Smith & Wesson’s M&P line of pistols is Smith’s flagship series of full-size, compact, and sub-compact, double-stack pistols. Chambered in a variety of calibers including 9mm, .40 S&W, .45 ACP, and 10mm Auto these pistols have gained a reputation for reliability and ease of use. They are widely used by law enforcement across the United States and are extremely popular among civilians interested in self-defense.
The original M&P pistol was released in 2005. It had some big selling points that set it apart from its striker-fired competition, including a more contoured grip at a less-radical angle, and interchangeable backstraps to fit different hand sizes. Twelve years later, responding to some consistent complaints about the M&P. Smith introduced an updated product line called the “M&P 2.0.” The 2.0 line of pistols was met with much fanfare, and this is when the author’s eye was caught by the S&W family of polymer-framed pistols.
The M&P 2.0 pistols featured some serious changes. Maybe the most appreciated upgrade was the improved trigger, the original M&P having been constantly criticized for having a subpar trigger. The “new and improved” 2.0 line also featured a rougher trip texture, longer metal slide rails, a metal magazine release, and more serrations on the slide, including forward slide serrations. Then new 2.0 pistols were very good-looking pistols, and the enhancements extended from the full-size M&P all the way down to the sub-compact S&W M&P Shield.
Smith & Wesson M&P 2.0 9mm Trigger Upgrades
Despite the improvements of the M&P 2.0 design, the trigger on M&P pistols still leaves a lot to be desired. The standard trigger is made of plastic, and has a two-part design. This two-part system is designed as a drop safety, the lower half of the trigger needing to be articulated separately from the upper half to release a lever, allowing the trigger to be pulled, similar to Glock’s “Safe Action” trigger. This dual-motion of the trigger introduces some additional motion and makes the trigger something less-than-crisp.
Additionally, the trigger is made of plastic. Unlike metal triggers, plastic flexes to a palpable degree, imparting even more motion into the trigger. Having owned a M&P Shield 2.0, M&P9C 2.0, and M&P9 2.0, the author can attest to this phenomenon. This all adds up to a trigger than is somewhat “soft” at best, and “mushy” at worst. This does not make the M&P easy to shoot with a great deal of precision.
Another complaint against the M&P 2.0 series’ triggers is the lack of a tactile and audible reset. Although it isn’t a method we focus on, some shooters like a discernible reset when “riding the reset” to move the trigger finger forward as little as possible between shots.
Finally, the S&W M&P triggers have a marked curvature that many shooters don’t like. The trigger finger falls into this steep curve and some argue that trigger finger placement is less precise than would be the case on a flatter trigger. Another complaint about the curved trigger is that the trigger finger does not apply equal force across the entire length of the trigger, again promoting poor accuracy.
As you can see there are plenty of complaints about the stock trigger in the M&P line of handguns from Smith & Wesson. That also means there are plenty of problems to fix and plenty of reasons to upgrade your trigger. An upgraded trigger can help improve your accuracy, speed, and confidence in your M&P pistol.
There are a million upgrades you can do add to your M&P pistol, from a longer barrel to a fiber optic front sight, or a night sight upgrade. Probably the most important, however, is an upgraded trigger. Let’s take a look at some options from Overwatch Precision!
Smith and Wesson M&P 2.0, Metal 2.0 TAC Trigger System
The METAL 2.0 TAC Trigger System from Overwatch Precision is a prime example of an upgraded M&P trigger that solves many of the M&P’s problems. The METAL 2.0 TAC Trigger system is a six-piece system that is proven to improve your Smith’s trigger pull. The upgrades in this kit include the trigger, a one-piece, flat-faced trigger shoe that gets rid of the OEM hinged trigger.
Aside from the metal, flat-faced trigger shoe, this kit also includes an upgraded, NP3-coated trigger bar, a NP3-coated striker block, an upgraded trigger return spring, and two unique 316 stainless sear springs for fine tuning. With this kit installed your M&P 2.0 will have a consistent, smooth, and predictable trigger break. It will also have 35% less pre-travel, 36% less over travel, allowing you to take full advantage of this otherwise-outstanding pistol. The METAL 2.0 TAC Trigger system is only available for M&P pistols chambered in 9mm and 40 S&W.
The METAL 2.0 TAC Trigger system is also available for the M&P Shield. 2.0. Though even the original Shield trigger has traditionally been regarded as superior to the larger, double-stack M&P pistols, it still leaves a lot to be desired. The Shield is one of the most popular pistols on the market today and improving its factory trigger goes a long way to making it a more capable defensive handgun. This kit also functions on the new Shield Plus, the new 10+1 and 13+1 offering in the Shield line.
Smith and Wesson M&P 2.0 FALX Trigger System
If you prefer the curved trigger that the M&P family is known for but still desire a trigger upgrade, the M&P 2.0 FALX Trigger System might be for you. The M&P 2.0 FALX Trigger system is a six-piece system that is proven to improve your Smith’s trigger pull. The upgrades in this kit include OP’s aluminum FALX trigger shoe which retains the OEM-ish curve while deleting the hinge aspect of the OEM trigger.
Aside from the improved trigger shoe, this kit also includes an upgraded, NP3-coated trigger bar, a NP3-coated striker block, an upgraded trigger return spring, and two unique 316 stainless sear springs for fine tuning. With this kit installed you M&P 2.0 will have 35% less pre-travel, 36% less over travel, allowing you to take full advantage of this otherwise-outstanding pistol while retaining the classic M&P look.
M&P 2.0 NP3'ed 9mm Competition Only SEAR with springs
If you want to further refine your M&P Pistol for competition, you may wish to add a NP3 Competition-Only Sear to your trigger kit. This sear, made from A2 tool steel, can allow you to lower the trigger pull to between 3.5 and 4.25 lbs. – and in some cases, as low as 2.8 pounds – dependent on your sear spring configuration. This is in inexpensive upgrade to your M&P competition pistol and may give you that competitive edge.
It is important to note that Overwatch Precision only recommends the NP3 Competition Only Sear for competition use. It is not intended for carry, duty, or defensive use due to the very light trigger pulls possible with its use.
M&P 2.0 NP3'ed Striker Block with Spring
If you’re looking for a very accessible, simple option to improve the trigger pull of your M&P without altering its look or function (perhaps on a duty gun), consider the NP3’ed Striker Block with Spring. The striker block is an internal part on S&W M&P pistols. The upgraded striker block from Overwatch Precision (the same one included in our trigger kits) is machined from A2 tool steel to precise dimensions. It is coated with NP3, which is a space-age, self-lubricating finish. It creates a smoother trigger pull with a predictable “wall.”
The Best Trigger Upgrades for S&W M&P 2.0
The S&W M&P line is a phenomenal family of pistols. Their flagship, double-stack M&Ps are offered in full-sized, compact, and subcompact pistols, as well as a “long slide,” 5”-inch model with a longer barrel. The Smith & Wesson M&P Shield, the O.G. subcompact pistol that started a trend is still around, and it has led to the Shield Plus. Additionally, the newest M&Ps, the Shield EZ pistols, offers a grip safety and an easy-to-rack slide. This lineup truly offers something for everyone. They are reliable, accurate, and handsome pistols.
If there is one overriding complaint about the M&P it is the trigger. An aftermarket trigger can dramatically improve the performance of a M&P Pistol, and Overwatch Precision makes some of the best in the industry, including our METAL 2.0 TAC Trigger System and M&P 2.0 FALX Trigger System. Both of these will dramatically increase the accuracy and split speed of your M&P pistol without compromising reliability.
And don’t forget that Overwatch Precision’s parts are warrantied forever against damage and defects, whether you’re the original owner or not. These aren’t novelty kits or quick, inexpensive upgrades. Our trigger kits are made for bet-your-life reliability under hard use. Be sure to check out our offerings for ARs, CZ, Glock, HK, Springfield, and Walther pistols, as well!