The Bersa Thunder draws mixed reactions from the gun community. One Bersa Thunder review might state that a .380 ACP does not pack enough power, while another shooter might swear by its reliability. Should you get this handgun?
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Bersa Thunder 380 Review | Packing for Self-Defense
What You Need To Know
The Bersa Thunder 380 is a .380 ACP with an 8+1 round capacity, 3.5-inch barrel length, 6.6-inch gun length, and 22-ounce weight. You can easily slide this behind your belt or inside a handbag.
Many shooters hail the Thunder .380 ACP as one of the best innovations in the industry. Its small, lightweight frame attracts shooters of all levels, from neophytes who want a manageable pistol to veterans needing inconspicuous concealed carry weapons.
However, no two shooters share the exact preferences. What your buddies find practical and efficient might turn out as junk on your end.
So before you cough up a few hundred for a new Bersa Thunder, we recommend going through this compact yet comprehensive review first. Our goal is to help buyers make educated purchases.
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The Bersa Thunder .380 ranks nowhere near competition level, but you can accurately shoot it from a 35- to 50-yard mark. This accuracy makes for good target shooting during the weekends.
Bursa Thunder .380 ACP handguns range from $250 to $300. Shooters would be hard-pressed to find any other pistol on the market that offers similar quality.
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The Bersa Thunder 380 magazine has a small round capacity of 8+1. Shooters might have a tough time shooting multiple rounds out on the field, but nine rounds are enough if you use the ACP for self-defense.
If you want something larger, try the Bersa Thunder 380 Plus. It carries all the advantages of the standard Thunder 380, but also offers a larger 15+1 round capacity.
Take note of the gun’s safety decocker. Safety decockers prevent accidental discharge stemming from mechanical failures and human errors. However, they also make it difficult to fire quickly.
In an emergency situation, panicky, nervous first-timers might forget to unhook the decocker, thus compromising their overall safety. To prevent similar situations, practice activating and deactivating the decocker as quickly as you can.
With a double-shot, first-action mechanism, versatile 3-inch barrel, and light 22-ounce weight, the Thunder .380 ACP undoubtedly scores high in terms of reliability. You can use this handgun in several situations.
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Many shooters criticize the Bersa Thunder 380 for its poor-quality design. Admittedly, Bersa could have done a better job with the way the Thunder .380 ACP looks.
It does not have the best finish, but it definitely looks better than the other handguns in the same price range. This .380 ACP only costs $300, yet people unfairly compare it to 9mm pistols costing double.
Tip: The Thunder series also comes in pink. We found that first-timers and neophytes gravitate toward brightly colored pink guns because they have an overall less intimidating look. Everybody wants the security that gun ownership offers, but not many can handle the intensity.
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Final Verdict: Real-Life Application
Considering the price point and overall value offered, the Bersa Thunder .380 ACP passes as a suitable self-defense or concealed carry weapon for shooters of all levels. Even lanky teenagers firing for the first time can handle this ACP.
However, keep in mind that the gun costs $300, so do not buy with the intent of acquiring a $2,000 pistol. The handgun has its shortcomings, but it’s nonetheless reliable.
Check out this Bersa Thunder 380 review by Honest Outlaw where they take the pistol out for a test run:
The Bersa Thunder .380 ACP suits first-time shooters in the market for a self-defense handgun. It offers reliability, accuracy, and functionality, so most shooters would feel comfortable using it for concealed carry applications. Plus, you can get a brand-new piece for only $300.
Although, as many shooters have said before, .380 ACP handguns do not pack forceful stopping power. You will either have to target the weak points or fire multiple rounds to deal significant, life-threatening injuries to your attacker.
Have you tried shooting this .380 ACP handgun before? Share your own Bersa Thunder 380 review with us in the comments section below!
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I own a Bersa thunder 380, I’m sixty nine years old it fits good,easy to handle, and accurate. Its not how big the bullet its how good you can shoot.
I have carried concealed a Bersa 380 on and off for 12 years. Nice, reliable close quarters firearm. Easy to conceal inside the belt and access is easy as well. Prefer my Browning HiPower but at 84 I tend to develop a definite list to starboard.
I have the Bersa 380 with the Crimson Trace laser grips and have carried it concealed in an IWB holster for several years. It’s very dependable with a variety of types of ammo and extremely accurate at normal “combat” ranges. Great pistol!
I got one for my wife because it is easy to operate the slide and the installed red dot makes target actuation easy too. I would recommend it as a concealed weapon. She carries it in her purse with no problem. I like to shoot it too. We both carry it at different times depending on whether we go together or not. We carry it with anti-personnel ammo.
I bought my first hand gun over 30 years ago. I started with a S&W 9mm auto. To big to carry. Traded it in for the smallest 9mm I could find. To small. It literally hurt my hand to shoot it. Took it to the gun shop to trade it in. The sales person showed me a Bersa 380 in a limited edition done in black with gold trim. It fit my hand so good I thought the gun was made to order. I bought it, I shot it, I love it and never looked back. I haven’t even looked at another pistol since. It’s the perfect carry gun for me.
I bought a Bersa Thunder after seeing one a friend bought for his wife. I really like it – it is small enough to carry concealed – and I was able to shoot palm of the hand size groups at fifteen yards . Further it hit where I pointed it. I think it is a solid value .
I have the Bersa Thunder 380, the 380 plus and the thunder 32. All three are reliable and accurate, I highly recommend any of these! They are worth it especially for the price!
I bought this pistol , based on a story told to me by a lite Bird , had his Bersa in the sofa he sat in for over ten years never cleaned it or pulled it out of the Sofa . An intruder broke into his house with the intent to do harm … he pulled it from the sofa, a round in the Chamber , fired two rounds and stopped the intruder .
I bought my Bersa as my first CC handgun 20 years ago and I can tell you though I’m not as constant as I should be about cleaning my Carry because I don’t shoot it often enough. My first years of Bersa I shot a lot and this hand gun has NEVER failed or jammed. Not once! I felt comfortable enough to pass it to my wife for her carry after I bought my XDM 9.