Sig P365XL Overview
The Sig P365XL is a continuation of the Sig P365 family. Sig Sauer is famous for its double action single action Sig P226. But in the mid-2000s they wanted to offer something that would be more advantageous for the US market so they introduced the Sig P250.
Despite its more reasonable price, Sig P250 was a commercial flop. The Sig P250 was a double-action-only modular design and it didn’t do well on the US market. To purchase a modular kit that allowed you to change the size of the gun you would pay almost as much for the kit as the gun itself.
In the US where it’s very easy to acquire multiple guns only needing a background check and the correct amount of money to purchase the firearm, that is not an issue. There are some countries that pose limitations on the number of guns you can own. In those countries owning something like the Sig P250 may have been a major advantage but in the US, it just didn’t do that well.
Sig saw an opening in the striker-fired market and came out with their Sig P320 to compete with all those other guns on the market like the Glock, Springfield, and Smith and Wesson striker-fired offerings. The Sig p320 was a mediocre success initially. It did well on the market, but it did not compete at the level Sig expected. In January of 2018 Sig introduced the Sig P365 as a brand-new handgun that was the size of a Glock 43 but held four more rounds in the magazine.
The Sig P365 took the gun world by storm. Sig had managed to put 10 rounds in the size that most guns could only hold six. The Sig P365 quickly became a huge commercial success despite some teething issues after the initial introduction. To expand on their success with the Sig P365 at the beginning of 2019 Sig announced the Sig P365 XL which they introduced in June of 2019.
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The Sig P365XL has a 12-round magazine, a flat trigger, and a longer slide than the Sig P365. The magazines themselves are also available in a 15-round extended capacity there are a variety of aftermarket extensions as well for the Sig P365 XL series. From a capacity standpoint, the Sig P365XL even though it only holds two more rounds is quite a bit larger than the Sig P365.
It’s not as size efficient as the Sig P365 and is less size efficient than the Glock 43x or Glock 48 if they’re using the 15 round shield arms mags. But it’s much more size efficient than the Glock 48 and Glock 43x if they’re using the Glock factory OEM 10 round magazine.
There’s actually a decent mag well in the Sig P365XL. That mag well encompasses the rear and the sides of the grip. So, it’s fairly easy to insert a magazine into the gun considering the large bevel at those portions.
Now one thing to keep in mind when you’re inserting the mag is due to the relatively shorter grip of the Sig P365XL, many people (especially adult males) will have the heel of their palm hanging off below the grip.
So, if they have a full grip when they go to reload the gun it’s very likely they could pinch their palm between the magazine base plate and the grip of the pistol itself. I have unfortunately done this many times.
The grip of the Sig P365XL is really just a larger version than the Sig P365, a slight beavertail at the end. But overall, the ergonomics are dang near identical. The difference is you can actually get all three of your fingers on the grip of the gun if you have medium to larger size hands. As far as the ergonomics themselves the gun feels good in the hand if you get a solid grip on the gun it really helps you control it.
If you have really small hands this grip will fit you perfectly like a full-size gun will fit someone with larger hands. If your hands are larger than that, your pinky will likely stick off or hang off the magazine base plate. If you wanted to you could also switch the grip module out for a regular P365 grip module that takes the 10 round magazines, if you wanted a shorter grip with the longer slide and optic cut.
The frames themselves are around forty to fifty dollars, so it’s not that expensive to do the swap. The texturing on the Sig P365 XL is actually pretty good. It has a stippled like texture with a sandpaper-like feel on all four sides of the grip. Both of the sides and the front and back strap. There is no texturing on the portion right below the top rear of the slide where you would place your palm traditionally.
But the gun and the grip are so small that you really can’t get your palm close enough to get an index of the gun unless you have really small hands.
Now one thing to note the general feel of the gun is very good. And when you’re gripping the gun off of a table or a mat or from an OWB holster it’s very easy to get an awesome solid grip on the gun. But if you’re drawing from a holster IWB. The distance between the front strap and the back strap is a tenth to a quarter of an inch shorter than most similar size guns.
And due to that, your fingers have to go much further between your body and the gun itself. So, it takes a little longer to get a good grip on a gun like this when drawing. And it can also be uncomfortable pressing your fingernails into your stomach or love handles to get the full grip on the gun because your fingers are coming up and dragging against your skin.
The Sig P365 does come standard with three-dot night sights. It comes with the Sig like Sights which have a blacked-out rear that has a tritium vial on each side of the notch. It’s a square notch rear and a front sight that has a very dull green ring around the front night sight. The vials on the front and the rear appear to be the same strength.
The sights themselves aren’t great, but if you want to replace them, you’re frankly out of luck and the reason for that is the sights themselves sit on the cover plate for an optic. So, this gun is milled for an optic but that optic does not have a backup rear iron Sight since the iron Sight is mounted to the cover plate which would be removed if you decide to install an optic.
An upside is the sights are right on the line of good enough you will find it hard to justify the cost of replacing them but not so good you’ll love them. The downside is this cover plate is there are not a lot of companies making aftermarket sites that will work with the cover plate.
So, if these sites don’t work for you, you’re kind of out of options unless you decide to mount a red dot on the gun. Now when it comes to mounting a red dot on the Sig P365XL, you’re in luck. There are multiple manufacturers making red dots for this gun including Sig which has their Sig Romeo zero offering and Holosun which has the Holosun 507K.
Previous to those two models is the Shield RMSC which is the mounting pattern on which the Holosun and the Sig Romeo zero were designed on. So, all these models fit the P365 XL so you’ve got a variety of quality offerings for the gun.
The Sig P365XL has no safety although there is a thumb safety version available. The thumb safety is fairly well placed on these guns, a similar position to the colt 1911 in roundabout terms it is very low profile though. So, I would take that into account when picking out the gun.
Personally, I don’t find the thumb safety necessary but Sig does offer it if it’s something you would like. The mag release on the Sig P365 XL is very conveniently located. People with small to large hands will likely be able to access it without compromising their grip on the gun. That said if you have medium to larger sized hands the meaty portion of your palm at the base of your hand will likely block the magazine from ejecting.
So, when you press the mag release it will disengage the mag but the magazine will not drop free and if it’s empty you would have to tear it out; you can’t even shake it out. To avoid this you’ll need to break your grip on the Sig P365XL when dropping the magazine. Now if you remove your bottom of your palm from that portion of the gun and press the mag release.
The magazine shoots out due to the pressure from the magazine follower against the slide stop. The magazine release is metal and it’s shaped like a triangle. It’s fairly smooth on all edges and overall, I think it’s a good option.
For a factory mag release, it’s not too low profile that is hard to reach, but it’s not so large that you’ll accidentally drop the mag by pressing into it with your support hand palm when shooting the gun. Overall Sig Did a great job on that feature.
The slide stop on the Sig P365XL is identical to the slide stop on the Sig P365 it looks very similar to the takedown lever on the Sig P365 and is positioned right behind it with my thumb I can easily reach it but it might sit a little far forward for somebody with very small hands.
Keep in mind the 65 XL would be a great duty gun replacement for individuals with extremely small hands. So, that might be something you want to take into account if it’s absolutely necessary that you are able to reach the slide stop with your primary hand thumb as a right-handed shooter.
There is no slide stop option on the left-hand side of the gun. It would be nice to see the slide stop mounted just a little further to the rear and also have an ambi option, but for most shooters, the ambi option isn’t going to be necessary.
The overall ergonomics of the Sig P365 are quite good when you just feel it in the hand. It allows you to get pressure where you want on the gun to control recoil. There isn’t a lot of space for your support hand if you have medium to larger size hands which is a downside as your support hand is going to be pressing on your primary hand instead of the gun itself the small size of the grip is also a major negative when drawing from the holster IWB.
A lot of Sig P365 XL fans are going to disagree with me there, but a timer doesn’t lie and I’ve yet to see them get on the timer and shoot the gun versus other guns with larger distances between the front strap and the back strap. I do think this is a very important part of a defensive firearm and if you have large hands I’d make sure to take that into account.
Now the upside of the small grip is if you are a male with very small hands or medium to smaller female with small hands the Sig P365XL will likely fit your hands like a glove. I have been in classes where I’ve seen very small-statured shooters being forced to shoot larger guns like Sig P320 and Glock 17 and it just doesn’t work for them because they cannot get a good enough grip on the gun.
When they handle smaller guns like the Sig P365, the Sig 365XL, or the Glock 43, they actually shoot them much better because they can maintain full control of the firearm. Now as far as the ergonomics of the slide, the slide features both front and rear cock inspirations.
The slide on the Sig P365XL is fairly tall. The forward cocking serrations are good but they’re not great; they are definitely effective enough to manipulate the slide without issue. But if you had sweaty or slick hands, they aren’t so aggressive that you can guarantee a good solid purchase on the gun.
That is probably my only gripe with the slide of the Sig P365XL. My other only gripe would be the distance from the front strap to the backstrap of the gun, but again that’s only going to affect shooters with medium to larger size hands when they’re drawing from an IWB Holster
The trigger on the Sig P365XL is a flat trigger with a slight hook at the bottom. The edges and sides of the trigger are very well rounded with no sharp edges. There is also no drop safety on the trigger itself, but the trigger shoe is extremely light and that is what Sig is counting on to keep the firearm drop safe. The idea is that a lighter trigger will not fall with gravity like a heavy trigger may when the momentum of the gun is stopped upon being dropped.
Now onto the trigger pull itself. When you go to pull the take up it is very light and then you hit a wall. Once you hit that wall you start to feel creep. It’s a very creepy trigger when you’re going slow. I feel two individual levels of creep although your gun may vary depending on the tolerance stacking of that individual firearm. Once you get through the two levels of creep, it goes into a rolling break without much of a wall.
That rolling break in my opinion is quite nice for a defensive firearm where your goal is running the gun quickly and effectively, and not necessarily knowing the exact pure instant when it’s going off. You can still time your shot into well under a tenth of a second. So, it’s not like the trigger is unpredictable.
You know the zone where it’s about to go off. You just aren’t sure of the exact moment. The reset on the Sig P365 is quite audible and it resets right to the point of the wall before you start filling the creep again and then the striker drops with that rolling break. When the striker drops the trigger feels quite weird. It’s a very plastic and springy feeling from the striker dropping.
And the reason for this is Sig originally had issues with strikers breaking with the Sig P365 series. So, they redesigned the striker so it’s bombproof and the striker itself impacts the spring cups that surround the striker instead of impacting the rear of the striker channel.
So, this striker itself never hits metal besides hitting the primer on a bullet; this is a very good design change in my opinion. Overall the creep is just nitpicking and in my opinion, the P365XL has an excellent self-defense trigger. But I’m also not a trigger snob and I really like rolling breaks.
Maintenance of the Sig P365XL is fairly easy. All you have to do is lock the slide back, make sure that there is no magazine in the gun and that the chamber is empty, and then rotate the takedown lever that’s in front of the slide stop down 90 degrees. Once that is rotated down, you’ll slowly pull the slide back just slightly and then slowly let it forward so it comes all the way off the slide.
From there you can remove the recoil spring assembly and the barrel. Just reverse the process to put the slide back on the gun. The nice part about that is you do not have to pull the trigger to safely disassemble the firearm; for a lot of people, this is a big pro. Glock had a lot of complaints in previous years of law enforcement officers shooting themselves with the gun.
Most of the time it was due to a negligent discharge while they were cleaning the firearm because they did not follow proper safety procedures, and check to make sure the firearm was unloaded before pulling the trigger.
Dry fire is a much more common practice now and people are more comfortable with pulling a trigger on an empty chamber. But a newer gun owner might really like the takedown on the Sig P365XL.
Overall, the aesthetics on the Sig P365XL like most guns are fairly marginal. The frame and the rear portion of the slide actually look quite good. It looks like a scaled-down variant that is much thinner than the Sig p320. Where the Sig 365XL starts looking a little bit odd is the extended slide portion of the gun.
It just looks slightly long for the length of the grip. If the length of the grip were maybe 3/8 of an inch longer, the gun would appear more balanced. That said, looks only play so much of a role and shooting is where the gun really comes into its own. My favorite feature about the looks of the gun has to be the flat trigger. The flat trigger really stands out.
Shooting the Sig 365xl is not quite what you’d expect. If you’ve shot the Glock 43x, the Sig P365, and the Glock 19. You’re probably expecting the Sig P365XL to be an extremely soft shooter when in fact the Sig P365XL to me feels like it shoots very similar to the much smaller Sig P365.
The Sig P365 is a complete standout gun in its class in both capacity and recoil control whereas I don’t get that impression from the Sig P365 XL. There’s something about it when they made the gun a little bit heavier with the longer slide, it doesn’t seem to absorb recoil as at the same ratio of the smaller Sig P365. The grip on the gun is very small.
So, if you’re doing any work from the holster, you’re probably going to come to hate that feature of the gun. But the upside is it comes standard with a red dot cut from the factory which is a very nice feature to have as that gives you a much better sight picture when acquiring your target. Overall the Sig P365XL is a good option.
And if you carry a Sig P365 or have one in your carry rotation then adding a Sig P365 XL might be a good option. But the Sig P365XL is not such a great shooter that I can see going to it over say a Glock 48. I would put it in a similar category to the Glock48 it shoots similar to that. It does have a better trigger than the Glock 48, but I can’t say that I like any other feature about it better besides that and the red dot cut.