Kudos to Walther Arms, for releasing its new PDP (personal defense pistol) in three sizes in February 2021. For this review, Walther sent us the smallest of the new line – the four-inch PDP, which should be attractive to the women’s market.
Sponsored by Walther Arms
Chambered in 9 mm, the PDP (out of the box) has that “Walther feel.” What’s that, you may ask? It starts with the grip. It’s got that curve in the grip. If you shoot a Walther, you’ll recognize it – and appreciate it. It also comes with adjustable backstrap pieces so you can have various sizes of grips, too, which always is a plus.
Then, crosscheck the frame’s appearance overall to other Walther handguns (especially the PPQ) and you’ll see what I mean. If you keep up this attention to detail, in no time you’ll be drilling down as you watch movies, saying things such as “He’s carrying a PPK.”
At some point in the design, or right from the outset, the engineers at Walther decided to make a statement and create something unique to the line of guns. Here’s what they did differently with the PDP:
The gun comes red dot ready. That’s a plus, especially in the trending world of what’s hot with optics and personal defense guns. In fact, Walther goes one step further, and will send you a free optic plate. You must request it.
Engineers at Walther designed this gun around the red dot concept by creating a special grip, which functions with your hands to allow a red dot sight to meld into the perfect natural aiming position through the forward sweep of the design. This forces your shooting hand to drop the muzzle somewhat when you point at a target.
The Walther PDP grip texture first appeared on the steel frame Q4 and Q5 series. They figured if the concept worked for competition shooters, whose hands can get sweaty, it would work for personal defense shooters. It’s got a bit of bite, but it doesn’t leave bitemarks, and for defense reasons, it won’t chew up your holster.
Super terrain serrations cut into the slide, making it easy to grab and manipulate the slide from either side.
The Performance Duty Trigger
The trigger has been redesigned with a shorter length and a stronger trigger break definition.
Thanks to COVID and the ensuing ammo shortage, I didn’t have hundreds of rounds of 9 mm ammo available to “break in” the gun. So, with that in mind and to verify that the PDP doesn’t need a break-in period, we did these tests with the gun right out of the box. I mounted a small red dot that I already had on the slide.
But first … I ran several patches through the disassembled gun. Disassembly steps are similar to the PPQ’s. A take-down button makes it very easy to do. The gun came with lots of oil inside, because manufacturers have no way of telling how long and under what conditions a gun will be stored before getting to a customer. There’s no way I’d want to work with that goo on the range. The excess oil forms an abrasive slurry that can prematurely wear-out parts.
Also, I highly recommend always cleaning your new gun before you shoot it. Get to know it and check against the owner’s manual to make sure you received all the parts intended before loading up the gun.
First of all, it took about 15 shots to zero the red dot sight. The gun shot high and to the right at first with the optic.
Then, it became drill time for accuracy results at 7 yards from a bench rest, using a sand bag for support. The test results shown below are in inches, and are from three groups of five shots per ammo.
Here are the ammos used and the results.
Aguila 9mm Luger, 115 grain, full metal jacket: largest group – .5; smallest group – .25; average – .33
Remington HPT Pistol, 115 grain, jacketed hollow point: largest group – .5; smallest group – .25; average – .33
Remington UMC, 115 grain, full metal jacket: largest group – .5; smallest group – .25; average – .41
Federal Premium Hydra Shok, 124 grain, notched copper jacket: largest group – .25; smallest group – .25; average – .33
I can tell that the gun comes designed for an optic, and takes advantage of the forward sweep in the grip. It happens when I present the gun to the target.
I also feel confident that this gun – either with an optic or without one – will be a trustworthy tool for carrying a personal defense firearm, as there were no failures to fire during this test series.
As always, I appreciate the balance and overall feel that Walther offers in its design of handguns, and that shows in this model, too.
Note: Walther has partnered with DeSantis Gunhide, GATDaily and GunWinner.com to give away a PDP. Must enter by April 19, 2021: Enter here.