Originally Posted by jhbwolverine
Just what the title says.
The only differences that I can see on their website is that the rifling on the CM9 barrel is different, and that the PM9 comes with 2 magazines rather than one. And the PM9 is $230 more expensive. I can't imagine the magazine costs that much, and I don't understand the difference between the two types of rifling well enough to know whether that justifies the cost difference.
Can anyone explain it to me, or is there something I'm missing here?
I don't know much about the PM9 but here is what I found:
Conventional rifling in the barrel. – The PM9 has a polygon rifling that is match grade. Since most gunfights are close quarters without a lot of time for bench-resting, Kahr elected to eliminate this expensive process for the CM9. A side benefit is that you can shoot lead reloads in the CM9, whereas they foul up the PM9.
Pinned-in plastic front sight. – The rear sight is still drift adjustable, so you lose basically nothing unless you are in the habit of hammering in those panel nails that seem to be in all Ikea furniture with the front sight of your PM9.
One magazine instead of two. The second magazine on the PM9 is a 7 round extended, but you can of course buy these if you so choose.
Stamped logos on the slide. – There is a $234 difference in MSRP on these two guns. Not a lot of people I imagine have been sitting around watching TV at night admiring the roll engraving on their Kahr to begin with, but mentioning this says something about the company and their integrity about how they are saving money on the manufacturing.
Injection molded slide stop lever, as opposed to a lever machined from steel, which theoretically would be stronger. I’m sure it was a cost saver, but I don’t think they would use this process if it reduced the reliability of the gun.
Less machining on the slide assembly.* I think this is the key, and it is the way that Kahr is telling you that they have been sobered by the low price point of the new entrants to the market. Running a CNC machine is expensive and there was most likely a very involved machining process from the beginning with the PM9, which is why it is so pricey. Years later with millions of rounds fired through the PM9s, the design is a success, and the engineers have figured out how to make the gun with fewer processes. The CM9 is basically the same inside as the PM9, but Kahr found a shorter and less expensive way to get there.