The Heckler & Koch P2000sk is a polymer framed hammer fired sub compact with modest dimensions and better than average capacity. The 9mm holds 10 rounds and is still only 4.55″ high. The cold hammer forged barrel has polygonal rifling, and is 3.26″ long. It’s tucked neatly within an overall length of 6.4″, making is easily concealable. Yet the length of the barrel gives it more ballistic punch (when you compare it to some of the shorter 9mms on the market now). It isn’t the thinnest sub compact on the market, but its 1.37″ width is by no means bulky. The controls don’t stick out, but provide exceptional leverage. They are much easier to manipulate than many sub compacts.
For those who use H&K pistols, having cross platform familiarity is a strong selling point for the P2000sk. It is the smallest pistol H&K makes and it is a pistol with a purpose. The subcompact H&K is built for self-defense. The P2000 pistols are logical pairings with the larger H&K USP. They’re small, ergonomic, and have easy to use. So why isn’t the P2000sk any more popular than it is?
The P2000sk was developed as a subcompact ambidextrous defensive handgun. Utilizing low profile controls, low profile sights, no external safeties, and the reliability of a full size handgun, the weapon seems to fit well within the pantheon of subcompact 9mms. At the time of its inception, the P2000sk seemed more unique. Its biggest competition was the Glock 26/27.
Shooting the P2000sk
Shooting the P2000sk takes some getting used to. Its grip is very tight–maybe cramped is a better. I have a hard time getting three fingers on the gun comfortably. But it isn’t about comfort. If you’re drawing the P2000sk in a defensive situation, you won’t be thinking about comfort. And there is a replaceable back strap to enlarge the grip if you find yourself too jammed up on the grip.
Firing the pistol starts with a long double action trigger pull that breaks at a hefty 11 pounds. That may seem excessive, but the pull isn’t gritty. It is crisp and manageable and easily staged. After that initial round fires, the pistol picks up a much more manageable 4.5 pound trigger pull in single action.
One of the best features of the P2000sk is the way it handles recoil. The pistol’s recoil is not sharp, nor is it snappy. I’ve shot a lot of 9mms in this size, and some of their muzzle flips can be especially brutal. But with proper grip and form the P2000sk is easily managed. Repeat shots are fast and consistent. The gun simply handles like a full size pistol.
The ambidextrous slide drop and magazine release make feeding the weapon effortless, with either hand. When holding the pistol with both hands all the controls are right where they should be and easily accessible, elevating any need to shift the gun to actuate any of its functions.
The magazines are stout, like all H&K mags, and hold 10 rounds of 9mm. If you prefer .40, the mags hold 9. The mag plates have a small nub for extra grip. It isn’t much to hold onto, but it does act as a leverage point. This is one of the extras that helps with the mitigation of muzzle flip. It is like a small anchor.
The fact that the pistol doesn’t have an external safety is unnerving to some. I grew up shooting Sig Sauer and H&K pistols. I’m a huge fan of decockers. The decocking button sits on the rear of the P2000sk’s slide and allows the user to safely carry a round in the chamber. The double action first shot is heavy and long but easily managed to be just as accurate as the single action shots to follow.
If you would rather have a double action only version, H&K makes the Law Enforcement Modification package (which they also call Combat Defense Action). It is effectively a double action only trigger that can be dialed down from the heavy pull to as little as 5.5 pounds. The LEM package uses a precocked hammer that works similarly to striker fired pistol, offering the same pull for every round.
Another great feature of the P2000sk is the accessory rail built into the frame. For most of the testing I ran a Viridian C5L on the gun. This light laser combo is compact and easy to use. Paired with the P2000sk this combo becomes even more of a defensive tool. The ECR “enhanced combat readiness” feature of the C5L turns the light and laser on when the gun is drawn from a holster. When you combine this with the readiness provided by the lack of external safeties on the P2000sk, all impediments to use have been eliminated. When you draw the gun, the light comes on and there’s no safety to worry about–just pull the trigger.
The C5L ECR system works with magnets. A normal holster won’t activate the switch. With a magnet in the holster, the switch is easily turned on and off. I’m carrying the P2000sk in a Multi Holster that I modified to fit the gun. That’s one of the challenges about carrying an older gun, or a newly released gun, or even an obscure gun. You may have a more limited holster selection. When you add an odd light to it, too, it gets even more difficult. I had this holster made for a similarly sized gun. The P2000sk fit well enough that I was able to reheat the Kydex and get a solid fit.
The P2000sk is a pistol after my own heart. Its features put it above the competition. I think its only impediment to success was its hefty price tag. The P2000sks are selling now in the high $800s. There are a lot of polymer framed 9mms now that come in well under that price point. Are they as well built as the P2000sk? That question is easy to answer in some cases, and will spur debate in others. The price, though, is a show stopper for some. Yet for the H&K fan boys this pistol is just about right.
So here’s the big question. The H&K P2000sk is functionally adept, accurate, and reliable. It is handsome, too. Yet it remains one of the more obscure sub compact 9mms. Still, guns like H&K’s own VP9 make the P2000sk seem even more dated. For anyone carrying a larger H&K for duty purposes, the P2000sk is the choice for backup or deep cover. But what about the rest of us…why isn’t the P2000sk dominating the sub compact market?