A few weeks ago, I published a post which contained my top five firearms based on round count. While writing that post and linking each firearm on the list to its corresponding latest review, I realized that two of the firearms on that list were overdue for follow up reviews. One of those overdue firearms was the Heckler & Koch VP9 Match which passed the 2,000 round mark some time in November of 2022. Yeah, almost a year ago. That makes this review almost a year overdue. Thankfully, there are no late fees associated with overdue reviews.
The delayed review might create the impression that my opinion of the VP9 Match has evolved negatively. That isn’t the case. The gun itself continues to work reliably and it is still a pleasure to shoot. Just like its standard VP9 brethren, this VP9 variant chugs along past milestones in a remarkably unremarkable fashion. That is it just keeps running without malfunctions and predictably minimal signs of wear and tear. In fact, I have yet to replace the o-ring on the barrel which I had expected to be worn out by now, but it hasn’t. It’s a well built machine that just won’t quit.
That said, I have become less enthusiastic about using it for the applications I intended to use it for. Those applications were IDPA and USPSA competition. As I pointed out in the 1000 round review and again when I mentioned in my top five list, the VP9 Match is still not listed in the USPSA Production Gun List. That means it isn’t allowed for competition in either Production or Carry Optics divisions which happen to be divisions it is best suited for. Sure, one could run it in USPSA’s Open or Limited division, but it’s not a competitive option for either of those divisions. For IDPA, the dimensions of the pistol are larger than what is allowed for Stock Service Pistol (SSP) or Carry Optics (CO) divisions which, once again, are the divisions the pistol is best suited for. While I can get away shooting this pistol at local club matches, it’s a non-starter for major matches which I’ve started participating in. So until IDPA rules change or the VP9 Match is added to the USPSA Production Gun List, the VP9 Match won’t be seeing much range time which is a real shame since I like the pistol a lot and would be happy to use it in competition.
Looking beyond the continued competition use roadblocks, the VP9 Match has undergone some changes since its last review. The most notable change is how the optic is mounted which came about because of multiple optic mounting failures which continued even after replacing the H&K optic mounting plate and trying different Trijicon mounting screws while ensuring all screws were torqued to specifications and used Blue 242 Loctite. The failures stopped after I swapped out the H&K optic mounting plate with an aftermarket plate from C&H Precision Weapons and, following the instructions provided by C&H Precision Weapons, used Vibra-TITE VC-3 Threadmate on the properly torqued screws.
Another notable change the VP9 Match underwent involved swapping out the 2.5 MOA Trijicon SRO with a 5.0 MOA Trijicon SRO. Why? Because bigger is better. At least in the context of the types of competitions I want to use the VP9 Match in. Plus I sold the 2.5 MOA SRO to a friend who was in the market for one and I used the funds from that sale to pick up a 5.0 MOA SRO that I found a hot deal on. That 5 MOA SRO will likely end up on another pistol if the VP9 Match doesn’t start seeing regular range time in the future.
If the VP9 Match does start seeing some regular range time, then it is possible it will get outfitted with some coarse grained competition grip panels from Jerkman Custom Grips. When that will happen is very difficult for me to say. It depends heavily on USPSA and IDPA rule changes, but there is a chance that I may find another use for it as I continue to explore different shooting sports. Until then, the VP9 Match will continue to mostly, and shamefully, sit in the safe.
9/1/2023 Update: It turns out that the VP9 Match is on the USPSA production gun list and has been since March of 2023. I just did a poor job of checking that list when I wrote this update. As such, the VP9 Match should be good to go for both Production and Carry Optics divisions. I’m still not sure I will be making much use of it unless I can figure out a way to get two or three more rounds into the 20-round magazines. It might seem silly, but that 10-15% increase in capacity makes a pretty big difference on some match stages. That said, I’m very tempted to get this pistol out for a spin again. Perhaps I’ll give it a whirl sooner or later.