A .25 Auto in the chamber of the Taurus 25 PLY.
A .25 Auto in the chamber of the Taurus 25 PLY.

Having firmly established that the PT 25PLY is indeed small and light, favorable descriptors for something you want to carry, I wondered whether its physical makeup would work against it as a firearm. After all, this is supposed to be a weapon. It is meant to shoot a bullet and may be someone’s just-in-case last-hope in neutralizing an attack of some kind. Was it up to the task?

I contemplated whether the Taurus PT 25PLY would be a case of less is more. Or less. Shooting the 25PLY would provide some answers so I turned from matters of size and weight to preparing to fire. Unfortunately, removing the magazine was not as easy as expected — I had to physically pull it out while pushing the magazine release — and I also found it a little difficult to load the magazine, which only added to my angst. Pressing in the rounds by hand proved an exercise in endurance for my thumb and, despite Taurus’ claim that the PT 25PLY holds 9+1, I could only fit eight rounds in the magazine.

As I loaded the magazine, the rounds seemed to click in place instead of just sliding in. I was actually concerned that the magazine was holding the rounds so tight that they would not chamber when firing. Before I shot, I tried removing the rounds by hand. This too, was difficult.

Thankfully, all the fuss about the magazine evaporated during the shooting session. Every round chambered, fired, and ejected properly, even if a couple of the spent casings landed on my head.

The thumb safety on the Taurus PLY 25 was robust and engaged positively.
The thumb safety on the Taurus PLY 25 was robust and engaged positively.

Since small handguns are, well, small, often it is difficult to get a solid grasp on the slide in order to chamber a round. The PT 25PLY’s tip-up barrel, however, eliminates this concern. Just press the barrel release forward with a thumb to get the barrel to tip up, drop a round in the chamber, and close the barrel. Want to check the chamber and see if the PT 25PLY is loaded? Same procedure. No slide manipulation needed. This feature is really helpful on a small handgun.

Firing the PT 25PLY proved a couple of key points: First, Taurus did its homework in redesigning the ergonomics of the pistol. The polymer stocks worked in conjunction with the base of the magazine to offer a very comfortable grip that was a pleasure to hold and shoot.

I didn’t expect much recoil from the .25 Automatic round but had wondered how the quality of shooting would be in such a small pistol. Each round fired offered recoil in the form of a mild push back—very tame and manageable. I excused the PT 25PLY’s miniscule notch and ramp sights because the gun’s excellent ergonomics enhanced my ability to simply point and shoot and because the gun is meant more to be a last line of defense as opposed to a target pistol. Second, the PT 25PLY’s trigger offered a long and very smooth stroke which aided in shooting accurately and should provide some peace of mind against accidental discharges.

Additional safety features include a frame-mounted thumb safety—this felt robust and engaged and disengaged positively—as well as a magazine disconnect. The gun also includes the Taurus Security System, allowing a user to secure the gun with the turn of a key.

I carried the PT 25PLY around in the front right pocket of my pants or shorts with no holster. Surprisingly, it “stood up” well, allowing me to simply put my hand in my pocket in order to grasp it. It would of course fit in the bigger pockets of cargo pants or shorts but locating the pistol there would require some kind of pocket holster.

The Taurus PT 25PLY might not be a powerhouse caliber nor the first firearm chosen for a gunfight, but with 9+1 rounds of .25 Automatic in an updated design that includes ergonomic polymer stocks and multiple safeties, it is light, comfortable, safe, and reliable. Just in case.

Mark Kakkuri is a freelance writer in Oxford, Mich.

This article appeared in the October 10, 2011 issue of Gun Digest the Magazine.

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  1. This Taurus is nice, but with the very low power of the 25ACP cartridge, it would be better to take this same design and chamber it in 22 Long Rifle. You can carry at least as many rounds and have a pistol that you can afford to practice with. Practice makes perfect with shot placement. Taurus should be able to price such a pistol in 22 Long Rifle somewhat lower and still make a profit as well. A second related feature would be to have Crimson Trace grips for this pistol much like those for the Beretta Bobcat. Together, it would make for a far superior pocket pistol for women and others who are recoil sensitive but want to have something to carry to protect themselves.

    • @Theken101

      “”They will, however, voice all manner of opinion with all kinds of emotion on which make, model, and caliber of firearm you should bring to a gunfight: “I would never carry anything other than a [insert manufacturer or model] in [insert caliber]!””

      I guess someone only read the title of the article.. 🙂