Canik Mete SFT Handgun Review: Stealing the Popular TP9’s Throne? By:

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Quick Canik History

TP9SA and Mete SFT pistols on display
The orginal TP9SA, left, next to the Mete SFT. I would say they have strikingly different profiles and features. The Mete on the right certainly boasts a lot of upgrades. Note the black area on the back of the TP9SA just in front of the sight. That is a decocker on a single-action-only pistol – not great in my humble opinion. However, it does shoot very well. (Photo: Paul Peterson/Guns.com)

OK, full confession, I’ve been a huge fan of the Canik TP9 line ever since I shot my first one in 2015. It’s largely a Walther P99 clone, yet I honestly couldn’t believe a gun at that price range performed like it did for me at the range.

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Based in Turkey, Canik began importing its first guns into the U.S. in partnership with Century Arms. Some of Canik’s earliest guns were double-action/single-action affairs with somewhat nasty, gritty triggers. Then Canik rolled out its TP9SA, which had a single-action-only trigger that was a dream compared to the original.

But it had one major flaw. On top of the slide, there was a completely pointless decocker left over from the original double-action/single-action TP9. If hit, it left the pistol as dead as a fish in the Sahara Desert. Canik quickly fixed this with its next generation, the TP9SF.

Related: Budget Pistols Built Like Tanks – Meet the Canik TP9 Series

Canik Pistols
Clearly the Mete on the left and the TP9 on the right are related, but I bet Canik would claim that evolution has occurred. (Photo: Paul Peterson/Guns.com)

The TP9 series has since moved on to provide everything from tactical options to pistols for concealed carry and competition. Offering reliable guns with a nice trigger at a bargain price gained Canik a foothold in the crowded U.S. handgun market.

Now Meet the Mete

Canik Mete SFT Pistol
There’s a lot going on in the improved external features of the gun, from the grip texture to the undercuts at the back and the front of the trigger guard. I had not even thought about that last one as an option before. The Mete has an additional undercut at the front of the trigger guard for those who run their support-hand finger in front for the trigger guard. (Photo: Paul Peterson/Guns.com)

Canik’s Mete line boasts the bold tagline, “The Evolution of Superiority!” The company fully acknowledges that the Mete (pronounced “Met-Ay” if you were wondering) builds off the TP9 family while offering a more refined end product. Basically, there’s a host of external and internal upgrades over the blockier TP9 series that we’ll dig into in the specs later.

Perhaps just as noteworthy as the upgrades was the speed at which Canik rolled out new models. The Mete launched in August 2021, but it already has at least six unique models in early 2023. The Mete we have on hand today is actually a Mete SFT, my own personal firearm. Other flavors include the standard Mete SF along with the more competition-ready Mete SFxand SFx Pro.

No doubt that list will grow. In fact, the newest member of the Mete family is the compact MC9 that just hit the scene in January. It joins the already popular TP9 Elite SC to make up Canik’s concealed carry offerings.

Related: Review – Canik TP9 Elite SC for Range Days & Self-Defense

My SFT falls between a Glock 19 and a Glock 17 for size. That’s a bit big for what most people want for a concealed carry gun, but I have done it comfortably in an appendix IWB holster. Regardless, I’m excited about the much smaller MC9.

Specs & Features

Canik Mete SFT Pistol
This is one of the easiest handguns to disassemble. There are only four main parts, and even the takedown lever (large black square on the frame above the trigger) is enlarged and easier to use than on most guns. (Photo: Paul Peterson/Guns.com)

Some companies roll out new models or gun lines every year that seem, well, underwhelmingly different from the previous model. The Mete is an exception. The guts may be similar to a TP9, but the changes are many and noticeable to the shooter.

Oddly, Canik’s own website claims the “external changes are subtle but are instantly recognizable when handling the firearm.” I half disagree. I quickly noticed the differences. The company includes an integrally flared magazine well, improved texturing on the front of the grip, redesigned beavertail, and double-undercut trigger guard.

Other changes include a low-profile, ambi slide stop. I really liked this on the range. Some of the ambi TP9 slide stops were annoyingly large and actually impeded my grip. The rear sight is also angled forward if you needed to rack the slide with just one hand. Canik even modified the internal push pins for easier disassembly of the internal parts.

Canik Mete SFT Pistol
The flared magwell is noticeable, and it comes with a metal adapter if you want to enlarge it. (Photo: Paul Peterson/Guns.com)

Finally, following the trend of red dots on pistols, the Mete slide features a cut to accept micro optics with the Trijicon RMRcc and Shield RMS/RMSc footprint. I have not tested this option yet, because I’m still stuck in the iron-sight age. Normal white metal three-dot iron sights come standard.

Canik Mete SFT Pistol
From top left to bottom right, we have a loaded chamber indicator, optics plate, ambidextrous slide stop with a reversible magazine release, and an easy-to-use takedown lever. (Photo: Paul Peterson/Guns.com)

The gun ships with one 18-round magazine and an additional 20-rounder. There’s a Picatinny rail up front, a loaded indicator on top, and a cocked indicator at the rear. For the lefties out there, the magazine release is not ambi, but you can swap it to the other side.

Here’s a rundown of the Mete SFT specs by the numbers:

Length: 7.5 inchesHeight: 5.73 inchesWidth: 1.4 inchesBarrel Length: 4.46 inchesWeight: 1.76 poundsTrigger Pull: 3.75 pounds (10-pull average)

I found the trigger to be outstanding, especially in a production gun. There is about a quarter inch of light but noticeable take-up. After that, you are basically at the wall, and the break is crisp and clean. The reset is just an eighth of an inch, positive, and fast. You can run this gun fast if you want.

Canik Mete SFT Pistol
If you’ve shot a lot of factory-production triggers, you’ll love the refinement in the Mete’s production trigger. (Photo: Paul Peterson/Guns.com)
Canik Mete SFT Pistol
The grip texture is positive. The magazine well helps lock your hand in and makes loading easier. And, naturally, there is a Pic rail up front. (Photo: Paul Peterson/Guns.com)

The grip texture was also close to my “Goldilocks zone” for production grips. It’s positive and gritty, but not so much so that it wears on my hands over time or snags my calluses. That texturing is only on the side panels and the front. The back strap merely features raised bumps with a pronounced hump. I found the angled front and rear slide serrations to be sufficient, though the rear ones are a bit shallow if I’m being picky.

Sights are basic, but they work. If you want to replace them with something like night sights, Canik does offer them, and several manufacturers make Canik-specific sights. I am unsure about cross-compatibility with other brands for the Mete line.

Canik Mete SFT Pistol
As always, Canik dumped in every extra it could find. These include a hard case, loading tool, metal magwell adapter, two optics bases, two extra backstraps, punch and tool kit, cleaning kit, and the standard gun lock (not pictured). The adorable mini Canik in the lower right corner has extra screw bits in its grip and works like a screwdriver, and no FFL is required for that bit. (Photo: Paul Peterson/Guns.com)
Canik Mete SFT Pistol
There’s also a reversible IWB/OWB holster that works much better than most included holsters out there. (Photo: Paul Peterson/Guns.com)

Shooting & Accuracy

Enhancements are only enhancements if they work. For the most part, the Mete’s upgrades were noticeable on the range. The integrally flared magwell does help with quick loading and locks your hand in nicely. Adding the metal adapter really makes loading and locking in your hand easy.

Canik Mete SFT Pistol
At 25 feet on my first range trip, I won’t complain. You can almost see how I was working to get used to the light and crisp trigger with some of the fliers that are away from the group. (Photo: Paul Peterson/Guns.com)

I found myself accidentally riding the larger slide stops on some of the Canik TP9 pistols, but that was not an issue with the Mete. The magazine release was also very easy to reach, which was appreciated because I rolled into my first range session with four 18-round mags and two 20-round mags ready to rock.

I’m sitting north of 600 rounds through this gun so far. The bulk of that was a mix of 115-grain Federal American Eagle and Syntech range ammo, as well as 115-grain Remington Range, Blazer, and BCC Adrenaline. I did also blow through 100 rounds of 124-grain SIG Elite Performance hollow-point ammo, a box of 115-grain steel-case Tula, and an equal amount of cheap factory-reloaded brass. I never really questioned reliability, which proved to be great. My first TP9 went years without an issue, and that was a faulty primer.

Canik Mete SFT Pistol
I have a lot of different types of ammo through this gun, and it really doesn’t care what I shoot through it so far. (Photo: Paul Peterson/Guns.com)
Canik Mete SFT Pistol
Mags filled with 18 and 20 rounds make ammo go away pretty fast. (Photo: Paul Peterson/Guns.com)

As for accuracy, it did take me a mag or two to get a feel for the gun. Honestly, I’m not accustomed to nice triggers. I normally find myself shooting production triggers that are practical but not impressive. The Mete trigger is light, crisp, and fast for a production gun. It tended to surprise me a bit at first when it went bang with so little effort. But at 25 feet on my first range visit, groups of 1-2 inches were appearing on paper. I could tell when I rushed based on the fliers.

The ergonomics of the grip and grip angle help with that. I find the large hump on the center of the backstrap just sits in my hand well and makes it easy to return to my point of aim. The sights, on the other hand, are just fine. There’s nothing special about the three dots, but the sights are raised to co-witness with at least some dots on the market. As a primarily iron-sight shooter, I actually find that a bit annoying, but I understand the purpose.

Canik Mete SFT Pistol
The hump on the backstrap fits nicely in my hand. (Photo: Paul Peterson/Guns.com)

If anything, I would have expected to shoot better with the Mete. My first few outings with a Canik TP9SA had me shooting fist-sized groups at 25 yards. I think I may have acquired some training scars over the years that need to be addressed. At 25 yards with the Mete, I was shooting groups that were more like 5 to 7 inches with a decent amount of effort.

Pros & Cons