Smith & Wesson M&P Bodyguard 38: Top-Selling Revolver of 2019

by
posted on March 12, 2020
smith-mp-38-a.jpg
The Smith & Wesson M&P Bodyguard 38 was the top-selling revolver in 2019 among FFLs using the services of Gunbroker.com. The company rolled out the revolver back in 2014—based on the legendary J-Frame—but the gun waited five years before even breaking into the annual top-10 wheelgun list.

There’s good reason it started out on top, though. Its size, rugged build and reliability make it ideal for carry and backup duty, and there’s a growing demand in that niche, thanks to the increasing number self-defense enthusiasts and people with CCW permits.  There’s no doubt, however, a big part of the popularity is also a byproduct of the five versions currently available, including a pair compliant with Massachusetts regulations.

All Smith & Wesson M&P Bodyguard 38s are chambered for .38 Spl., rated to safely run +P loads and have a five-round capacity. The stainless steel barrels are 1.87" long and the revolver’s total length is only 6.6". Weight runs from 14 to 14.4 ozs.—depending on model—ideal for all-day comfort, thanks to the aluminum-alloy frame and synthetic grips. The hammerless design also minimizes the chances of it hanging up on clothing during the drawstroke. The cylinder release is ambidextrous.

The double-action-only has fixed, integral rear sights with a pinned, black ramp-up front. Finish is matte black and MSRP for the basic, no-frills model is $402. Models with an integrated Crimson Trace laser and have an MSRP of $539. Grips available for this flavor also include one that has a darker, black polymer. 

Two Everyday Carry Kits are currently available, each built around laser-equipped models—one being Massachusetts compliant. MSRP stays the same at $539, but enthusiasts receive a S&W Oasis Liner Lock folding knife, M&P Delta Force CS LED flashlight and Smith & Wesson-branded gun portfolio (carry case) with their purchase. Supply it limited. Including items enthusiasts would likely purchase separately without increasing the price is another reason the M&P Bodyguard claimed top honors among revolvers last year.

That momentum hasn’t slowed, either. It claimed top honors in both January and February 2020.

Latest

Eaa Corp Mc312 Goose Shotgun 12 Gauge F
Eaa Corp Mc312 Goose Shotgun 12 Gauge F

New for 2021: EAA MC312 Goose Gun

European American Armory Corp. introduced a model of its MC312 semi-automatic shotgun designed specifically for goose hunting.

The Armed Citizen® June 21, 2021

Read today's "The Armed Citizen" entry for real stories of law-abiding citizens, past and present, who used their firearms to save lives.

NRA 150th: Marksmanship Training Saving Lives in Vietnam

What does a 50-foot NRA range for .22 rifles in Oklahoma have to do with the combat effectiveness and survival of a Marine in Vietnam? In the young life of R.S. Hildreth, almost everything.

New For 2021: M&P Spec Series Kit

Smith & Wesson is set to offer brand loyalists with a limited edition kit that includes its well-regarded M&P9 M2.0 Optic-Ready pistol.

Preview: Cold Steel Crawford 1 Flipper

In collaboration with custom knife maker Wes Crawford, Cold Steel announced the launch of its Crawford 1 Flipper pocketknife, a blade designed to do it all.

Rifleman Q&A: Number Of Turns To Focus A Scope?

From the archives of American Rifleman, read about ocular-ring adjustments on riflescopes from the July 2004 magazine.

Interests



Subscribe to the NRA American Rifleman newsletter