SIG P220 Legion 10mm Optics-Ready Handgun Review & Range Report
The P220 Legion 10mm is a barrel-chested Delta operator with a dad-bod that walks into a mission briefing and immediately puts his feet on the table. The P220 10mm is the old man in the locker room covered in silver hair with the strength of a gorilla who refuses to wear a towel in the sauna.
He doesn’t care that it makes you uncomfortable- that’s your problem.
Because the P220 10mm is a cannon from a different time, modernized just enough to keep up with the young bucks; A 1971 Plymouth Cuda with the engine of a new Corvette. It’s a heavy beast that doesn’t care if you’re good enough to wield it correctly – it doesn’t have a huge magazine, and it scoffs at polymer like a side salad with a 32-ounce steak.
The 10mm Legion remembers a time when shooters had to choose between capacity and power, and it breathlessly grunted, “Power!”
10mm too much gun for you? Eat more red meat!
44.5 ounces unloaded too heavy for you? Hit the gym!
Eight-round magazines not enough for you? Shoot better!
SIG P220 Legion 10mm Handgun is Optics Ready
When the steel frame of the P220 Legion fills your hand, it transports you back to a time when mustaches were paragons of masculinity. When seatbelts were for wimps and understeer was a feature of muscle cars.
But the 10mm Legion isn’t just a nostalgia trip/horse steroids made physical. It has the performance to back up its gusto. Utilizing its five-inch barrel, the 200 squeezes a ton of performance out of the already beef 10mm auto round. Making it appropriate not just for home defense but for slaying hogs and bear with proper shot placement.
The new optics-ready P220 Legion is the latest iteration of the P220 that started life as a very large 9mm handgun way back in 1975. In its inception, the P220 was a direct replacement for the prohibitively expensive P210 series of handguns renowned for its accuracy and precision machining. But if you’re arming thousands of soldiers and not just a handful of bullseye shooters, some corners need to be cut.
The biggest difference is how the new P220 pistols no longer needed the slide hand-fitted to the barrel and frame. This act alone dramatically decreased production costs for an unperceivable (at least to 99% of shooters) difference in accuracy. The gun was an instant hit overseas, where its reputation for bomb-proof construction, accuracy, and unstoppable reliability put it in a league of its own.
But the P220’s popularity stateside didn’t really take off until SIG offered the gun in .45 ACP, where it immediately drew comparisons to America’s favorite 45 workhorse: the M1911. And once Americans got a taste of that sweet, sweet SIG quality, they were hooked. The design later morphed into the higher-capacity P226 and P229 handguns, but many shooters held a special place in their collective hearts for the full-sized single-stack beast.
And given the overbuilt nature of the gun, it only made sense that SIG would pair it with a more powerful round – and that’s just what they did back in 2015 with the introduction of the 10mm version.
The latest version wearing the Legion label from SIG now comes optics-ready from the factory in two major configurations: Double-Action/Single-Action and Single-Action Only. As a lifelong fan of the 1911, I naturally chose the latter. And my God, what a combination it is.
The SIG P220 Legion features ergonomics nearly on par with of a 1911 (I prefer the slimmer profile of a 1911) with an excellent trigger, all-steel construction, and five-inch barrel. This gun might not have been originally designed for 10mm, but it was certainly destined for it. The way the P220 Legion’s heft soaks up recoil makes you feel like a roided-out Arny from Commando; follow-up shots are laughably easy, even one-handed, with more potent defensive loads like those from Hornady and Winchester.
Prior to filming the review for this gun, I had taken it out to my backyard range and blasted through a few boxes at a time to get a feel for it and had so much fun I ended up having to buy more ammo for the video. What really struck me is how during filming, I blasted through 350 rounds of full-power ammo and never felt fatigued in my hands or arms. The P220 is the M1 Garand of handguns – managing to strike the perfect balance of heft and recoil so that a shooter knows they’re firing a serious weapon but not so blasty to leave you exhausted or sore after a few mags. But this makes sense, the gun weighs a whopping 44.5 ounces – nearly three pounds.
The P220 Legion 10mm: if I have to choose between doing curls at the Gym or practicing at the range, I won’t.
The P220 10mm is unapologetically powerful, heavy and just freakin’ brawny. But that doesn’t mean it wants you to be stuck in the past. No, the engineers at SIG modified the design to accept both a tactical light and an optic. One thing to note: the footprint on the Legion is for a Shield Sight but needs an adaptor as it’s actually built from the ground up for SIG’s beefiest micro red dot: the Romeo2. And that’s precisely what I recommend shooters run.
I originally installed a no-name Chinese optic on this handgun to test accuracy, and the P220 Legion 10mm’s recoil destroyed the dot in three mags. Don’t skimp. Buy something designed for 10mm if you’re going to run a red dot on this gun.
SIG P220 Legion Performance
Speaking of which, with the Romeo2 installed, I was punching ragged holes in paper at 25 yards and effortlessly ringing steel at 100. If you can’t hit your target with the new P220, you’re either a terrible shot, or you managed to fire the wrong caliber ammo through the gun. As far as reliability, after a total sum of 600 rounds of ammo from Winchester, Hornady, Federal, and PPU, I never encountered a single malfunction whatsoever. But I will say this, one older loading from PPU that I found at a local gun shop didn’t want to load past three rounds in the magazine. The rounds seemed to drag inside the magazine body itself.
When I placed the rounds next to ammo that did work, it was plain to see they were slightly longer overall than the good ones. Interestingly enough, these rounds fed and fired fine in the Glock 20 I tested a few weeks ago but were noticeably harder to load in the magazine. So I suspect the issue lies with the rounds, not the gun. Just the same, buy a single box of any ammo not made by Winchester, Federal, or Hornady before committing to a whole case just to be safe.
SIG P220 Legion 10mm Handgun Verdict
So, what’s my verdict? I love it.
I love the P220 Legion 10mm like I love classic cars, big-bore revolvers, and driving a stick shift. It is a gun that embraces the experience of shooting rather than trying to make it something for the everyman to enjoy. Anyone can handle the P220 Legion, but most will buy something cheaper and higher capacity – but they’re missing out on a tac-driving, hard-hitting, outlast-your-grandkids hand cannon.
Sig Sauer P220 Legion R2 10mm Optics-Ready Handgun Specs:
- MODEL: Sig Sauer P220 LEGION R2
- BRAND: Sig Sauer
- SKU: 220R5-10-LEGION-R2
- UPC: 798681663002
- MSRP: $1700.000 (cheaper $$ online)
- CALIBER: 10mm Auto
- MAGS INCLUDED: (3) 8rd Steel Mag
- SIGHTS: X-RAY3 Day/Night Sights
- THREADED BARREL: NO
- PISTOL SIZE: Full-Size
- OVERALL LENGTH: 8.8 in [224 mm]
- OVERALL WIDTH: 1.3 in [33 mm]
- HEIGHT: 5.5 in (140 mm)
- BARREL LENGTH: 5.0 in (127 mm)
- WEIGHT: 44 oz (1.25 kg)
- SIGHT RADIUS: 7 in (178 mm)
- ACCESSORY RAIL: SIG Rail
- TRIGGER ACTION: DA/SA
- TRIGGER TYPE: P-SAIT
- GRIP TYPE: Black G10
- GRIP COLOR: Black
- BARREL MATERIAL: Carbon Steel
- FRAME FINISH: Legion Gray
- FRAME MATERIAL: Stainless Steel
- SLIDE FINISH: Legion Gray
- SLIDE MATERIAL: Stainless Steel
- OPTIC READY: Yes
Sig Sauer P220 Legion R2 10mm Optics-Ready Handgun Manual
About Jim Grant
Jim is one of the elite editors for AmmoLand.com, who in addition to his mastery of prose, can wield a camera with expert finesse. He loves anything and everything guns but holds firearms from the Cold War in a special place in his heart.
When he’s not reviewing guns or shooting for fun and competition, Jim can be found hiking and hunting with his wife Kimberly, and their dog Peanut in the South Carolina low country.