As we noted, the term “ACP” comes from “Automatic Colt Pistol.” It was a designation created to mark the engineering of John Moses Browning. Known as one of the most influential weapons designers of all time.
Cartridges with the “ACP” designation are straight-wall cartridges that are all used in self-loading pistols. By definition, an ACP round is not used in revolvers or rifles, but are exclusively used in pistols.
The first letter, “A,” stand for “automatic.” This notes that the rounds are made for “automatic” pistols. Although under today’s definitions they are technically semi-automatic weapons.
The second letter, “C,” is for Colt. At the time, Browning was working for the Colt Manufacturing Company. Adding the company name to the cartridge was, and still is, a common practice.
Finally, the “P” notes that the rounds are made for pistols. Not revolvers, not rifles, but pistols. This may seem redundant since “automatic” is already included, but that’s the logic behind the naming.
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