Mossberg MC2c 89031 9mm Luger

The Mossberg provides great ammunition capacity within a very thin package and was second in our accuracy tests. It was a close third in the speed drills.


We recently tested four new or newish 9mm polymer-frame pistols that use mostly proven designs and come in at affordable prices. The first member of our new group is the Savage Stance, $408; followed by the SCCY-DVG-1, $255, a new optics-ready model that we covered on the Gun Tests YouTube page in January 2022; the very new Mossberg MC2c, $380; and the latest introduction, a SAR USA SAR9 Compact X, $631, which was announced in April 2022. How well do these affordable pistols work in an everyday-carry environment? Well, when we shot them head to head, we found some were more accurate than others, and even more important, some were more dependable.

Your eyes do not deceive you about the maker of the first pistol, the Savage Stance. Savage! Savage, you say! What does Savage, the maker of great rifles for more than 100 years know about pistols? Quite a lot, actually. Savage was one of the two finalists in the military trials that eventually accepted the Colt 1911 submission as the winner. A scaled-down version of that pistol was produced from 1907 until 1920. It featured a 10-round double-stack magazine almost 30 years before the famous Browning Hi-Power. Now, a mere century later, Savage is back in the pocket-handgun market with a fascinating entry.

The MC2c’s rear deck is milled for a red-dot optic.

SCCY (pronounced sky, as best we can determine) is out of Florida, and the company has a reputation for producing relatively simple, affordable, and effective firearms. We tried out their new optics-ready DVG-1 model to find out for ourselves. The DVG-1 departs from previous models in that it is striker fired, where previous versions were hammer fired. The required changes in leverage and springs can increase the effort needed to retract the slide, but ours did not show that to be a material factor. The other three pistols in this test averaged in the sub 19-pound category where the SCCY required 20.3 pounds of muscle to retract the slide. We did not feel the 7% increase was noticeable.

Next is Mossberg’s MC2c, a modern 9mm semi-auto with a 14-round magazine, which is a great compromise for most small or big hands. It is very similar in size to a Glock 48. There are many very good reasons why different firearms are shaped differently, primarily because people are as well. About the only assumption that can be made on the potential user of a new firearm is that five out of six will be right-handed. For example, one member of this group of testers has long, slim fingers. The rest of us tend to have bigger hands and shorter digits. That means that pistols of a size that work well for him don’t necessarily work for us at all. The Mossberg MC2c handgun seeks to strike a balance that most users will like.

To disassemble the Mossberg MC2c, press in at the middle of the slide cover plate (1) and move it down (2). Remove the striker assembly (3) and ease off the top end (4).

SAR USA is the exclusive U.S. importer for all firearms and ammunition products produced by Sarsilmaz Silah Sanayi of Istanbul, Turkey. Sarsilmaz is one of the oldest firearms manufacturers in the world, being founded in 1880. It would appear that the “X” in the SAR USA SAR9 Compact X name stands for “extras.” Our sample included a nice hard case along with an inexpensive, but functional, mag pouch and holster. The package included a second 15-round magazine with weighted base pad perfect for those of us still practicing El Presidente–type reloads. Also included was a nice, Picatinny rail-mounted LED light. But intentionally, apparently, SAR did not include the battery. Curious. All told, a very nice collection of gear.

How We Tested

We shot the pistols at American Shooting Centers in Houston, firing accuracy groups at 15 yards. We posted multiple five-shot groups from a well-sandbagged Caldwell Pistolero shooting rest, assisted by a Mini DRC Fortune Cookie from We obtained velocities in one session using a LabRadar chronograph.

We tested using three different types of ammunition. First was 115-grain Remington Range ammo, along with Winchester White Box 115-grain FMJs. We also tried our standard match reload in the form of 147-grain FMJ bullets from Precision Delta, powered by Hodgdon Tite Group powder and CCI small pistol primers. On a pistol-by-pistol basis, here’s what we learned during our testing:

Gun Tests Grade: B+ (BEST BUY)


The Mossberg MC2c starts off with a slide just over 0.9 inch wide by our measurement. It has a flat top and beveled upper edges. The nose has been rounded for easy insertion into a holster. The rear of the slide has 12 angled grasping grooves, and the front adds seven more. The rear deck is already milled for a red-dot optic using the Shield RMS pattern. The extractor is a hinged, external piece that pivots a tab out to serve as a tactile indicator of a loaded chamber. The front sight is mounted in a dovetail and shows a single white dot. The two-dot rear sight is mounted in a dovetail, allowing windage adjustment to the left or right. The rear sight also has a flat front for those one-handed, tactical reloads everyone needs to know how to do for the Zombie Apocalypse.

Action TypeSemi-auto
Overall Length7.0 in.
Overall Height4.9 in.
Maximum Width1.13 in.
Weight Unloaded1.25 lbs.
Weight Loaded1.85 lbs.
Capacity14+1 or 16+1
Slide MaterialStainless steel
Slide Retraction Effort18.4 lbs.
Receiver MaterialPolymer
FinishBlack DLC coating
Front Strap Height2.0 in.
Back Strap Height3.5 in.
Barrel Length4.0 in.
Grip Thickness (Maximum)1.13 in.
Grip Circumference5.25 in.
MagazinesOne 14 round, one 16 round
Rear Sight2 Dot, drift adjustable
Front Sight1 Dot. drift adjustable
Sight Radius5.8 in.
Trigger Pull Weight4.6 lbs.
Trigger Span2.8 in.
SafetyTrigger, striker
Warranty1-year limited
Telephone(800) 363-3555
Made InTexas

The back end of the slide shows a substantial difference from a Glock. Unlike our Austrian friend, the trigger on the Mossberg does not have to be released or the striker be forward for the pistol to be disassembled. Remove the magazine on the Mossberg. Check the chamber 27 times to make sure it is unloaded, and lock the slide to the rear. There is a slide cover plate at the rear with a tab that can be depressed in its middle. Depress the tab and slide the cover plate down, exposing the striker assembly. Slide that out to the rear, release the slide forward, and ease it off the rails. No more twin tabs in front of the trigger that have to be manipulated for disassembly.

Unlike on a Glock, the trigger on the Mossberg does not have to be released or the striker be forward for the pistol to be disassembled.

The polymer frame uses different checkering patterns on different areas. The front and rear of the grip have vertical serrations to keep the hand from slipping to one side or the other. The side panels use raised checkering to keep the pistol seated firmly in the hand. Further inspection reveals a slight palm swell. For those who like indexes for their thumbs in a forward hold, checkered memory pads are located just above the front edge of the trigger guard. The checkered, metal magazine release is single-sided but reversible. The trigger is flat-faced but with the blade safety in the middle, and is set pretty far to the rear. Required trigger compression averaged just over 4.5 pounds, and movement was smooth. The front of the frame also provides a Picatinny rail with a single slot.

Our Team Said: The Mossberg MC2c was second in our accuracy tests with a 2.69-inch group average across all ammo types. It was a close third in the speed drills. It seemed to take us just a hair longer to get that first shot off. Some dry firing and getting used to the grip angle should fix that no problem. Function was perfect.

9mm Luger Range Data

Testing was done at American Shooting Centers in Houston. Muzzle velocities were determined via a LabRadar chronograph. All shots for group were done from a well-sandbagged Caldwell Pistol Rest from MidwayUSA and aided by a mini-DRC Fortune Cookie bag from Wiebad. Averages were taken for 5-shot groups shot at 15 yards.
Remington 115-grain FMJSavage StanceSCCY DVG-1Mossberg MC2cSAR USA 9CX
Average Velocity1056 fps1063 fps1123 fps1131 fps
Muzzle Energy285 ft.-lbs.289 ft.-lbs.322 ft.-lbs.327 ft.-lbs.
Average Group4.10 in.3.07 in.2.43 in.2.06 in.
Best Group4.07 in.1.82 in.1.93 in.1.81 in.
Winchester 115-grain FMJSavage StanceSCCY DVG-1Mossberg MC2cSAR USA 9CX
Average Velocity1083 fps1090 fps1157 fps1140 fps
Muzzle Energy300 ft.-lbs.304 ft.-lbs.342 ft.-lbs.322 ft.-lbs.
Average Group4.56 in.2.70 in.3.06 in.2.00 in.
Best Group3.35 in.1.93 in.2.59 in.1.72 in.
Precision DeltaSavageSCCYMossbergSAR USA
147-grain FMJStanceDVG-1MC2c9CX
Average Velocity852 fps856 fps889 fps899 fps
Muzzle Energy237 ft.-lbs.239 ft.-lbs.258 ft.-lbs.264 ft.-lbs.
Average Group2.62 in.2.96 in.2.59 in.2.58 in.
Best Group2.12 in.2.28 in.2.44 in.2.44 in.

Drill Data (5x5x5)

Process: Fire five shots from low ready at a 5-inch circle placed at 5 yards. Numbers are averages for two repetitions.
PistolTime to First Shot (seconds) Split Average (seconds) Total Time (seconds)
Mossberg MC2c0.9450.2481.935
SAR 9cx0.9350.2281.845
Savage Stance0.9150.271.995
SCCY DVG-10.880.2681.95

Drill Data (5x8)

Process: Fire five shots from low ready at a 6-inch by 11-inch A Zone placed at 8 yards. Numbers are averages for three repetitions.
PistolTime to First Shot (seconds) Split Average (seconds) Total Time (seconds)
Mossberg MC2c1.050.2782.16
SAR 9cx0.9650.2441.94
Savage Stance0.9850.3152.245
SCCY DVG-10.990.2832.12

Value Guide: Smaller 9mm Luger Handgun Rankings

Gun NameIssueGradeComments
Smith & Wesson M&P9 Shield EZ M2.0 12436 9mm Luger, $4992022-07-01 00:00:00AOur Pick. We liked the way this pistol handles and operates. Racking the slide is easy enough.
Kahr K9 K9093A 9mm Luger, $750Mar. 2022AAn excellent option for EDC. Metal frame mitigates recoil for faster follow-ups. The grip angle is comfortable.
SIG Sauer P365 365-9-BXR3 9mm Luger, $599Dec. 2021AOur Pick. Small enough to fit in a pants pocket. Carries 10+1 rounds of 9mm. Felt recoil is less than with a 38.
Ruger MAX-9 No. 3500 9mm Luger, $544Sep. 2021AOur Pick. This is a sophisticated pistol. No fault with the magazines, capacity, or general accuracy.
Smith & Wesson M&P9 Shield Plus 13246 9mm Luger, $553Sep. 2021AA step up from the previously tested 9mm Shield. The new pistol has an improved trigger and greater capacity.
Taurus GX4 1-GX4M931 9mm Luger, $398Sep. 2021A-Best Buy. The Taurus is the most compact, and the Taurus is the only pistol with a changeable backstrap.
Smith & Wesson M&P9 Shield EZ 12437 9mm Luger, $479Feb. 2021A-The Shield EZ9 was easy to manipulate and soft to shoot, but the sights needed to be calibrated better.
KelTec PF9 Blued-Black 9mm Luger, $358Feb. 2021B+An inexpensive pistol that functioned flawlessly. It reminded us of a good 38 Special snubbie.
Taurus G3C 1-G3C931 9mm Luger, $306Feb. 2021B+Best Buy. The Taurus G3C pistol is an inexpensive offering that functioned flawlessly and shot well.
Springfield Armory Hellcat HC9319BOSP 9mm Luger, $550Mar. 2020AOur Pick. An 11+1 pistol, this small Springfield might be the most versatile pistol in the group.
Walther PPS M2 2805961 9mm Luger, $649Mar. 2020ABest Buy. A smaller pistol with grips that will not abrade tender hands.
Ruger Security-9 Compact Model 3818 9mm Luger, $309Feb. 2020BThe pistol is adequate for the task of self defense and will not break the bank.
SIG P365 Nitron Micro-Compact 9mm Luger, $465Feb. 2020BThe SIG costs more than the Ruger Security-9 without overwhelming advantages.
Springfield Hellcat Micro-Compact 9mm Luger, $500Jan. 2020F/AHellcat #1 failed when the trigger wouldn’t reset (F). Hellcat #2 worked perfectly (A). Best accuracy.
Glock 43X Ameriglo Night Sights PX435SL301AB 9mm Luger, $542Jul. 2019AOur Pick. Firing grip is superior to the G43 and allows better shooting with little compromise.
Mossberg MC1sc 890019mm Luger, $365Jul. 2019A-Best Buy. The Mossberg 9mm gave up little to the Glock designs. Reliability was never a question.
Taurus G2S 1-G2S931 9mm Luger, $204Nov. 2018ABest Buy. The Taurus pistol was reliable and controllable in rapid fire.
Smith & Wesson M&P9 Shield SW180021BW 9mm Luger, $400Nov. 2018AThe Battleworn Shield is reliable, accurate enough, and compact enough for EDC.
Bersa BP9MCC 9mm Luger, $295Nov. 2018A-Reliable, feels good in the hand, and offers excellent handling in fast-paced drills.
Honor Defense Honor Guard HG9SCF FIST 9mm Luger, $400Nov. 2018A-The FIST option is viable. We tested it against barricades with excellent results.
Ruger EC9s 3283 9mm Luger, $231Nov. 2018B-Most accurate handgun of the test, despite its light weight.


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