A Summary of the Guntests Magazine Review
of the Hi-Point CF-380 Pistol

This is a summary of a Guntests Magazine comparison of the Hi-Point CF-380, the Walther PPK, and the Bersa Firestorm pistols. All three pistols shoot .380 ammo, and it is an interesting trio of firearms.

Guntests lists manufacturers' suggested retail prices for the three guns as:

GTM says that the U.S. made Hi-Point handguns are "always interesting." GTM wondered would "Hi-Point again get our highest marks, as has been common for that make over the years?"

GTM went on to say that Hi-Point firearms are consistant, and have always worked perfectly for GTM testers. GTM also says that, in their view, Hi-Point pistols are definitely unattractive. GTM thought the CF-380 looked "like a soldering gun." But they also admitted "beauty is as beauty does" and they DID like the side panels on the slide. They also admitted that "fit and finish were way more than adequate," and GTM considered the sights of the CF-380 to be excellent and "instantly visible." The sights on the pistol, as it came in the box, were "right on the money" and needed no adjustments.

GTM felt that there were two problems with the CF-380. First, they said that the trigger pull was too tough, and not consistent, varying between 8.5 and 11 pounds from shot to shot. Second, GTM complained that the grips were "very slippery," the they advised the Hi-Point factory to "mold in some checkering on the front and back straps and on the grip panels." (I believe it is quite common for Hi-Point handgun owners to slip on a Hogue grip, or a short length of bicycle inner tube.)

GTM shot the CF-380 with Independence 95 grain FMJ ammo, and also with Cor-Bon 90 grain JHP. "Groups at 15 yards were in the two to three inch realm, dead center for point of aim." It seems to me that the GTM testers didn't have very much trouble with the heavy trigger pull. That's pretty good marksmanship! They also showed that bullets fired from the CF-380 were generally moving 30 to 50 fps faster than from the other pistols they tested. For example, Cor-Bon 90 grain bullets exited the CF-380 at 995fps, and only made 945fps from the Walther PPK. The Bersa pistol occupied the middle ground. GTM reported that the CF-380 experienced zero failures to fire, eject or feed. "This was no surprise," they reported. "Hi-Points tend to do this with boring regularity, in our experience." However GTM felt that the heavy trigger pull prevented the CF-380 from doing well in fast-shooting exercises.

GTM also praised the CF-380 for being free of sharp edges, and having a "smooth front face" that permitted practicing clearance drills "without having to visit your doctor." GTM characterized the CF-380 as "an excellent and reliable bargain." They found no problems with the gun, except for the heavy trigger and the slick grip. Recoil was quite mild, but GTM thinks of the CF-380 as a man's gun, because of it's weight, the heavy trigger, and the large size of the grip. GTM concluded, "If you need a .380 and don't want to spend a lot of money, this might be the gun for you."

GTM grades guns on an ABCDF scale. The Hi-Point CF-380 was given a grade of C+. Personally, since they liked it so much, I think they graded inexplicably low. The Walther PPK was given a B+, and the Bersa Firestorm was graded A. The article was written, and the photographs were taken by Ray Ordorica. The article appeared in the February 2008 issue of Gun Tests magazine, Vol. XX, No. 2. Gun Tests is a great magazine. I have subscribed for several years, and I recommend a subscription to everyone.

This summary of the Gun Tests article is a service of www.mouseguns.com.