Unboxing the ZVS P20 and P21 Pistols

    My first contact with ZVS was with their Shotgun ammunition, as the winner of the first IPSC World Championship in Hungary 2012 was sponsored by them. I used another brand and let’s say there was room for some improvement between how my Molot Vepr shotgun and my ammunition behaved together, so I looked in envy for other solutions.

    Fast forward some five years, I recently had the opportunity to see the unboxing of two ZVS Pistols, the P20 and the P21.

    ZVS are based in Slovakia. 

    I realized that The Firearm Blog had never previously written anything about ZVS, but that is about to change with this article.

    Unfortunately we did not have the possibility to test these pistols at a shooting range, but you take what you got. This “review” is in no way conclusive, see it as an introduction to a brand and what they offer in terms of handguns.

    I tried both the Single and Double Action on both the P20 and P21. The single action is quite nice, the double action is quite hard. These are “production guns” after all, so all natural and as to be expected by this kind of pistol.

    The ZVS P21 feels more like a real pistol in size, and would be my choice for a competition pistol between the two. The ZVS P20 is the more compact design. You can check the top picture to see the difference in size between the two.

    P20 Top View

    Both grips feel a bit slippery and I understand that ZVS are working one some sort of improved grip or customized grip tape.

    From ZVS’s description.

    The P20 pistol is a semi-automatic handgun with the locked breech system.

    Characteristic features are:

    • universal shape and controls for both hands
    • frame construction adjusted for different hand sizes
    • double function trigger mechanism SA/DA
    • high accuracy of fire
    • long service life
    • high reliability, even in difficult climatic conditions and with various types of cartridges

    Functions of trigger mechanism

    SA (Single Action)

    It is a single action function when the hammer is cocked ( in rear position ). After pulling the trigger the hammer is released and the pistol will fire. The trigger travel is short, and pull weight is low.

    DA(Double Action)

    The trigger mechanism operates in a double action mode when in a first phase of pulling the trigger is the hammer cocked, then released and the pistol will fire. The trigger travel is longer, and trigger pull weight is higher at SA mode.


    And over to the ZVS P21

    The ZVS P21 has the same description, but the slide and the barrel is longer.

    Technical data

    Caliber 9x19mm
    Overal length [mm] 210
    Overal height [mm] 132
    Grip width [mm] 38
    Weight with empty magazine [g] 831
    Barrel length [mm] 121
    Sights length [mm] 158
    Magazine capacity 16
    Vývrt drážkovaný
    Stúpanie vývrtu (vpravo) [mm] 250
    Trigger resistance – SA [N] 14,7 – 24,5
    Trigger resistance – DA [N] max. 58



    The ZVS P21.

    ZVS P21, Made in Slovakia. Note the ambidextrous design.


    For a deeper look into the company and the ZVS P20 and P21 I found these YouTube videos.


    Both the ZVS P20 and P21 are approved on the IPSC Production Handgun list, at the bottom.

    I don’t know the exact prices, but expect it to be around 600-700 Euro.

    Eric B

    Ex-Arctic Ranger. Competitive practical shooter and hunter with a European focus. Always ready to increase my collection of modern semi-automatics, optics, thermals and suppressors. TCCC Certified. Occasionaly seen in a 6×6 Bug Out Vehicle, always with a big smile.