The SIG P320 VTAC Pistol: Is it the Ultimate Self Defense Gun? (Video)

P320 VTAC in action

I am very excited to have gotten my grubby mitts on a P320 variant I have been waiting a long time for. The signature edition P320-X-VTAC, spec’d by Kyle Lamb himself. Having reviewed several variants of the P320 family, why would I be so intrigued by this one? Because of its namesake, and the potential of what that represents.

SIG’s new handgun case.

On the off chance you don’t know who he is, Kyle Lamb is a retired Sergeant Major from a Special Operations Force. More importantly, he is arguably the father of the modern carbine technique.

The story goes a little something like this. As a relatively young man, Kyle was in Mogadishu during the most famous battle thereof, commemorated in the movie “Black Hawk Down.

After the battle, Kyle does a bit of introspection and decides that maybe there is a lot to be learned still about marksmanship training. Which is a pretty big thought to have if you are in one of the world’s premier assault forces, already known for its ability to shoot.

Three 17-round flush-fit magazines.

Over the next decade, Kyle trains with the who’s who of competitive shooting, a side benefit of being in a Special Operations Unit. He competes himself in old school events like the Soldier of Fortune 3 Gun. And takes the influence of shooting legends like Bennie Cooley and looks through the lens of what can be added to tactical training. And by the time Operation Iraqi Freedom rolls around, he has had nearly a decade to put it together.

X series trigger

Fresh experience in Baghdad combined with growing rank and responsibility puts Kyle in a unique position to implement a new set of training principles. And it cannot be overstated the brain trust of other experienced, professional warfighters learning and implementing lessons as well. The SOF community is excellent at sharing amongst themselves.

What is born from this, is the modern rifle technique.  And it filters down to the point that it is pretty much a unified approach to combat marksmanship fusing the best lessons from Iraq, Afghanistan, and the competitive worlds.

Two tone color scheme.

One of the other SOF Veterans that teaches firearms training put it best. “We all teach like Kyle Lamb, you are paying for the personality you prefer,” when it comes to picking an instructor. And that is a high compliment.

Optic cut standard.

What does that have to do with the X-VTAC? While Kyle Lamb is best known for his carbine and NVG training, he certainly doesn’t suck with a pistol. Over those same decades he might’ve learned that a carbine is the preferred combat weapon, but your pistol better perform when you need it. And we can see all of that built into the X-VTAC.

Field stripped.

The X-VTAC is what I would call the secondary flagship to the P320-X5. And the primary difference between the two is the intended purpose. The X5 was built to be a competition gun. It has a bull barrel, a slightly longer length (5 inches vs 4.7 for the VTAC), and excellent Dawson competition sights.

The X-VTAC has all the best elements of the X series, such as the X-style frame and trigger. But it has compromises that lend themselves more to a combat handgun.

VTAC unique rear sight.

The VTAC features a regular profile barrel, a small but not insignificant weight savings. Up and down mountains, every ounce counts. The shorter slide and barrel, length-wise, the same as the US Army P320 M17 variant, means you will have an easier time finding a holster.

That is an important bit. Top-end duty holsters are expensive to make, and will only be created for weapons there will be a lot of. You can also understand why a holster manufacturer would prioritize say, a gun the DOD is buying 500,0000 of, over a new model civilians might buy 10,000 of.

A short while back, I scored a Safariland ALS duty holster for a full-size P320. The X-VTAC, with a Surefire X300 flashlight, fits no problem. That is a consideration if you plan to use your pistol in a tactical role.

With VTAC logo.

Unique to the VTAC are a number of other features. The slide is PVD coated coyote brown, for a black and tan motif with the X grip. The sights are something different, a signature creation of SGM Lamb. Fiber optic sights are preferred by many for daylight shooting, while tritium’s rule the night.

The VTAC sights combine the two, with what you can see in pictures are six total dots. A fiber optic rod sits on top, with a tritium vial dot below each one front and rear. Just glancing at a picture, you might think this creates confusion.

However, in practical application, it does not. In the sunshine, you don’t even notice the second set of dots. And at night, the glowing orbs closer to the boreline are all you see. It works out rather nicely.

Front sight with dual aiming dots.

Normally, I am not a fan of fiber optics in the rear. In my experience with them in the past, the dots were TOO bright. The VTAC system seems to have solved that, by both shortening the rods and limiting the light that filters into them from the top. The front is a bit longer and more exposed, which makes it pop ever so slightly more.

I also like the shape of the front sight. It is thick at the base but tapers toward the top to almost a pyramid shape. The result is a wider light gap at the top, which I find fast for speed shooting, with a thick enough base not to compromise durability. There is nothing else quite like them, and you won’t be disappointed.

Black Point Tactical IWB holster.

The VTAC model also ships with three flush-fit 17 round magazines. This is the size most people prefer for a duty weapon, though the SIG factory 21 extended mags will fit, too. Three is pretty much the magic number for a duty loadout, so it is nice to have that out of the box. One in the gun and two in pouches is a significant amount of 9mm.

A side note about the VTAC, there is another accessory built for it. I don’t normally consider IWB concealing a full-sized handgun, but I make an exception in this case.

Safariland ALS available.

Because our friends over at Black Point Tactical make a holster specifically for the VTAC Model, with inputs from SGM Lamb himself. (In fact, he is on the landing page for Black Point Tactical in the photo at the moment.)

It is amazingly comfortable for the size of gun it conceals, and one I can strongly recommend you try. It takes the VTAC from a great duty gun to a great do-everything gun, and that is a detail that matters.  

When retention is a must.

The X-VTAC is an absolutely cool gun, and a fine addition to the P320 line. It fills a nice gap between the X5 and the X-Full, with some features you won’t find anywhere else. If you are looking for an all-purpose duty gun with no compromises, look no further.

For more information on the SIG VTAC pistol visit SIG SAUER.

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About the author: Clay Martin is a former Marine and Green Beret, retiring out of 3rd Special Forces Group. He is a multi-decade and -service sniper, as well as 3-Gun competitor and Master ranked shooter in USPSA Production. In addition to writing about guns, he is the author of “Last Son of The War God,” a novel about shooting people that deserve it. You can also follow him on twitter, @offthe_res or his website, Off-The-Reservation.com

{ 15 comments… add one }
  • Foxfire5 March 9, 2021, 7:11 pm

    Well I will tell you Paladin Having been schooled in Korea and Vietnam there is nothing wrong with good old 230 grain Hardball. Just double tap and they will drop like a sack of potatoes! No through and through’s like in 9mm and a half a mag.

  • bkb March 9, 2021, 4:13 pm

    Guys

    Get yourself a Furminator…..been using one with my Elsa for 12+ now.

    Makes her look ‘Mavahlus’ and cuts down on the shed….(-:

  • Robert March 9, 2021, 7:32 am

    I have to agree with El Paladin, offer it in a .45acp! Regardless of technological advancements in bullet/ballistics, it’s still the old adage “One & Done.

    Ron also makes a good point about the .357Sig. If you insist on a 9mm, at least opt for the 9mm Magnum (.357). Superior to the standard 9mm in every respect.

  • Stan March 8, 2021, 10:58 pm

    I have the Vtac and Legion P320s . I find that I actually shoot the Vtac better than the Legion. The sights seem to help a lot on the Vtac. I have kind went nuts on the P320 last count I have seven in different cal. and configurations. Great article thanks.

  • Bill Weaver March 8, 2021, 9:06 pm

    Clay, you are going to love that pistol. I have a gen 1 X-VTAC with an O-LIGHT Baldor Mini and it shoots great.

  • El Paladin March 8, 2021, 4:42 pm

    As an Elite Forces vet of 2 wars, federal officer “en La Fronterra”, US civilian Border Scout, (Horse-Mounted), and current, Texas Ranger in PT svc., I love Sigs & HK’s! Yet, y’all STILL have ONE problem; post Viet-Nam, (was there also in the 173rd Abn), & that is it is (still) NOT .45 ACP! Think Super-Drugs!! …Yet Sig & HK DO make –fine- 45’s! The enemy, (terrorists; foreign/domestic-raised, MI-13 gang-bangers, the slavemasters w/ their drugged children, the other armed illegals of Border-Breachin’ Biden, from all over the globe, are, have-been, & will-be….on the latest, super-drugs, when they advance on you! You must have –ENERGY– to deck them! 20′, or 20 yards is –nothing–to reach you, as they take rounds! You can quote all the tech data on enhanced 9mm, but you can’t even come ‘close’ to what combat medics, & trauma physicians will tell you, and what you can read about their clear, hard, body-evidence, from forward, ops, med units. We win w/ .45, 7.62, .30-’06, 50 cal., 20 mike-mike, 40 mike-mike, etc. After all, we bet our lives. Old “Blood & Guts” was right: “Make the other sXX xx x xxx, die for his country!” El Paladin

  • Curtai March 8, 2021, 10:59 am

    Yep, got me one of these with my 1200$ stimulus last year, my shop had the original and finally got in the R2 with the slide cut… much nicer

  • Stephen Graham March 8, 2021, 9:48 am

    That may now be the reason for me to purchase a 3 to 0!

  • Kurt Wilke March 8, 2021, 9:12 am

    First, it looks like you have a German Shepherd which means you are a real cool guy. Second is the VTac MOS compatible, as it appears that it is? Third is it DA/SA? Approximately what is the trigger pull on SA? Thanks for your response.

    • Kane March 8, 2021, 11:21 am

      I have a CCW Sig P320. The first shot and all subsequent shots are about 6lbs but that is just a guess. The module (sp?) is a nice feature. I got two mint SW M&P full size and compact I would like to trade or sell because the SIG is a better fit for me.

      I had two German Shepherds lost one last July but I am not ready yet to find another yet.

  • Chris Chimelak March 8, 2021, 8:00 am

    The best self defense weapon is a Claymore.

    • Bad Penguin March 8, 2021, 9:15 am

      Only if you know how to use it and its not taped to your head:-)

  • Ron March 8, 2021, 7:54 am

    I love my Sigs. I have a p229 in 357 Sig which has taken over as my preferred carry over my M&P45c. My p220 in 45 is my second favorite. Which Sig would offer the p320 vtac in 357 sig. I kept brushing my tablet screen thinking it was my Great Pyrenees’s ,(named Ruger) fur on my screen.

  • Steve Evans March 8, 2021, 5:24 am

    I just love all the dog hair on your gear. I have two pups and that stuff gets everywhere!

    • Bad Penguin March 8, 2021, 9:13 am

      LoL He has a German Shedder and I’m surprised there isn’t more! But it makes the pictures more real life.

      My shedder is marked like his (Sable) but at 9 months, its almost 100lbs of landshark and sheds accordingly.

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