New Hampshire gun maker SIG Sauer Inc. is asking a federal judge in Texas to toss a lawsuit over the company’s P320 semi-automatic pistol that claims the firearm is defective and can accidentally fire when dropped.
In its recent response to the suit, the Newington-based company denied that the pistol was defective as originally designed or that it made any misrepresentations.
SIG Sauer said it “denies that the P320 pistol is unsafe or that it ‘duped’ anyone into purchasing” the firearm, according to court paperwork filed in the U.S. District Court in Texas.
In a proposed class action complaint, Dante Gordon argues SIG Sauer failed to disclose an alleged safety defect and alleges warranty violations, fraud and other allegations related to the safety of the P320 pistol he bought in Texas in 2014.
The Texas man says the gun is defective and susceptible to unintentional drop fire, and he claims the company has known about the issue since at least April 2016 when the U.S. Army found a problem during field testing. The pistol is popular among civilians, law enforcement and the Army, which picked the P320 to replace the M9 service pistol in 2016.
SIG Sauer admits that it implemented a performance enhancement to the Army’s version of the P320 pistol by installing a lighter trigger and sear, and offered the enhancement to all P320 purchasers, including Gordon, through the implementation of the P320 Voluntary Upgrade Program in August 2017.
The company denies that the Army provided any information about the drop testing it conducted in connection with its evaluation of the pistol in 2016.
In its response to the suit, the company included an image of a warning contained in the pistol’s owner’s manual saying any firearm could fire if dropped.
SIG Sauer argues the suit should be dismissed for several reasons. Among other things, it said that it “lacks any factual allegation that SIG Sauer knew at the time Gordon bought his pistol in September 2014 that the P320 purportedly had a ‘design defect’ that could ‘inadvertently discharge a round of ammunition if dropped on the ground,’ ” the company said in court documents.