Introduced in 2012, the Smith & Wesson M&P Shield has become one of the most successful pistols in the company’s recent history. Just 6 inches long and 1-inch wide, the Shield is a favorite for private concealed-carry and law enforcement alike.

Available in both 9mm and .40 S&W, the Shield combines a 3.1-inch barrel with a striker-fired action for a short, clean trigger pull. This combination makes the Shield one of the easiest micro 9mms to shoot.

The standard Shield features low-profile sights that are snag-free while still being easy to pick up. As with the full-sized M&P family of pistols, a substantial aftermarket industry provides upgrades from sights and triggers to slide work.

The first time I went to the range with a Shield, I came away thinking, “This little pistol shoots like a laser beam!”

But the Smith & Wesson Performance Center has taken the Shield one step further by offering a new enhanced, ported version in both 9mm and .40 S&W.

The most striking features of the new pistol are the three ports on each side of the slide. The barrel also has two ports that, when the slide is forward, correspond with the front two ports in the slide.

The S&W Performance Center has also improved the trigger and installed high-visibility fiber-optic sights. The front sight features a green light pipe while the rear inserts are red.

As you can see in the accompanying video, the little pistol was a blast to shoot and proved both reliable and accurate.

Look for a complete review in an upcoming issue of COMBAT HANDGUNS. To subscribe, visit

For more information on the Performance Center Ported M&P Shield and other products from Smith & Wesson, please visit

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