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Heckler & Koch P2000 US Duty Pistol

Designed for the German police and adjustable to any hand size, HK's latest handgun is a great law enforcement tool.

January 01, 2005  |  by Dave Douglas


The P2000 is one of the few truly ambidextrous pistols available for law enforcement duty use. Most left-handed officers are usually forced into using a right-handed gun.

Lefties normally adapt well to guns designed for righties only because they have had to adapt to a right-handed world all of their lives. But using what is naturally their primary hand to manipulate gun controls is far superior, especially under stress.

Some manufacturers make their weapons a little bit lefty friendly. For example, they make the magazine release reversible and that’s a good start. But HK has a magazine release on both sides of the gun and a slide release as well.

Since the P2000 has no external safety to flip on or off, all of the controls are available to both lefties and righties. Another added benefit to a fully ambidextrous gun is ease of manipulation in non-primary hand-shooting drills.

Adjustable Grip

Perhaps the number one feature of the P2000 that makes it a one-gun-fits-all solution is the grip. The P2000 has an interchangeable back strap system. This makes the gun easy to configure for just about any hand size.

The P2000 comes with four back strap inserts. The largest rides up higher on the back strap and adds almost a quarter inch to the top of the grip. The smallest makes the back strap almost straight and removes about a half inch from the middle-sized insert’s grip heel. The center of all the inserts is textured with a non-slip surface for a secure grip.

Installation of the back strap options is easy and doesn’t require an armorer or gunsmith. A pin at the bottom of the grip that doubles as a lanyard attachment is drifted out with a punch, the grip insert is pulled down and then off. The new insert goes back on just as easily. Just be careful that the hammer strut and spring remain in place.

Smooth Operator

The P2000’s modified Browning-type action is similar to HK’s highly successful and reliable USP and USP Compact. It uses a recoil-reduction system that is also similar to the USP family of guns. The heart of the recoil-reduction system is a specially designed flat-wound recoil spring contained in the captive recoil spring assembly by an absorber bushing made of high-strength polymer. The result is that recoil on the P2000 is very manageable. Even the powerful .40 S&W cartridge has very little perceived recoil impulse.

HK’s new Law Enforcement Modified (LEM) trigger makes trigger manipulation on the P2000 smooth and positive. Trigger pull runs 7.5 pounds. It stacks slightly just prior to breaking, giving the operator notice that discharge is imminent, and sear reset is relatively short, allowing for quick followup shots. Best of all, trigger pull is exactly the same on all shots.

The P2000 is available in 9mm and .40 S&W calibers. The 9mm holds 13 in the magazine and one in the chamber. The .40 S&W carries one less.

For a sure grip, the P2000 has a molded base plate. An accessory rail is also molded into the polymer receiver that can handle just about any tactical illumination or laser-aiming device.

To sum up, the HK P2000 is an all-around excellent gun that can be used by just about anyone. If you have huge meat hook hands or little tiny ones you can use this gun. It doesn’t matter if you are left handed or right handed.

The Heckler and Koch P2000 is a gun designed for law enforcement and well worth a long, hard look if you are looking for a new duty pistol. It’s a realistic solution for uniformed assignments or as an easily concealable investigator’s gun.

Heckler & Koch
P2000 US Duty Pistol

Caliber: 9mm, .40 S&W
Capacity: 13 + 1, 12 + 1
Length: 7 inches
Width: 1.34 inches
Height: 5.04 inches
Sight Radius: 5.59 inches
Barrel Length: 3.62 inches
Weight: 1.37 pounds,1.39 pounds
Price: $710

Sgt. Dave Douglas is the rangemaster of the San Diego Police Department, a veteran law enforcement officer, and a Police contributing editor.

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