TFB Review: CZ SP-01 Tactical – A Modernized Legend


    The CZ SP-01 Tactical from CZ is one of the hottest selling models for CZ currently. It is based on the classic CZ 75 and then modernized for the 21st century The gun was launched in 2004 to accommodate the increasing number of weapon attachments on the market. Fast forward 15 years and the gun is still a serious contender in the DA/SA market.

    CZ has grown in popularity over the last ten years and is a favorite between new and experienced shooters. The CZ SP-01 series is based off the classic CZ 75, but CZ decided to add a Picatinny rail to the legend and bring it into the modern age. Right out of the box my SP-01T was extremely smooth. The double action was crisp and not overly heavy, and the single action was lighter than I expected a DA/SA gun to be coming from the factory. It was extremely accurate and I began to really see its greatness the more I shot it.


    The SP-01 Tactical weighs 40.5 ounces which is heavy for today’s standards, but the weight adds to the controllability of the gun. The SP-01 Tactical has a 4.6 inch cold hammer forged barrel and 17-19 round magazines as standard capacity. The double single action along with steel construction and higher round capacity mixes old and new school methods to create a unique firearm. The handgun is unconventional, to say the least, but it’s one of the flattest shooting handguns I have ever tested.

    When reading more about the process to make these guns, CZ actually puts the SP-01s into a custom machine. The custom device dry fires Every SP-01 tactical 500 times before shipping it out. This helps make the gun feel remarkably smooth right out of the box. These are the small details I wish more companies did as a factory standard feature.

    Range Day

    The first range trip I took the gun on I shot roughly 400 rounds. I wasn’t sure what to expect from the gun and I was not disappointed. I went with a group of friends and some of them are fairly new to firearms. I decided to let them shoot the CZ and wanted to hear what they had to say. They mostly had standard Gen 4 or Gen 5 Glock 19s and were shooting 5-6 inch groups at 10 yards with their Glocks. The most interesting thing that occurred when they shot The SP-01 T was the group size of their shots were cut in half. I asked them what their initial thoughts were and why the group shots were better.

    The short response was it was a heavier gun and flat shooting. As a result,  it was easier to put rounds on target faster with better accuracy. I will also shoot tighter groups with this SP-01T than I do with most guns. I primary shoot and carry Sig P-series metal framed guns. My P226 definitely has a higher bore axis than the CZ. I felt like the CZ SP-01T has a much softer recoil impulse than most other handguns on the market. The SP-01 Tactical was a pleasant experience at the range, and I can see this becoming a carry gun for me in the near future.

    Second Range Day

    I decided to take it out again a couple weeks ago and shoot it with a Surefire X300 U-A. I ordered an RTI mount Holster from ANR Design and decided to do some drills with the new set up. I was surprised initially because I didn’t need to try and control the recoil. I typically try to mitigate recoil when shooting handguns, but the SP-01 T feels different. There was virtually no muzzle flip and it was pretty impressive. I will be honest and say there are a few things about the gun. I’m not a huge fan of the rubber grips that come standard on the handgun. I think they grab clothing a bit too easily and don’t fit my hand as well. Another thing I don’t think is necessarily bad but different is having to get used to the inverted slide rails and the methods of manipulation.


    Typically on a handgun, the slide rides on top or on the outside of the frame. On the SP-01T and other CZ variants the slide rides inside the frame which is opposite of other designs. This is how the gun shoots so flat, but a downside of this is there’s less area to grab the slide to manipulate the action. In the grand scheme of things it’s really not a big issue, but shows I have something to train. The rear serrations are aggressive, so it’s easy to get a good grip on the slide. There are also front serrations on the gun that make racking the slide very easy.

    Overall Impression

    Overall, I think SP-01T is a fantastic option as a full-size duty/competition gun in today’s market. So if you’re looking for a solid DA/SA gun that’s not going to break the bank, I think the SP-01T is a great option. I plan to keep shooting it and I will give you guys updates over the next few months. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below.

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    I’m an avid shooter and love educating whether it’s at my job or in the shooting community. I’m an average joe that really loves talking with other people about firearms and other passions.
    I’m active on Instagram on @fridgeoperator.