The Cybergun X-Five was the first replica I ever bought, so I have to admit having a particular fondness for this pistol. However, it’s also a pretty good visual and functional replica with good weight and heft and a fair shooter and I believe that it would appeal both to anyone interested in replica handguns.
Real steel background
Schweizerische Industrie Gesellschaft (SIG) is a Swiss company which designs and manufactures a range of semi-auto pistols. However, Swiss laws on the export of firearms are very restrictive. In order to facilitate export sales of their products, SIG entered a contractual agreement with German firearms manufacturer J. P. Sauer und Sohn GmbH. This joint venture became identified by the trade-name SIG Sauer and handguns bearing this name are manufactured either at the Sauer manufacturing plant in Eckernförde, Germany or at the SIG Sauer Inc. facility in New Hampshire, USA.
SIG Sauer P226
The SIG Sauer P226 is a locked breech, short-recoil operated semi-automatic pistol which is available chambered for 9mm, .40 S&W or .357 SIG cartridges. It is a development of the SIG 220 and was designed and introduced to enter the US Army XM9 Joint Service Pistol Trials in 1984. The XM9 trial was intended to find a replacement for the venerable Colt M1911A1 as a US service sidearm. The Beretta 92F was eventually selected, but only by a narrow margin over the P226. Despite losing out to the Beretta, the P226 went on to achieve a great deal of commercial success, being adopted by police, military and special service forces around the world. A licensed copy of the P226 is manufactured in China as the Norinco NP226. Unlicensed copies are also manufactured in Myanmar (as the MA-6) and Iran (as the ZOAF) and used by the armed forces of those countries.
SIG Sauer P226 X-Five
The P226 X-Five is a competition variant of the P226 with a longer 5 inch barrel, extended beavertail and an adjustable rear target sight. The X-Five is generally provided in polished metal finish, often with wood grips and is a replacement for the SIG210, one of the most highly regarded target shooting semi-auto pistols ever made. The X-Five is available chambered for 9mm or .40 S&W cartridges and each pistol is hand fitted and finished before being factory tested to confirm that it is capable of a sub-2″ grouping at 25 yards. The X-Five Tactical is a variant available only in 9mm and featuring a black Ilaflon finish, black plastic grips and fixed rear sights.
The Cybergun SIG Sauer P226 X-Five
Introduced in 2009, the Cybergun SIG Sauer P226 X- Five is a CO2 powered, all metal (other than grips and internal parts), blowback replica of the X-Five Tactical. It is 4.5mm calibre and comes with a full-size, drop-out, 18 round magazine and a smoothbore 4.4″ brass inner barrel. No adjustable rear sights are provided, but it does come with a standard size accessory rail below the barrel. It’s sold by French distributor Cybergun and I suspect is probably produced on their behalf by Taiwanese manufacturing company KWC.
Cybergun P226 X-Five Open
In some markets the X-Five Open (also known as the “Sight-rail” or “Combo“) is available. This is a kit comprising the standard Cybergun X-Five, a (non-functional) compensator, an “X-Mount” sight rail (which allows a red-dot sight to be fitted) and fully adjustable rear sights. The removable compensator does not hide an extended barrel, so this is mechanically identical to the standard X-Five, though the grip and magazine base look to be slightly different.
Magazine capacity: 18
Barrel length: 4.4″
Weight: 2.55 lbs
Overall length: 8.85″
Sights: Fixed front and rear
Packaging and presentation 3/5
The Cybergun SIG Sauer P226 X-Five comes in a sturdy cardboard box with a an expanded polystyrene insert with cut-outs to fit the pistol and accessories. The pistol comes with a magazine, a ¼” allen key for tightening/piercing the CO2, a spare CO2 retaining plug and a small box of Cybergun steel BBs.
Oddly, the 4.5mm X-Five box and manual both mention an “adjustable shooting system” and “BAXS“, the proprietary version of hop-up seen on a number of Cybergun replicas. However, the 4.5mm version does not have BAXS or any trajectory adjustment – it isn’t possible to impart the required spin to the heavier metal 4.5mm BBs.
Visual accuracy 7/10
SIG Sauer P226 X-Five above, Cybergun P226 X-Five below
The Cybergun X-Five is a very good visual replica indeed. Other than markings, it’s actually difficult to tell the replica from the original. All controls are correctly replicated and every contour and detail on the frame, slide and grips is identical.
Markings on the left side are reasonable, comprising white painted “SIG Sauer“, “X-Five” and “Germany” on the slide and “SIG Sauer” on the grips. On the right side of the frame, things are spoiled slightly by a large, ugly block of white safety text.
Finish is semi-matt black painted, and looks fairly good. However, the paint doesn’t appear to be particularly thick, is prone to scuffing on high points (the paint on the ambidextrous safety on my X-Five for example, wore off very quickly indeed) and is easy to scratch.
Functional accuracy 14/15
The Cybergun X-Five shoots in single and double action. The magazine release, slide release and takedown lever all look and function as they do on the original. Applying the safety catch locks the hammer and no de-cocker is provided – as on the original, de-cocking is done by carefully lowering the hammer.
The Cybergun X-Five can be field stripped for cleaning and lubrication in the same way as the original. The magazine must first be removed and the slide racked back and locked. The takedown lever on the left of the frame is then rotated through approx 100° and can then be released and slid forward off the frame.
Overall, this is a very good functional replica indeed and would make a good training weapon for the original.
When you first pick up the Cybergun X-Five, you’ll realise that this is a very heavy replica. At 2.55 pounds, it’s very close to the weight of the original. However, it isn’t a particularly large pistol and unlike (for example) the Cybergun GSG92, I find the X-Five fits my hands very well.
Preparing the X-Five for shooting is simple. The plug in the base of the base of the magazine is removed using the allen key provided and the CO2 cartridge is installed. The plug is then replaced and tightened until the cartridge pierces. This usually happens without drama or undue leaking. When tightened, the plug fits flush to the base of the magazine, which looks good. Up to 18 steel BBs can be loaded into the magazine though there is no retaining catch, so you have to hold down the follower while loading. Some people have noted that loading all 18 BBs can cause misfeeds and jams, and recommend loading only a maximum of 15 BBs, though I can’t say I had any issues using a full magazine. The magazine is then inserted until it locks and the slide is racked and released to move the first BB to the chamber ready for shooting. Racking the slide also cocks the hammer.
The sights are fixed but well sized – it’s easy to centre the foresight (which has a white dot) in the relatively narrow notch in the rear sight. The trigger operates in both single and double action, but as this is a blowback pistol, in practice you’ll be using it almost exclusively in single action. In this mode it’s light, smooth and has a clearly defined and consistent break point. On pulling the trigger you’ll immediately notice the sound and recoil. The X-Five fires with a satisfying bang and the recoil is strong and pronounced, causing the gun to jerk upwards after each shot. This means that you’ll have to re-acquire the target after each shot, but this realistically replicates the use of a real semi-auto pistol. The slide locks back when the last shot is fired.
Six shots, six yards, free-standing, Blaster steel BBs. Inner (black) circle is 1″ diameter.
Cybergun claim 300fps, but I generally found that using Blaster steel BBs and a fresh CO2 gave around 310 – 320 fps. Not especially powerful, but BBs do hit the target with an authoritative “thwap” from six yards. Cooldown is an issue though – rapid fire will see the fps dropping dramatically. Accuracy was good on my X-Five – grouping at around 1¼” at six yards, with BBs hitting the target about 1″ above the point of aim at that range. CO2 usage is reasonable for a blowback pistol – I got around 45-55 full power shots from a single CO2.
Unlike the Cybergun GSG92, the X-Five is semi-auto only. No great loss considering that the GSG92 gobbles CO2 and is wholly inaccurate in full auto mode.
Quality and reliability 11/15
The finish on the Cybergun X-Five doesn’t seem to be especially durable. It rubs off easily on high spots and can be very easily scratched. Some users also report misfeed/jamming issues if you try to fill the magazine to capacity. However, other than for these issues, I’m not aware of any major problems with this replica.
After less than 200 careful shots, the inner barrel and guide rod on one of my X-Fives had started to shed paint. High-spots were also wearing thin.
Overall Impression 13/15
I really can’t recommend this one highly enough. It’s reasonably well made but fairly inexpensive. It’s hefty enough to feel realistic but not so chunky that it’s unwieldy. The blow back is strong, it doesn’t seem to have any major technical or mechanical issues and it shoots well enough to be challenging and fun. If you can put up with the thin paint which will wear quickly, there’s a lot to like here.
This is still one of my favourite replicas. Partly, that’s because it was also the first replica I ever bought, and I can still remember being stunned at how close it was to the real thing. Naively, I assumed that all replicas were this good. However, even allowing for my rose-tinted view of the X-Five, I still believe it’s a great replica. It’s chunky and hefty while still being a good fit for my medium sized-hands. It looks and functions just like the real firearm and it’s a powerful shooter with a satisfying bang, strong blowback and fair accuracy. OK, it’s a pity Cybergun didn’t include the adjustable rear sight on the standard version and the finish is pretty thin but then it’s relatively cheap and doesn’t seem to have major reliability issues.
Overall, if you’re interested in replica pistols, I can’t see any reason that you wouldn’t enjoy the Cybergun X-Five.
Total score: 81/100