TFB Review: The Slick-Sided CZ P10 M Micro Compact Pistol

    The CZ P10 M pistol was released in Europe in 2019, then in the US in 2020. The US market was polarized and seems to be one of those concepts that people either love or hate. What’s so controversial about the CZ P10 M, you ask? It really comes down to the omission of one part, the manual slide release, not to be confused with a slide stop in this case, as it still has one that locks the slide to the rear after the last round is fired. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of this concept, as well as how the CZ P10 M actually feels, conceals, and shoots.

    CZ Coverage @ TFB:

    CZ P10 M pistol review

    CZ P10 M REVIEW- INITIAL IMPRESSIONS & SPECS

    I was pretty curious to test out the CZ P10 M, primarily because of the controversy surrounding the lack of one feature, the slide release. I’ve been shooting pistols for decades, and I found it hard to believe that one little feature can make this pistol sink or swim in people’s minds. I was pretty sure I could overcome a less traditional manual of arms, more on that in a bit.

    CZ P10 review

    Picking the CZ P10 M up out of the case, it fit my hand comfortably and seemed to be a manageable size for shooting the 9x19mm caliber and for concealment. The P10 M feels great in the hand, and while it retains the same textured theme as its big brother, the P10 F, it’s a little more subdued and less aggressive on my hand and inside the waistband. The CZ P10 line has been a popular option on the striker-fired market, and I was glad to see that CZ didn’t go overboard when scaling the M model down when it came to the slide height over the shooting hand. When handling micro-compact and subcompact pistols, I always check that I won’t get bit by the slide as it reciprocates, and the P10 M shouldn’t have any problem with this unless the shooter has extra-large hands. I have medium-sized hands, so the clearance left enough room that I believe shooters with large hands should remain un-bitten.

    Product Name                 CZ P-10 M
    SKU                                  95199
    MSRP                               $505.00
    Chambering                    9mm Luger
    Magazine Capacity         7+1
    Frame                              Fiber-reinforced polymer
    Trigger Mech                  Striker
    Sights                             Three Dot
    Barrel Length                 3.19″
    Width                              1 in
    Weight                            20.1 oz
    Overall Length               6.31 in
    Safety                             Trigger Safety
    CZ P10 M review

    The follower pushes up on the internal slide stop after the last round has been fired.

    The method for field stripping the P10 M is pretty intuitive, but triple check that the magazine is out and that the chamber is empty since the trigger needs to be pulled to remove the slide. You can use the edge of the magazine to unseat the takedown pin from the right side of the pistol. The takedown pin is kind of tight, so I used my pocket knife to help it out enough to grab it with my fingers. Once the slide is off, you can remove the recoil spring and rod, then the barrel.
    CZ P10 M pistol review
    CZ P10 M pistol review
    CZ P10 M pistol review
    CZ P10 M review

    Reversible magazine release.

    CONCEALABILITY

    The CZ P10 M was built for concealment and is comparable in size to a SIG P365 or a Glock 43. I found that it was a bit large for pocket carry, with the exception of my running shorts that I wrote about HERE and HERE on TFB’s Concealed Carry Corner. I took the P10 M on a few runs and it didn’t hinder my stride or weigh my shorts down. Since there wasn’t any slide release, I decided to take full advantage of the slick-sided pistol, so I made a minimalist/trigger guard holster out of Kydex. I wore the P10 M at my 4 o’clock position which is my preferred spot. I’ve carried my Glock 22/27 with a minimalist holster as well, which is usually fine, but sometimes the sights and slide stop irritate my skin, but the P10 M perfectly fit this method of carrying and was naturally well concealed without printing.

    I was worried a bit about how the slide serrations would interact with my love handles, but I didn’t notice them at all. To be honest, carrying the P10 M with only a trigger guard holster lashed to my belt was so comfortable, I’d probably forget it was there if I hadn’t already been so used to carrying a firearm every day for years.

    CZ P10 M pistol review

    CZ P10 M pistol review

    Another nice feature of the CZ P10 M is the three-dot, photoluminescent sights. One quick charge from an LED flashlight lasts several hours, so carrying with the minimalist holster, I was able to do a quick recharge of the sights with only minimal exposure of the gun. The photoluminescence CZ uses on their pistol sights (also seen on the SP-01 Phantom I reviewed) seems to be an excellent middle ground between night sights and the standard, non-illuminated black or three-dot sight system.

    CZ P10 M pistol review

    This is a 6-second exposure of the P10 M’s glow in the dark sights after 3 hours from just a 10-second charge. This exposure most closely resembles what my eyes were able to see, which is plenty for a good sight picture if you’re trying to stay hidden, yet ready.

    TRIGGER TIME

    The sights are quick to acquire and the recoil is managed easily. As with the CZ P10 F Competition Ready model I reviewed, the magazine ejects quite positively, no ripping the magazine out is required on the P10 M. The magazine release is also reversible with the use of a Torx wrench.

    CZ P10 M pistol review

    This photo shows just how forceful the magazine ejects, even on a horizontal surface.

    One aspect of the internal slide stop is that it can be actuated with a finger, but it’s a two-handed affair to hold the frame in one hand and pull the slide back with the other. Then, with the hand holding the slide, reach a finger into the ejection port and pull up on the slide stop on the left side of the magazine well. I could see this method coming into play more in training if an instructor was to require the slide locked open before live fire and the user’s magazines are already loaded.

    CZ P10 M pistol review

    Actuating the internal slide stop manually.

    CZ P10 M pistol review

    The P10 M’s trigger isn’t great, but it’s not terrible either. There’s a bit of take up, then a definitive stop on the sear, but to trip the sear, there’s roughly a quarter-inch pull which feels spongy. It didn’t take long to get familiar with it, and it seems to me that it falls somewhere in the middle between horrible triggers and excellent triggers. For what the P10 M is built for, I’m not going to complain about the trigger, because in a life and death situation, there’s not much time to be a trigger snob, and I was able to make hits at 30 yards with the P10 M with ease.

    CZ P10 M pistol review

    CZ P10 M pistol review

    The CZ P10 M chugged through everything I fed it, from the lowly steel-cased FMJ, up to brass cases, and most importantly, defensive ammo. I ran it through Hornady’s American Handgunner and Critical Defense loads, as well as Sierra’s JHP loads which I’ve never tried before. The P10 M was reliable throughout all of my testings.

    CZ P10 M pistol review

    FINAL THOUGHTS

    The CZ P10 M pistol may go a bit against the grain compared to almost any other modern pistol regarding the lack of a manual slide release-slide stop lever, but it does so with a purpose, as I believe I showcased by using only a trigger guard holster. Wearing the P10 M against my skin was comfortable while walking, standing, sitting and driving for hours. For experienced shooters, it may take some practice to get used to manipulating the internal slide stop, but for anyone who buys this as their first pistol, I imagine they’ll pick it up easily.

    Since the CZ P10 M was made for concealed carry, I made sure to have my wife work the slide. She was able to do it, but working against the double recoil springs made it tough, so anyone who has hand or arm strength issues may want to try this out before purchasing.

    CZ had a good attitude about this pistol and they realize it may not trip everyone’s trigger, but it’s available for anyone if they want the thinnest possible 9mm carry piece. You can view CZ’s dedicated webpage on the P10 M HERE, or view their whole lineup of products at CZ-USA.com. The P10 M has an MSRP of $505.

    What do you think about the CZ P10 M? If you’ve already grabbed one, how has your experience been?



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    Doug E

    Doug has been a firearms enthusiast since age 16 after getting to shoot with a friend. Since then he’s taken many others out to the range for their first time. He is a husband, father, grandfather, police officer, outdoorsman, artist and a student of history. Doug has been a TFB reader from the start and is happy to be a contributor of content. Doug can be reached at battleshipgrey61 AT gmail.com, or battleshipgrey61 on Instagram.


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