Differences Between Ruger LCP 2 Vs LCP MAX

Ruger LCP II and LCP Max covert carry handguns are two common choices for those looking for a compact and dependable weapon.

While both firearms have some similarities, they also have some significant variations that can influence their effectiveness and suitability for individual requirements.

In this comparison, the features and traits of the Ruger LCP II vs Ruger LCP Max will be discussed to see which one might be a better fit for your covert carry requirements.

FeaturesRuger LCP IIRuger LCP Max
Cartridge.380 ACP.380 ACP
SightsLow profile sightsTritium front sight
Magazine6+1 capacity10+1 capacity
Weight10.6 oz10.6 oz
Length5.17 in5.22 in
Barrel Length2.75 in2.8 in
Width0.91 in0.97 in
GripTextured grip surfaceLarger textured grip
SafetyTrigger safetyTrigger safety
Height3.71 in4.12 in
Gun typeSemi-automatic pistolSemi-automatic pistol
DesignSmooth rounded profileMore pronounced grip frame and longer barrel
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Difference Between Ruger LCP 2 Vs Ruger LCP MAX Based on Features?

The Ruger LCP II and LCP Max are two famous concealed carry pistols with many parallels but also some significant variations.

The Ruger LCP II is perfect for self-defense and personal security. The Ruger LCP Max is an improved version of the famous Ruger LCP II, with several improvements to operation and user experience.

Here are a few brief observations of these two handguns:

1. Design:

Ruger LCP II and LCP Max are both compact, lightweight handguns intended for covert carry and personal protection. They have a comparable profile, with a smooth and rounded form that allows them to be easily handled and concealed.

The LCP II has a minimalist design that is distinguished by plain lines and the absence of exterior controls. The slide and frame are smooth and rounded, with a tiny trigger guard and a low-profile slide stop mechanism.

The LCP Max has a comparable profile to the LCP II, but there are some significant variations.

The slide has serrations on both the front and back sides, and the sights are more sophisticated, with a tritium front sight and a movable rear sight. The LCP Max also has an accessory track under the muzzle for attaching lights or lasers.

Both handguns come in a range of colors, including black, gray, and bronze. They are constructed of high-quality components, including a blued alloy steel trigger and barrel, as well as a glass-filled polyamide frame.

2. Grip:

The Ruger LCP II and LCP Max grips are comparable, but there are some significant variations.

For better traction, the LCP II has a smooth and compact grip frame with a checkered texture on the sides and front strap. The grip texture is intended to be both pleasant and useful, allowing for a firm grasp on the handgun.

The front strap has a small curve to it, which assists in properly positioning the handgun in the hand and regulating recoil.

The LCP Max, on the other hand, has a bigger and more contoured grip frame than the LCP II, as well as a new texture design for better handling and control during fast discharge or under blowback.

With a honeycomb design that offers a safe and pleasant hold, the grip texture is more aggressive and tactile than the LCP II. 

3. Weight:

The LCP II weighs 10.6 ounces (300 grams) empty, making it one of the lightest handguns in its class.

Because of its lightweight design, it is simple to transport and conceal for prolonged amounts of time without becoming fatigued.

The LCP Max is marginally heavier than the LCP II, weighing 10.7 ounces empty (303 grams).

While the weight difference is minor, it is worth mentioning that the LCP Max has a larger grip and a slightly longer barrel, which could account for the small weight gain.

4. Sights:

The sights on the Ruger LCP II and LCP Max are marginally different. The fixed low-profile sights on the LCP II include a blade front sight and a serrated back sight. The serrated back sight reduces glare and improves sight image.

In contrast, the LCP Max has a more sophisticated sighting mechanism. A tritium front sight with a white border and an adjustable back sight with a serrated surface are included.

Windage and elevation changes are possible with the adjustable back sight, which can help increase accuracy and precision.

While both handguns have effective sight systems, the LCP Max has more sophisticated and adjustable sights that can be tailored to meet the requirements of the user.

5. Magazine: 

The magazine sizes of the Ruger LCP II and LCP Max vary.

The LCP II has a magazine capacity of 6+1, which means it can contain six bullets in the magazine plus one in the chamber.

The magazine is a single-stack design, which serves to keep the pistol’s total dimensions small and simple to hide.

In comparison, the LCP Max has a bigger magazine size of 10+1. It, too, employs a single-stack cartridge, but with a larger capacity. This greater capability may be advantageous in self-defense scenarios requiring numerous rounds.

6. Magazine Well: 

The LCP II has a standard magazine well that is intended to hold.380 ACP ammo. The magazine well is rather shallow and streamlined, which contributes to the gun’s overall compactness and concealability. Also, the magazine well of the LCP II is unusually shallow, implying that the gun’s grip is quite short.

The LCP Max has an enlarged magazine well intended to accept.380 ACP ammo. The LCP II’s enlarged magazine well is larger and deeper than the LCP II’s, allowing for a longer grip and a more comfortable shooting experience.

Furthermore, the LCP Max’s expanded magazine well has an ergonomic design that aids in the gun’s overall handling and control.

7. Trigger: 

The Ruger LCP II and LCP Max both have a single-action trigger mechanism that provides a smooth and reliable trigger draw. However, there are some variations between these two handguns’ triggers.

The trigger on the LCP II is intended to be quick and crisp. It has a safety trigger with blades that stops the gun from discharging unless the trigger is completely compressed. The LCP II’s trigger draw weight is roughly 6 lbs.

The LCP Max trigger is intended to be a step up from the LCP II trigger. It has a dual recoil spring system for a smoother trigger draw and less recoil. The LCP Max’s trigger draw weight is also around 5-6 pounds.

8. Durability:

The Ruger LCP II and LCP Max are both made of high-quality components and are constructed to last for years. Both are made of a high-strength, glass-filled polyamide frame that is both lightweight and robust.

The LCP II has a through-hardened alloy steel slide that offers exceptional durability and wears resistance. The cylinder is also made of alloy steel and is intended to endure hundreds of rounds without deterioration.

The black oxide coated stainless steel slide on the LCP Max offers exceptional corrosion protection and longevity. The barrel is also composed of stainless steel, which offers better resistance to wear and tear than the barrel on the LCP II.

9: Racking

Shooting a 380 LCP II is very uncomfortable with hand arthritis. You can shoot 100 rounds through the 9mm Shield at the range and it is much easier on hands with arthritis.

The grip on the MAX is a little wider. This is in order to accommodate the staggered rounds in the magazine. However, this can be a snappy round, making the wider grip uncomfortable for those with smaller hands.

However, in the broader sense, the LCP MAX will be better than the LCP 2 in case of ease of recoil.

10: Shootability

The shootability is greatly related to grip on the guns. And this is where the LCP 2 is a little disappointing. You can add a Hogue grip to improve shooting but it will add to the size of the gun.

Additionally, the LCP 2 has this problem with its mag well. The mag won’t lock in with the “flat” baseplate. However, it works fine with the pinky rest plate.

When shooting straight out of the box, the Max simply fits better and is more stable. The main reason why the LCP MAX is a much better shooter is that you can fully grasp the gun and it doesn’t want to jump.

To conclude, the LCP MAX has more space for a palm grip as well, which the LCP 2 lacks. So it is a better shooter.

11: Action

In terms of action, the LCP 2 and the LCP MAX are pretty same. It is important to discuss the hammer-strike action for safety concerns.

So, the action of the LCP has always been an internal hammer fired since the very first generation. The hammer on the old LCP is only halfway cocked, whereas the hammer on the LCP II is almost completely cocked (almost single action).

The initial click is an erroneous reset. To get the second click—the actual reset point—you must almost completely let the trigger out.

There is only one click on the LCP 2 and MAX. This click serves as the actual reset. It is significantly better than the original LCP because the reset point is halfway through the trigger travel.

12: Carry and Concealability

It should be as small, thin, and concealable as possible if you’re going to carry a .380 pocket pistol, in my opinion. Along with weight, the two main factors are height and width.

Now the LCP 2 is great! It is small, concise and has about .05 ounces less weight on it.

The LCM max is small and almost comparable to the size of a Glock 44. But it also has more capacity.

Yet, the LCP Max size is simply inadequate for carry and concealability. It is because of the width. Yes, there is a larger capacity, but yet, it remains inadequate!

Safety Issues of Ruger LCP II and Ruger LCP Max:

The Ruger LCP II and LCP Max both have efficient safety measures that can help avoid accidental discharges and improve weapon safety.

Both handguns have a trigger safety that requires pulling the trigger to deactivate the safety and discharge the weapon.

The LCP II also has a manual thumb safeguard that can be activated to prevent the trigger from being pulled, whereas the LCP Max does not.

Both handguns, in addition to the trigger safeguard, have an internal hammer that stops the gun from firing if it is dropped.

Ruger LCP 2 or Ruger LCP MAX Which One to Choose?

The LCP II in.22lr would be the range pistol with the easiest racking. Its design is referred to as “the Light Rack.”

However, the LCP Max has a significantly improved extractor. Which was the root of many LCP II issues. So the LCP MAX wins this one.

The LCP 2 and LCP max both have a long lifespan. However, the LCP MAX is a better gun all around. The LCP MAX has better sights, more ammunition flexibility, is easier to hold, and has less recoil.

Therefore, I contend that the MAX is superior to the LCP II in terms of range and portability. It is an incremental advancement rather than a revolutionary one.

I advise purchasing both the LCP 2 and the LCP MAX, if you have the money. Then, practice on the LCP 2 (rapid fire drills are considerably less expensive).

And then try to transfer those skills to the MAX as affordably (with the fewest rounds) as possible. A single box of 380 ammo will easily cover the cost of an LCP II 22.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What are the benefits over Ruger LCP 2 in an LCP MAX?

The clearest advantages are a full hand grip, a significant increase in firepower, infinitely improved sights, and no discernible size difference. Sounds like a dream right?

But what is the exchange you had to make?

Well, about a $100 bucks.
But is there something you are missing? Yes, the trigger pull.

Have you wondered how’s the trigger pull comparison?

Max pulls at 7.5 lbs, while LCP 2 pulls at 4.75 lbs. The heavier pull weight has not piqued the interest of users.
But in a pocket pistol, do you really want a light trigger? If you do then maybe get a Bersa bp9cc.
You better purchase a holster too. Damn thing resets quickly and has a 3lb trigger pull.

What is the original Ruger LCP model?

The Ruger LCP’s first model was launched in 2008. It has a glass-filled nylon frame, a 2.75-inch barrel, and a magazine capacity of six rounds.

When was Ruger LCP II released?

The Ruger LCP II, an updated version of the original LCP, was launched in 2016. 

When was Ruger LCP Max released?

The Ruger LCP Max is the most recent variant of the LCP, launched in 2021.

Should I use +P ammo in the Ruger LCP II and LCP Max?

No, the Ruger LCP II and LCP Max are not compatible with +P ammo and might cause harm to the gun.

Is it possible to use LCP magazines in the LCP II or LCP Max?

No, the LCP magazines for the LCP II and LCP Max are not interoperable.


To sum up, Ruger LCP MAX is a better gun. It is a better, more viable option with the greater shootability, carry, comfort on the hands and concealability.

The rest of the information is available to you thanks to this article. I do hope you make the better choice between these Rugers!

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