Glock 48 Review [2021+Video]: Worthy CCW?

by Ryan Cleckner

January 11, 2021

5 comments

4.8
(21)

The Glock 48 is the newest pistol model released by Glock. It was released with the Glock 43X which is a hybrid between this new Glock 48 and the slightly older (and smaller) Glock 43.

Folks have been clamoring for a slim mid/full-size 9mm Glock for a while now. I’ll admit, I’m one of them.

However, now that it’s here, I’m wondering if Glock should have known better than to listen to me. The Glock 48 is exactly what I asked for… a slim Glock 19. But, now that I’ve been able to compare it to the Glock 43X, I think I like the Glock 43X a little better (at least for CCW).

We’ve spent some time with the Glock 48, here’s what we think:

Glock 48 SPECS

  • Cartridge 9MM Luger
  • Capacity 10+1
  • Length 7.28
  • Action Gas operated semi-auto
  • Barrel Length 4.17″
  • Weight 25.12 oz

Glock 48 Background

The Glock 19 is, by far, the most popular Glock pistol. In fact, I recommend it more than any other handgun for a general purpose handgun.

It is a great balance of size and reliability.

It is just big enough to serve as a duty gun and be big enough for serious range use. It is just small enough that it is reasonably concealable.

If I could only have one handgun, it would probably be the Glock 19 – it’s not really the “best” in any one category but it is ubiquitous.

I can find parts and accessories for it anywhere and it runs like a tank.

If there’s one complaint of the Glock 19 as a concealed carry gun (besides the plastic/junk sights it comes with), it is this: it is just barely too big to be easily concealed. Yes, it can be done, but having a single-stack/slimmer Glock 19 for concealed carry seemed desirable.

A few years ago, Glock came out with a single-stack pistol for concealed carry but they missed the boat and came out with it in 380 ACP instead of 9mm. Actually, they were probably geniuses because everyone bought the Glock 42 in 380 ACP for a year before they came our with the Glock 43 in 9mm and people had to purchase an entirely new handgun. I may have had some inside information and knew to wait to purchase my Glock 43.

The Glock 43 seemed like what we wanted – a tiny Glock in 9mm. The problem with it was: it was too small to effectively use and it only held 6 rounds in the magazine. Yikes! My Smith & Wesson J-Frame revolver (which is lighter and arguably easier to carry) started sounding like a good option again with a 5 round capacity.

Glock was doing fine…until…..Sig came along with the Sig P365. It is not an overstatement to say that the Sig P365 redefined what a concealed carry handgun should be.

The Sig P365 was TINY, it held 12 rounds in the magazine, came with a great trigger, great sights, and it felt great in the hand.

Glock had to respond. Enter this Glock 48 and the hybrid Glock48/43, the Glock 43X.

What is the Glock 48?

Simply, the Glock 48 is effectively a slimmed-down Glock 19 that holds 10 rounds in the magazine.

Glock 48 Features

1 Shorter Trigger Distance

I love this part… it creates such a smooth pull. This has been a complaint of mine for long time.

2 Built-in Beaver Tail

This allows for a higher grip on the gun so when you doing rapid fire, you can have better control of the muzzle flip.

3 Glock Marksman Barrel (GMB)

It improves the rifling on and modifies the barrel crown for increased accuracy

4 Precision-Milled Front Serrations

Front serrations allow for another option to get a quick reload, which I personally find easier.

Glock 48 Review – Our Take

We got to try out the Glock 48 at SHOT Show 2019 and we’ll admit, we were surprised – we liked it more than we thought we would.

By far, the easiest way to describe the Glock 48 is to call it a Glock 19s. Why? Because it is a slim Glock 19… it’s that simple.

Is that enough for us to recommend it?

The gun was reliable for everyone at the range (of course it was, it’s a Glock) and it was accurate enough for CCW.

This review is going to be very similar to the review for the Glock 43x because they are very similar guns. Why did my “meh” turn into a “oh, these are pretty cool!”?

One big reason and a couple smaller ones:

The Grip of the G48 is Just Right

Upon first holding and firing the Glock 48 at the range, it felt familiar but skinnier (go figure).

Being a self-proclaimed Glock-guy, I found that it was easy to shoot and operate (much more so than the smaller Glock 43). The grip of the Glock 48 seemed like the perfect blend of as small as possible for concealability while being as large as possible for grip/operation. Kudos to Glock here.

However, this means that everything I liked about the Glock 48 grip I also liked about the Glock 43x grip (because it’s the same grip!).

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.

Glock Familiarity

There’s something to be said for familiarity.

When you pick up the Glock 48, 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 G48.

The controls are where I expect them, the grip angle is familiar, and the trigger is predictable with a strong reset.

Accuracy

The accuracy of the Glock 48 was good enough (I didn’t shoot it as accurately as I shot the smaller G43x).

To be fair, the Glock 48 had the factory plastic sights whereas the Glock 43x had upgraded sights (both models available below).

Now, on to some of the things that we weren’t too fond about the G48:

Although the overall grip size is better than the Glock 43, and it was slimmer than a Glock 19, 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 48 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 48 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.

FINAL TAKE:

This is likely one of those guns that you’re going to know whether you should get it or not. The Glock 48 is either something that you’ve been waiting/looking for, or, you’re like us and can’t really find any faults with it but you can’t really see a big need for it either.

That is of course with one big exception: If you live in a state that limits your capacity to 10 rounds, then this might be a GREAT choice for you. True, it’s not much smaller than a Glock 19 for the decrease in capacity, but if you can only carry 10 rounds anyway, why carry and extra bulk? See our Glock 48 vs Glock 19 comparison below.

This Glock 48 is clearly a competent CCW option in a mid-size gun. If you’re looking for a new concealed carry gun and you’re a fan of Glock… this may be it!

Glock 48 VS Glock 19

The Glock 48 adds a silver slide and forward cocking serrations but the two biggest differences between the Glock 19 and the Glock 48 are the width and the capacity.

The Gen 4 Glock 19 is 1.26 inches wide and, as you can see below, the Glock 48 is 1.11 inches wide. The standard capacity of the Glock 19 is 15 rounds of 9mm and the Glock 48 holds only 10.

So, let’s do some comparative math…

You give up 1/3rd of your magazine capacity to save 0.16 inches of width. Yes, that’s it in a nutshell. Is decreasing from 15 rounds down to 10 rounds (having only 66% of the capacity) worth saving 12% of the width? Glock sure hopes that you think so.

Unfortunately, giving up a giant chunk of your ammo isn’t the only compromise…

As we mentioned above, the Glock 19 is BY FAR the most popular Glock pistol. I doubt that there is another handgun, by any manufacturer, for which you can find more holsters, magazines, parts, and accessories for.

So, in addition to giving up 33% of your capacity to save 0.16 inches, you also have to invest in (and wait for them to become available) new holsters, mags, etc.

If you’re just starting out, and don’t own a G19 yet, maybe this is a good place for you to start?

However, if you’re already invested in Glock 19 parts and accessories, jumping to a Glock 48 may not be the smartest move (unless you want one…then that’s surely reason enough). Instead, you might want to check out the Glock 43x – you get the same capacity and thinner profile as this Glock 48 in a lighter and smaller package.

  1. Overall length: 7.28 inches
  2. Slide length 6.85 inches
  3. Overall Width 1.11 inches
  4. Slide Width 0.87 inches
  5. Height (with mag): 5.04 inches
  6. Line of Sight: 5.04 inches
  7. Trigger reach: 2.64 inches

Glock 48 Pros and Cons

  • Glock reliability
  • Glock familiarity
  • Common parts (sights, mag release, etc.)
  • Front cocking serrations
  • Unique magazines
  • Unique holster
  • Significant reduction in capacity for slightly smaller size
  • Larger than competition

Report Card

Shootability

Cannot say enough, about how well this baby shoots. – Very easy to operate.

A
Reliability

Shows up well out of the box. Gets dirty pretty quick, meaning to stay reliable, you need good maintenance.

B+
Accuracy

Hardly had to aim for all my groupings. It’s that good.

A+
Ergonomics

With the built in beaver tail, I can have control and my big hand on the grip of this gun. Very good!

A
Value

Well priced and worth it. Don’t hesitate to invest, for this firearm.

A+

Our Grade

A

Reviewed by Ryan Cleckner

Reader’s Grade

TBD

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This is a great starter gun suitable for any budget. But owning a gun doesn’t just mean having the actual weapon. You’re gonna need some key essentials.

Once you’ve gotten the essentials down, it’s time to look towards more exciting upgrades.

Best Sights for the Glock 48

If you’re new to a Glock, then you need to become aware of the ONE thing Glock does not do well. SIGHTS! I think they just believe that your going to get new sights anyway, so they put on the most horrible sights possible. So, we have put a few options below to help you make a wise choice.

Our top pick for Glock 48 aftermarket sights has to be Trijicon HD Tritiums. It’s a classic U shape rear and front blade sight set that is embedded with bright green tritium lights. What’s unique about these particular sights is the front hook on the end of the lead sight. That hook is there to help in emergency one-handed slide operations. CHECK PRICE

If you’re looking for a set of amazing sights to use in any condition, the Ameriglo Agent Night Sights are hard to beat. So much so that they’re actually standard FBI and US Marshal Service issued. These are green tritium sights with the front being surrounded by a bright orange ring–making these super easy to sight with.

Check Price

Best Holsters for the Glock 48

Let me say it loud enough for everyone in the back to hear it…You need to have a proper holster if you’re going to conceal carry. Just shoving a gun down the front of your pants is not correct. That being said, there are a bunch of great holster options available. Let’s take a look at a few.

Galco Classic Lite Shoulder Holster

Are you an Inside waistband or outside waistband kind of person? If you answered neither, then you might want to check out this Galco shoulder holster. This a great option for those carrying a single Glock 48 that want maximum comfort and mobility.

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Fobus Evolution Holster

Sometimes, the best way to carry is with a simple paddle holster. And the Fobus Evolution is one of the best out there. It’s made with a micro paddle with rubberized backing so you can experience maximum comfort and stability. The Evolution also sports an adjustment screw with passive retention that way you can be sure to get a snug, secure fit without it being too tight or loose.

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Other CCWs of its Class to Check Out

As far as we’re concerned the Glock 48 is a pretty decent firearm. But in the realm of CCWs, things are getting shaken up by a few challenges. One of which has become Gun University’s favorite CCW to date.

#1 Springfield Hellcat – 9MM

HELLCAT-REVIEW

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  • Reliability A+
  • Accuracy A
  • Ergonomics A
  • Shooting Experience B
  • Value A-

Our Grade

A-

Reviewed by Ryan Cleckner

Reader’s Grade

TBD

Based on 0 Reviews

Your Grade

Do You Own This Gun? Leave A Review

Success Your Grade Has Been
Added To Our Reader’s Score

This is our favorite bullpup rifle we’ve gotten our hands on. It shoots reliable and accurate.Also, it fires common ammo with easy to find mags–unlike the PS90, As a matter of fact, the thing we liked the least is its price. But… you do get what you pay for…READ MORE 

#2 Glock 43x

Glock 43x

Sold at Palmetto State ArmorySportsmans GuideBrownells, and Guns.com

A single-stack “slimlined” Glock pistol specifically designed for CCW.

Check Latest Price

  • Shootability A+
  • Reliability A+
  • Accuracy A+
  • Ergonomics A
  • Value A+

Our Grade

A+

Reviewed by Ryan Cleckner

Reader’s Grade

TBD

Based on 0 Reviews

Your Grade

Do You Own This Gun? Leave A Review

Success Your Grade Has Been
Added To Our Reader’s Score

This is our favorite bullpup rifle we’ve gotten our hands on. It shoots reliable and accurate.Also, it fires common ammo with easy to find mags–unlike the PS90, As a matter of fact, the thing we liked the least is its price. But… you do get what you pay for…READ MORE

#3 Sig P365

Sig P365

The Sig 365 set a new definition for what a great concealed carry handgun can be – it quickly became the go-to 9mm for many shooters.

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  • Reliability A+
  • Accuracy A+
  • Customization A
  • Ergonomics A+
  • Value A+

Our Grade

A+

Reviewed by Ryan Cleckner

Reader’s Grade

TBD

Based on 0 Reviews

Your Grade

Do You Own This Gun? Leave A Review

Success Your Grade Has Been
Added To Our Reader’s Score

Up until the release of the SIG P365, our very own Ryan Cleckner carried a Glock 43 as his personal CCW. But make no mistake that when we say the P365 rewrote the rules of CCW, we’re serious. Ryan now carries the P365 and is loving every minute of it. READ MORE

How to Care for Your Glock 48

Glocks are generally regarded as one of–if not, THE–most reliable handguns available on the market. But that reliability standard can quickly degrade due to improper care and negligence. Alans Firearms does a magnificent job at showing you exactly how to break down this gun, clean and lubricate it, and put it back together safely.

Important Links And Manuals For Your Glock 48

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About Ryan Cleckner

Ryan is a former special operations sniper (1/75 Ranger) and current firearms attorney, firearms industry executive, university lecturer, and bestselling author of the Long Range Shooting Handbook.

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5 COMMENTS

  1. Thanks for this great article. When I first saw, and picked up, the 48, I really liked it. A lot. Mine is all black, not the two tone. My S&W Shield now just collects dust. I really wanted a CCW that I actually enjoyed shooting, and the G48 is just that gun. Fun to shoot, insanely reliable, and hides very well with an IWB holster. Planning on getting a TLR6 light for it in the near future, and might even get the slide milled for a red dot…

  2. I sold a G19 to get the G48. I did not like the feel of the G19, but I love the G48. That may seem odd, as I like the fit of a G17. The 48 carries better than the 19. 10 rounds are enough for me. I also pack a G43 as a pocket gun. Both are great pistols.

  3. The Glock 43x is an awesome product which balances several necessary compromises that any concealed carry handgun needs to work out. Several things that are likely important to your readers too:
    – if you have a Glock 43, you can put the 43 slide on the 48 and effectively you have a 43x in that configuration.
    – the new 43x/48 MOS version now supports both a light rail and red dot. These accessories add cost, but options are always a good thing.
    – the innovation value of the 15 round Shield Arms magazines cannot be overstated. This one development, for me, puts the whole existence of the Glock 19 in question and now makes the 43x the default ‘go-to’ gun recommendation that I make whenever someone is not sure what one handgun to purchase.
    – while 0.16 inches seems like a small difference in thickness, this is huge when it comes to carry comfort!
    – the combination of the longer grip and smaller slide mass of the 43x make for a much more manageable recoil

  4. Check out your “Glock 48 Specs” table – “Gas Operated”? Where is the piston on this one? I thought it was a recoil operated locked breech similar to the Petter-Browning design.

    Shoulder holster, hmm. IF I were to wear one, such as at a Miami Vice reunion, that would be the one I choose. I own a couple and can’t find a use for them unless heavily dressed. Even then not my cup of tea.

    Fobus…..? Sold at Academy between ProMag and those die cast metal rail accessories.

    Good choices on the sights, much better than factory.

    Enough from the peanut gallery, good review. When the G27 first came out I had to have it. And quickly went back to my CCO sized 1911. The G27 was too thick! I have a 43 with extended mags. Nice hip gun. Tool big for comfortable pocket carry. (J frames rule here. Or a KAHR .380 for even smaller. They are so small it’s easy cause malfunctions with grip.) If I were to start over I’d be focusing on Sig 365 or maybe a S&W Shield 2.0. Just my tastes. I wish CZ made a 9mm single/staggered stack based on the 75 action. Yes, I am old enough to make Miami Vice jokes, I prefer DA/SA guns with good triggers.

    Bonus – If you want to make fun of me, I would really like to try a 48 slide on a 43 frame. I can always stick a longer mag in, and the slide is the easy part to conceal. I’m beginning to sound like Goldilocks.

    Keep up the good work.

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