Just about five months ago I reviewed Kahrís
tiny polymer-frame PM9 pocket pistol. Like all Kahr
pistols, it proved to be a high quality, reliable little auto
pistol. Kahr pistols have a good reputation for reliability and
innovative design, and the PM9 offered impressive performance in
a very small package. However, some want a bigger cartridge than
the 9mm, and Kahr also offers their PM model chambered for the
.40 S&W cartridge. Now Kahr has upped the ante a bit more by
offering the PM45, which packs .45 ACP power into a very small
Like the PM9, the slightly larger PM45 has a
plastic frame with a steel insert which supports and guides the
slide during its cycle. The magazines are stainless steel, and
hold five rounds of .45 ACP ammunition, for a total loaded
capacity of six rounds. The design of the Kahrís feed ramp is
offset to allow the trigger bar to ride higher in the frame,
resulting in the pistol sitting lower in the hand for a superior
feel and excellent recoil control. The surface on the frame is
textured for a good grasp without being abrasive to the skin or
clothing. Running my hand over the surface of the slide, no
sharp edges were found, giving the pistol that feel of a used
bar of soap. Nothing is there to cut the hand, or to gouge into
the flesh while carried concealed.
The PM45 is small and slim for a .45 ACP pistol.
The barrel length measures 3.136 inches. The slide width is just
a fuzz over one inch. The maximum width, across the slide latch,
measures 1.165 inches. The maximum height, including magazine
base pad and sights is 4.85 inches. The overall length is 5.85
inches. The reach from the top of the backstrap to the smooth
trigger is only 2.51 inches. The trigger pull measures a very
smooth four and three-quarters pounds. The magazine release is
placed exactly where God intended it to be, just behind the
trigger guard, and it works well for both right-handed and
left-handed shooters. The PM45 comes packed in a hard case with
a trigger lock and two stainless steel magazines. Each magazine
holds five rounds and wears a base pad that serves as a rest for
the little finger. The PM45, like other Kahr pistols, is a
striker-fired design, and thus has no hammer protruding from the
back. The safety is internal on the Kahr, and in use one just
points the gun and pulls the trigger. The Kahr slips easily into
a pants pocket, but is perhaps best carried in a slim
inside-the-pants holster for maximum concealment. The Cross
Breed Supertuck would be an excellent choice to carry
the PM45 well-hidden from view. Weighing in at only 19.2 ounces
empty, the little PM45 is a joy to carry.
I fired the PM45 with a variety of high
performance ammunition, and also with my semi-wadcutter
handload. The only ammo to give problems was the handload, but
after a few dozen rounds, it also worked flawlessly in the
little pistol. Every brand and type of factory ammunition that I
tried functioned perfectly in the PM45, and turned in
respectable velocities. Chronograph testing was done at a
distance of twelve feet over the sensors of a Chrony Master
Beta Model chronograph. Air temperature was in the
seventy-five degree range, at an elevation of approximately 400
feet above sea level. Velocities are listed in the chart below
in feet-per-second (fps). Bullet weights are listed in grains.
JHP is jacketed hollowpoint. EPR is a specialty high performance
type bullet loaded by Extreme
Shock. SWC is a handloaded lead semi-wadcutter bullet.
DPX is the Barnes all-copper hollowpoint bullet loaded by
Cor-Bon. PB is a specialty hollowpoint bullet with a
nylon ball nose loaded by Cor-Bon, called PowRBall.
|Buffalo Bore JHP
|Buffalo Bore JHP
|Extreme Shock EPR
As noted above, functioning was perfect with all
of the high performance ammo. Accuracy was also very good. I did
not try the PM45 for accuracy from a bench rested position, as
that would be outside the realm of the pistolís intended
purpose. The little Kahr is a fighting pistol, made for
defending oneís life in the most up close and personal of
social conflicts. I did fire the Kahr offhand at varying
distances, and it proved to be more accurate than I had
expected. Handheld standing at fifteen yards, the PM45 grouped
my handloads into one and three-quarters inches, and did almost
as well with the hotter factory ammo. The only thing that was a
bit annoying about the little pistol, is that it had the habit
of throwing the empty cases onto my forehead. Other than that,
no complaints at all. The sights are sturdy, easy to see, and
have tritium inserts for visibility in low-light conditions. I
prefer a good set of tritium night sights on a fighting pistol,
and Kahr offers the PM45 with or without tritium inserts. It is
worth the extra money to opt for these. Most gunfights take
place at night, and I am glad to see that Kahr puts a good set
of sights on this small pistol.
Small, lightweight auto pistols are getting
better all the time, and the Kahr PM45 is very likely the
smallest and best pocket-sized .45 ACP on the market. It is
thin, smooth, reliable, and accurate. It fits the human hand so
well, and is simple and easy to operate. It offers six shots of
.45 ACP power in a pistol that is as compact as a five-shot .38
Special. It is made in the USA, and is available now.
Check out the complete line of Kahr pistols
online at www.kahr.com.
For the location of a Kahr dealer near you,
click on the DEALER FINDER at www.lipseys.com.
To order the PM45 online, go to www.galleryofguns.com.
To order any of the high performance ammunition
listed here, go to www.buffalobore.com,
|For a list of dealers where you can
buy this gun, go to:
|To buy this gun online, go to:
The PM45's compact size is evident compared to a folding
knife (top) and a Smith & Wesson Model 342PD J-frame .38
(center & bottom).
The compact PM45 disappears in the pants pocket, or
slips easily into the waistband.
Captured dual spring system.
Feed ramp is offset for the trigger bar.
1-3/4" 15-yard offhand group.
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