Sig Sauer just announced the release of their latest pistol, the P322. The P322 is essentially a pistol that looks to be based on another one of their pistols. The main difference, is that this one shoots 22 Long Rifle rounds.
And, as a bonus, it gives you 20 rounds of ammo in the mag, and one in the chamber.
I’m not sure why they released it just a few days after we all attended the event known as The Gathering, but they did. There would have been a flood of coverage for that pistol had they let us all shoot it.
Actually, I guess the reason why they announced it a few days later was because of the pistol’s name, coinciding with the date the pistol was released — which is 3/22.
Either way, that announcement is the reason for this blog post.
After cruising around the interwebs and looking at the reaction to the pistol, I can see that people are somewhat confused as to what the purpose of it actually is.
I don’t think SIG is trying to tell people to carry this P322 for self-defense, though you certainly can shoot someone trying to hurt you with it. 21 holes in any caliber is sure to ruin an attacker’s day.
I think the real reason is as a training supplement to one of the most popular pistols ever created, that still allows you to shoot a gun while using a much more affordable caliber — .22 LR.
Training with a 22 Pistol:
There is massive benefit to training with a 22 long rifle pistol. The benefit increases if it is similar to your actual carry gun.
This is one of the reasons why Glock’s G44 exists, why the FN 502 exists (and plenty of others like from Ruger and Walther), and if you look closely to the above picture — the P322 looks a lot like a carry gun that Sig Sauer already offers.
Let’s look at a few of the reasons why training with a 22 is a good idea.
The main benefit, especially right now, is that you can get training repetitions in on the cheap. Well, cheaper than if you were to use your regular carry caliber. Granted, you’d have to buy the gun and the ammo, but over time you’ll save money because the price of 9mm, 40 S&W, or 45 Auto is atrocious right now.
And while it seems to have stabilized for a little while, it’s about to go up in price again because of the current world events and the cost to get the components. In fact, Vista Outdoors (owner of Federal, CCI/Speer, Blazer, and Remington) just announced a price hike effective April 1, 2022.
Buying a brick of 22lr ammo is still the most cost efficient method of live fire training. If you can make it realistic (like with drawing from a holster), even better.
With a 22 pistol, you can get a lot more rounds of training, that is more realistic than if you were just dry fire training.
I’m also a huge fan of dry fire training. Getting trigger time however you can get it is going to be a tremendous help to you.
That being said, unless you have one of those nifty contraptions that give you air recoil during your dry fire training, you’re not going to have realistic recoil.
And, even with that air device that mimics recoil, you still don’t have the muzzle blast or the other stuff that goes along with shooting a real gun.
You don’t have any of those problems if you have a 22 pistol that you can train with. And if it similar ergonomically, then it is even better. You might not have the same amount of muzzle rise with a 22, or the same amount of muzzle blast, but it is there and you do still feel it.
Drawing from the holster:
Something that most people still aren’t doing, is drawing from the holster, presenting to target, and engaging it.
If you have a 22 pistol that is similar to your carry gun and can use your holster during your training, there is tremendous benefit. You can actually do realistic scenarios where you’re drawing and presenting a ton of times for cheap.
And because you can see the feedback on the target, it’s even better.
It’s still a gun:
Some of you might still need some convincing. After all, there are excellent dry fire products out there and live fire training with your actual carry gun in your chosen caliber is still obviously recommended.
The final point I have, is that it’s still a gun. It’s a .22lr, but it is still a pistol. If you don’t have a 22 you need one because a 22 is, if nothing else, an excellent survival tool. The guns are lightweight, and you can carry a lot more ammo for it because they’re so light.
You can hunt with it and in a pinch defend yourself with it. A 22 is the ultimate survival gun.
Next, read this DGU where a 22 was used.