20rds - 40 S&W Hornady Critical Defense 165gr. HP Ammo


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Hornady Ammunition 165 Grain Jacketed Hollow-Point (JHP) Ammo Details

This is 40 S&W Hornady Critical Defense 165gr. Hollow Point Ammo.The new Hornady Critical Defense ammunition is the pinnacle in self defense ammunition. Using a variation of the tip material used in the revolutionary LEVERevolution® line of ammunition, Hornady engineers were able to achieve 100% reliable expansion every single time. Conventional hollow point pistol bullets have always had issues with the cavity becoming clogged with fibers from clothing which rendered them very ineffective in terms of expansion in soft tissue after encountering the clothing barrier. Critical Defense eliminates this issue — guaranteed. Critical Defense ammo is so effective because of the soft polymer insert in the tip of the bullet. It is rigid enough to prevent clogging when passing through clothing, yet supple enough to deliver violent terminal performance when the bullet encounters soft tissue — EVERY single time. Additionally, all Critical Defense ammunition is loaded with nickel cases to eliminate corrosion and aid in low-light situations, plus its premium low flash propellants deliver maximum velocity, even in very short-barreled handguns. You can trust you and your family’s safety to the only handgun ammunition specifically engineered to deliver 100% consistent performance every single time — Hornady Critical Defense. This ammo comes packed in 20rd. boxes.

  • Manufacturer
    Hornady Ammunition
  • Condition
  • Bullet Weight
    165 Grain
  • Bullet Type
    Jacketed Hollow-Point (JHP)
  • Use Type
    Self Defense
  • Casing Type
    Nickel-Plated Brass
  • Quantity
  • Ammo Caliber
    40 Smith & Wesson
  • Manufacturer SKU
  • Primer Type
  • Muzzle Velocity
  • Muzzle Energy
  • UPC Barcode
  • Cost Per Round

Ballistic Gel Testing


In hopes of giving ourselves and our customers a better idea how this 40 Smith & Wesson self-defense ammo would perform if called upon in a self-defense scenario, we tested dozens of the best selling hollow points on the market.

We fired five rounds of this Hornady Ammunition 40 Smith & Wesson ammo through a cloth barrier into Clear Ballistics calibrated synthetic gelatin and recorded the results. For these tests, we used a S&W M&P40c with a 3.5-inch barrel. In the photos, graphics and video on this page, you can see specifically how the Hornady Ammunition ammo performed and how it sticks up with the rest of the 40 Smith & Wesson ammo we have tested so far.

To read more about our testing procedures and discover what round makes the best self-defense ammo for you head to this page.

Hornady Ammunition 165 Grain 40 Smith & Wesson ammunition fired into ballistic gelatin

Unfired versus Fired Round Comparison

Image detailing before and after firing 20rds - 40 S&W Hornady Critical Defense 165gr. HP Ammo Image detailing before and after firing 20rds - 40 S&W Hornady Critical Defense 165gr. HP Ammo

How do the results for this Hornady Ammunition 40 Smith & Wesson compare to other 40 S&W?

20rds - 40 S&W Hornady Critical Defense 165gr. HP Ammo Gel Test Results
Bullet Depth (in.) 17.8 18.3 18.8 19.2 19.3
Expanded Diameter (in.) 0.45 0.47 0.47 0.49 0.49
Bullet Weight after shot (gr.) 163.5 163.7 163.8 163.9 164.4
Bullet Velocity (fps) 1040 1043 1045 1047 1060
Reviews Leave a Review
  • ☆☆☆☆☆

    posted on by Charles Gray

    I carry this in personal firearm everyday. I have never shot a more consistent ammo out of my Glock 23 or my Kimber 45. Shooting this ammo is expensive I know but if you're serious about protecting your loved one's and yourself then you already know to at least be familiar with ammo that you're carrying in your weapon. At 10 yards I got nothing out of the 9 ring and at 20 yards nothing out of the 7 ring. I highly recommend this ammo for anyone that is serious about self preservation.

  • ☆☆☆☆☆

    posted on by BR WA

    Recently purchased 100 rounds of this for use in my XD40 CCW/home protection firearm. <br />
    Shot 50 rounds at the range, without a hiccup; no FTE, FTF, jams, stovepipes. The powder burned very clean and left almost no residue behind. 40/50 rounds were center mass in either in 8 or 9 rings at 10 yards (there were 10 fliers, but I got excited, and they were completely my fault). <br />
    <br />
    The only 'drawback' to this ammo (but which I actually appreciated), is that it is a very HOT load, and kicks like a mule. The ammo is a bit on the expensive side, but what's $20 when your life might potentially be on the line one day? <br />
    <br />
    Overall, very consistent and accurate ammo. I would not hesitate to recommend this to friends and family.

  • ☆☆☆☆☆

    posted on by josh laura

    This ammo is great. Never had any issues with the .40 or my .45 with this stuff. Hornady is my favorite manufacturer of ammo. Don't let the price deter you. One can't put a price on his/her life and this is probably some of the most accurate handgun bullets offered on the market at this time, plus the ballistics are great and it offers reliable expansion consistently. I'm going to buy all i can while i still can.

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