S&W M&P 40 Carry And Range Kit - First Impressions

For the past few months I’ve been looking for a pistol to buy. I was thinking about a Sig Sauer since I absolutely love my P220 in .45. The solid construction and reliability made it an easy choice. However, I was hesitant because of the cost. Then a couple months back, Whitey showed off his new M&P Shield in .40. I absolutely loved it. And I thought, maybe I should give an M&P pistol a chance.

So a few weeks ago I went shopping at all my local, and not so local, gun stores to find an M&P Shield. I quickly learned that these are pretty popular right now. It’s impossible to purchase one without being on a HUGE waiting list. Over that weekend I took one last look at a local gun store and they had a Smith & Wesson M&P .40 Carry and Range kit. They had it well below the MSRP, and it was a deal I could definitely not pass up. The M&P .40 felt great in my hand and met all but one of my requirements.

The Carry and Range kit included:

  • Blade-Tech® Kydex® Holster
  • Blade-Tech® Double Magazine Pouch
  • Maglula Uplula™ Speed Loader
  • Ear Plugs
  • Extra Magazine (3 total)

The only downside to this purchase for me, was that it was not a sub-compact pistol. Almost a little too big to conceal carry in the summertime. Thankfully, I’m six and a half feet tall, so it’s not too hard for me to conceal a bigger weapon. This might not be the case for others, so be aware of the size of this weapon as a daily conceal carry pistol.

That being said, I have been nothing but happy with this pistol. The M&P .40 is extremely well made and seems like it could take quite a bit of abuse.

I’ve put about 400 rounds through it so far, and it seems to be getting a bit easier to shoot. Not sure if it’s me getting used to it, or the parts just nicely breaking in. I suspect it might be a combo of both.

One of the many great features of this pistol is the interchangeable grips. Alot of polymer frame weapons don’t let you modify the grip for comfort. Usually, people just use a slide on grip like a Hogue. This feature of the M&P .40 allowed me to have a really comfortable grip that felt much more natural than the default grip it came with.

While at the range, a few people have mentioned that they didn’t like the trigger. And everyone I've spoken with has recommended the same kit from Apex. And while checking into this enhancement, I have seen nothing but glaring good reviews on both the product and the support documentation on installation. At some point in the future, I might have to give the Apex M&P Duty/Carry Action Enhancement Kit (DCAEK) a try (and of course do a review on it), but at the moment, I’m actually pretty happy with the existing trigger feel. I'll have to retouch this point after a few hundred more rounds.

Weapon Specifications: (per S&W website)

Model: M&P40 Carry and Range Kit
Caliber: .40 S&W
Capacity: 15 Rounds
Barrel Length: 4.25" / 10.8 cm
Overall Length: 7.625" / 19.4 cm
Overall Height: 5.5" / 13.9 cm
Width: 1.2" / 3.048 cm
Weight: 24.0 oz. / 680.4 g
Front Sight: White Dot Dovetail
Rear Sight: Steel Low Profile Carry
Grip: (3) Palmswell Grip Sizes
Material: Frame/Polymer, Slide/Stainless Steel, Barrel/Stainless Steel
Finish: Black Melonite® 68HRc

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