February 17, 2013

Springfield Armory XD45 Compact Tactical .45 ACP

In this test we looked at four different polymer handguns that offer higher round capacity but take up less space than full-size models. Our first pistol, the $503 Taurus PT24/7 Pro 45-BP-12 could be considered a true compact, especially when compared to Taurus’s new OSS pistol. The Springfield Armory XD45 4-inch Compact XD9645HCSP06, $589; and the Springfield Armory XD45 5-inch Compact Tactical XD9655HCSP06, $619, have undergone the Colt Officers treatment, receiving a shortened grip frame attached to a full-length slide. The $637 Glock SF21 is a remodeling of the Glock 21, but the SF21 does not seem to be much smaller. We wanted to find out if any of its subtle streamlining added up to a better pistol than the original.

Aficionados of forty-five who crave the Government Model’s power but long for more rounds in a concealable handgun should like the XD45 Compact Tactical. The length of the grips on both the XD Compacts with the 10-round magazine in place was about 0.75 inch shorter than a standard-framed 1911 loaded with a flush-fit magazine.

The original concealable 1911s were custom guns in that their grip frames had been cut in length. This limited capacity to six rounds in the magazine. We measured the XD grip to be 1.2 inches wide at its base. This was about 0.10 inches thinner than a typical 1911 fit with standard width grips.

Springfield Armory XD45 Compact Tactical .45 ACP

courtesy Gun Tests

This is a gun that could excel as a police sidearm or in a concealed backup role with the 10-round magazine in place.

The XD Compact Tactical differs from the 4-inch model only in the length of its barrel and slide. This increased the sight radius, making the front sight easier to see for most shooters, but it adds about 2.5 ounces to total weight. Additional weight usually adds recoil control, but not when it’s attached to the top end, which is moving back and forth. If the difference in felt recoil between the two model XDs was a negative, then here’s reason to feel good about the need for more attention to the grip. The long 5-inch barrel provided more velocity and power than our other guns. In fact, the extra inch of barrel accounted for about 50 foot-pounds more muzzle energy when compared to the 4-inch XD pistol.

Another aspect of carrying either of the XD pistols with the large magazine in place is the excess weight. For example, it is one thing to carry 15 or 16 rounds of 115-grain 9mm ammunition in the magazine and quite another to tote 13 rounds of 230-grain 45 ACP. This made all the guns in our test top heavy when seated vertically in a belt holster.

Springfield Armory XD45 Compact Tactical .45 ACP

courtesy, Gun Tests

Removing the top end of the XD pistols required locking back the slide and turning the slide latch upward.

Springfield does supply a belt holster and dual magazine pouch with the XD Compacts as well as for other models, but for some body types, this polymer high-ride design can let the gun flop outward, printing against the covering garment. In our opinion a better choice of holster for these guns would be a low-ride model wherein the line of the grip is nearly level with the belt.

The matching dual magazine pouch was exceptional however. It featured a tension adjustable hold that will not come loose and both front and back edges were sculpted with a Picatinny rail for carrying a weapon light or other accessory.

From the bench our test pistol averaged about 1-inch-wide groups for all shots fired.

In our action test of the Tactical model, we landed 17/20 shots in the A-zone. The 20-shot group was tight, but our test shooter was once again pushing shots to the left. Shifting to the head shot, we printed 6/10 shots in the desired spot.

Comments (12)

I purchased a Springfield XDs .45 in May 2013 and have over 1,100 round down range. I have had many "light primer strikes" after the first 100 rounds. Several weeks ago (July 2014) I cleaned the striker channel with break cleaner. I shot 269 rounds since the cleaning and have had no FTF. Some may ask, after having so many "light primer strikes" why stay with the weapon? I hate to sell a weapon that have operating issues and like a challenge on solving the problem. I believe the FTF issue may be solved and will put another 200 rounds at the range. If there is no problems I will then feel comfortable with EDC of the weapon. This is the reason for the weapon...summer EDC.

Posted by: fxdwg_98 | July 1, 2014 4:51 PM    Report this comment

got a xd45 4 inch with truglo sites and love it

Posted by: stoneyh | October 30, 2009 1:17 AM    Report this comment

What is included in the defensive carry work and at what cost?

Posted by: Wood Butcher | March 12, 2009 2:45 PM    Report this comment

Bought an XD 45 Compact last year. Sent it to Sprngfld Custom Shop for their "defensive carry" work which tightened up the trigger pull and shortened reset. WOW - what a sweet pistol! I have Pa and Utah CCW and shoot several defensive handgun tactical courses each year (LFI, Insight, F-R-I etc). I was so impressed I sold my Glock 19 and bought the XD 9mm!! Sorry Glock guys but the XD's fit my hand better therefore I shoot them better.

Posted by: CLYDE B | February 28, 2009 3:31 PM    Report this comment

great comments. just purchased springfield xd in 45. have not had time to shoot it. i have springfield in 357 and love it.

Posted by: pa-cman | February 25, 2009 9:04 PM    Report this comment

My XD 45 is sweet to shoot, has high capacity, is easy to maintain and cost a little over $500 two years ago. It is all the 45 I'll ever need.

Posted by: boomstick | February 21, 2009 6:02 PM    Report this comment

I purchased, the Springfield XD45; taking it to the range, along with my Glock19. I shot them both; 230grain hollow points, in my .45, and 147grain, in my Glock. The difference, in recoil, was nominal, to say the least! I'm not really interested, in having to use, either, in self-defense, but, i'd rather have the stopping power, the Springfield .45 has, with the 13shot magazine! Thank You, Springfield! This will be, my last .45!...[it does it all!].
George Dowling

Posted by: muffdiver | February 20, 2009 10:00 AM    Report this comment

The XD series has a lot of take-up, which can be managed OK, and a lot of reset distance, which is more troublesome. If one has a tendency to mash the trigger under pressure he will be sure to mash badly on the second and succeding shots because of the lengthy take-up. Springfield Armory will adjust the take-up but insists that it is for competition only and not for carry. Does anyone have experience with this adjustment on an XD?
Paul Empson, Nebraska

Posted by: mpsn | February 19, 2009 5:10 PM    Report this comment

I have had a Ruger P90, Springfield 1911 Mil-Spec, Glock21 (First gen), now the new Glock21SF. To me, The G21SF has everything I want in a pistol. And the slimmer frame enables me to put more of a, "Choke hold", on the grip. The 13 rounders are legal where I live, and the pistol came brand new with two 13rd mags. Total price of the G21SF: $640. Firing is great!!! 230gr Speer Gold Dot HP's, no problem. I'm afraid to try the plus-P stuff though.

Posted by: dsajlh | February 19, 2009 2:01 PM    Report this comment

The 4 inch barrel is friendlier for IWB carry, no accuracy difference. I prefer the Truglo TFO sights. Not mentioned is the ambi mag release. Very helpful for mag changes without shifting firing grip.
Only downside this (also) Para 10 user (for real deep cover and maximim firepower) would like- but as of yesterday not available anywhere- is an enlarged/ extended slide release/ lock back for clearing and for type 3 failure drills.

Posted by: medicine man | February 19, 2009 11:22 AM    Report this comment

I'm pro .45 and after using and carrying my XD40 which is a real "soft shooter", I want to try an XD45. Springfield has real winners with the XD series. The Glock is easier to customize, but the XD's don't seem to need customization.

Posted by: dgray64 | February 19, 2009 11:18 AM    Report this comment

I have an XD-45 4" in the newer (as of last summer) "military" version which includes an ambidextrous thumb-safety. In fact, I traded my old one w/o the safety for it. I've been very pleased with it and was quite surprised by it's accuracy and the newer added safety is great for adding that added peace-of-mind. It's a tad hefty when loaded with the 13+1 rds, but having that much heavy-duty firepower in such a compact package is impressive. My only real beef is that - also last summer - Crimson Trace came out with a laser-grip for the XD-45, which, of course, won't fit on my newer thumb-safety model. Hopefully, CT will retool their a new grip for this model as well. At any rate, I'm certainly an XD fan. Oh, I should add that having Trijicons installed on it is a very desirable add-on and well worth the extra 75 bucks(ish).

Ed Boyd
Central Texas

Posted by: ED B | February 19, 2009 9:24 AM    Report this comment

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