Test Gun: Ruger LCP
Barrel length: 2.75 inches.
Ammunition: Fiocchi .380 ACP 90gr XTP
Test media: 10% Vyse Ballistics Gel.
Distance: 10 feet.
Chronograph: Caldwell Ballistic Precision Chronograph G2.
Five shot velocity average: 808fps
BB Calibration: 3.75 inches.

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In July I did a test of the Federal Hydra-Shok deep in .380 and its performance was very well. As I said in that post, Shooting the Bull did some extensive testing of .380 ammo and concluded the Hornady XTP and the best .380 round for carrying in small pocket pistols. I realize he later change his opinion to the Lehigh defense Extreme Penatrater but we are just comparing conventional hollow points.

Other then Shooting the Bull’s testing I have not seen anyone test the Hornady XTP in real organic ballistics gel. I did test the Fiocchi loading of the XTP bullet last December but it was in Clear Gel and as we have found out the difference can be quite considerable. Since I had some leftover from the last test I thought it would be a good idea to shoot them in Vyse organic ballistics gel so we could have a direct comparison of what may be the two best .380 rounds on the market.

Some of you are saying to your self, “but he picked the Precision One brand of ammo, not Fiocchi”. And while that is true, the reality is a Hornady XTP is the same bullet no matter who loads it. If you look at his test of the Fiocchi and the Precision One, you will notice the velocity was only a few feet per second different. Not enough to make a difference in performance. Tested with different lots or different days the results may have been different.

Not having a full box of ammo I use chrony and off hand target results from the last test.

I got a five-shot average velocity of 808fps with a high of 828fps and a low of 790fps.

Five rounds offhand at 5 yards.

Shooting the first round int the bare gelatin, I got a velocity of 796fps and penetration of 11 inches. The recovered expansion was .50 inches and the weight was 90.3 grains. Round two also made it to the 11-inch mark with a velocity of 817fps. It expanded to .51 inches and had a recovered weight of 90.6 grains.

When shooting through heavy clothing gel the first round hit at a velocity of 785fps and penetrated to 14 inches. It expanded to .46 inches and had a recovered weight of 90.4 grains. The second round had a velocity of 785fps and penetrated to 11.5 inches. It expanded to .52 inches and its recovered weight was 90.4 grains.

Since Shooting the Bull tested his through four layers of denim and I also tested the Federal Hydra-Dhoks in denim too I decided to shoot these through denim also.
Round one in the four layers of denim-covered gel had a velocity of 794fps. Its penetration was 12.75 inches and expanded to .53 at its widest point. The recovered weight was 90.2 grains. The second round had a velocity of 778fps and penetrated to 13 inches. The recovered weight was 90 grains and it expanded to .47 inches.

I think the 90gr XTP’s did pretty well but are they better. As Paul Harrell would say,”you be the judge”.

Again we see how different the performance was when compared to Clear gel. In the clear gel the bullets shot into the heavy clothing didn’t expand at all. This simply reinforces my choice to stop using Clear gel.


  1. Thanks for another informative report! In more normal times, i.e. prior to late May 2020, this ammo was readily available and priced *very* competitively. I noticed several of your test shots came in slightly below your chronographed test string’s low of 790, yet even these expanded every time. Penetration, unsurprisingly for a .380 from a micro-compact, is on the light end of the FBI standard, but 11″ is nothing to sneeze at, and several shots went deeper. Good test, good ammo. Thanks again!


  2. Good test. I recall reading that in .380 the only other hollowpoint worth a damn is the old 90gr Federal Hydra-Shok, which likewise deforms just a bit and usually penetrates around 12″ in calibrated gelatin.

    I’m really surprised to see this bullet expand this well even through heavy clothing, at sub-800 feet per second. (If only the 185gr and 200gr XTP in .45 performed so well and so consistently at such velocities, or the 110gr and 125gr in .38 Special!) I wonder what the 90gr XTP does at closer to the manufacturer’s stated specs, at 900-1000 f.p.s. It seems likely to me that it’d expand more. Would the added momentum help it penetrate deeper or would it expand faster and stop sooner?

    I know Hornady also used to load this bullet in 9mm, and once upon a time 88-90gr hollowpoint bullets intended for the .380, loaded up to 1300-1400 f.p.s., were considered by some knowledgeable people like the late George Nonte to be about as good as you could get in 9mm. Granted, this was back around 1977, but I wonder how the XTP would perform at the higher velocity, given that it’s supposedly a controlled-expansion design. I also wonder how fast you could safely push the 90gr XTP from a 3″ or 4″ .357, but then I think about the likely consequences of greatly accelerated topstrap erosion, forcing cone erosion, maybe even erosion to the cylinder face, and it gives me pause. Then again, a 16″ or 20″ lever action rifle in .357 has no barrel cylinder gap and no vulnerable forcing cone to damage, and I wonder if you could hit 2300 or 2400 feet per second with the right powder, and how well these little bullets would hold together in gel at those velocities. I recall reading that the 240gr XTP intended for the .44 Mag holds together and expands quite nicely even at .444 Marlin velocities.


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