.40 S&W shot from inside a car...

This is a discussion on .40 S&W shot from inside a car... within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; One of the likely scenarios for a person who travels/commutes is the possibility of defense against a carjacker. My inquiry is: Does a .40 have ...

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  1. #1
    Member Array ZTF Hitman's Avatar
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    .40 S&W shot from inside a car...

    One of the likely scenarios for a person who travels/commutes is the possibility of defense against a carjacker. My inquiry is: Does a .40 have any advantages as far as penetrating the car door and inflicting damage to the BG over other calibers. I heard something about the FBI conducting relative testing. Does anyone have any info on this subject?

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    Ex Member Array Ram Rod's Avatar
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    First line of defense against a carjacker should be the car.

    My inquiry is: Does a .40 have any advantages as far as penetrating the car door and inflicting damage to the BG over other calibers.
    Are you talking shooting the BG from the outside in, or the inside out? What ammo? FMJ or HP? IMO, forget about handgun ammo and penetrating car door metal, or the ballistics after going through glass for that matter.

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    Guy walks up to your car with a gun, tries to gain entry. You have to shoot from inside...Forget rolling down a window, shoot through door . My question was Does .40 s&w have advantages over other calibers in this regard.

    As far as specifics, I carry with 165 bonded JHPs. S&W M&P40 4.25" barrel. I know bonded bullets are preferred when there are barriers (such as car doors) My question is about the caliber.

    BTW, I live in SE Louisiana. My work often takes me through more crime-prone areas of New Orleans.

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    VIP Member Array Cuda66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZTF Hitman View Post
    Guy walks up to your car with a gun, tries to gain entry. You have to shoot from inside...Forget rolling down a window, shoot through door . My question was Does .40 s&w have advantages over other calibers in this regard.

    As far as specifics, I carry with 165 bonded JHPs. S&W M&P40 4.25" barrel. I know bonded bullets are preferred when there are barriers (such as car doors) My question is about the caliber.

    BTW, I live in SE Louisiana. My work often takes me through more crime-prone areas of New Orleans.
    .40 S&W--approx 400-500 ft/lbs.

    Car--many, many mile/tons.

    Hit the gas.
    There are no dangerous weapons; there are only dangerous men.--RAH

    ...man fights with his mind; the weapons are incidental.--Jeff Cooper


    There is a reason they try and make small bullets act like big bullets--Glockmann10mm

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    okay, I get the point! Hit the gas first....BUT still, noone has touched on the point of this thread...

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    VIP Member Array Majorlk's Avatar
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    Have you ever seen the inside of a car door with the inside panels and outer skin removed? If you have, you likely would never consider shooting through the door - from either direction.

    Shooting through the window is another matter.

    If I am inside and someone grabs the door, my first action will be to hit the accelerator and get the h... out of there. I would have to be blocked in to worry about shooting the perp first. If I shoot it will be through the window.

    To give you a short answer ... bigger (and heavier) will be better. This is one of the few cases I would consider a FMJ to be the better bullet.
    An armed society is a polite society. Manners are good when one may have to back up his acts with his life. - Robert A. Heinlein

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    I question your tactics and target. The little training that I have on anti-carjacking tactics is to bring the gun above the metal part of the door in the Center Axis Relock. A right-handed shooter can shoot over the metal one-handed, if shooting to the right.
    I'd say switch to a good 357 SIG round if you are in and around automobiles.
    Massad Ayoob says:
    Secret Service (with SIG P-229s) and North Carolina Highway Patrol (with Beretta Cougars) both adopted the [125gr] Winchester Ranger Talon round, but neither has had enough shootings to develop a data base. Departments like Virginia State Police (SIG P-229), Richmond, VA PD (Sig Pro), and Texas Department of Public Safety (SIG P-226) have all had numerous shootings using 125-grain CCI Speer Gold Dot. And all have been uniformly thrilled at the results. []Recommendations for five calibers based on street performance - Duty Loads: Today's Best - page 2 | Guns Magazine
    and
    From Texas to Virginia, [the 125gr JHP Gold Dot] has been kicking butt with no horror stories of stopping failures. New Mexico State Troopers fell in love with the 357 SIG a few years ago, and stayed with that cartridge when they ordered their new S&W M&P auto pistols. North Carolina Highway Patrol gave up its beloved Beretta pistols after more than twenty years to adopt the SIG-Sauer, because they could get it chambered for 357 SIG.
    Gunfights indicate that this cartridge is particularly good for shooting through auto sheet metal and window glass, yet does not deliver on the street the dangerous over penetration that some gelatin tests had indicated might happen. The spent, expanded bullets are normally recovered from the far side of the criminal’s body, or from his clothing, or from the ground within a few feet behind where he was located when shot.
    Massad Ayoob. The Gun Digest Book of Concealed Carry. “Defense Loads of Choice: the Word from the Street”. 2008.
    The agencies who now use this high-tech round would seem to have a lot of experience in the realm of automobile sheet metal. Let me know if you hear of anything to dispute that a good 357 SIG round is no worse than any other handgun round for penetrating automobile sheet metal.

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    Mas Ayoob reports that several state agencies who have adopted the .357 Sig have found it penetrates auto bodies with enough snot left over to take out BGs. .45s and even 9mm +Ps are marginal in that regard. (ref: Gun Digest Book of Combat Handgunnery, 6th ed.)
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    To clarify, the best weapon in a carjacking, after SA, is the ton+ of metal that one is driving.

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    "Don't Tread on Me"

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    The primary problem with shooting from inside a vehicle is going to be hearing loss. If you are worried about penatration because you are going to shoot through a rolled up window that hearing loss is likely to be complete and permanent.
    I once shot from a vehicle on the ranch, with the gun OUTSIDE the vehicle and me inside, both windows down. It was several days before I could hear anything and weeks before my hearing returned to near normal. Feel free to benefit from my stupidity.
    Of course its better to be deaf than dead.

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    Distinguished Member Array Spec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ram Rod View Post
    First line of defense against a carjacker should be the car.



    Are you talking shooting the BG from the outside in, or the inside out? What ammo? FMJ or HP? IMO, forget about handgun ammo and penetrating car door metal, or the ballistics after going through glass for that matter.
    Why Ram Rod? I found a couple of test online that shows that a car door is not going to stop any type of handgun or any type of other bullet for that matter. Including glass. The bullets still go through the glass but is off a little from the intended point aimed at.

    So to answer the OP, yes you could shoot through your door/window... does a 40 have more advantage? yes over the 9mm it does according to the tests...
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    Accuracy ALWAYS WINS! So carry what you can hit with.

    If you find yourself in a fair fight your tactics stink.

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    Senior Member Array Landric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pistology View Post
    To clarify, the best weapon in a carjacking, after SA, is the ton+ of metal that one is driving.
    While a number of people have felt the need to point this out, it doesn't answer the OPs question at all. I think we all know that driving away is more effective than shooting when possible and safe, but its not always possible and/or safe to move one's vehicle.

    Shooting through a car door (at least one of fairly recent manufacture) isn't particularly difficult so long as the window is up. If the window is down, it gets a lot more difficult. The .40 S&W probably offers slightly better penetration of such barriers than the .45 ACP or 9x19mm, and the 357 SIG, .357 Magnum, and 10mm offer still more. The .40 should get the job you are looking for done pretty well.
    -Landric

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    Quote Originally Posted by Landric View Post
    While a number of people have felt the need to point this out, it doesn't answer the OPs question at all. I think we all know that driving away is more effective than shooting when possible and safe, but its not always possible and/or safe to move one's vehicle.
    I didn't think that we all knew that. I thought that I gave a good response to the OP's question in my Post, #7. I re-iterate, there's no harm in stating and re-stating and stating again the correct continuum of force response - just to keep things in perspective - for those readers who are asking a specific question that might fail to recognize what to many but not all of us is the standard tactical response.
    If safety is your goal, it's never safe to shoot point blank through a car door, now is it, Landric?

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    Landric, thank you for answering the question as directly as you did

    Pistology, I don't have that much formal training, especially in the realm of shooting from vehicles. That's why I'm asking questions. I would much rather stomp the gas than shoot a loud handgun in the confines of my car. BUT, if left with no choice, if you have to, then you have to. Around NOLA, the thugs don't give a damn. They kill quite a few people in carjackings.

    Thank you all for the input. Thanks, Pistology for the link to preferred loads in different calibers. I will check that out. I am here to learn more.

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