The Ultimate Firearms Destination for the Gun Lifestyle

CMMG Banshee MK10 300 Series Pistol

The El Camino of PCCs

Photos by Kenda Lenseigne

The Chevrolet El Camino is the mullet of the car world. Half car, half truck it’s the automotive version of business in the front and party in the back. The coupe utility vehicle garnered a cult following as a classic muscle car, but it’s hard to see the allure of a vehicle that struggles with its own identity. Is it a car or truck? Why would anyone even own one? The idea that it helped pave the way for modern-day soccer mom crossover vehicles is almost enough to shun the classic. While not everyone is a fan, there’s an entire universe of followers dedicated to the El Camino who’d gladly sell the Lynyrd Skynyrd shirt off their back for a chance at the classic truck-car thingy.

Similar thoughts were inflamed when we heard of a carbine chambered in 10mm Automatic. The merits of a 9mm Luger carbine are easy to see, but what’s the point of a more powerful pistol round in a rifle platform? Just get a rifle round in a rifle platform, as God intended. We didn’t watch many episodes of Miami Vice, so the 10mm Auto wasn’t on the top of our favorite caliber list. And, for a while, it wasn’t on many other shooter’s lists, either. Like the El Camino, 10mm Auto mysteriously garnered a cult following. And anything chambered in the long .40 makes the fanboys swoon, while everyone else struggles to see why those guys are crying and fainting like 1950s Elvis fans.

10MM is the Best MM

In 1983, the honorable Lt. Col. Jeff Cooper developed the 10mm Auto to be the ultimate pistol round. The idea was to make an auto pistol cartridge that shot flatter than a .45 ACP and had more oomph than the 9mm. The FBI decided to give the power pill a chance after the infamous Dade County shootout where the 9mm rounds of the time came up short and agents were outgunned by the bad guys. The 1980s didn’t have the technology to produce the quality hollow-point projectiles of today, so a bigger bullet going faster was how they made up for it. The American way.

Alas, the powerful pistol round proved to be too much for some agents. The FBI qualification scores plummeted after the adoption of the 10mm. This led to the dilution of the 10 with the lighter-recoiling, so-called FBI load 10mm. This eventually led to the birth of the .40 S&W round. The .40 was a trimmed-down version of the 10mm that fit in a 9mm-size frame. Just like that, the 10mm fell from grace … for some.

Fast-forward to today where 10mm has seen a resurgence. Today’s technology and the big case volume of the 10mm have made a great recipe for success. Versatility has kept it alive. There are ammunition offerings from 900 fps all the way up to 1,800 fps and bullet weights from 100-grain up to 220-grain. Knowing the shooting community, the speed will not stop there. Admittedly, those numbers sound impressive, but what’s it for?


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