First Look: Springfield Armory Echelon 9mm Pistols

It has all the features you'd expect, plus a completely new way to mount an optic.

posted on July 12, 2023
Springfield Armory Echelon

Springfield Armory has released the Echelon 9mm, a new take on the modern, striker-fired duty pistol. This modular and highly adaptable handgun is engineered for superior ergonomics and built to perform when the going gets tough.

The heart of the Echelon is the new patent-pending Central Operating Group (COG), a self-contained and serialized stainless-steel chassis. The result is a system that is easily moved between available grip modules in seconds. The COG can be installed in any Echelon grip module, allowing shooters to create a firearm that fits perfectly in their hand. The pistol comes standard with the medium grip module and three interchangeable backstraps, while small and large grip modules can be purchased separately. The three backstraps are designed to fit all three grip module sizes. In addition, all the controls of the pistol are fully ambidextrous.

The Echelon’s trigger is entirely contained within the chassis, with critical components that are machined from tool steel and highly polished for a clean take up, defined wall, crisp break and short, positive reset. In addition to this, the Echelon is designed and tested to exceed SAAMI drop test parameters and features a unique secondary sear design in the COG for an additional layer of safety.

On top of the Echelon’s slide is the innovative Variable Interface System (VIS), which uses patent-pending self-locking pins to create an extremely versatile optic-mounting system. As the mounting screws are torqued to spec, the pins exert lateral pressure on the optic’s interior mounting surface to eliminate left/right movement. This ensures you maintain consistent and reliable point of aim/point of impact. In addition, the pins can be positioned to fit the footprints of a wide range of popular optics, allowing you to directly mount your optic to the pistol’s slide.

The Echelon is offered with a choice of U-Dot tritium/luminescent or traditional three-dot tritium sights and has a hammer-forged 4.5-inch barrel, while a 5.28-inch hammer-forged, threaded-barrel model is also available.

The Echelon’s slide has four distinct engagement surfaces. There is a trench cut forward of the action that gives shooters a natural index location for press checks and charging the firearm. The back of the slide is flared for positive purchase, while deep forward and rear serrations are carried through the corners for a firm grip from any angle.

The Echelon employs a newly developed magazine for durability and reliable operation. The two magazines included feature a 17-round model in a flush-fit configuration, while an extended basepad allows for 20 rounds to be carried. A reduced-capacity 10-round model is also available.

“The Echelon was engineered from the ground up to be today’s most advanced striker-fired pistol,” said Steve Kramer, Springfield Armory’s Vice President of Marketing. “This new firearm—with its precision-manufactured COG chassis, revolutionary VIS optics-mounting system, advanced slide design and enhanced ergonomics—is the culmination of years of intensive product research and development to create the ultimate duty and defense handgun.”

MSRP for the Echelon 9mm varies from $679 to $739, depending on the model and features. More information on this new pistol line and other products from Springfield Armory is available at


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