“The new Walther? I asked Q to get me one of these.” – James Bond
Fans of the Double O Seven franchise will no doubt recognize the iconic Walther P99 – used from Tomorrow Never Dies (1997) to Quantum of Solace (2008). Pierce Brosnan debuted this gun to the franchise with a 1990’s panache not seen since perhaps Sean Connery.
Introduced in 1997, the gun proved to be more than just Hollywood good looks and glitz. It was a performer well ahead of its time. Widespread adoption by European military and law enforcement followed…and for good reason. As they still are today, traits like striker-fired, glass-filled polymer, high-capacity (15 +1) were all the rage and the P99 offered several advantages no others did. A unique ambidextrous paddle-style magazine release combined with an Anti-Stress trigger system – which combines a light, albeit long, single action trigger pull or a more traditional double action trigger pull when the gun is de-cocked. Decocking is easy enough with an integrated snag-free, flush fit button located on the top of the slide. No levers to hang up or confuse with a safety. A red painted cocked indicator protrudes from the rear of the slide just in case you want to make double sure of the gun’s status.
What immediately comes to mind when picking up a P99 for the first time is that it’s perfectly balanced and proportioned. While it is a full-sized, duty pistol, it is sleek enough to easily be considered as a daily concealed carry piece. The front of the slide is angle-cut while the serrations on the rear are light and not overly intrusive. Maybe not as practical as today’s designs with hyper-aggressive slide cuts for racking while covered in mud and blood and gore, the subtlety will tear up a Brioni far less. The grip angle is perfect for me. The finger grooves and lite bumps for texture feel great in hand and while other grips may technically offer more purchase, the P99 is plenty for my needs. With more innovation for its time the P99 offers interchangeable backstraps for a perfect fit.
Offered in multiple variations over several decades, it’s only fitting the P99 Final Edition is the iteration most coveted—OD green and matte black. As a tribute to the last of a breed, the Final Edition guns come in a sleek all white Apple-esque looking box that holds a weather-proof matching OD green hard case complete with pistol, challenge coin and extra magazine.
How does it shoot? I have no idea and hopefully never will as the box is where mine will stay—living out the rest of its years as a safe queen. But, of all the other Walthers I have owned or shot including older P99’s, I have no doubt if it was called upon to eradicate an evil media group set on world domination (oh wait, that’s FE) it would do so with absolute lethal reliability and more accuracy than I’m capable of harnessing.
One of the finest, innovative auto pistols of our time. A must own in any collection.
If you are reading this, the Final Edition is likely sold out. Keep an eye out on Rock Island Auctions.