Upper Echelon: Springfield 9mm Platform Issues New Colors


The next evolution of the Echelon is now upon us. The Springfield 9mm platform swells its ranks, adding two new color variants sure to appeal to semi-auto pistol fans. Shooters now get Echelon models in Desert FDE or OD Green.

Springfield Echelon 9mm Platform Adds Color Variants

Inside, the new options remain all Echelon. The pistol centers on the patent-pending Central Operating Group. It employs cutting-edge manufacturing techniques, according to Springfield. The self-contained, modular chassis serves as the serialized part.

The pistol’s Variable Interface System features patent-pending self-locking pins to deliver a versatile optics-mounting system. As mounting screws tighten to specified torque, the pines exert lateral pressure on the optic’s interior mounting surface to eliminate left/right movement. The system works with footprints from more than 30 popular optics.

Backing up the optics system, the Echelon features a set of U-Dot tritium/luminescent sights. A 4.5-inch barrel and Cerakote finishes to the billet-machined slide add greater appeal.

“The Echelon was engineered from the ground up to be today’s most advanced striker-fired pistol,” said Steve Kramer, Springfield Armory’s Vice President of Marketing. “With the addition of these two new color variants in Desert FDE or OD Green, shooters have even more options with this unparalleled pistol design.”

Echelon Color Variants

  • Desert FDE Echelon 4.5” 9mm w/ U-Dot; MSRP: $719
  • OD Green Echelon 4.5” 9mm w/ U-Dot; MSRP: $719

On July 12, 2023, Ballistic reported:

Springfield Armory Echelon in 9mm.

The new Springfield Armory 9mm, the Echelon, breaks free from the ideas and conventions we’ve come to expect in XD family of pistols. This new polymer, striker-fired 9mm employs a chassis system and several innovations that position it to excel for both duty and carry applications. It’s truly an ascent to an upper echelon of pistol making for Springfield Armory.

Echelon: The Modular Springfield Armory 9mm Pistol

“The Echelon was engineered from the ground up to be today’s most advanced striker-fired pistol,” said Steve Kramer, Vice President of Marketing, Springfield Armory. “This new firearm–with its precision-manufactured COG chassis, revolutionary VIS optics-mounting system, advanced slide design and enhanced ergonomics–is the culmination of years of intensive product research and development to create the ultimate duty and defense handgun.”

The heart of the new system builds around the company’s Central Operating Group (COG). It employs cutting-edge manufacturing techniques, according to Springfield Armory. The modular COG is self-contained and comprises the serialized stainless steel chassis. All Echelons build around this centerpiece. And as the line and aftermarket offerings build out, only imagination will ultimately limit the configuration able to be build around the COG.

But Springfield Armory also looked at shootability. The gun features three different backstraps for fit, in one of three different grip modules, to hone the pistol’s feel. All controls are fully ambidextrous as well. A trench cut on the slide, along with rear flares and additional serrations enhance manipulation. Meanwhile, a new adaptive grip texture locks up the shooter’s purchase to the gun.

The new Springfield Armory Echelon pistol in 9mm.

Optics-Ready VIS

Springfield Armory designed the Echelon from the ground up as an optics-ready platform. In doing so, they addressed the issue of mounting a reflex sight. An innovative new system, dubbed the Variable Interface System (VIS), eliminates the need for mounting plates. Instead, shooters simply direct mount one of multiple popular red dots sights right to the slide!

Finally, the Echelon’s trigger works within the COG to deliver a clean, defined break. The two-sear system delivers a safe system that won’t fire unless the trigger is depressed, according to Springfield Armory. Yet it still delivers a very crisp break with a short, positive reset.

First runs on the Echelon comprise a full-size pistol with a 4.5-inch barrel in four different configurations. Retails prices range from $679-$739. For more info, visit springrieldarmory.com.

Springfield Armory Echelon Variants

Model MSRP
4.5-inch 9mm with U-Dot $679
4.5-inch 9mm with U-Dot, 10-round $679
4.5-inch 9mm with Tritium Three-Dot $719
4.5-inch 9mm Threaded with Tritium Three-Dot $739
Spread from July-August 2023 issue of Tactical Life with the new Springfield 9mm.

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