett
Double major in Engineering and Geology at the University of Minnesota. Experienced shooter & hunter for over 15 years. Certified NRA officer for over 10 years working as a writer at .

Was This Post Helpful?

Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content