Those classic Walther PP lines, all-metal construction, DA/SA with decocker, 15+1 rounds of .380 on tap, and an affordable price. That's quite a list to make the Bersa TPR 380 Plus attractive.
We've wanted to get our hands on one of these for years, but the older Thunder Plus models were hard to get ahold of. It seems what was imported was quickly snatched up. Bersa has now updated the Thunder Plus to lines that follow the TPR line and calls the new configuration, "TPR 380 Plus". The changes are mostly aesthetic, but may have changed slide mass too.
If you've never fired a double-stack .380 ACP pistol you're missing out. Browning's version of 9mm typically shoots softer, and a double-stack firearm distributes that recoil across more of the hand further softening the feel. Some of that is lost by the TPR 380 Plus' direct blowback operation, but it's still not bad to shoot. The gain from direct blowback is simplicity; simple to operate, simple to disassemble, and simple to manufacture. That last perk is part of what makes these guns available for under $400 (more pricing later in the article). So what do you get for your money? Take a look at the tabletop video below.
Specification and Features direct from Bersa USA:
15-round magazine capacity for plenty of firepower
3-dot sight system for the perfect sight picture
Combat-style trigger guard accommodates gloves or two-handed grip
Extended slide release that´s smoother and easier to operate
Micro-polished bore with sharp, deep rifling for greater accuracy
Decocker for safer concealed carry
Integral locking system for the ultimate in safety
Lifetime service contract for original owner
CALIBER: 380 ACP
ACTION : DA/SA
FRONT SIGHT: Dovetail
REAR SIGHT: Notched Bar Dovetail (adjustable)
FINISHES: Satin Nickel or Matte Black
CONSTRUCTION: Alloy Frame, Steel Slide
SAFETY: Integral, locking system, Manual Firing Pin
BARREL LENGTH: 3.5”
Pricing (As of 10JUL22, click links for current pricing):
Find the lowest current pricing across the web HERE.
So, How does it shoot? Does the double-stack width counter the potentially sharper recoil of direct blowback? What does it eat? What kind of energy are we getting from a 3.5" .380? We hit the range for our standard battery of exercises including the crowd-favorite What's For Dinner™ The results are in the video below:
Ammunition seen in our Shooting Impressions video was made possible by our Patrons and supporters of our ammunition savings account through Ammo Squared. Additional, on-demand ammunition through True Shot Gun Club.
Our Take: At this price point you can't expect to be wowed, but from Bersa you can expect a quality firearm of high value. Both Teya and I experienced a bit of recoil impact to our thumb knuckles, likely a result of our high grip style, but not unavoidable. There are few options on the market today that offer the attributes this gun has. It's easy to field strip, easy to operate, and although the current trend is away from .380ACP, FBI statistics show it's generally just as effective at stopping the fight as 9mm. The Bersa TPR 380 Plus is a good fit for someone looking for an affordable compact option that's not too punishing to train with.