Our Ballistic Best Reader’s Choice Awards marches forward, and today we’re looking at the “Best 1911” category.

The 1911 handgun has an iconic status in the firearms community. It’s come a long way since the days of John Browning. Some keyboard commandos argue the 1911 is outdated and made for “Boomers,” but we’d argue otherwise. Thanks to some clever thinking and technological advancements, the 1911 is doing just fine; so take your finger off the keyboard and maybe consider picking one up.

And so we dive into the final voting, as chosen by you. The nominees in our Reader’s Choice voting poll for the “Best 1911s” category were as follows:

Here’s a quick look at the other Reader’s Choice categories with the winners we’ve selected so far:

The “Best 1911” category saw 7,218 votes in total. And with 1,553 votes (21.52 percent), the winner of the Reader’s Choice Award goes to the Wilson Combat EDX X9L.

Wilson Combat EDC X9L

The following was written by contributor Mike Detty as a part of the 2019 Ballistic’s Best issue. Want to find out the winners our staff chose? Grab digital and/or physical copies of “Ballistic’s Best 2019” at

Wilson Combat rocked the 1911 community when it introduced the innovative EDC X9. This aluminum-framed 9mm boasted a 15+1 capacity as well as 1911 internals and controls. The EDC X9 was essentially everything that Bill Wilson dreamed a high-capacity 9mm carry gun could be, and then some.

New for 2019 is the EDC X9L, a long-slide version of the original X9. The new gun features a 5-inch barrel for shooters who want a longer sight radius for competition, for example. Our test gun came with an optional aluminum magazine well and two 18-round magazines.

Wilson Combat coated the stainless steel slide and 7075-T6 aluminum frame with its black Armor-Tuff for a non-reflective matte finish. Wilson Combat uses its X-TAC treatment for the cocking serrations as well as the front- and backstraps. The pistol was also designed with a tang to prevent hammer bite, but with no grip safety. Wilson also includes its Bullet Proof hammer, thumb safety and magazine release.

The slide is a tri-top design with distinctive ball cuts and, of course, a lowered and flared ejection port. Our test sample came with a fully supported, stainless steel, match-grade barrel with a reverse crown to protect the rifling if the gun is dropped on its muzzle.

Our Testing

Wilson Combat guarantees the EDC X9L will shoot groups under 1 inch at 25 yards. After examining the gun, I had no doubts that it would. In fact, I have never shot any Wilson Combat handgun that wasn’t dead-nuts accurate. The EDC X9L is no exception. In fact, our test gun actually surpassed the accuracy guarantee with a three-group average of just 0.88 inches. Using the same 9mm loads from Black Hills, Federal and Hornady, my best groups were 0.81, 0.91 and 0.93 inches, respectively. The trigger averaged 3.9 pounds, but it was so crisp it felt lighter. With its light take-up, zero overtravel and firm reset, this trigger is what all 1911 triggers should be!

Prices for the Wilson Combat EDC X9L start at $2,995, and customers have a number of options they can add to the gun. Those who prefer the 1911 operating and control system but feel the need for more capacity will find the EDC X9L to their liking. For more information, please visit

Wilson Combat EDC X9L Specs

  • Caliber: 9mm
  • Barrel Length5 inches
  • Overall Length: 8.7 inches
  • Weight32.4 ounces (empty)
  • Grips: G10 Starburst
  • SightsFiber-optic front, Battlesight rear
  • Action: SA
  • Finish: Armor-Tuff
  • Capacity: 18+1
  • MSRP$2,995 (starting)

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