The Auto Mag pistol is back in 3 calibers

Sometimes they come back: the powerful .44 Auto Mag pistol is being produced again. The original manufacturer of the gun, the Auto Mag Corporation, closed down in 1982. In 2015 a new company, Auto Mag LTD. Corp, was formed to bring this legend back to the market.  The new company purchased all of the assets and rights to the Auto Mag and – to cut a long story short – after long testing, some prototypes and many improvements over the original design, in these days the first newly-made pistols are being shipped. They are 77 pistols with 8.5-in barrel in honor of Dirty Harry’s Auto Mag in the movie Sudden Impact.

The new Auto Mags are produced through an agreement with Excel Industries. Originally, Excel Arms was to manufacture the magazines and frames only, but they offered to complete the entire gun.

The “new” Auto Mag pistol showcased at SHOT Show 2018 in Las Vegas
The “new” Auto Mag pistol is a short-recoil operated pistol chambered in powerful calibers like the .44 AMP, .357 AMP and .45 Win Mag.

Auto Mag pistol, a unique gun in caliber .44 Auto Mag.

The rotary bolt of Auto Mag pistol
The rotary bolt of Auto Mag pistol.

Developed by Harry Sanford, the Auto Mag pistol was intended – and has always been – as a unique firearm: a short-recoil operated pistol featuring a rotary bolt with locking lugs (similar to the AR-15 rifle action). It shot a specially developed cartridge, the .44 Auto Mag pistol (AMP), and was designed to harness the power of .44 Magnum revolvers in the form of a semi-auto pistol. But things didn’t go well for the Auto Mag Corporation: as explained on the “new” Auto Mag company’s website,  “the original company failed because they believed that the market would support thousands of Auto Mags being sold per month.” 

In all, just around 9,000 guns were made before production ended. That’s why the current business model “is based on market analysis that supports sales of the new Auto Mag of approximately 150 pistols per month. As part of this market analysis, we have not planned for an extensive marketing strategy. We believe word of mouth, social media, web traffic and Auto Mag aficionados will drive sales. In general, we would like to sell directly to buyers.” 

Rear sight of the Auto Mag. pistol
The pistol Auto Mag is a short-recoil operated pistol featuring a rotary bolt with locking lugs.

Initially the new Auto Mag will only be offered in .44 AMP, but the company says that later will be also offered .357 AMP and .45 Win Mag versions. As for the ammo, they have worked with Starline Brass to produce a run of 100,000 cases for the .44 AMP cartridge and are in discussions with several ammunition manufacturers to start a line of .44 AMP ammunition.

The new Auto Mag is available with both 6.5 in and 8.5 in barrels. On the company’s website the 6.5 in barrel .44 AMP Auto Mag has a price of 3495 USD, while the 8.5 in barrel version is priced at 3795 USD. They also offer complete replacement uppers at 1599 USD.

Auto Mag pistol: technical data and price

Auto Mag pistol
44 .AMP, .357 AMP, .45 Win. Mag.
short-recoil operated pistol with rotary bolt
Barrel length: 
6.5 in and 8.5 in
3,495 USD (6.5 barrel) and 3,795 USD (8.5 barrel)

For more information please visit Auto Mag website.

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