By: Friedrich Seiltgen

Copyright © 2023


In 1777 George Washington ordered the creation of Springfield Armory to store ammunition and gun carriages for the American Revolutionary War.

In 1794 Springfield Armory began manufacturing muskets to defend our young, free Republic. The Armory functioned as a firearms supplier for every major American conflict until 1968.

In 1968, citing budgetary concerns, the U.S. government closed Springfield Armory. Now the walls of Springfield Armory would house historians, paying homage to the past rather than those with an eye to the future.

In 1974, a passionate family named Reese rescued not only the name “Springfield Armory®” but the philosophy that drove it for centuries.

With reverence for the legacy of The Armory, the Reese family resurrected the most historically significant designs produced by The Armory – M1 Garand, 1911-A1, and the M14.

In 2001, as Springfield Armory entered a new millennium, introducing the XD® pistol changed the world of handguns forever. The XD followed in the footsteps of so many legendary Armory designs before it, quickly gaining a reputation as a quality, reliable firearm that is easy to use.

In 2007, Springfield Armory raised shooters’ expectations of what a polymer pistol should be by introducing the XD-M® series of pistols. The XD-M carried on the Springfield Armory tradition of raising the bar.

In 2017, shortly following the launch of the SAINT in 2016, Springfield Armory wasted no time releasing a premium line called the SAINT Edge. The Edge features a billet receiver paired with premier components for quick handling and improved accuracy and is comparable to custom builds costing much more.

In 2019, featuring a patented magazine with a best-in-class capacity of 11+1 and 13+1 with included extended magazine, the Hellcat is explicitly designed for everyday carry with Adaptive Grip Texture™ and high visibility sights. Also available in an optics-ready OSP™ configuration, the Hellcat gives you The Capacity to Defend.


The polymer alternative grip modules allow shooters to find a configuration that fits them best. Available in small, medium, and large, each grip module accepts the Central Operating Group.

The Echelon ships with three backstraps – each with an integrated armorer’s tool. The backstraps are universal and can be installed in small, medium, and large grip modules.

The Echelon has an ambidextrous slide stop and magazine release, and common indexing points are textured for an extra-firm grip.

At the heart of the Echelon lies the all-new Central Operating Group (COG). Employing cutting-edge manufacturing techniques, the COG is self-contained and serialized, allowing it to move quickly between grip modules in seconds. Precision built from stainless steel, the chassis provides a robust housing for its patent-pending operating system.


Thoroughly tested for ease of manipulation, the Echelon’s slide features four distinct engagement surfaces. A trench cut forward of the action gives shooters a natural index location for press checks and charging the firearm. The back of the slide is flared for positive purchase while deep forward and rear serrations are carried through the corners for a firm grip from any angle.

The Echelon’s patent-pending optic mounting system is concealed beneath the slide cover plate. The Variable Interface System (VIS) allows users to mount over 30 optics models directly to the slide without using adapter plates. Configure the self-locking pins for the footprint of your desired optic to achieve a low, direct mount for an improved sight picture..

The hammer-forged Echelon barrel is manufactured for elite performance. Long regarded as the gold standard in barrel making, the hammer forging produces a stronger barrel with a smoother surface for ultimate accuracy and service life. Melonite® coated for corrosion and wear resistance, choose between a 4.5” standard or a 5.28” threaded barrel with ½ x 28 thread pitch.


Type: Striker-Fired, Semi-Automatic

Caliber: 9mm

Magazine Capacity: 10/17/20 Rounds

Sights: Tritium / Luminescent Front, Tactical Rack U-Dot™ Rear

Barrel Length: 4.5 Inches

Overall Length: 8 Inches

Width: 1.2 Inches

Weight: 23.9 Ounces

MSRP: $679 – $739



The Echelon comes in three configurations:

The base model pistol comes with Springfield’s Tritium front sight and “Tactical Rack” U-notch rear. The second model is equipped with three-dot Tritium sights, and the third model is offered with a threaded 5.28″ barrel and three-dot Tritium sights. All versions ship with two magazines.

Get to your Springfield dealer and see if the Echelon is your next pistol.

That’s all for now, folks! Please keep sending in your questions, tips, and article ideas. And as always – “Let’s Be Careful Out There.”

Friedrich Seiltgen is a retired Master Police Officer with 20 years of service with the Orlando Police Department. He conducts training in Lone Wolf Terrorism Counterstrategies, Firearms, and Active Shooter Response. His writing has appeared in RECOIL, Soldier of Fortune, The Counter Terrorist Magazine, Off Grid, American Thinker, Homeland Security Today, and The Journal of Counterterrorism & Homeland Security International.

Contact him at [email protected].