Para, a staple in the world of quality and featured 1911s, introduced five new pistols at this year’s SHOT Show. All are 1911s, although some really stretch the familial resemblance.
First up is the fine Hunter LS Elite, a long-slide variant with a 6-inch barrel chambered in 10mm. Equipped with target adjustable fiber optic sights, the Hunter LS Elite should have no problems as a game-getter with its extended barrel, loaded with full-house 10mm cartridges.
It has an ambidextrous safety and has a deep Ion Bond wear-resistant finish. It also comes with VZ G10 grips. The 10mm 1911 is a single-stack, with a capacity of 9+1.
The MSRP for the Hunter LS Elite is an approachable, albeit not inexpensive, $1,250.
They’re also working on a double-stack 9mm model called the Pro Custom 18.9. This full-size 1911 sports a generous capacity of 18+1 rounds of 9mm and apart from the magazine, is fairly straightforward.
It also comes with adjustable fiber-optic sights, VZ G10 grips, an Ion Bond finish and an ambidextrous safety. One final detail is the integrated magwell, making this a solid competition pistol out of the box.
The Pro Custom 18.9 has a slightly higher MSRP at $1,300.
.45 ACP fans aren’t without offerings as well, with Para’s new Executive Agent and Black Ops Recon. Both pistols are for everyday carry, although the compact Executive Agent is tailored for the concealed-carry market.
The Executive Agent has a very short 3-inch barrel, but a standard grip with a capacity of 7+1. The frame is hard-anodized aluminum while the slide and barrel are stainless steel, both with the Ion Bond finish.
It comes with night sights, VZ grips and has the highest MSRP at $1,400. Real-world prices will be around $1,200, though, which is competitive with similar alloy-framed concealed-carry 1911s. The Executive Agent weighs just 24 ounces unloaded.
The Black Ops Recon expands on their Black Ops series with a slightly more compact double-stack .45. This pistol is similar to the others save for its 4.25-inch barrel. Like the Executive Agent, it is equipped with night sights.
All of these handguns are made in the USA by Para and feature skeletonized hammers and triggers.
2011 may have been the Year of the 1911, but it seems we’re in a solid 1911 renaissance; Para’s additions are testament to that; and these are just a taste of Para’s in 2013. However, if you’re looking for something a little more exotic, not to mention a little less expensive, you have to check out what Armscor has been up to, too.