THE KAHR ARMS AUTO ORDNANCE 9MM 1911: by Nick Jacobellis

         For the record, Auto Ordnance is no stranger to the firearms industry.  My

familiarity with Auto Ordnance goes back many years, when I adopted their .30

caliber Paratrooper Model M1 Carbine; a rifle that has been flawlessly reliable.  As

many of you also know, the 9mm Kahr Arms P9 (Polymer) Pistol that I own and

evaluated is also a proven design, that has been flawlessly reliable. 

                              FIRST IMPRESSIONS OUT OF THE BOX           

         The first thing that you notice when you examine the Auto Ordnance 9mm

1911, is the high quality fit and finish of this firearm. Your impression of the Auto

Ordnance 9mm 1911 will soar even higher, when you rack the slide for the first

time.  This pistol is so easy to operate, I actually wondered if the recoil spring was

strong enough to cycle the slide, when this firearm was fired.  I mention this,

because anyone who has test fired various pistols knows from experience, that

some makes and models have noticeably heavy recoil springs. This is not the case

with the Auto Ordnance 9mm 1911.

         Before I began field testing the Auto Ordnance 9mm 1911 I disassembled

this pistol for two reasons.  First and foremost, I wanted to inspect the internal

components, to see how this pistol compared to other 1911s, including more

expensive firearms. My internal inspection of this pistol revealed, that the Auto

Ordnance 1911 is a very well made firearm, with superb fit and finish for a

base model.  Second, I always clean and lubricate a new firearm before sending

rounds downrange. 

                                             SHOTS FIRED

         The second I pulled the trigger and I began to field test the Kahr Arms Auto

Ordnance Government Model 9mm 1911, I was very impressed with the

performance of this firearm.  In fact, the first thing I noticed, is that the all steel

construction of this 9mm 1911 absorbs recoil like a sponge. 

         In addition to testing this pistol with the 9 round Checkmate magazines,

that came with this firearm, the Auto Ordnance 9mm 1911 was also tested with

two 9 round 9mm Mec-Gar 1911 magazines that worked well in this pistol.

However, I did experience problems with two new 10 round flush fit MecGar 9mm

1911 magazines.  This surprised me to no end, because over the years I have found

MecGar magazines to be flawlessly reliable when used in various SIGs, a Walther/

Manhurin PP, two different 9mm Browning Hi Powers, two different CZ 75s, as

well as in an IWI 9mm Jericho pistol and a Springfield Armory SA-35 Hi Power


         During the first range session, the all steel Auto Ordnance 9mm 1911

functioned reliably with 124 and 147 grain Speer FMJ ammunition, 124 and 147

grain Federal hollow-point ammunition and some old 147 grain BVAC hollow-

point ammunition.  When I conducted a second range session I tested this pistol

with some additional Speer 147 grain FMJ ammo, as well as with 9mm 135 grain

Federal Personal Protection HP ammo and 9mm 124 grain Speer Gold Dot hollow-

point ammunition. 

         As far as accuracy goes, the Auto Ordnance 9mm 1911 delivered sub one

inch groups at 7 yards from a standing unsupported position.  This is pretty

impressive, when you consider that the Auto Ordnance 9mm 1911 is equipped with

the lowest profile fixed sights imaginable.  These sights are the same sights used

on every “plain Jane” Government Issue (G.I.) 1911 that saw widespread service

with armed professionals for a large portion of the 20thCentury.  I can only assume,

that my familiarization with G.I. model 1911s, made it possible for me to

effectively engage targets, with the small fixed sights that are installed on the Auto

Ordnance pistol.

         During the second range session I also effectively engaged a TQ19 Law

Enforcement Qualification Target at various distances out to 25 yards.  This

included making head shots and center mass torso shots, at extended distances with

the Auto Ordnance 9mm 1911. 

                                        CLOSING REMARKS

         The Auto Ordnance 9mm 1911 is a pleasure to shoot on a sustained basis

and is ideally suited for use by anyone, who is challenged by using a pistol fitted

with a heavy recoil spring.  The soft shooting nature of this pistol also makes the

9mm 1911 an excellent training pistol for novice shooters.

         As far as features go, the Auto Ordnance 1911 has a 5 inch barrel, a drift

adjustable rear sight, military style brown plastic grip panels, a thumb safety, a grip

safety and a firing pin block to prevent this firearm from accidentally discharging

if dropped.  The Auto Ordnance 9mm 1911 weighs 38.4 ounces unloaded.  While

the test pistol was made in Massachusetts, production of Auto Ordnance 1911s is

in the process of being relocated to a facility in Greeley, Pennsylvania.  The retail

price for a Kahr Arms Auto Ordnance 9mm 1911 at the time of testing was $766.

About the author:

Nick Jacobellis is a Medically Retired U.S. Customs Agent and a former NY police officer who was physically disabled in the line of duty while working undercover as a federal agent. To date, the author has published over 205 magazine articles and ten action-packed nonfiction, historical fiction, and fiction books: Controlled Delivery Books One and Two, The Frontline Fugitives Books I, II, III, and IV, Buck Banderas U.S. Marshal Books One and Two and A Special Kind of Hero. These books have received 5 Star reviews and are available on (US), and (UK). The K9 Academy is the author’s 10th book. The author was born and raised in Flatbush section of Brooklyn N.Y. and has an BS Degree in Police Science from John Jay College of Criminal Justice.