Since 2000, SIG and Sig Sauer have been separate entities with Sig Sauer (formerly Sig Arms) manufacturing the entire range of Sig pistols, rifles, and military weapons, while J.P. Sauer & Sohn continues to manufacture its own line of bolt action and semi-automatic rifles. (For a more detailed examination of the SIG family see the 32nd Edition Blue Book of Gun Values). Sig Sauer also maintains U.S. sales and manufacturing operations in Exeter, New Hampshire.
The P210 was one of the finest handguns of its time, and as with many of its 20th century contemporaries like the Colt Model 1911 and Browning Hi-Power, the Sig is still a very practical and serviceable handgun for the 21st century. The changes that have been made to the original P210 in creating the Legend are secondary to retaining its finest characteristics. The Legend has the same overall appearance and precision design as its ancestors, coupled with a new carbon steel slide machined from solid billet steel, an extended beavertail added to the heavy-style carbon steel frame, an improved manual safety, internal drop safety, a frame-mounted magazine release2, and custom wood grips. The Legend is a seamless blend of old and new, making this 9x19mm classic a pricey $2,399 with the standard fixed sights.
A perfect blend of past and present, the new Sig Sauer P210 Legend combines the best attributes of the original 1947 SIG design with a few modern updates.
As a military gun, holsters for the P210 were designed around practical field applications and followed contemporary designs of the era, which meant flap holsters to provide maximum protection for the gun. On the civilian side, flap holsters were also popular in the 1940s but with better styling than the military types. Post WWII era Swiss style holsters for the P210 were also flap style, some with a combination of shoulder strap and belt loop allowing them to be worn with the shoulder strap across a uniform jacket and secured at the waist with a traditional Sam Browne belt. These were generally larger holsters than the U.S. G.I. styles produced for the M1911.
For the Sig Sauer P210 Legend, John Bianchi has copied both a traditional European style flap holster with shoulder strap and a Sam Browne pattern waist belt. This very traditional European outfit provides a secure carry for the costly SIG P210 that is suited to its post-World War II heritage.
Weighing a hefty 37.4 ounces the P210 is no lightweight, which contributes to its excellent balance in the hand, recoil management, and accuracy. A great deal of Swiss shooting is spent on the target range where the P210 is equally at home. The Sig Sauer uses a two-stage trigger: a long take up followed by a crisp release. Most of the P210 hammer and sear engagement is released during the trigger take up, and can be seen in a slight rearward movement of the hammer as the trigger is pulled. With a single stage trigger, like a Model 1911, there is no movement. The short second stage moves the sear to release the hammer. The P210’s large crescent moon trigger pivots on a pin to reduce lateral play and ensure smooth engagement of the sear. Take up on the test gun was only 1/8th inch with an average trigger pull of 2.8 pounds. This level of precision helps justify the P210’s price. It is, for all intents and purposes, an out-of-the-box target pistol.
The Sig Sauer P210 Legend is sighted in at the factory at a distance of 25 meters (27.5 yards) and supplied with a signed factory test target. The guns must deliver a five-shot group that measures 50mm (2.0 inches) or less. I decided to try and do at least that good using a duplicate of the Sig Sauer test target and Winchester 115-grain FJM 9mm ammunition.
It took almost 100 rounds pouring out of the Sig Sauer’s 4.7-inch barrel at 1,210 feet per second (fps) average to get the P210 sorted out and get comfortable with the gun’s light trigger pull. All tests were done from a rested position using a two-handed hold. Once the sight picture was firmly established at a distance of 82.5 feet (25 meters), tight groups were relatively consistent and the best five shot target ended up coming close to the factory test target with five rounds measuring 1.88 inches center-to-center.
The P210 is a masterfully crafted handgun as well suited to the target range as the battlefield. It is extremely easy to handle although the sights on the standard gun are less than desirable. Serious shooters should opt for the slightly more expensive Legend model with adjustable target sights. The fit, finish, and nostalgic appeal of the Sig Sauer P210 will make it worth every dollar.