.45 Long Colt Vs. .45 ACP Review: A Complete Comparison on Features, Use, and Suitability

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Getting to understand firearms and their best calibers can be challenging to beginners who have just secured their guns. The names can be similar, yet they fire different rounds or on different guns. For example, the .45 Automatic Colt Pistol and the .45 Long Colt may sound similar, but they don’t fire the same rounds. 

The reason is simple. The .45 LC is a revolver, and the .45 ACP is a semi-automatic pistol. 

A Brief History of the .45 Colt and .45 ACP

While the name Colt appears in both firearms, the ACP and the LC are miles apart in every possible way. The story started in 1872 when the Union Metallic Cartridge Company partnered with Colt to create the first .45 Long Colt. The result is that in 1873 the U.S army adopted the .45 LC as their official military handgun. 

After years of the U.S military using the .45 LC, it was time to abandon it and move forward to the semi-auto pistols. It means that there was a demand for a new military round and firearm. 

This need led to the invention of the .45 ACP in 1904 by John Browning. Even though Colt’s name exists in the .45 ACP, it’s probably because Browning worked for Colt during this period. 

The U.S. Army and the Transition from .45 LC to .45 Auto

The U.S Army liked the accuracy and power of the .45 LC revolver but in a semi-auto pistol. Following the tests from Tompson—LaGarde, Browning’s .45 ACP proved to be the most effective replacement. In 1911, the U.S Army replaced the .45 LC with the .45 ACP as the standard military handgun. 

About the .45 Long Colt

Under the .45 Long Colt debate, people often wonder if the .45 Colt is the same round or firearm as the .45 Long Colt. Yes, it’s the same round; however, the .45 Long Colt