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Rarely do makers vary from that plan, because business is risky enough without piling on extras.
First things first: No, you don't have to buy all six as a package. As appealing as that may be, it's a bigger cash outlay than most of us are prepared to entertain. But what's in the Six Pack?
First up, the Heavy Duty. You might scoff, "A heavy-duty .380?" Well, don't. The P238 HD is an all-stainless pistol with G10 grips. Being stainless, it can be carried in places you might not want us to know about and not worry about rust. And because it's all stainless, you can practice until you've consumed all of the .380 ammo available in three counties and not risk wearing it out.
Next is the Tactical Laser, which features a laser unit attached to the frame in front of the triggerguard. The pistol frame is aluminum, as are the grips and the slide and controls are stainless, so even if you scrape the surface ugly after years of carry, the slide will still resist corrosion. The laser has dual buttons, one on either side, so you can use either hand to turn it on and off.
For a definitely low-profile, classy gun, you go with the P238 Nitron Rosewood. Here, the slide and controls are left all black after the Nitron and oxide treatments, the anodized aluminum frame is done up in black, and the grips are rosewood because, well, gentlemen who prefer wood grips prefer good ones, not a chunk of lumber ripped off the packing crate the barrel steel came in.
Those looking for something a little flashier can go with the P238 Two-Tone Blackwood. Here, the slide is left stainless, as are the controls. The aluminum frame is anodized flat black, and the grips are black-stained wood.
Finally, for those who insist on the maximum flash and attention-grabbing looks, there is the P238 Rainbow Titanium. The anodized aluminum frame is
matched up with rosewood grips, but the stainless parts-the slide and controls are treated to a SIG Rainbow Titanium finish. What is this? I'm not really sure. as SIG is reluctant to disclose the technical details. It is applied via the PVD (Physical Vapor Deposition) process. However, exactly what is deposited and how, and how it makes all those refracted colors, is something SIG does not want to reveal. (I mean, is it a magnetron-sputtering process, or do they use cathodic arc evaporation or pulsed laser ablation? No one will say.) However, the overall color is sort of a lavender/purple, and it shifts to red, orange, turquoise and other colors I can't name as you move it in the light.
When I saw the Rainbow Titanium P238, I had a sudden realization: I'm an old fart. Blue, stainless, Parkerizing, even some of the bolder colors of baked-on finishes I can get behind. But this just isn't me. Don't let that stop you or your significant other from glomming onto one as quickly as possible. But you won't have to worry about me depleting the supply of this particular model.
I hurried off to the range with this embarrassment of riches and did my best. First of all, I didn't have enough .380 ammo on hand to give all of them a thorough wringing-out. I'm not sure anyone does these days, unless they work in the test-fire bay of an ammunition manufacturer. Ammo in .380 is kind of hard to come by due to the demand for ammunition of all kinds. And after all, these are SIG pistols. What are the chances that any of them would malfunction, no matter how much ammunition I put through them? So I didn't even try to do any volume shooting. I simply had a hand at accuracy testing and got a feel for how they shot.
Also, the company is rigorous about details. One of the Six Pack sent to me was a show gun, inspected and included so I'd have the full panoply of pistols in one package. The standard procedure is that any pistol that has left SIG and returns is a used pistol. Therefore, it arrived here with a "used" label on the end of the box, despite probably never having had a round fired in it between manufacturing and arriving here at Gun Abuse Central. Attention to detail like that should be noted and praised.
I was impressed with the consistency of the trigger pulls from model to model and between the aluminum- and stainless-frame pistols. They were all clean and crisp and heavy enough that they are proper carry guns and not target-shooting range queens. They also worked flawlessly with all the ammo I had, in all the models. I'm an inveterate grip-wringer. I choke up on the grip of a gun like there's no tomorrow, and as a result, there are models I simply cannot shoot. A PPK leaves dual tracks in my shooting hand.
A Browning Hi-Power draws blood. The tang of the P238 is made for guys like me, as I haven't had any of them so much as nip me, let alone draw blood.
Indoors or at night, that laser is going to be plenty bright enough for use as an impact indicator.
You now have an embarrassment of riches to select from if you're in the market for a compact .380 for defense. And who isn't these days?