Th G43X, along with the G48, is one of Glock’s new “slimline” pistols designed for concealed carry.
This appears to be Glock’s attempt to increase the capacity of the G43 while not fundamentally changing the conceal-ability of the Glock 43.
We spent some time shooting the G43X at SHOT Show and we really like it!
Glock 43x Background
Many concealed carriers, even those who were normally “glock-shooters” opted for a non-Glock firearm for concealed carry.
This is not because Glocks are bad handguns – in fact, they are arguably the most reliable firearms available!
Instead, it’s because Glocks were fat.
Yes, an averaged-sized male could conceal a Glock 19 (the mid-size Glock 9mm and the most popular model they offer), but it was even easier to carry and conceal something a bit smaller and lighter.
Popular options were the Smith and Wesson shields, Ruger LCPs, and small-frame revolvers like Smith and Wesson J-Frames and Ruger LCRs.
Glock finally got the message and came out with teeny-tiny Glock pistols… first the Glock 42 in 380 ACP (which drove people crazy but they still bought it for a year) and then (finally) the Glock 43 in 9mm.
I knew enough to wait for the Glock 43 and I’m glad I did. I thought that it was the best possible CCW gun for me – Glock reliability, decent 9mm capacity, and competent “shootability.”
In fact, it was my CCW choice for a couple of years until the Sig P365 was announced at the 2018 SHOT Show.
For many, the Sig P365 was a superior choice because it was effectively the same size as the Glock 43 but it had DOUBLE the capacity.
The Glock 43 held 6+1 rounds of 9mm while the P365 could hold 12+1.
It took Glock a while to catch-up and it appears that this G43x is their attempt. The G43X holds 10+1 round of 9mm in a slighter larger package.
The “X” in G43X stands for the gun being a cross between the Glock 43 and the new Glock 48. There’s only one other “X” Glock model (so far) and it is a cross between the Glock 19 and the Glock 17.
What is the Glock 43x?
The Glock 43x is effectively a Glock 43 with a slightly wider and taller frame to increase the grip size and capacity from 6 rounds to 10 rounds of 9mm.
It is one of Glock’s two slim-line pistols introduced at the 2019 SHOT Show.
The Glock 43X is intended to be a concealed carry gun.
Glock 43x Review – Our Take
The Glock 43x is an interesting move.
On one hand, the news has hit the industry with a bit of a thud. A “new” Glock that is bigger than the Glock 43 (and the P365), but still less capacity than the p365.
On the other hand, kudos to Glock! They are one of the rare manufacturers who are actually listening to their customers.
Let me try to make sense of this…
People (me included) have been begging Glock to come out with a slimmer mid/full-size 9mm pistol for years now. Glock listened and here it is. That’s actually pretty awesome.
So why the collective…meh?
Perhaps it’s unfair. After all, this pistol is going to be reliable and accurate… it’s a Glock.
Let’s dive into our experience with it…
We enjoyed shooting this little baby-Glock at the 2019 SHOT Show. I’ll be honest, my “meh” turned into a “oh, I get it” after I held it and send some rounds downrange.
Why did I like the G43X?
One big reason and a couple smaller ones:
The Grip of the G43X is Just Right
The G43x’s grip is the goldilocks of the two previous options for a 9mm Glock, the slightly too small to effectively handle (for me) and the slightly too big to comfortable to carry concealed Glock 19.
One of the reasons I migrated from the earlier Glock 43 to the Sig P365 was that I could competently shoot the P365. The Glock was just a bit too tiny for my hands. Yes, I could shoot it, but it was difficult to truly “run the gun” through drills.
I carried the G43 knowing that it was better than nothing and I liked the concealability. This G43X is still small enough for me to easily conceal while being just the right size in my hands to effectively control and shoot.
Front Cocking/Slide Serrations
Glock has been known, much like Apple, to come out with incremental upgrades to products.
This can be frustrating to consumers but both of these companies know way more about how to manufacture and sell products than I do. And, it must work – both produce quality products.
In fact, now that I think about it, the Glock/Apple comparison is pretty good. Other companies will come out with new features on their products faster than Glock/Apple but once Glock/Apple catch up, the features seem to be implemented smartly in a well tested and designed result.
Both companies also have intense followers who clamor over each new product iteration even though it may only offer slight improvements over prior models.
Also, both produce square-ish products with slightly rounded corners. 🙂
Back to the forward slide serrations:
Glock has finally been introducing these on their handguns and they are a nice feature on the G43X – it just wouldn’t be the same if Glock left them off this gun like they have for most prior models.
There’s something to be said for familiarity.
When you pick up the Glock 43x, it feels like a…well…Glock. For some, that’s a bad thing but for others, like me, who are used to Glocks, it’s a welcome feature.
I’ve shot THOUSANDS of rounds through Glocks. All that practice/training is not lost when I pick up the G43X.
The controls are where I expect them, the grip angle is familiar, and the trigger is predictable with a strong reset.
This baby can shoot!
I’ll get some pictures of the group sizes soon, but i was very happy with the accuracy.
I am not a good “group shooter,” especially with Glocks, but I can run them at full speed well-enough.
I don’t know if it was the larger grip, the nice Ameriglo Sights (see our commentary on them below), or just the subcompact slide (yes, subcompact guns are often more accurate because of their tight barrel/slide lock up and spring tension….go figure).
I won’t win any bulls-eye competitions with it but it is clearly capable enough to put rounds where you want them.
Now, on to some of the things that we didn’t like about the G43x:
Although the overall grip size is better than the Glock 43, it was still a bit of a Glock-brick. We’ve started to get used to more ergonomically designed guns.
Strange enough, the slimline nature of the grip worked against what I’m used to. In my hands, a tight grip seemed to make the Glock 43x want to slide/twist a bit to the left. Something about the larger (more square) Glock grips of the larger models maintains alignment better in my hand.
This may seem like a small gripe about a small grip (it is), but we want to make sure that you get the full picture.
Second, this is pure personal preference, but I think that the sliver slide makes the Glock 43x look cheap. Your mileage may vary.
Third, the lack of a rail for lights/attachments. I get that it is narrower than a standard Glock and therefore standard Glock lights won’t fit. However, by not putting a rail, they don’t allow light manufacturers to develop something for this new gun.
Based on our experience, it is going to be very popular for concealed carry. This means it will be used/intended for defensive shooting which often happens in the dark… therefore, some people are going to want a light.
And fourth, the reason that the Glock 43x news hit the industry with a bit of a thud was because this was Glock’s chance to answer Sig’s P365. By only having a 10+ round capacity in a larger handgun is was a bit of a missed shot to try to one-up the handgun that one-upped them last year.
FINAL TAKE:This Glock 43x is clearly a very competent CCW option. If you’re looking for a new concealed carry gun and you’re a fan of Glock… this may be it!
Glock 43x Pros and Cons
Glock 43x Dimensions
- Overall length: 6.5 inches
- Slide length 6.06 inches
- Overall Width 1.10 inches
- Slide Width 0.87 inches
- Height (with mag): 5.04 inches
- Line of Sight: 5.24 inches
- Trigger reach: 2.64 inches
Glock 43x vs Glock 48
The Glock 43x and the Glock 48 are very similar.
The only difference between the G43x and th G48 is the slide and barrel length.
Because of this, we like the Glock 43x better. These slimline Glocks are supposed to be for concealed carry so smaller makes more sense to us.
Also, a shorter barrel makes the Glock 43x easier to carry in the appendix-carry position and it makes it easier to draw from a holster.
Sure, there are some benefits to a longer slide/barrel, but we don’t think that they add much here. For example, we’re not chasing increased velocity from a longer barrel and the longer sight radius, although easier to use for precise aiming, is not enough of a difference for us to warrant the larger (and heavier) Glock 48 over the Glock 43x.
Glock 43x FOR SALE
If you’re not sure which sights are for you, then you should buy the standard version now and then replace the sight with whichever sights you like later.
We’ve listed some of our favorite sights for your Glock below.
Glock 43x SIGHTS
In our experience, your eye really jumps straight towards the big/colorful front sights.
Of course, there are many other sight options available (many of them less expensive than our favorites) for your Glock 43x. Brownells has 173 different Glock sight options available and Palmetto State Armory has 28 different sets available.
If you’re going to change the sights yourself, do yourself a favor and get yourself a Glock front sight tool. The front sight tool we recommend has a large handle to make changing the Glock’s sights easy. There are others available for $2-3 cheaper, but the small extra cost to make the tool easier to use is well worth it for us!
Glock 43x HOLSTER
Sure, this makes sense, but the G43X has a slight wider grip that may interfere with the top of some holsters.
We doubt it’ll be an issue for many open-top leather holsters but it could be a problem for Kydex holsters.
Once we get some in, we’ll test fit them for you and let you know!
In the meantime, the following manufacturers are advertising holsters for the Glock 43X:
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