Smith & Wesson Introduces New M&P Pro Series C.O.R.E. Pistols… Why?

Smith & Wesson introduced a new pro-series of M&P pistols yesterday called the C.O.R.E. and I just don’t get it.  I know that seems odd as I have writing about red dots on defensive pistols, I’m in the early process of having a similar Glock built and I have talked with folks like Michael Bane about their thoughts/experiences and impressions of where the technology is going.

I even like Smith & Wesson’s the execution!

The release says the gun have a new stippled backstrap that mimics what many shooters are doing… Good!

They have the performance center sear which gives the gun a defined reset, eliminating the ghost/surprise reset that I have complained about in the past and no magazine safety… Great!

They added taller sights and coordinated mounting plates so the sights and the dots co-witness… Awesome!

So what’s my issue?  Read the 1st part of the press release and try to catch it…

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (November 7, 2012) — Smith & Wesson Corp. today announced that
four new models have been added to the Company’s premier line of M&P® polymer pistols.
Based on the popular Pro Series line of competition ready firearms, the new M&P C.O.R.E
(Competition Optics Ready Equipment) models offer consumers a specialized platform for
adding accessory optics to their personal handguns. Engineered to accept six popular styles of
competition based optics, the M&P C.O.R.E models are easily adapted to meet any demand.

Did you see it?

C.O.R.E. stands for Competition Optics Ready Equipment. To me this is a fighting gun, not a competition gun.

With an RMR in place (I’m finding that is the only currently available likely to hold up) this gun is not legal in IDPA and it would be at a disadvantage to guns running frame mounted optics in USPSA Open.

To me… Using a slide mounted optic is a compromise of size vs utility.  It is not the best choice for a go fast race gun, nor is it the best choice for concealibility or ease of carry, but it is small enough to carry, it works with our natural tendencies and can offer the same sight picture as your rifle (if that is important to you).

By putting “Competition” in the name Smith & Wesson may be opening the door for challenges from police departments and lawyers that have issues with using competition gear on the streets.

Assuming the dot holds up, this looks like a phenomenal duty gun. And if they would offer it in the mid-sized 15rd version I have been screaming for, I would likely put my RMR’d Glock 19 plans on hold in favor of an off the shelf product.  I hope I am wrong and the Smith & Wesson marketing team is probably better informed than I, but I’m afraid that its marketing might cause it to be less of a success than it should be.

What do you think about this concept, its execution and my take? Post a comment below, Tweet me @BalloonGoesUp or message me on Facebook and let me know what you think!

If you are interested in this concept, make sure you follow the Ultimate Pistol Project for its feasibility… albeit with a Glock.


  1. says

    By putting “Competition” in the name Smith & Wesson may be opening the door for challenges from police departments and lawyers that have issues with using competition gear on the streets.

    I dunno, I think that’s a bit of a reach, there.

    I do think that IDPA is going to have to cave and have a lights’n’lasers division sooner or later, or risk irrelevance. How soon that will happen, though, is anybody’s guess, so Smith’s release seems premature.

    I still want one.

    • says

      It could be a reach… but the naming shows they missed the likely target market. As for IDPA, I am pressing hard for the class and I would definately shoot in it. As for wanting one… you’re damn straight!

  2. says

    1. Competition sounds safer than defense.
    2. They’re adding features in the factory that people are doing as soon as they buy an M&P which means S&W is losing money.
    3. It’s about money.

  3. Iknow50now says

    Lets ignore the fact that the CORE makes it stupid easy to mount an optic.

    I think the larger question is how does this pistol compare to a regular S&W Pro? What does the CORE it bring to the table that is not already available with the Pro?

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