CZ 75 Review: Hands-On Tested!
Today we are embracing hipster culture and putting our flannels on, sipping our craft beers, and shooting our CZ 75. The CZ 75 is one of the most reproduced pistols globally, and today we are chunking lead with CZ’s O.G., the CZ 75 B.
CZ 75 Specs
- Barrel Length 4.6 inches
- Overall Length 8.1 inches
- Weight 2.2lbs
- Width 1.4 inches
- Capacity 10-16 rounds
- Caliber 9mm
Spies, Secret Patents, and CZs
From the name CZ 75, you can rightly assume that the 75 stands for 1975. The CZ 75 is one of the early ‘wonder nines’ that mixed a semi-auto platform, a 9mm chambering, and a double-stack magazine. The lineage of the CZ 75 can be easily traced back to the famed Hi-Power and the SIG P210.
In 1975 Czechoslovakia wasn’t the Czech Republic and lived behind the famed Iron Wall. They developed the CZ 75 for export but never obtained international patents protecting their design. Instead, they were issued secret patents that aimed to conceal the firearm and prohibited anyone in Czechoslovakia from reproducing the firearm.
The design was ahead of its time, and when the firearm leaked into the international community, the lack of international patents allowed anyone to make a CZ 75, so they did. The CZ 75 became one of the most copied pistols in the world! Italy, Israel, Turkey, China, and many more produced their copies of the famed pistol.
These days if you want a CZ 75, you can pick and choose from a wide variety of copies, or like me, you can still get the O.G. from CZ themselves. Well, kind of. The CZ 75 B models implement longer slide rails, a half cock position, and a firing pin block. It’s not much different, and models with full-length slide rails have been produced since 1980, and models with the firing pin block have been around since 1993.
CZ 75 Features
1 Internal Slide Rails
2 DA/SA Trigger
3 Hammer Forged barrels
4 All Steel Construction
5 Manual Safety
CZ 75 Gun Models
The firearm we’re reviewing today comes with a few variations, let’s check them now below;
CZ 75 Review – Our Take
Ye Olde CZ 75 is certainly a product of its time. This big, heavy, full-size 9mm pistol holds nothing back in the size and weight department. Much like the M1911, the CZ 75 is largely a product of its time. It’s not necessarily the first pistol I’d pick up for home defense, concealed carry, or duty use. However, some of those old-school features make it an excellent competition series pistol.
All 35.2 ounces of metal make it quite controllable, especially when paired with the low bore axis and the lightweight slide. The slide rides inside the frame instead of outside of it. That delivers us the very low-profile slide and the unique CZ 75 look. From a practical perspective, the lower bore axis and the lightweight slide reduces felt recoil and increases control. This is my favorite centerfire pistol for new shooters due to the low recoil and controllability.
My CZ 75 B has the simplified Omega trigger. This trigger system is easy to upgrade, but I never saw the point. The double-action provides that long heavy trigger we are used to, but it’s also quite smooth and grit-free. Our single-action trigger is very light and crisp with just a hair of take-up. The worst part of the trigger is the somewhat long reset. It really takes away from a very nice stock trigger.
Honestly, your accuracy may suffer a bit in double action, especially if you are shooting for tight groups, but with plenty of practice, you can master that trigger and become proficient with it. Lots of dry fire will make the double action second nature. In terms of accuracy, the CZ 75 does well.
Hitting headshots at 25 yards is fairly simple to do. Heck, ringing steel gongs at 35 yards proved easy. Back to 50 yards, the front sight covered most of the steel gong, and I felt my accuracy slip. However, with that said, I could still hit it more times than I missed. Sure, that might mean six out of ten, but the point stands. The sights sit very low on the CZ 75 B and don’t catch the eye extremely well.
It’s just a simple three-dot setup. I’d prefer a slightly thinner, maybe slightly taller front and rear sight. A good fiber optic front sight and all-black rear would increase practical range and speed. I think speed should be part of the conversation when we talk about accuracy. While I can hit the target just fine, other guns allow me to hit the same target faster.
Ergonomically I love the CZ 75 B. The gun sits in my hand like it was made for it. The grip is just perfect and very slim, allowing shooters with various hand sizes to grip the gun comfortably. The controls are all large and easy to reach with minimal thumb movement.
Engaging the manual safety is easy, and the safety itself is interesting. It cannot be engaged with the hammer down. With the hammer cocked to single action, you can activate the safety and carry it locked and cocked safely.
The magazine release is a big metal button that can be reached with a slight downward shift of my thumb makes it easy to drop mags and reload. CZ made the slide lock/release massive and textured for easy access. This is one of the few guns out there that has a slide release that my thumb doesn’t pin down when firing. My only ergonomic issue is how small the slide is. It can be tough to grip, especially when you are new to the gun.
In terms of reliability, well, it’s rock solid. I’ve owned this gun for years. I love it, and I shoot it fairly often. It’s also a gun I turn to when teaching new shooters, so it’s been in the hands of shooters of all skill levels with questionable skills and techniques. Yet, it’s chugged through everything. This includes JHPs, steel-cased ammo, reloads, and of course, traditional brass.
I’ve had ammo-related malfunctions but can’t remember a single time the gun choked mechanically. Hard primers, projectiles sunk too deep into cases, and one crappy ProMag have caused issues, but the guns never failed to eject, extract, and have never suffered a double feed.
CZ 75 Pros and Cons
- Low recoil
- Easy to Control
- Awesome Ergonomics
- Very Reliable
- Lacks modern features like a rail, optics, etc
- Sights do little to catch the eye
- Heavy for carry
All that weight that makes it a terrible carry gun sure makes it a nice shooter. The slide design and ability to get a nice high grip make this thing a kitten in the control department. It’s great for new shooters who might be a little recoil-sensitive.
The metal-framed CZ runs and runs without complaint. Even with crappy ammo, it’s frustration-free. The only issues I’ve had are related to poorly made ammo and cheap magazines.
CZ knows how to design a gun ergonomically. Holy crap is this thing comfortable to grip, and the controls are all very easy to reach. My complaint is mainly the small slide, and it could use some more aggressive checkering or some slight wings for more positive engagement.
It’s accurate enough, but it could be better. A better set of sights would take it far, especially shooting with any kind of speed to it.
Ooh boy, the price sits at right around 600ish bucks on the current market. It’s a tough sell because it’s a pistol from 1975 that lacks a lot of the modern features. As such, it’s really a handgun for CZ nerds. If you want a concealed carry pistol, I will point you to the P-07. If you want a competition pistol, then the Shadow 2 or Czechmate. The CZ 75 B is more or less an experience and a range toy, and it’s an expensive one.
Reviewed by Travis Pike
Based on 20 Reviews
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The CZ 75 B is a great gun, but it’s a gun without a home or purpose. It’s fun to shoot, easy to shoot, and enjoyable, and sometimes that’s enough.
CZ 75 Gun Deals
CZ 75 Ammo
CZ 75 Starter Pack
If you’ve decided to pick up the CZ 75, or found another firearm that suits your needs, there are some bare essentials you’re going to need to pick up in order to maximize its potential and your safety regardless of if it’s your first firearm or not.
- Gun Cleaning Kit: Otis All Caliber Elite Range Box on Amazon or build your own personalized cleaning kit with premium components.
- Shooting Glasses: All it takes is one piece of rogue hot brass, and you’ll learn the importance of shooting glasses. But not all glasses are built the same. See our recommendations for the Best Shooting Glasses.
- Hearing Protection: Firing a gun without wearing proper ear pro can be very dangerous and detrimental to your hearing. Find out the best hearing protection for you in our full length review.
- Storage: Check our our article on the Best Biometric Gun Safes
- Targets – If you’re wanting a great resource for shooting practice or zeroing your optics on your optics rifle or pistol, download our FREE Sighting in Targets below.
Upgrades and Accessories
CZ 75 Accessories
Caring For Your CZ 75
It’s critical not only to keep your guns secure, but also to understand how strip it down and care for it. In this video below we have found a great video which covers this topic.
Important Links and Manuals
May 26, 2023
May 26, 2023
I found CZ when I searched for a Single Action .40 over 20 yrs ago. Since then I have added the CZ 75B DA .40, CZ 75B 9mm DA and another in stainless I converted to SA, CZ P-01, CZ p-06 (.40) and CZ 75D compact aka PCR 9mm. I’ve used aftermarket sights on most. I’m a fanboy for sure. I’ve tuned the actions on all using Cajun Gunworks action kits. All metal guns. If you’re a fan of striker fired poly guns they make a couple great models which get top reviews as well.
At combat range…..7 yards……excellent accuracy. I use nothing special….Winchester White Box and it is fine.
Heavy piece which helps soak up recoil of hotter rounds. I think this is rated to be OK with even the +P 9mm now available…..
I need to test with some of the Hornaday Critical Defense ammo.
Not especially concealable, but will ride easily in your backpack (camping use!) or a car holster if you are so licensed…..
Available in 9mm and 40…..with, at one time, a .22 conversion kit available.
I felt in love with the CZ the moment I laid eyes on it back in 1992, at Larry’s Gun and Pawn in Huntsville, Alabama. The ergonomics were impossible to forget. The way the pistol sat in my hands, how it naturally aims at the target as I brought the gun up. An impossible to forget experience. It was not until 2008 that I ended up buying the stainless steel CZ 75b version. I regret not buying it earlier. Smooth trigger, a sense of security and trust, a CZ fan for life!!!!!!!!
I bought the CZ 75 B when I was interested in 3 gun. It fit my hand just like my 357 carry gun in the store. I bought several different types of ammo in 115 and 124 grain weights to test at the range. The gun was flawless with each brand and type. I couldn’t believe the lack of recoil and the accuracy was superb giving me a bit over 1 inch groups at 25 yards. I bought bullets and loaded rounds from maximum listed loads down well under the suggested starting loads and they all fired with no problems. I was looking for a load light enough that it would not cycle the gun but it all worked. I started working toward an accurate load for 3 gun and began practicing. My groups were less than 1 inch at 25 yards from a rest and just a tad over unsupported.
I was so pleased that I started looking for a 40 caliber for a carry gun. I bought the first 75 B I found and I am happy to say that it has the same accuracy as the first.
I purchased a CZ 75 from my local Bass Pro Shop. It fits my hand like a glove. I wear it on the hip using a BlackHawk holster. The felt recoil is negligible. The gun seems to like all the factory ammo I ‘ve have fired in it. I really enjoy the pistol. The CZ is a nice little gun. My only regret is that I should have purchased this classic years ago. Thank you CZ.