A Truly Shootable Tactical Pistol: Shadow Systems Shows Off Its New Take

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Shadow Systems’ new MR920 polymer frame, 9mm pistol
Shadow Systems’ new MR920 polymer frame, 9mm pistol that features heavy texturing and custom ergonomics to improve on the venerable Glock-style design shown at SHOT Show 2020’s range day. (Military.com photo/Matthew Cox)

LAS VEGAS -- Shadow Systems just released the latest version of its highly customized, polymer-framed pistol that's designed for combat shooters.

The new MR920 line -- demonstrated at SHOT Show 2020's recent range day -- builds on Shadow Systems' original MR918 multi-role 9mm pistol design unveiled last year at SHOT.

"The MR920 is kind of a culmination of everything we have learned about the best polymer-frame pistol characteristics that you can possibly build into one gun," Trevor Roe, CEO and owner of Shadow Systems, told Military.com.

"Our goal is to design the most controllable polymer frame pistol with the lowest recoil and the fastest shot-to-shot recovery out there."

Shadow Systems' MR920 and original MR918 lines feature combat and elite models that feature heavy texturing and custom ergonomics to improve on the venerable Glock-style design.

"It's based on the Glock design -- the internal operating system -- but after that, it's 100% Shadow Systems," said Roe, who served as an Army infantry officer from 2004 to 2011, and has been a competitive shooter since he was 14.

Related: SHOT Show 2020 Coverage

The MR920 features a patent-pending optic cut in the slide that will fit several different types of commercial red-dot optics. Shadow Systems relocated the internal components, so users can mount optics directly into the slide with deep mounting screws, Roe said.

"They are the longest screws that we know of ... so now we have a direct connect for a really low mount," he said.

The MR920 features a large, textured ledge for the non-firing hand thumb "so when you are on the gun, that thumb can really dig into that location ... and help with recoil control," Roe said.

The newer model also has a larger beavertail grip, which is swept slightly upward.

"The design features that we incorporate are motivated by the desire to be ready for combat, when things are imperfect, when you are scared, when it's dark," Roe said. "So that little upswept feature helps get your hand on the gun, or if you have gloves on, keeps you from hooking your glove over the back of the beaver tail."

The MR920 also features an increased guard fence around the slide lock button to prevent accidental engagement during firing. Shadow Systems has also added a higher-traction magazine release for faster magazine changes.

Like the original MR918, the newer design features a backstrap system to suit a variety of grip angles, Roe said.

"We don't think that small, medium and large is really the right question; we think grip angle and natural point is the right question," he said. "The backstraps are designed to change the grip angle, so if you are a 1911 guy, you can select the max one that makes the muzzle point a little lower. If you are a Glock guy, it points a little higher, and we have one in between."

The MR920 models range in price from $839 to $1,039 and are set to be available in early February.

-- Matthew Cox can be reached at matthew.cox@military.com.

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