The name Staccato may be unfamiliar to some of you. The Staccato company is the evolution of the STI gun company who were best known for their line of practical shooting competition pistols that set the baseline for the industry worldwide. The Staccato P features many of the improvements shooters and gunsmiths have been doing on top of the factory pistols for years.
However, it seems Staccato has not only changed many of their pistols’ features but also the core focus of the company. The full-blown race guns used in practical shooing are no longer offered. The focus leans toward a new generation of duty and personal guns; though the lessons from decades past have not been forgotten.
At first glance, the most noticeable feature of the Staccato P is the Dawson Universal Optics system. This sight system has a removable plate that allows using Leupold’s Delta Point red dot optics, Trijicon RMR’s, along with the co-witness height iron sights.
Then, as soon as the new generation grip slips into your hand another major change is revealed. The new polymer grip is rounded on the front edges, the trigger guard is generously undercut, and the front of the grip under the trigger is smoothed and relieved to allow a very high, comfortable grip.
I’m not sure what to call the surface effect on the grip – molded checkering maybe, but it doesn’t matter because it works very well at securing the hand to the grip. The bottom of the grip is nicely flared to allow for smooth reloads without adding additional size which could compromise concealed carry options.
After all the obvious niceties are uncovered, have a look at the length of the barrel and slide. Now you may be wondering why 4.4”? Well, when you have a red dot optic the importance of the sight radius diminishes, but if you do shoot the “P” with iron sights you find that 4.4” is spot on and that this gun tracks really well.
I can’t say specifically what it is that makes the 4.4” barrel/ slide combo track and reset so well but it does. I often thought that my Glock 19 tracked and reset better than my G17, and with competition guns, it is often a combination of barrel length, slide weight, recoil spring poundage, and bullet load (weight/ velocity) that make them shoot well.
I think Staccato found another one of those “sweet spot” combinations. The weight of the slide, length of the cycle, length and weight of the recoil spring, height of the grip, the weight of the non-moving mass of the bull barrel, or just the combination of certain elements of those, make it work.
The “P” was also 100% reliable for the 700+ rounds I put through it in accuracy and reliability testing. The testing was done with 10 different types of ammunition with bullet weights ranging from 115 – 147 grains.
One of the causes of malfunctions in the old STI 2011’s was the magazine. Many of the older magazines would need to be “tuned” to ensure consistent feeding. The feed lips and overall dimensions were sometimes a bit out of spec and caused occasional reliability issues, though many of us competitors managed to shoot hundreds of thousands of rounds through those guns over the years.
Staccato seems to have addressed those issues too. The 17 and 20 round Teflon coated stainless steel magazines functioned flawlessly, feeding every shape and type of ammunition I could gather to throw at them.
Running speed drills with the “P”, ringing the large amount of steel on the range, blasting the plate rack, or spinning the dueling tree, all seemed effortless with the Staccato. I shot the “P” with the Delta Point Pro and with just the iron sights and both were a pleasure.
The hand filling ergonomic grip allows a secure hold while you drive the dot or fiber optic sight and break clean shots with the 4 ½ lb. trigger.
Trigger- 4 ½ pounds single action
Barrel- 4.4 inches
Grip- 2011 G2
Safety- Ambi- thumb safeties, beavertail grip safety
Finish- DLC Black
Sights- Dawson Universal Optics system, (interchangeable dot plate, fiber optic front)
Length- 8 inches
Height- 6 ½ inches (w/ optic)
Weight- 34 ¼ ounces
Magazine- 17 rounds (flush), 20 rounds (extended)
MSRP- $2499 (optic not included)
I really under shot this pistol when I decided to do the group testing from 15 yards. Typically, I think it’s a good distance for defensive type guns, far enough to see groups develop, but close enough to still be considered defensive or duty distances.
Surprisingly, the Staccato P shot six of the nine types of ammunition used into groups of less than 1 inch. Throwing out a few outliers where I pulled the shot, the average group size across all 9 types of ammunition ended up being 1.05”.
The red dot definitely helped achieve the small group sizes by removing sight alignment errors. This along with the obvious tight tolerances and quality components allowed some amazingly small groups for a 4.4” barreled pistol off of bags on a bench.
The real beauty of the Staccato was that it wasn’t picky at all. It shot ammunition from 3 manufacturers and weights of 115, 124, 135, and 147’s all in groups less than one inch.
The smallest single group was shot with Hornady Critical Defense 135 grain ammunition, and surprisingly the second smallest single was CCI Blazer Brass 124 fmj ammo — this pistol just doesn’t care.
All in all, the accuracy was fantastic, the Staccato doesn’t care what ammunition is on hand, it was shooting great groups. Couple that with the fact that it was 100% reliable and it’s a winning performance.
Around the Gun
The fiber optic front sight seems high without the red dot installed but allows a nice sight picture in the lower portion of the dot window when it is installed. The taller sights may also prove handy if someone comes out with a threaded barrel to support a suppressor.
The nicely blended beavertail safety is complimented on both sides by the manual thumb safeties. The thumb safety detent has a firm positive engagement without being overly stiff to operate, no chance of slipping into an unexpected position.
The forward portion of the frame has the now somewhat commonplace accessory rail machined in for attaching a handgun light. The slide has front and rear cocking serrations that seem to have more gap than raised surface. However, they work fantastic and provide a great grip for cycling the slide.
The full-length guide rod is one of Dawson Precisions tool-less take-down units. It has a pinned lever that pops up with to hold the spring plug in a retracted position when the front part of the lever is pressed in. This system allows a quick easy field stripping of the Staccato P.
The US Marshals Service Special Operations Group (SOG) adopted a Staccato P model pistol for their duty gun and several other units are using or evaluating Staccato’s. After giving the Staccato a quick review at the range I can see why.
Yes, I would do a longer evaluation if I was a unit looking at it for a duty gun, and I’m sure they performed due diligence, but the accuracy and reliability so far have been outstanding. In fact, I plan a longer evaluation myself to see how many rounds the Staccato 2011 will go before I see any issues.
I recently taught a class and let a number of the students run the gun as well, they all loved it and shot it well, several were pulling it up on their phones checking prices before the class was over.
The only downside of the Staccato P is the price, it’s a relatively expensive pistol. It falls above most standard factory models, yet well below the cost of a full custom pistol from a gunsmith, while still providing the performance of a higher-level custom gun.
Staccato has blended the best aspects of the legendary 1911 with years of competition tested 2011 improvements and the latest manufacturing upgrades to deliver a unique 4.4” 2011 that will challenge most shooters to keep up with its performance.