Taurus Defender 856

January 2020 (Bainbridge, GA) – Taurus®, manufacturer of premium handguns for personal defense, hunting, and sport shooting, has just released the all-new Taurus Defender 856 revolver.

Based on the original Taurus 856, the Defender 856 was developed for those who favor the easy carry, low profile, and comfort of a compact revolver in a package that performs across all environmental and lighting conditions.

Unlike most compact revolvers, the Defender 856 features a factory-installed front sight post with an integrated tritium vial, allowing for quick sight picture acquisition in the lowest light conditions. To ensure fast sight alignment in elevated ambient light conditions, the front sight post face surrounding the tritium element is bright orange. This combination gives the Defender 856 true all-light performance, which is essential for a go-anywhere personal defense handgun.

Chambered for .38 Special +P ammo, the Defender 856 boasts a six-round capacity and DA/SA action with a transfer bar safety. The barrel length is three inches, making it short enough for deep concealed carry while delivering a sight radius for accuracy at distances beyond the personal space zone. The longer 3-inch barrel also delivers increased muzzle velocity (vs. 2-inch barrels) for more decisive terminal performance. Unlike most 3-inch barrel revolvers, the Defender 856 comes with an extended ejector rod for quicker tactical reloads.

The Defender 856 debuts in four standard models—all featuring an ergonomic Hogue rubber grip for maximum recoil absorption and a no-slip grip. These include a stainless-steel frame with matte finish, ultralight aluminum alloy frame with matte finish, stainless steel frame with black Tenifer finish, and an aluminum alloy frame with hard coat black anodized finish.

Taurus also offers the Defender 856 in two upgrade versions featuring special grips and finish treatments. The Two-Tone model has a stainless-steel matte finish frame and barrel with a black cylinder. This color combination pairs well with an aggressively textured VZ grip in matching gray and black. Shooters who appreciate solid hardwood grips can opt for the Tungsten Cerakote model Defender 856 (frame, barrel, and cylinder) with a stylish Altamont walnut grip.

Taurus Defender 856 Specifications

  • Caliber: .38 Special +P
  • Frame Size: Small
  • Capacity: 6 rounds
  • Action Type: DA/SA
  • Barrel Length: 3.0 in.
  • Overall Length: 7.5 in.
  • Overall Height: 4.80 in.
  • Overall Width: 1.41 in.
  • Finish: stainless steel matte, aluminum alloy matte, stainless steel black Tenifer, aluminum alloy hard coat black anodized, stainless steel matte/black, Tungsten Cerakote
  • Grip: Hogue rubber, VZ black/gray, walnut
  • Front Sight: tritium night sight w/bright orange outline
  • Rear Sight: fixed
  • Safety: transfer bar
  • MSRP: $429-$477 (depending on configuration)

To learn more about the new Defender 856 revolver or to see the full line of Taurus handguns, visit

About Taurus:

Taurus Holdings, Inc. (“Taurus”) and its subsidiaries continues to evolve and produce revolutionary new products. In addition, new standards for quality and efficiency help deliver reliable and affordable guns to the market. Taurus is based in Bainbridge, Georgia. Taurus is owned by Taurus Armas, S.A. which is a publicly traded company based in Brazil. Taurus Armas S.A. manufactures a wide variety of consumer and industrial products that are distributed worldwide.

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