X-Five Origins Part 1

X-Five Origins Part 1 Part 2 Part 3

Sig Sauer builds a P226 ASP competition model

By Dennis Adler

Sig Sauer rolls out another new 2018 model with the ASP X-Five, a new 4.5mm pellet-firing blowback action model. This is not a Sig Sauer licensed air pistol (like the excellent blowback action P226 X-Five BB models) but a Sig Sauer product manufactured for and sold by Sig Sauer. The new airguns will be available in both black and silver finishes.

Sig Sauer has been working hard the last two years to establish itself in the airgun marketplace and over the past year has begun to introduce a series of new models that may well be the game changers in blowback action semiautomatic CO2 air pistols. In the past, Sig Sauer has lent (licensed) its name to other CO2 pistols like the exceptional P226 X-Five and recent X-Five Silver blowback action CO2 BB models, but Sig is moving swiftly toward its own proprietary line of CO2 pistols that, in just the past year have already upped the game with the innovative rotary belt-fed pellet firing P320 ASP. Now, using their latest 20-shot 4.5mm rotary pellet magazine, Sig is adding a competition-inspired ASP X-Five model to their CO2 lineup. The ASP (Advanced Sport Pellet ) series X-Five follows on the heels of the new WE THE PEOPLE Model 1911 blowback action ASP BB pistol, and precedes the much anticipated military version of the Sig Sauer P320 (M17 ASP) with a self-contained CO2 pellet magazine concept.

Up until now, the only versions of the centerfire X Series Sig Sauer models have been the Sig Sauer-licensed blowback action CO2 smoothbore BB models offered in black finish with a fixed sight, X-Five Open and new X-Five Silver with adjustable rear sights.

X-Five Origins

Sig’s centerfire P226 X-Five was different from the military (Navy SEAL) law enforcement and civilian P226 models having been designed from the start as a target and competition pistol. Using all stainless steel construction, a stainless magwell and low profile adjustable rear sights, the X-Five was available in blue, black Nitron, and two tone stainless finishes. Introduced in 2005, the X-Five, X-Five Competition and X Series, which included the P226 X Match, P226 X Open and P226 X Super Match, were phased-out four years ago. Interestingly, the Sig Sauer-licensed P226 X-Five CO2 model was introduced in 2012 (toward the end of centerfire model production) and along with the accessorized X-Five Open and latest X-Five Silver CO2 models continue the X-Five design, but again these are not Sig Sauer brand pistols; they just bear the Sig Sauer name and design features.

The ASP X-Five (bottom) is based on the X-Five competition model. In 2014 Sig discontinued the X-Series, which was introduced in 2005. The new blowback action, pellet-firing Sig model is very close in appearance and handling to the 9mm pistol.

The new ASP X-Five is Sig Sauer’s first competition-based, pellet-firing blowback action model, and it is different than the Sig Sauer-licensed models not only in caliber (pellet vs. BB, though the new Sig rotary magazines will also load BBs), but in being more detailed in its overall design in relation to the actual Sig Sauer X-Series centerfire pistols.

The ASP X-Five is Sig Sauer’s first hybrid design combining features that were first developed in 2016 for the P226 ASP…

…which included a hinged backstrap that opens to insert the CO2 into the grip frame channel. The CO2 is automatically seated and pierced when the backstrap is pressed closed, making this one of the fastest air pistols to load. This design is used for the new ASP X-Five model.

While not using the newly developed self-contained CO2 pellet magazine technology, the new ASP X-Five still breaks ground by using the Sig Sauer patented cam-operated CO2 quick loading and piercing system from the P226 ASP combined with the 20-round rotary pellet magazine from the P320 ASP, thus making the ASP X-Five Sig Sauer’s first hybrid CO2 model. The rifled steel barrels used in the Sig Sauer ASP pellet pistols also make the new X-Five model suitable for shooting at the 10 meter discipline, rather than being limited to 21 feet like the smoothbore BB models.

The next step in Sig Sauer’s design improvements came with the P320 in 2017, which introduced Sig Sauer’s high capacity rotary pellet magazine. This allows the pistols to hold a total of 20 rounds.

The rotary pellet magazine opens to allow quick loading of lead or alloy pellets into individual chambers that rotate around the breech. This design is also used in the ASP X-Five.

The new 2018 ASP X-Five uses the faster to load hinged backstrap and automatic CO2 seating and piercing system to make reloading CO2 almost as quick and inserting a new 20-round rotary pellet magazine.

The ASP X-Five promises to be an exciting pistol to shoot and we will begin to explore its features and handling in Thursday’s Part 2.

8 thoughts on “X-Five Origins Part 1

  1. I’ve been looking forward to this one and the two tone version in particular. I’m hoping these new Sig Sauer X-Fives perform better than their P226 pistols.


  2. Seems like Sig has made a firm commitment to the airgun market. Their products seem to be evolving quickly . The downside on the hicap blowback mechanism is shot count . The will be the totally self contained co2/ pellet mag. My old Crosman600 hits hard and only gets around 30 shots. With the advent of the self contained co2 mag this is less of a factor. For real world training with hard hitting pelketsxon reactive targets , flexibility of training locales, it will give the 2: rimfire a run for the money. Pistol cost is a factor as well


    • I think affordability and familiarity with the centerfire model will be the biggest appeal to the P320 (M17) when it comes out later this year. As for the new X-Five I think this is a stepping stone but a solid one for serious target shooting. If the gun performs as well as expected the separate CO2 and rotary magazine will not be a big issue. It will all be about velocity and accuracy.



  3. Would like to see more airgun manufacturers get this bold and aggressive , as well as responding to customer input. The big disappointment this year is the dearth of new revolvers both single and double action. Looking at the newColt Cobra 38 , itcould be replicated as an airgun. S&W 1917, where art thou?S&W 29? Dirty Harry still waiting . Colt 4 3/4 inch , and true Sheriff model? Crickets chirping.


  4. Excellent, I was waiting for this pistol to have a write up. I have been very pleased with my P320, I don’t experience the jams a lot of people have with it and mine shoots quite satisfactorily, awesome plinker. Not sure if I will add this to my collection but I am keen on the comparison. By the way, stock P320 comes with a 30 round mag the additional ones are only 20 rounds, I’m sure it’s just a typo.


    • Right, the P320 ASP still comes with the 30-round mag, however, the new X-Five ASP comes with the 20-round capacity magazine, same as the extra P320 magazines. I believe the P320 models will switch over to the 20-round mag when new production and new packaging is printed up. Sig wants the capacity to be closer to the centerfire model for training purposes. Personally, I like not having to reload as often when I am target shooting. We will have to do a P320 ASP vs. X-Five ASP comparison.


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