Most of the features of the SR9 with walkin’ around money to spare. (Photo credit: Ruger)
Ruger has just announced a new full-size 9mm, the 9E. Rooted in the design of the successful SR9, the full-size 9E is a simpler design and priced to move. It fills the gap left in Ruger’s catalog after they discontinued the P-series. If you’re a Ruger fan and looking for a backup or are a would-be gun owner on a budget, read on.
Like the SR9 the 9E is a striker-fired pistol with a trigger safety. It uses the same grip, with a railed dust cover, interchangeable flat and curved backstraps, an ambidextrous manual safety and an ambi mag release. The magazines are the same, 17+1, although it only ships with one magazine.
The bottom half of the 9E has a lot in common with the SR9 but the slide assembly is all different. While it’s similar in function, weight, and has the same length barrel, it has angular cuts and less machining than the SR9 to cut production costs and machine time.
The 9E weighs just a little under an ounce more than the SR9, likely because of the reduced machining to the slide.
Ruger 9E, top, and SR9, bottom. (Photo credit: Ruger)
The 9E has wider slide serrations and a different finishing treatment. The 9E has a flat matte black oxide finish as opposed to the semi-glossy black nitride finish of the SR9.
One feature that’s gone from the 9E is the tactile loaded chamber indicator, but the slide and barrel are ported to allow users to visually confirm if there’s a round in the chamber. Many people prefer this system as it lacks any moving parts and can’t really malfunction.
Lastly, the 9E comes with fixed, not adjustable sights. They’re a different pattern and not compatible with SR9 sights.
Dimensionally the two are practically identical so it should work in just about every SR9 holster. It is 7.5 inches long overall and 5.53 inches tall, .01 inches taller than the SR9. It’s the same width at 1.27 inches and has the same-length barrel, at 4.14 inches.
All together these changes knock a clean $100 off the price. The 9E has an MSRP of just $429. We fully expect real-world prices to be under $350 making this one of the most affordable wondernines on the market, and it’s American-made.
At this price the 9E is competitive not just with some of the more entry-level manufacturers on the market, they’re competitive with low-cost foreign imports while still receiving the backing and support of Ruger, which is one of the best in the industry when it comes to customer service.
If you’re looking to get a solid full-size pistol for self-defense, open-carry or just fun times at the range but have limited funds, keep an eye out for the 9E. It might be your next handgun.