The gun is built around a polymer frame and weighs a scant 23 ounces. In lieu of the proprietary H&K rail found on USP pistols, the dustcover has a more sensible Picatinny rail for illumination accessories. The stippling is molded into panels on the P2000's front and backstraps, but it is not nearly as aggressive as the USP's diamond-point checkering. A matte-black nitro-carburized finish H&K calls Hostile Environment is applied to the slide and other metal parts.
Disassembly is simple. Just drop the magazine and align a square notch on the left side of the all-steel, machined slide with the slide-release lever, and pry the lever away from the frame. The slide, barrel and guide rod/recoil spring assembly come off, and the left-hand slide-release lever comes out of the frame. The right-hand lever stays attached to the frame. The pistol utilizes the Browning linkless design found on so many semi-autos these days, with one additional feature. A polymer, recoil-absorbing bushing rides up and down the steel guide rod. This bushing is found in both the P2000 and USP compact pistols.
The barrel is 3 5/8 inches long and features polygonal rifling. The pistol is a trim 7-inches long and stands just over 5-inches tall. Dovetailed into place, the sights are the traditional three-dot pattern and have a low profile. Tritium night sights are optional.
Total thickness of the gun in the three calibers offered - 9x19 mm .357 SIG and .40 S&W-is 1 1/3 inches. The magazine-release extends out of both the left and right sides of the oversized trigger guard and drops the magazine when swept downward.
The P2000 comes with four backstraps (small, medium, large and extra large) to reduce the need for slip-on grips or expensive fill-and-grind jobs. Simply punch out a roll pin and replace the backstrap with one that best fits your hand. The backstraps slide in the frame via a full-length vertical dovetail that eliminates any play or wiggle.
Where this pistol shines is on the range. Our sample pistol was chambered for .40 S&W, and function firing yielded brisk recoil with heavy 180-gr. loads but manageable recoil with 165- and 155-gr. loads. Five, five-shot groups fired for accuracy at 25 yards averaged 2.47 inches with Remington's 165-grain Golden Saber jacketed hollow points. The pistol is quick to the target and points well for those who prefer the more aggressive grip angles of modern designs.
The first shot heads downrange after a 10-pound trigger pull, and subsequent rounds are released after a sweet single-action pull of just 4 pounds. It was a delight to cock the hammer and hit falling plates at extended distances instead of fighting through a long double-action trigger pull.
So what's the big deal about the single-action option in a carry gun? Many would argue that consistency is the key, but a dire situation could demand pinpoint accuracy. The P2000 V3 has a desirable blend of accuracy and controllability that make it ideal for service, sport or licensed carry.
Manufacturer: Heckler & Koch, Germany; www.hecker-koch.de
Importer: Heckler & Koch, Inc.; (703) 450-1900; www.hk-usa.com
Caliber: 9x19 mm, .357 SIG, .40 S&W (tested)
Action Type: short-recoil-operated semi-automatic pistol
Frame: fiberglass-reinforced black polymer
Barrel: 3 5/8" chrome-moly steel
Rifling: six-groove polygonal 1:16"
Magazine: 12-round, detachable box (14-round capacity for 9x19 mm and .357 SIG)
Sights: rear notch and front post align three white dots, drift-adjustable for windage
Trigger pull: double-action (9-lbs. pull)/single-action (4-lbs. pull)
Overall Length: 7"
Width: 1 1/3"
Weight: 23 ozs.
Accessories: four replaceable backstraps, two magazines, lockable carry case
Suggested Retail Price: $887