Ruger’s LCP II Review: How does it compare to the original?

Few things make people cringe like a bad sequel. Unfortunately, most sequels do not live up to the original. Every once in a while, the sequel equals or surpasses that first attempt, whether we’re talking movies or guns.

Ruger recently announced the LCP II. As the name suggests, this is a redesign of the original LCP pistol. So what makes the new gun different from its predecessor, and is it a worthy sequel? Let’s take a look at the guns and find out.


The first Ruger LCP pistols had very small sights that were almost useless. Ruger quickly updated that pistol so the sights were still small but actually usable. The LCP II increases the size of the sights even more, and that has made a huge difference in the ability to see and use them.

The sights remain very low profile, but are large enough to be useable in even tense situations. Ruger also now serrates the sight face so that you are less likely to get any glare from it in bright or changing light conditions.

Slide Stop

Original LCP pistols had a slide stop to hold the slide open. However, you had to manually engage the stop; the slide would not lock back on an empty magazine. New LCP II pistols will lock open on an empty magazine. To me, this is another big improvement in the pistol design.


I never found any problems with the original LCP grip, but I like what Ruger has done with it on the new pistol. Though still very flat and thin, the grip was widened slightly to spread out felt recoil across a broader section of the hand.

Additionally, the frame texture has been changed to be something closer to a skateboard-tape type surface. It isn’t as rough as real skateboard tape, but it is grippy. Between the extra width and new surface treatment, the gun has less jump when shooting.


This may be the single biggest improvement over the original gun. Ruger moved to a single-action (SA) trigger with a trigger safety. It’s not a hair trigger, nor does it feel like a 1911-style pistol, but it is still technically an SA trigger. The benefit to the shooter is a much shorter trigger stroke. This is a night-and-day difference.

Size & Weight

Let’s face it: most people interested in the LCP line of handguns are attracted to the size and weight of the guns. With all of the new changes, one might wonder if they affect the dimensions of the gun. They do, but not by very much.

First, the LCP II is slightly heavier than the older gun: exactly one ounce heavier at 10.6 oz.

Second, the overall length is up a negligible 0.01″, and the height increased 0.11″.

The width is also up: On the old gun, I measure the grip width to be about 0.78″. On the new gun, I measured the width to be 0.90″.

I’ve carried the new LCP II for a little more than a week now. I notice no difference from the original when carried in a DeSantis Nemesis pocket holster. But with the extra size and modifications, I get a gun that I am more likely to wield effectively for self-defense.

Ruger nailed this sequel.