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Heckler & Koch USP

Semi-automatic pistol


The HK USP pistol is used by military, police and is also available to civilian customers

Caliber 9x19 mm Parabellum
Weight (empty) 720 g
Weight (loaded) 805 g
Length 194 mm
Barrel length 108 mm
Muzzle velocity 350 m/s
Magazine capacity 15 rounds
Sighting range 50 m
Range of effective fire 50 m


   The USP or Universal Slebstlade Pistole (universal self-loading pistol) is a product of the German Heckler & Koch company. Development of this pistol began in 1989. It evolved from a Heckler & Koch MK23 pistol. The goal was to develop a new pistol in a number of versions, that could be suitable for civilians, as well as military and police markets. It was aimed at civilian customers in the USA, as well as global military and law enforcement market. Production commenced in 1993. A wide variety of versions have been developed. In 1995 a version of the USP was adopted by the German army as the P8 as the main sidearm. Currently the USP is in service with nearly 20 countries.

   The fist version of the USP was chambered in .40 S&W ammunition. At the time it was a relatively new ammunition. However other versions of the USP appeared shortly, chambered in 9x19 mm Parabellum, .45 ACP, and .375 SIG ammunition (USP Compact).

   This pistol has a metal reinforced polymer frame and one-piece milled steel slide. All metal parts have a special finish, that provides protection against corrosion and wear. The pistol can be even kept for prolonged periods in salt water.

   It is a short-recoil operated weapon. This pistol has a patented recoil reduction system. The USP has a double-action trigger. It can be also in single-action firing sequence. Also there are versions with double-action only trigger. Actually there are nine basic variations of the trigger and safety arrangements. Some of them have a safety lever on the right side. Other are without manual safety, or with decock-only lever. This pistol also has an automatic firing pin safety.

   The Heckler & Koch company was that confident with the USP, that gave it a lifetime warranty. Service life of this pistol is around 20 000 shots.

   The USP is fed from a double-stack magazine, that holds 15 rounds. Magazine release button is ambidextrous.

   This pistol has simple sights that are dovetailed to the slide. The USP is accurate at ranges of up to 50 meters.  Maximum range of fire is about 60 meters.

   There are a universal mounting groves under the barrel for various accessories, such as tactical flashlight or laser pointer.




   USP Standart, a baseline version;

   USP Compact, a compact version. It was revealed in 1994. Production of this pistol began in 1996. The USP Compact is the only version of the USP, chambered in .375 SIG ammunition. Its magazine holds 8 to 13 rounds, depending on the caliber. In 1997 a version of the USP Compact chambered in 9x19 mm was adopted by German police as the P10;

   USP Compact Tactical, a compact version of the USP with a threaded barrel. It can be fitted with a sound suppressor;

   USP Tactical. It is a version developed for special military and law enforcement forces. It has an extended threaded barrel. It can be fitted with a sound suppressor. Also it has adjustable rear sight;

   USP Elite, a version intended for civilian market. It has adjustable front and rear sights. It is mainly intended as a target pistol;

   USP Expert, a version intended for civilian market. It has adjustable rear sight;

   USP Match, a target version, intended for civilian market;

   HK45 is a version chambered in .45 ACP. It was designed to meet requirements of the US armed forces to replace the M9 pistol. However this US program was suspended in 2006. Despite that, the in 2008 the HK45 pistol was adopted by special units of Western Australian Police. In 2010 its compact version, the HK45C was adopted by US Navy Special Warfare Command.








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