In 1936, Walther Arms collaborated with Gustav Genschow and Company (GECO) to produce the 9x18 Ultra on behalf of the Luftwaffe, the illegally formed aerial branch of the German military. By the time World War II broke out, the Luftwaffe had become the most powerful military force in Europe.
In light of the new military’s impending needs, the Germans had requested a round to replace the less powerful .380 ACP. The 9x18 Ultra was born, keeping the same rim dimensions and 100 grain weight. World War II interrupted the progress of the invention, and the cartridge was not officially adopted until Walther introduced the Walther PP Super (PP Super) in 1972.
Walther PP Series
Developed by the German arms manufacturer Carl Walther, the Walther PP (Police Pistol) series is comprised of blowback-operated semi-automatic pistols. The double-action pistols feature an exposed hammer, single-column magazine, and a fixed barrel. Several innovative safety features include an automatic hammer lock, a loaded chamber indicator and a combination safety/decocker. The series includes the Walther PP, PP Super, PPK, PPK/L, PPK/S, and PPK/E models.
The original PP was introduced in 1929. First designed for European police, it quickly became desirable by the newly formed German Luftwaffe – whose secret training required a more powerful weapon and ammo. The Walther PP, along with 9x18 Ultra ammunition, fit the bill.
Introduced in 1972, the PP Super was an all-steel model of the PP, chambered for 9x18mm Ultra ammo. Designed as a police pistol, it was a blowback, double-action pistol with a firing-pin safety and an external slide-stop lever.
When the German police adopted the 9x19mm round as their standard ammunition, the experimental 9x18 Ultra cartridge fell into disuse. In the 1970s, Walther saw a dramatic decrease in sales, with only about 2,000 PP Super pistols sold to German police forces.
Walther withdrew the PP Super from their catalog in 1979.