A quarter century ago, the big switch from the traditional revolver to the semi-autopistol was in full swing. Today, it is rare to encounter a law enforcement officer or other armed professional carrying a double-action revolver as a service arm. Small hideouts, however, remain a mixed bag. But when you analyze this situation it’s easy to see why snub revolvers still have a loyal following.

In the years to come, this too is likely to change and the role of the snub will further diminish. Until fairly recently, snubs made the most sense for super discreet carry. Small pocket pistols in .22 LR, .25 ACP, and .32 ACP simply don’t have the juice to quickly shut down a determined adversary. On the other hand, subcompact versions of popular double-stack service pistols often prove too “chunky” to be true hideouts. The classic snub, however, epitomizes size/power efficiency. It may not be the “Hammer of Thor,” but the .38 Special cartridge boasts pretty fair stopping potential with performance that clearly exceeds that of lesser cartridges.

The dynamic that will eventually change the concealed carry paradigm is the evolution of a class of pistols best described as “micro-nines.” No larger than old school .380 ACP pistols, micro-nines are relatively thin, offer superior terminal ballistics, and are far more user-friendly than either pocket pistols or snub revolvers. The icing on the cake is that they are no harder to hide.

Bersa Background

Argentina may conjure up images of the tango, fine wines and superb beef but not necessarily firearms. In reality, some very interesting (if not quirky) guns have come out of Argentina. Notable examples include the Ballester-Molina pistol, Halcon M1943 sub-machinegun, and the 1891 Mauser rifle. The Ballester-Molina was a most interesting piece best described as an evolved .45 ACP pistol based on the 1911.

In the 1950s, Italian immigrants Benso Bonadimani, Ercole Montini and Savino Caselli, began building firearms in Argentina. They called their company Bersa, which represented the first letters in their names. With headquarters in Rames Meija, Bersa has grown into one of the largest privately owned corporations in Argentina.

Bersa has met with the most success with their line of reasonably priced yet very reliable autopistols. The Bersa M90 is the official sidearm of the Argentine armed forces and federal police and a slightly more refined version is imported here as the Thunder ProHC. Their Bersa Thunder .380 based on the timeless Walther PP/PPK design has been a runaway hit.

Gun Details

Recently, Bersa has introduced a new pistol, which I feel is their best effort to date. The BPCC (Concealed Carry) is a small, striker-fired pistol built on a polymer frame. My test pistol, dubbed the BP9CC, incorporates a number of in-demand features and is destined to be a huge commercial success.

The Bersa BP9CC is a lightweight, semi-auto 9mm that fires from a locked breech. Upon handling the BP9CC, one instantly notes how thin it is and this, of course, makes it ideal for concealed carry. At a scant 0.94 inches wide, the BP9CC is significantly trimmer than the subcompact versions of any number of popular service pistols. The single-stack grip frame, also, is very thin but didn’t prove the least bit uncomfortable when firing hot 9mm defensive loads.

To create the BP9CC, Bersa used a familiar recipe of mating a lightweight polymer frame to a steel slide and barrel. Metal surfaces on the sample pistol I examined were finished in a non-reflective matte black. A duo-tone pistol with a nickel finish will also be available. A series of slightly curved serrations, reminiscent of tall grass in the wind, are present on the rear of the slide to facilitate manipulation.

The polymer frame is nicely contoured and the grip will accommodate a wide range of hand sizes. Fore and aft serrations, plus an aggressive raised surface on the side panels, keep the hand from moving about during rapid fire. The triggerguard is slightly undercut in order to get the axis of the bore close to the shooter’s hand and minimize muzzle flip. Like many contemporary pistols, the BP9CC has a Picatinny rail molded into the frame to accommodate a white light or laser aimer.

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