Firearms|1,000 Round Review

By Andrew Bryant
August 31st, 2022, theloadoutblog.com

The History & Evolution of An American Icon

To understand the 2011 pistol let’s take a brief look at the legendary and iconic 1911 pistol. The 1911 pistol is an American icon and one of the most recognizable firearms ever created. It’s iconic imagery and design are apart of our visual lexicon here in American and also aboard. The 1911 pistol is a true icon within the firearms world. This iconic and timeless pistol was designed by the great John Moses Browning. Browning’s firearms where pivotal in catapulting the American military into a powerful military juggernaut during both World Wars. Till this day his firearms and influential design echoes throughout the firearms industry.

The 1911 has an operational history unlike any other pistol in our nation’s history. From both World Wars, to Korea, to Vietnam, and the GWOT era. It’s operational pedigree is undeniable. The 1911 is an American icon and a symbol of American Heroism.

Even with its vast pedigree that doesn’t mean the 1911 platform should cease to evolve. During the past 25 years the platform has evolved and seen an Renaissance with the 2011 platform. The 2011 shares all the same mechanics, features, and ergonomics of a 1911 pistol. Now, featuring increased magazine capacity, mounting options, and less recoil. The 2011 is a modernization of the 1911 pistol for today’s modern audience.

Atlas Gunworks and their 2011s are a natural evolutionary step for the 2011 platform. Atlas offers a shooting experience unlike any other.

The Atlas Gunworks 2011s have the heritage of an American muscle car combined with the precision engineering of a Swiss watch. It is an amalgamation of the iconic Shelby GT500 and Swiss watch manufacturer Breitling. The Shelby GT500 was designed and built to be a performance variant of the iconic Ford Mustang. The GT500 was designed to push the performance of the Mustang to the limit with a more horsepower, more torque, a better suspension, tires, and brakes. While being built with the precision and attention to detail of a Breitling watch. A blend of performance, precision, and passion. This amalgamation of performance and precision is what is achieved with the Atlas Gunworks Ares.

Background On Atlas Gunworks

Atlas Gunworks is a small firearm manufacturer based out of Vermont who focuses on building wonderfully handcrafted 2011 pistols. The company was started as a response to a need for exemplary competition guns with a timely turnaround time and outstanding customer service. Most lead times for high quality competition firearms in the early 2000’s was anywhere from 12-24 months. With poor communication and lead times being so unpalatable long time friends Adam Nilson and Tod West teamed up with the goal to solve those problems and build an an amazing product.

Over the next several years the team worked to build high quality competition 2011 pistols. Then, two events happened that allowed Adam and Tod’s early vision to evolve into Atlas Gunworks. First, a patent expired allowing for new innovation in the 2011 marketplace. Second, was Alan Zitta. Mr. Zitta is a renowned 1911 gunsmith with over 30 years of experience and a ISPC World Champion living in Vermont at that time. His expertise, knowledge, and willingness to pass on his knowledge lead to quantum leap for Adam and Tod to take a small business to the next level. Which evolved into the Altas Gunworks we know today.

Now, armed with knowledge, a great product, ambition, and talent Adam and Tod they where able to build high quality 2011 pistols. Atlas Gunworks 2011s come with drastically reduced lead times, exceptional build quality, and outstanding customer service. This new business model by Atlas Gunworks disrupted the system and put Atlas in a very advantageous position within the market.

When it comes to Atlas Gunworks they are guided by the highest of standards of quality for their products. The driving force behind every Atlas Gunworks pistol is, “engineered with function as the driving force and with performance as the critical metric.” Which I believe Atlas has achieved.

My Relationship With Atlas Gunworks

Before, I get delve into this review I want to discuss my relationship with Atlas Gunworks.

I was introduced to Atlas Gunworks pistols by Mike Stoker and Trevor Cotter during a Range Day event before Shot Show 2020. I had never shot an Atlas product before and I was instantly amazed at the build quality and craftsmanship put into these wonderful 2011s. I wrote an article about my experience and introduction into their pistols during Shot Show.

Push forward a couple years later to Shot Show 2022. I was introduced by Trevor Cotter to Mark Stevens the Marketing Director of Atlas Gunworks. Mark read my initial article from 2020 and asked would I like to review a couple of their guns. I told him, “I was definitely interested in that.” Through our discussions I was able to review the new Atlas Ares and another to be named pistol in the future.

I am not affiliated with Atlas Gunworks in anyway. I was not paid for this review and I will be giving my honest opinion on this weapon without any outside influences upon me.

Now, let’s get into the review of the Atlas Gunworks Ares.

Atlas Gunworks Ares

The Ares is Atlas’s latest and most aggressive entry into the duty/edc market. This pistol was designed from the ground up with thoughtful design choices for the end user that allows this pistol to excel in an duty/edc environment. This pistol also has the versatility to be a great gun to use in a competitive setting.

When, it comes down to design of the Ares the company took a minimalist approach. Absolutely, utilitarian compared to the company’s other more aesthetically pleasing 2011s. Which is a positive and not a negative for duty focused Ares. For an duty or edc focused pistol it’s substance over style.

The Ares features: aggressive front and rear slide serrations, a crowned bull barrel, an aluminum frame, a moderate textured grip, adjustable rear sight, a fiber optic front sight, and a slide that comes optics-ready. The Ares is also available in a ported and non-ported variants. You can also purchase the Ares in a 4.6” or 4.25” barrel length. During this Test and Evaluation I had the ported 4.6” version of the Ares.

During my time with the Atlas Ares it allowed me to get a very good impression of what this pistol has to offer to the end consumer. At, the end of the day the Ares is a wonderfully handcrafted 2011 that impressed me again and again during my evaluation process. The Ares is shaping up to be strong contender for one of the best new duty/edc pistols on the market at its price point.

In-depth Breakdown of The Ares

Now, since I’ve given you an introduction to the Ares let’s take a closer look at this amazing pistol. As, Garand Thumb would say, “Let’s go tip to butt.”

Barrel & Slide

The Ares comes with either 4.6” or 4.25” crowned bull barrel. Which you can get ported or non-ported depending on end user preferences. For this review I had the 4.6” ported version of the Ares.

Next, let’s start with the slide of the Ares. The slide features aggressive and aesthetically pleasing front and rear slide serrations. The design of the serrations are utilitarian and effective. There where many times while shooting the Ares in which my hands where sweaty and I was able to effectively manipulate the slide with no problem. If you have the ported version of the Ares you will have two ports at the front of the slide at about 1 or 2 o’clock position. Allowing those gases to expel and allow Ares to shoot flatter than a traditional non-ported pistol.

The slide also features traditional iron sights with a blacked out and adjustable rear sight and a fiber optic front sight. The Ares comes optics ready. The pistol comes with the optics plate of your choosing to mount the corresponding pistol red dot.

Frame, Safeties, & Trigger

Frame

Moving down from the slide to frame. Atlas Gunworks uses a aluminum frame on the Ares. Atlas calls the grip texture moderate on the Ares. When you lock your grip into Ares it is there to stay. The moderate grip texture is sticky and tacky like lifting chalk. Once your hands are locked in. They are locked in. I think it’s still pretty aggressive for moderate but, it is tamer compared to the aggressive grip texture used on their competition pistols. The moderate grip texture could act as cheese grater against your skin if you appendix carry practitioner.

Safeties

If you continue to inspect the frame of the Ares you will notice it is missing a traditional grip safety that the 1911 is know for. Now, you have a normal back strap with ambidextrous safeties.

The ambidextrous safeties have smooth and fluid motion with a nice tactile feel and audible click. The safety selectors are low-profile on both sides of the Ares. The safeties act as thumb rest or gas pedal for the Ares. Allowing you to really lock in the grip even more on the Ares.

Trigger

Now, let’s talk about this awesome trigger within the Ares. The 1911/2011 pistols are known for having some of the best triggers in the game. This trigger is clean and crisp. It’s an excellent trigger. Easily in the Top 5 of 2011s triggers currently out there on the market. The Ares features a wonderful short uptake to its wall with a clean and satisfying break at 3lbs. That include an amazing and filthy trigger reset. A reset so filthy it will make you yell out, “Woooooooooo!” like your the Nature Boy Ric Flair. Yes, people its that filthy and impressive.

Overall the Ares is a wonderful built firearm and it shows by the attention to detail and engineering put into this pistol. When you hold this Ares it screams quality and invokes a confidence into the end user. As, the end user you know you have a wonderfully handcrafted 2011 experience.

Fit & Finish

The biggest factor or sign of quality in an 1911/2011 is its fitment. When I discuss fitment I am talking about the relationship of the slide, to the barrel, and to the frame of the pistol. To achieve that level of precision, accuracy, and reliability out of this platform…fitment is key. If not reliability and accuracy will naturally be diminished. This relationship between slide, barrel, and frame have to work in perfect harmony to produce the accuracy and reliability that the 2011 platform can provide. It is essential that a duty is reliable and accurate. It’s is what you demand from a pistol in that role.

This is reliability and accuracy is achieved by Atlas’s amazing CNC machining process that features stringent standards combined with its master gunsmiths. It’s this combination of man and machine that allows for Atlas to achieve this level of quality and precision in their pistols.

When it comes down to fitment of the Ares it is exceptional. There is no play or extra movement between the frame and the slide. No matter which direction you attempt to manipulate it the Ares doesn’t budge. The silky smooth movement and interaction between the slide, frame, and barrel flows harmoniously and effortlessly. This silky smooth interaction will leave you speechless. My first experience racking this slide is one of disbelief and amazement on how ridiculous smooth the movement of this slide is. The profound level of quality and attention to detail is something to be marveled at and to be respected. This attention to detail to the fit and finish of the Ares shows the level of passion put into their firearms over at Atlas. Once you rack the Ares slide you will experience the attention to detail and love Atlas put into their pistols.

1,000 Round Review

During my month time with the Ares I was able to conduct a 1,000 round review of the pistol. During those thousand rounds I learned a lot about the Ares and the capabilities of this pistol. The biggest takeaway from this evaluation was that the Ares is a highly accurate and extremely reliable pistol. Also, that it is a viable option as a duty/edc pistol for those looking for a 2011. I do have some caveats when it comes to the Ares that I will discuss later. Overall, the Ares is a extremely reliable and accurate pistol.

During my review process I shot about 250+ rounds per outing. The first outing with the Ares it was to gain a familiarity with the gun. Just a get to know you time period. The second outing was a 250 round mini Burndown Sage Dynamics style with 100 rounds of defensive ammunition. The last outing was about 400 rounds where I worked on draw from holster, speed, consistency, and transitions of targets.

First Range Visit

Range Info

Firearm: Atlas Gunworks Ares
Ammunition: Sellier and Bellot FMJ
Bullet Weight: 115 grain
Muzzle Velocity: 1280 ft/sec
Distance shot: 3-25 yards
Targets: Steel Targets & Standard ISPC
Rounds fired: 250+ rounds
Hours at Range: 2+hrs

My initial impressions of the Ares is a great one. This firearm is on beastmode 24/7 and is ready to do work. How Atlas is able to marry speed and precision is in this firearm is quite impressive. The craftsmanship and build quality is impeccable. You can see the attention to detail, hardwork, and care that is put into these pistols. There were a few things that stood out to me on the initial range visit. That was recoil impulse and the trigger.

Recoil Impulse

The first thing I immediately noticed was the unusual or odd recoil impulse after my first shot. I had never shot a ported handgun before. I was naturally expecting less recoil since the firearm was ported. Those ports act as a built-in compensator to help reduce recoil. That reduction improves the Ares ability to stay on target due to the reduction of muzzle flip. This reduction in muzzle flip allows you to acquire your sights faster allowing you to engage the target sooner. Yet, that first initial shot felt like it had just as much recoil or more potentially than a non-ported handgun. I know this is all a perception thing on my end. It is still an interesting development nevertheless.

Upon my second shot I honed in on analyzing the recoil impulse. What I noticed was that the recoil impluse was much less than the first shot. The more I shot during the first 50 rounds the smoother and seemingly softer the recoil impulse became. The recoil impulse with a ported barrel on the Ares is definitely much less which makes this Ares a complete pleasure to shoot.

Trigger

The second thing I noticed was the clean and crisp break along with it’s filthy short reset. The trigger kept all the same characteristics as it did when shooting. That isn’t always the case. The Ares has a very (and I do mean very) responsive trigger. This gun has the capability to burn the house down if you have the skillset to bring out its full potential. It’s like hitting the gas pedal on Supercar. If you don’t have the experience on how to handle all that horsepower and torque you will potentially spin out and crash a automotive masterpiece. You have to get know this trigger inside and out. Allowing you to discover your strength, weakness, and nuances for you to grow as a shooter. The Ares will show you if you are as good of a shooter as you perceive yourself to be. This trigger is an handicap or an asset depending on your skill level.

Second Range Visit

The next range visit I focused on reliability and testing how the Ares handled defensive ammunition. This is a duty/edc pistol so it is important to see how it handles varies ammunition. You want to make sure your defensive pistol can handle 115 grain range ammunition as well as 124 grain +P ammunition. It has to be able to eat it all like a hungry hungry hippo. The best test of reliability can be done with the Burndown.

The Burndown

Firearm: Atlas Ares
Time on Range: 1.5 hours
Rounds: 350; 250 (Burndown) 100 (Defensive Ammo)
Drills: Rapid Fire Drills with Reloads and Target Transitions (i.e. Bill Drill)
Ammunition: Sellier & Bellot 9mm 115 GR FMJ & Speer Gold Dot 9mm 124 GR +P

For the burndown I took 250 rounds of S&B 9mm and shot it as fast and accurately as possible through the Ares. Challenging the pistol to a higher volume of fire to see if that would cause any malfunctions. While conducting the burndown I did not experience any malfunctions or deficiencies with the pistol. The Ares was reliable…boringly reliable. Which is good when you need the Ares for protection in those critical moments. You need to know that this pistol will work every time when you need it. No questions asked. At, the end of the day the Ares ran like a well oiled machine.

A couple of takeaways from the burndown that I noticed. First, the harder I ran the Ares the smoother the gun seemed to run. The Ares likes to be ran hard. The interaction between the frame, slide, and barrel was on another level when this gun is running on all cylinders. The way the all the moving parts interacted with each other in perfect harmony and was smooth as glass. It was pretty ridiculous experience. Yet, ridiculous in the best possible way.

The best way to describe the effortless operation of the Ares is to use the analogy of a supercar on the track. Like any supercar the first few laps are used for the driver to get the car up to racing temperature. That’s for both the engine and the tires. This allows the engine to reach its peak temperature for optimal performance. For the tires to heat up and gather the proper grip. Once that engine reaches optimal output and those tires are stuck to that asphalt like glue that driver can push that vehicle to its full potential. This is the exact same concept that is happening with the Ares. The more I shot the Ares and the hotter, smoother, and more efficiently the pistol ran. I personally believe Atlas 2011s like to be pushed hard in generally, they are workhorse pistols.

Ported Barrel & Cheat Codes

Second, thing I noticed was how incredibly flat this Ares shot. I do have the ported version of the Ares which aides in the flat shooting of the pistol but, man did this pistol shoot incredibly flat. Due to the ported barrel the Ares has reduce muzzle rise which meant the pistol was back on target lighting quick. The sights where easy to track on target even during short or longer strings of fire. The Ares shoots like a nail driver. The speed and precision you can shoot it with makes it a pretty filthy shooting experience. When I was shooting a Bill Drill or a longer string of fire the Ares just stayed on target. Just putting rounds on top of rounds. It felt like I was playing Contra with the cheat codes enable. Everyone remembers the legendary Contra code: Up, Up, Down, Down, Left, Right, Left, Right, B, A and then press start. I felt like that cheat code was engaged while shooting the Ares.

Contra Meets Perfect Zero

It isn’t the Contra cheat code that allows me to do this. It’s the adherence to the fundamentals of marksmanship and wonderful craftsmanship of the Ares that allows me to shoot so well. One of the design principles woven into the Ares is what Atlas calls, Perfect Zero.

Perfect Zero is the concept that the gun fires, lifts, and returns to the same spot on target without any outside forces by the shooter. This is possible when the shooter adheres to the fundamentals of marksmanship. Which is proper sight alignment, sight picture, grip, and trigger control. If the fundamentals are applied correctly the Ares should fall right back on target.

Atlas is able to achieve the Perfect Zero by fine tuning all of their 2011s. First, Atlas takes a different approach and builds the gun around the ammunition. The Ares is built and fine tuned around shooting various types of 9mm. That can be 115 GR range ammo, 124 GR +P defensive ammo, or 147 GR subsonic ammo. It is designed to run it all flawlessly.

Think of it like fine tuning a engine on a Shelby GT500, Ford GT, or Porsche 911 GT3. Those master mechanics and engineers fine tune those supercars to get the most out of those engines. Same concept with Atlas’s Perfect Zero concept. Building and tuning the pistol to land your sights back on target at your original point of aim after every shot. The key to this proper application of the fundamentals of marksmanship.

When shooting the Ares during the burndown at a accelerated rate of fire my sights where falling right back on target. That is because I was applying fundamentals of marksmanship. I would instantly notice when my fundamentals weren’t correct cause I could see my sights deviate from my sight alignment and picture. Exposing my weakness and where I need to approve as a shooter during rapid fire engagements. The Ares was an absolute blast to shoot during the Burndown and allowed me to test my accuracy, recoil management, speed, and trigger control.

Defensive Ammunition

I shot 100 rounds of defensive grade ammunition through the Ares. The Ares is designed to be a duty/edc pistol. So, it was only natural that I tested its ability to cycle hotter ammunition. During this part of the evaluation I used two different ammunition types. I used 9mm 115 GR Hornday Critical Defense and 124 GR +P Speer Gold Dot.

Hornday Critical Defense

First, I shot 50 rounds of Hornday Critical Defense ammunition through the Ares. The gun handle the feeding and loading of the ammunition with no problem. The Ares functioned as it should…reliably.

When it came down to increase or a perceived increase in recoil I didn’t witness any. The Ares shot just as flat with the normal 115 GR range ammunition versus the defensive ammunition. From a perception standpoint it seems like the defensive ammo from Hornday shot a little softer. At the end of the day I feel like they were equal.

Speer Gold Dot

Next, I shot 50 rounds of Speer Gold Dot through the Ares. When it came down to the feeding and loading of the ammunition the Ares handle it like a boss, yet again. Giving me the boring consistency and reliability I would expect from an Atlas Gunworks 2011.

In regards to recoil it was an increase with 124 GR +P ammunition. It was small increase. It didn’t have the usual snappiness the comes with shooting hotter defensive ammunition. The Ares still shot incredibly flat dude to its ported barrel removing that energy from being transferred to the Ares. Overall it was a pleasure to shoot with defensive ammunition. I could run the gun just effectively and fast with the defensive ammo as I could with the range ammo. Which feels like your cheating.

Final Range Visit

On my final range visit I shot about 400+ rounds. This range day was just to push my limits with the gun and have some fun. I ran plate racks, dueling trees, and shot steel anywhere from 7 to 25 yards.

Firearm: Atlas Gunworks Ares
Ammunition: 9mm Sellier and Bellot FMJ
Bullet Weight: 115 grain
Muzzle Velocity: 1280 ft/sec
Distance shot: 7-25 yards
Targets: Steel Targets, Plate Racks, & Dueling Trees
Rounds fired: 400+ rounds
Hours at Range: 3+ hours

The final range visit was to lock in my final thoughts on the Ares and what it brings to the table as an duty/edc pistol.

The more I shot the Ares the more I was impressed by its build quality, reliability, and accuracy. There wasn’t a shot I didn’t feel like I couldn’t take with the Ares. This is so wonderfully designed from the ground up it invokes confidence in the shooter. I never had this type of confidence or swag with another pistol. I personally own a couple of 2011s and I am confident with them but, this Ares is on another stratosphere.

The Ares is truly a Jack of All Trades type of pistol. Nowadays, that can have a potential bad connotation. The original quote from William Shakespeare was meant as a compliment. The original quote is, “a jack of all trades is a master of none, but oftentimes better than a master of one.” This Ares can fill the role as your duty/edc pistol one moment. You can pull up to the range and use it in ISPC or USPSA match during the weekend. Then, you can turn it right back into your concealed carry pistol. Giving the end user the biggest flexibility out of any pistol I have seen in a long time. The Ares is truly a multi-role pistol which makes it even more invaluable to the end user.

The Caveats

Overall, I believe the Ares is a wonderfully crafted pistol. It was built from the ground up to be a work horse. Just because it’s a wonderfully crafted pistol doesn’t mean its flawless. There are definitely some caveats with this pistol. There are three main caveats I want to explore: sights and trigger, accessories and holsters, price and presentation.

Sights

The first caveat I want to discuss is are the sights and trigger. Let’s start with the sights. The sights in this package are great. You have blacked out adjustable rear sight with a fiber optic front sight. The Ares is a very expensive 2011 that is designed for duty/edc use.

If I am purchasing a pistol with those uses in mind I would expect a night sights from jump street. If I’m gonna run this with just irons, Tritium sights are a must. You can even keep the blacked out rear sight and give me a Tritium front sight post and I will be happy. That is an attention to detail and case usage dynamic that needs to be consider when building a duty/edc pistol. I understand that the heritage that the Ares is coming from is one of competition. I even stated that this gun can be used in a duty/edc role and be shot in a 3-Gun competition on the weekends. It’s an incredible versatile pistol but, duty/edc considerations should be taken first.

Trigger

Second, I believe that the trigger is a little to light for an duty/edc handgun. If Ares is truly wanted to be looked at as a contender to the popular and successful Staccato P it needs to have a heavier trigger pull. The Staccato P is approved for duty use by over 325 law enforcement agencies across the nation, including U.S. Marshals, Texas Rangers, and Las Vegas Metro.

I reached out to a friend who currently works for Las Vegas Metro. He informed me that all duty pistol must come with a trigger weight no lighter than a 4.5 lbs from the factory. The average Glock or P320 series comes with a 5-5.5 lb trigger pull weight. Unless you are Law Enforcement inside the state of New York with a trigger pull weight of 12 lbs for officers. Which is outrageous.

Now, let’s compare apples to apples. The Staccato P has a 4.5 lbs trigger from factory. Where the Ares has a super sexy 3 lbs trigger pull from factory. That means the Ares needs an extra 1.5 lbs of weight added to its trigger to be competitive. If Atlas Gunworks can add an 1.5 lbs of trigger weight and keep the same pre-travel, wall, and reset the Staccato P doesn’t have a chance. Since the Staccato P is setting the standard, has board appeal and acceptance that the bar to meet. I’m confident if the Ares truly wanted to be competitive in that space the addition of 1.5 lbs would be nothing.

I also think for normal edc considerations the trigger should be at a solid 4 lbs. I think 4-5 lbs is a solid trigger pull weight for an edc firearm. You don’t want your trigger too light or too heavy for an edc pistol. You want that Goldie Locks and The Three Bears of having the trigger pull that is just right. I think a jump to 4.5 lbs will allow the Ares to be competitive within the duty space and give people a little more security for edc considerations.

Accessories & Holsters

Ares with G-Code Level 2 Retention Holster

When it comes to accessories for the Atlas Ares that is pretty easy to find. On the Atlas Gunworks website they work hard to keep all meaningful accessories for their pistols in stock. Dawson Precision also makes accessories for Atlas pistols. A Surefire X300U, Streamlight TRL-1 HL, a Modlite or Ariaska light will easily fit on the 1913 Picatinny rail for the Ares.

The big question mark comes from holster compatible. The holsters that are offered on Atlas Gunworks website are Outside the Waistband focused for various pistols. You would have to reach out to holster manufacturers to see if they have a holster that is compatible for the Ares. As, of my personal research of Tier 1 Concealed, LAS Concealment, TXC holsters, or Tenicor don’t make holsters specifically for the Ares. Could a Staccato P holster potentially hold the Ares? Yes, it absolutely could but, it wasn’t designed from the floor up for the Ares.

Before, releasing the Ares, Atlas could have potential reached out to Tier 1 Concealed, LAS Concealment, TXC holsters, or to others holster manufacturers. So, from day one end users can find a holster for their Ares and carry as soon as possible. As of right now it’s a shot in the dark on finding IWB holster compatibility. Which means a delay on carrying the Ares as your primary pistol if you wanted to.

Sarfariland Competition Holster

When it comes down to holster compatibility I was lucky. I originally borrowed a friend’s Safariland 3-Gun competition holster for use during this review. Fortunately, I was able to run the Ares in my Level 2 retention holster from G-Code. I’m not sure if the 6000 series Safariland holster can be retrofitted to fit the Ares by potential popping the barrel plug, flashlight cap, and hitting it with some heat. I don’t think it would fit in any 7000 series Safariland holster because it’s an enclosed system.

Even, if you would want to run a traditional Kydex OWB holster you would run into compatibility issues. None of the major brands or even some of the smaller brands like Quick, Violent, Over don’t have holster specifically designed for the Atlas Gunworks 2011s. I feel that Atlas should look into making that more of a priority especially if they are looking to merge more into that duty/edc role with the Ares.

Price Point & Presentation

Show Me The Money!

Lastly, I want to talk about price point and presentation. Everyone knows that a well built and extremely reliable 1911/2011 comes at a premium. It’s apart of the business. You get what you pay for…bottomline when it comes down to this market. The Atlas Gunworks Ares also comes in at a premium price point. The Ares will set you back a cool $6,000.

Not everyone has $6k at their disposal to drop on a duty/edc focused pistol. I personal don’t have the ability to own an Ares at that price point. Some people would have a hard time justifying the price even if they had the money for a duty/edc focused pistol.

Which begs the question who is the Ares really for?

At the heart of it all that’s a complex question. I’m a firm believer that the Ares is worth every penny of that $6k price tag. The Ares is such a amazingly designed and engineered pistol I believe everyone should own it yet, that’s not the reality.

For most shooters especially in the duty/edc realm aren’t going to pay $6k for a pistol no matter how phenomenal the design, ergonomics, or accuracy is. They can spend money on a Glock 17, SIG P320, or Smith & Wesson M&P 2.0 for about $500 bucks. Then spend the remainder on accessories and training to become more proficient shooter. If they are really interested in a 2011 as a duty pistol they can buy for a Staccato P. A new Staccato P will run about $2500 dollars. The Staccato P also comes with a great reputation among civilians and law enforcement.

In the end the Atlas Ares is for the discerning owners and connoisseurs of ultra premium 2011 pistols who are looking for an unrivaled duty/edc experience at their fingerprints.

Do I think it is worthy the price of admission for the Ares?

Yes, I absolutely feel that the Ares is worthy every cent of that $6k price tag from Atlas Gunworks. From the design and engineering to the fit and finish of this pistol it is Impeccable. The accuracy it shoots with and the extreme reliability that it functions with cannot be understated. This Ares is worth its hefty price of admission.

Presentation

The final topic I wanted to touch on was presentation. This Ares has a $6k price tag. I would want the presentation experience to be top notch as well. The Ares comes with a pistol range bag by Atlas Gunworks with three pistol mags.

In regards of the presentation I believed the Atlas Gunworks is lacking. You can by a Zev Technologies OZ.9 pistol. That OZ.9 will will come with a small red Pelican pistol case, cutout foam inserts, and a user manual and warranty. That whole build will set you back about $2,000-$2800 dollars. That’s a rough estimate. If I spend $2500 on a pistol and can have that type of presentation. I expect my $6k Ares should meet that bar and surpass it. I’m not sayin the Atlas Gunworks pistol bag isn’t a well built quality range bag, because it is. I just expect more with my investment. Atlas provides an ultra premium 2011 experience. I’m looking for all parts of that experience to be made with the same attention to detail.

Final Thoughts

Over the past month I spent a lot of time dry firing and live firing the Ares. The more time I spend, the more subtleties of its build quality and craftsmanship becomes clear to me. It’s nothing more satisfying than learning something new about a firearm. That can be either aesthetically or mechanically. It just brings a wonderfully mischievous smile to my face, like the Grinch. This firearm is a wonderfully handcrafted masterpiece from the team over at Atlas Gunworks.

In conclusion, the Ares is a beast of a firearm that is ready for primetime. The Ares by Atlas Gunworks is wonderfully handcrafted pistol that is a Jack of All Trades pistol. That can be used as amazing duty/edc pistol and a pistol you can use at a 3-Gun event that weekend. This gun versatility is only a bonus to the end user.

As, stared before the Ares is a beast. To reach the Ares full potential you have to become fluent in the intricacies of its design. That means as the shooter you have to bring out its full potential. In the grand scheme of things I know I haven’t pulled out fhe full potential of the Ares. That takes time. As, Maverick says in the newest Top Gun Movie, “It’s not the plane, it’s the pilot.” Same rule applies here with the Ares. “It’s not the gun, it’s the shooter.” It’s the shooters job to bring out its full potential and maximize its capabilities.

Thanks For Reading

Thanks you enjoyed this post, hit that like button, share it a friend, and subscribe. If you have any suggestions, ideas, or comments. Please feel free to drop a comment. Be Humble. Train until only savagery remains and stay deadly ladies and gents.

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