Springfield Armory 4" G.I. Champion parkerized 1911 pistol

The Springfield Armory GI Champion 4" barrel 1911 is a Commander size pistol, which weren't brought to market until the 1970's. Thus, it's not really a replica of the G.I. pistols, but it does make for a good carry gun that has a nostalgic feel.

It comes with a 4" parkerized bull barrel with a fully supported ramp. The frame and slide are both forged steel, and are parkerized as well. Parkerized finishes are extremely durable, much more so than anodized. The wood grips with "U.S." engraved into the wood make for an attractive finishing touch.

The trigger on the Champion G.I. is flat, with a pull weight of 5-7 pounds. The pistol utilizes a full length guide rod with dual recoil springs.

The sights are G.I., with a notched blade in the rear and a low rounded sight blade up front.

The grip safety is flat, as were those on the G.I. pistols. The hammer is a spur style, again just like the G.I. models.

If you're interested in a Commander size 1911 for carry, defense or other purposes, and would like a retro look, the G.I. Champion should be on your short list.


GI .45 4", Champion PW9142LP
Caliber: . .45 ACP
Capacity: 7+1
Barrel: 4" Fully supported barrel
Sights: Low-profile military
Sight Radius: 5.5"  
Size: 34 ozs., 7.5" overall length
Trigger Pull: 5 to 6 lbs.
Magazines: 2

Every Springfield Armory 1911 pistol is equipped with a trigger locking device. A key inserted into a hole in the rear grip strap positively locks the trigger, making it impossible for a child to accidentally discharge the gun. This system gives you a choice as to whether or not you need to lock your gun. Unlike trigger locks on other brands of guns, the keyhole is small, so that it doesn't ruin the looks of the gun.

Click here to visit Gunshopfinder's Springfield Armory page. Or, to find a Springfield Armory dealer near you, select a state and then click "Submit."

Reviews of the G.I.Champion 1911

Overall Rating: review stars, 4 out of 5 possible stars 4 out of 5
By Tyler, Valdosta, GA
May 21, 2015

Primary use: Defense/Law Enforcement

"I love the Champion. I got mine on an even trade from a local pawn shop. Traded a Glock 27 .40 for this guy at no cost. The gun just feels the way a gun should in your hands (as do most 1911's I have held). The low profile sights, 4 in. barrel, and single stack mag style make this gun the perfect .45 to conceal carry, or open carry. It's not too bulky, fits almost any size 15 holster I've put it in, and is the most comfortable firearm I've ever carried. The only issue I have with it is the slide safety built for a right handed shooter, and the plunger assembly which makes re-assembly a pain when installing the slide stop in. Overall incredible, reliable, and comforting firearm with the most bang for its buck in its class."

Overall Rating: review stars, 5 out of 5 possible stars 5 out of 5
By Warphead
February 27, 2013

Primary use: Defense/Law Enforcement

"I purchased my Springfield Compact .45 approximately 20 years ago. I have carried it since on and off duty. The first week I had it I fired maybe 1/2 dozen rounds just to get the feel of it. The next week I went to the range to be qualified. I was somewhat nervous as I had no practice with this weapon. The range time consisted of the usual, varying ranges, positions, sudden threats & my favorite, emergency life or death fast draw and fire from the hip. The scoring was simple. 2 points for center target hits, one point within the small ring surrounding the center & 0 points plus lots of laughter from everyone for any outside of that. On that day we fired 150 rounds giving each a possible perfect score of 300. Me, the Springfield & the luck of the Irish pulled off a 299 out of 300. The only round that strayed was one that hit dead center on the dividing line between center and outside. A great weapon, A pleasure to have and it's saved my @$$ a couple of times over the years. Highly recommended."

Overall Rating: review stars, 5 out of 5 possible stars 5 out of 5
By Shawn, Pittsburgh, PA
July 7, 2012

Primary use: Defense/Law Enforcement

"Very stout and capable firearm, either in the hands of a expert marksmen or a beginner. I had my champ for over two and a half years and the gun is dead on reliable and very accurate and easy to function. I have fired thousands of rounds through the pistol and the rifling in the bore is still as good as it was the day i got it and the parkerized finish has also held up very well for being carried daily in a paddle holster. Sights are low enough not to snag in pockets or clothing, but prominent enough to make for easy aiming without straining your eyes. I have only added a set of beautiful custom ivory grips which were thinner than the stock grip panels which i found too thick and uncomfortable for my small hands. Gun also feeds smoothly with hollow points,frangibles,and full metal jackets, even +P rated ammunition even though the manual recommends not to use it. the gun digested several hundred +P rated rounds on the stock setup wonderfully. The only feeding issue i have ever had is with Winchester Silver Tip 230gr. hollow points. Tip is too blunt and hangs up on feed ramp and the gun with mangle the head of the projectile, even push it down into the case further, maybe bad lot from either a crimp or incorrect overall lenght on that brand of ammo.This was and is a continuous problem but only with that aforementioned load. One minor annoyance is it does not have a lowered and flared ejection port and will sometimes throw spent brass into your face/shirt collar. Other than those two issues gun is fantastic for the price and i am surprised to see that no one has mentioned the fact that the gun is factory fitted with a titanium firing pin, and a very, very strong recoil spring. perfectly fits in a fobus paddle holster so that the end of the slide doesn't even stick out of the bottom of the holster, where as my 5" AMT Hardballer sticks out about a half an inch. Wonderful gun, Wonderful price."

Overall Rating: review stars, 5 out of 5 possible stars 5 out of 5
By pw9142lp, Sevierville, TN
April 27, 2012

Primary use: Defense/Law Enforcement

"sub 2" groups at 25'. Feels great in my hand and handles very well. Carries and conceals fairly easily. Carry year round"

Overall Rating: review stars, 5 out of 5 possible stars 5 out of 5
By Doc, Fayetteville, NC
February 23, 2012

Primary use: Defense/Law Enforcement

"I have several 1911s, but the is the best quality bang for the buck! Accuracy, Dependability, and Affordability equals to the best 1911 gi commander I've ever had. No collection is complete without this gem!"

Overall Rating: review stars, 5 out of 5 possible stars 5 out of 5
By Iron Horse, Cedar City, UT
August 3, 2011

Primary use: Defense/Law Enforcement

"I have the Champion Model GI 4". It is the most dependible pistol I've ever used. Rock solid, and extremely accurate. 2" grouping at 30'. I am a lefty, so I put an ambidexterous on it. Works fine. It eats all types of 45 ACP, except for reloads. Had some problem here with the ejector when I used some friend's reloads. Stopped using them, and never had a problem since. It's a great conceal carry gun. Since I teach Bail Enforcement, Conceal Carry and NRA Pistol Courses, I always use the Champion as the example of what a 1911 should do, and how it functions as a defensive tool. I like the balance and simplicity. This is an everyday work gun, and it takes a lot of punishment. It can be in mountain snow and freezing conditions one day, and slamming out rounds in the desert heat the next. Not to mention, it works well in the rain and the wind! I would recomend the Champion to anyone who is thinking about a 1911 style pistol for professional and private use. Did I mention the nostalgia part of the GI Model? In Vietnam, the 1911 was my best friend!"

Overall Rating: review stars, 5 out of 5 possible stars 5 out of 5
By Jim, Catskill, NY
November 21, 2011

Primary use: Target Shooting

"Great 1911. I have owned several 1911's over the years, but this one beats them all. I had some work done (feed ramp, sights, trigger work) and now it shoots better then before. Looking forward to getting another. I would recommend it to anyone looking for a dependable .45 1911 model."

Overall Rating: review stars, 5 out of 5 possible stars 5 out of 5
By Dave, Apple Valley, CA
November 21, 2011

Primary use: Defense/Law Enforcement

"My Champion will shoot 1" groups at 25 yards from a bench, with 230 gr. PMC ball ammo. Pretty damn good for a commander-size pistol. I love mine. It's my favorite 1911-type pistol!"

Overall Rating: review stars, 4 out of 5 possible stars 4 out of 5
By muddobber2010, Eugene, OR
March 21, 2011

Primary use: Target shooting

"This gun is too much fun. I have many hand guns and this and the 40 XDM are high on my carry list when hunting. The only things I don't like is several times hunting I found the safety off while holstered. The other is it's harder to break down than XDM. I would like XDM more if it could go in a left handed holster."

Overall Rating: review stars, 4 out of 5 possible stars 4 out of 5
By Rocko, Largo, FL
May 2, 2011

Primary use: Defense/Law Enforcement

"This is a great 1911. It is extremely dependable. I've put over a thousand rounds through it and not the first hiccup. It groups fairly well, feels great, looks great, and if it were a little more accurate it would be the perfect defense, carry, and target gun. It does not have an ammo preference. Shoots all equally well. I really like this gun a lot."

Overall Rating: review stars, 5 out of 5 possible stars 5 out of 5
By Dave, Richmond, VA
June 21, 2011

Primary use: Defense/Law Enforcement

Once I became acquainted with this beauty, the true joy of ownership of one of these pistols became evident. I couldn't stay off the range. The groupings are satisfyingly tight, and this weapon readily accepts all but reloaded ammo (I wouldn't advise it's use). Ease of maintenance is another positive. Now I want the five inch!!! Overall, a quality, and fun pistol."

Overall Rating: review stars, 5 out of 5 possible stars 5 out of 5
By sharpshooter, Brooksville, FL
June 21, 2011

Primary use: Defense/Law Enforcement

"I've had mine for about 8 months now. I replaced the main spring housing with a flat one (personal preference). I got rid of the goofy little safety lock. It shoots very good. A good heavy duty gun for carry and use."

Overall Rating: review stars, 5 out of 5 possible stars 5 out of 5
By Barry, Lake Geneva, WI
August 3, 2011

Primary use: Defense/Law Enforcement

"The model Champion I have is the stainless steel V10 Ultra Compact , the ported 3 inch barrel equipped. I purchased it used from the original owner who purchased it in 2001 . We went to an outdoor range and at 25 yards this gun amazed me! It has been 10 years since I shot a handgun (a Smith&Wesson all steel nickle plated 559 9mm). The first shot nicked the bulls eye and the next 2 mags full ringed around it . The short barrel makes it a loud gun and at night two rows of flames rise up in front of you ,but contrary to popular belief it does not blind you . I will never need to buy another hand gun again. Since our state passed a concealed carry law, this was my reason for this purchase."

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