SIG Sauer P365XL 365XL9BXR3 9mm Luger

We graded the P365XL down for the lack of a rear sight when the optic is installed and then gave it extra points for the trigger and its overall performance.




SIG Sauer’s slightly larger version of the very popular P365 is called the P365XL, which adds another 0.6 inch to the barrel and lengthens the grip frame just enough to add two rounds to the capacity of a flush-fit magazine, bringing the total available to 12 in the mag. SIG recently introduced a 15-round magazine for this pistol that is available through their website at That could bring total onboard ammo capacity to 16 rounds in a small package.

Many of the desirable features of this pistol remained unchanged. The slide is stainless steel with a Nitron finish. There are very functional cocking serrations front and rear on the slide. The extractor is external, and other controls are large enough to be easily activated while being small enough to stay out of the way. X-RAY 3 Day/Night sights are standard issue. The front sight is not fiber optic but is still very visible. The sight body contains a tritium lamp that glows green in the dark. The lamp is surrounded by a green plastic insert that our tests showed to be very visible in the sunlight. The rear sight also has two tritium lamps in a metal body that can be used as a flat surface suitable for slide manipulation in an emergency.

Action TypeSemi auto, striker fired
Overall Length6.6 in.
Overall Height5.25 in.
Maximum Width1.1 in. at magwell only, 1 in. max width at the slide stop
Weight Unloaded (no magazine)17.8 oz.
Weight Loaded25.9 oz. with 13 rounds
Slide MaterialStainless steel, Nitron finish
Slide Retraction Effort14.6 lbs.
Receiver MaterialPolymer
Front Strap Height2.1 in.
Back Strap Height2.75 in.
Barrel Length3.7 in.
Grip Thickness (Maximum)1.17 in.
Grip Circumference5.1 in.
Magazine(2) 12-round flush fit
Front SightFixed with tritium insert
Rear SightDrift adjustable with tritium insert
Sight Radius5.5 in.
Trigger Pull Weight4.9 lbs.
Trigger Span2.7 in.
SafetyFiring pin block
WarrantyLimited lifetime
Telephone(603) 610-3000
Made InUSA

The slide is milled out to allow the mounting of a red-dot sight. The cover for that milled slot is attached by two screws accessible from the bottom of the slide. When those two screws are removed, the cover-plate comes off, along with the rear sight, as two separate units. Please note the installation of a red-dot sight requires the removal of the rear sight. If you mount a red dot on the P365XL, you will not have a dedicated rear sight. The Shield RMSc has a cut in the rear of the sight body that allows a rear sight/front sight to co-witness while the red dot is installed. This same slot can also serve as an emergency rear sight. We tested the effectiveness of the slot and it worked fine at 7 yards, but not as well as the standard rear sight.

There were a few more improvements we really like. The first was changing the curved trigger to a flat trigger like those used in SIG P320X models. The geometry of the flat trigger creates an almost vertical break point for the sear release and gives the shooter a bit more leverage. We found both of those points to aid our shooting with this pistol. Next was the slight lengthening of the grip frame. A majority of people should now be able to get most of three fingers on the grip, which also helps in controlling the pistol under recoil. Like many other polymer-framed pistols, the magazine well on the P365XL is beveled to help the rapid insertion of a new magazine. The P365XL goes beyond that point and actually flares the magwell to make an even bigger opening. Our calipers show this only added a very acceptable 0.1 inch to the width of the pistol. This is still a very thin firearm. Though one of our very few complaints is that it is thin to the point where a Picatinny rail would not work with the design. A proprietary rail is on the forend, but that can limit available accessories.

Every illuminated sight will be used in widely varying circumstances and differing amounts of ambient light. Changes in available light on the target change the amount of light throughput required from the sight. The bright light that is required to see the dot in direct sunlight will almost blind the shooter trying to use that sight later in the evening. Dot sights have to adjust the amount of light thrown on the glass. One of the ways to do this is manually by the shooter, which is fine in a competitive situation. That may not be so great for a defensive encounter. What if the shooter is moving from sunlight into a dimly lit room and doesn’t have time to fiddle with the rheostat? The Shield RMSc senses the light available at the target and changes the beam intensity. The only problem we really noticed with the programming was when we would stand in a lighted area and point the sight at a more dimly lit target. The beam did not get dim enough and bloomed a little bit on the target. We could still see to hit the targets just fine.

Our Team Said: The SIG P365XL did almost everything well. It functioned every shot, first try. Accuracy was excellent, with its average group only being .06 inch larger than the winning Hellcat. Speed and accuracy on the drills was outstanding, with the P365XL winning two of the four drills and coming in second place on the other two. Our group of testers preferred the P365XL’s trigger. But we did not like having to remove the rear sight to mount the optic. We shot a 15-yard drill with five shots from the low ready. We did the drill once with the iron sights and then again utilizing the red dot sight. The SIG P365XL does not maintain its rear sight with the optic attached, so we had to use the channel provided on the Shield RMSc sight. The SIG posted the slowest time on this drill without the red dot and the fastest time with it. We’ve seen too many things go wrong and would prefer to have that rear sight.

Written and photographed by Joe Woolley, using evaluations from Gun Tests team testers.

Value Guide: 9MM Luger Handgun Rankings

Arex Rex Delta REXDELTA-01 9mm Luger, $425Feb. 2020ABest Buy. Reliability and practical accuracy are good, and the pistol is the right size for concealed carry.
Stoeger Industries STR-9 31721 9mm Luger, $350Feb. 2020BIf you like the Glock 17, you will like the STR-9. Worth the money, but it is not our favorite.
Ruger Security-9 Compact Model 3818 9mm Luger, $309Feb. 2020BThe pistol is adequate for the task 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.
S&W M2.0 PC Shield 11787 9mm Luger, $430Jan. 2020ABest Buy. Smooth and accurate, great sights and trigger. Costs a lot less than the SIG.
SIG Sauer P365XL P365XL-9-BXR3 9mm Luger, $580Jan. 2020AOur Pick. The SIG P365XL was the most accurate of the four pistols tested.
Springfield Armory XDE9 XDE9389B 9mm Luger, $460Jan. 2020ASlide is easier to retract, hammer-fired, DA/SA trigger set the XDE apart in this test.
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, $542July 2019AOur Pick. Firing grip is superior to the G43 and allows better shooting with little compromise.
Glock 48 PA485SL301AB 9mm Luger, $488July 2019ABest-shooting pistol in the test and the most powerful. Minimally more difficult to conceal.
Mossberg MC1sc 89001 9mm Luger, $365July 2019A-Best Buy. The Mossberg 9mm gave up little to the Glock designs. Reliability was never a question.
Springfield XD(M) 4.5 9mm Luger XDMT9459FDEHCE TB, $505Apr. 2019AOur Pick as a personal-defense, home-defense, and tactical pistol.
Glock G34 Gen5 MOS PA3430103MOS 9mm Luger, $710Apr. 2019AThe Gen5 guns are the best yet, with superior accuracy and features over earlier Glocks.
CZ-USA CZ P0-9 91620 9mm Luger, $402Apr. 2019BBest Buy. CZ has managed to pack a lot of value into the P0-9. 19-round magazine.
FNH FNS-9L Longslide 66725 9mm Luger, $570Apr. 2019BHeavier trigger than the other pistols. Accuracy wasn’t as good.
Glock 45 9mm Luger, $546Jan. 2019AFast from concealed carry. The action allows a trained shooter to make fast hits. Reliable.
Beretta APX Compact JAXC921 9mm Luger, $449Jan. 2019BMagazines were difficult to load. Slide was difficult to rack. Takedown button too tight.
SIG P320-M17 320F-9-M17-MS 9mm Luger, $770Jan. 2019BThe grip fits most hands well and the sights are excellent. The DAO trigger was too heavy.
Beretta 92 FS JS92F300M 9mm Luger, $562Jan. 2019BShows the age of its design with a slide-mounted decocker and long DA trigger pull.
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.
Smith & Wesson M&P9 M2.0 Compact 11686 9mm Luger, $476June 2018APleasing trigger action, good gripping surface, a rail, and grip inserts.
Glock G19X G5 PX1950703 9mm Luger, $594June 2018A-Has many of the good features of the Gen5s. Fast from leather, fast on target, reliable.
Ruger SR1911 L’wt Commander 6722 9mm Luger, $739June 2018BFor those who like the single-action 1911 cocked-and-locked, this is a good choice.
SIG Sauer P225-A1 Nitron 225A-9-BSS-C 9mm Luger, $880June 2018B-Slim grip appeals to shooters with small hands. No rail and low magazine capacity.
Glock 17 Gen5 9mm Luger, $545Mar. 2018B-A credible firearm, but the sum of its parts is not a great leap forward.
CZ-USA CZ P-10 C 91520 9mm Luger, $480Feb. 2018A-Best Buy. Well-designed sights, decent trigger, ambi slide lock and magazine catch.
Lipsey’s Glock 17RTF2 Vickers FDE 9mm Luger, $630Feb. 2018A-Our Pick. Includes Vickers Tactical sights, a mag guide, and mag basepads.
Beretta 92FS W/Wilson Combat Upgrades 9mm Luger, $550Feb. 2018BSmooth, well finished, and the most accurate handgun tested. Grip did not fit all shooters.
Arex Rex Zero 1 Standard FDE 9mm Luger, $634Feb. 2018BFit, finish, and an absence of internal tool marks show high build standards.
Smith & Wesson M&P9 M2.0 11537 9mm Luger, $599Dec. 2017AA refined striker-fire pistol with a crisp trigger, excellent grips, and good accuracy.
Springfield Armory XD MOD.2 4-In. Service 9mm Luger, $565Dec. 2017A-Easy to shoot due to the fiber-optic front sight, textured grip, and consistent trigger.
Ruger American Pro Duty 8605 9mm Luger, $579Dec. 2017B+The American is capable and ran well with good accuracy. Grip inserts gave trouble.
Kimber Micro 9 Desert Tan (LG) 3300168 9mm Luger, $659Oct. 2017AThe laser grip complements the large sights on this micro pistol.
SIG Sauer P938 Emperor Scorpion 9mm Luger, $639Oct. 2017AWith large sights, a crisp trigger and toothy grips, this was easy to shoot and control.
Springfield Armory XD-E 3.3 XDE9339BE 9mm Luger, $519Oct. 2017BTrigger geometry took some getting used to. Decocker was hard to manipulate.
Walther PPS M2 2805961 9mm Luger, $451Sept. 2017AThe Walther PPS M2 is a class act. It was the most expensive pistol tested this month.
Smith & Wesson M&P9 Shield 180021 9mm Luger, $394Sept. 2017ABest Buy. Well designed grip checkering, good sights, and a decent trigger action.
Glock 43 Subcompact Slimline G43 PI4350201 9mm Luger, $445Sept. 2017BAccurate enough for personal defense, reliable, and fast handling.
Honor Defense Honor Guard Sub-Comp. HG9SC 9mm Luger, $449Sept. 2017BThe only defect was the problematic slide lock, which was too heavy to operate quickly.
Taurus 709 Slim 1-709031FS 9mm Luger, $198Aug. 2017ABest Buy. We would buy this gun, and we would carry it for personal defense.
Kel-Tec PF-9 9mm Luger, $257Aug. 2017A-The Taurus outshot the Kel-Tec, but that doesn’t mean the PF-9 is out of the running.
SIG Sauer P938 Micro-Compact 938-9-ESR 9mm Luger, $730Aug. 2017BThe pistol had enough break-in glitches to be rated down a full grade.
Remington R51 96430 9mm Luger, $400Aug. 2017DIt simply refused to function with one type of ammunition. The trigger was poor.
Ruger American Compact 8633 9mm Luger, $579July 2017D-We could not complete our tests without reseating the recoil assembly multiple times.
Honor Defense Honor Guard HG9CLE 9mm Luger, $499July 2017B+Admirably fills the role of a highly concealable fighting gun that’s inexpensive and fun.
Springfield Armory 1911 EMP PI9229L 9mm Luger, $1220July 2017AThe EMP delivered accuracy and ergonomics on par with more expensive custom guns.
CZ-USA 75D PCR Compact 91194 9mm Luger, $546July 2017AWe like everything about the 75D except the absence of a light rail.
Tristar Canik 55 C-100 9mm Luger, $365July 2017C
CZ-USA 75 P-01 9mm Luger, $576July 2017A


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