Have you ever thought of upgrading your handgun? Try out the SIG Sauer P226.

The SIG Sauer P226 handgun is the predecessor to the SIG Sauer P220, a vintage model built in Germany dating back to the 19th century. It became known for being one of the most outstanding models that the renowned SIG Arms Manufacturing had to offer when it was released.

The gun was created in Switzerland in the 1980s as a “cheaper gun” to build than the SIG Sauer P210 type, a highly costly handgun. At the outset, the prime focus was to displace the time-honored Colt M1911 and Smith & Wesson .38 revolvers that were once in use by the US Military. It was primarily created for the ongoing US military contract, in which the military desired to replace the M1911 pistol, which had been in service for about 70 years when the deal was being worked on. The US military has taken the step to switch to a new sidearm that is chambered with a 9 mm Parabellum and has a magazine with a high capacity.

A closer look at the design

The SIG Sauer P226 is an old-german-made vintage model that evolved from the previous SIG Sauer P220 pistol. (Source: Spec Ops Magazine)

The SIG Sauer P226 is quite identical to its successor, the P220, except for having a slightly “different shape” and a double-stacked magazine with a larger capacity. This pistol’s operation features a short recoil system and a locked breech. In later years, various calibers, such as.40 S&W or.357 SIG were made available. It is important to remember that the SIG Sauer P226 was the first pistol fitted with a.357 SIG chambering. It is a high-velocity 9-millimeter round with high level of penetration.

The SIG Sauer P226 can be purchased with either double action or double action only trigger. This handgun features a firing pin safety, but there are none of the manual safeguards available. On the left side of the frame is where you will find the decocking lever, but it is essential to be aware that the variant with “double-action-only” does not come with a decocker. The P226 is offered with a frame made of either regular aluminum or stainless steel.

Double-stacked magazines with a capacity of 15 rounds are used in the 9×19 mm version of the SIG Sauer P226. Both the.40 S&W and the .357 SIG calibers employ magazines that can hold 12 rounds of ammunition each. The button that releases the magazine can be used in either direction. It turned out that the P226 was indeed a sturdy, dependable, and expertly crafted weapon.

Other variants

SIG Sauer P226 in the box, with one magazine (Photo: XY, taken from Spec Ops Magazine)

What’s great about this gun is that you will never experience boredom with its type as it has other variants that you will surely love, too, including P226 Navy, P226 E2, P228 (M11) P229, and P224, respectively.

P226 Navy

After successful testing by German Kampfschwimmer in the 1980s, US Navy SEAL teams began using the SIG P226 as their sidearm. Under Mk25 Mod 0, the US Navy SEAL and the DEVGRU started using the P226 in 1989.

The NSW Commemoratives were the first P226 pistols inspired by Naval Special Warfare to be made available to the general public. They were released at the beginning of 2004. The SIG P226-9-NAVY is a variant of the SIG P226 that was manufactured and has a slide made of stainless steel that has been etched with an anchor to indicate that it is intended for use in Naval Special Warfare.

P226 E2

SIG Sauer’s “E2” (pronounced “E-squared”), also known as “Enhanced Ergonomics,” is the company’s attempt to redesign the big frame gun to be more “ergonomic” for people with small to medium-sized hands. The trigger face is moved back more than 13 millimeters (half an inch) when the grip size and reach of the trigger are both reduced; this makes it possible for a more significant number of shooters to have better trigger manipulation and control.

P228 (M11) 

The P228, a more compact version of the P226, is used by various law enforcement organizations and the US Armed Forces, known as the M11. The slide and the barrel on the P228 are significantly shorter than those on the P226. In contrast to the P226, the P228 is only offered in the 9x19mm Parabellum caliber with a 13-round magazine; however, it is also compatible with the P226’s 15- or 20-round magazines.


The P229 is an improved version of the P228, which was already a similar and compact firearm frequently carried for service or “concealed carry purposes.” The P229 has a heavier slide than the P228 does to be able to handle more powerful shots


The P224 is a variant of the series that is a subcompact version. The unloaded weight of the weapon is 29 ounces or 820g, and the barrel length is 3.5 inches or 8.9 cm. When chambered in 9mm, the P224 has a capacity of 12 rounds; however, it is also available in.357 SIG and.40 S&W. The P224 was initially released in 2012 as a double-action-only (DAO) model. In 2013, it was relaunched as a double action / single action (DA/SA) model with a decocking lever, but in 2016, it marked the end of the production year for the P224.

Too many variants to choose from. Now is the time to decide which handgun suits your needs well.