Gun Of The Week: FN Reflex MRD

posted on May 31, 2024

FN is no stranger to the concealed-carry market. In fact, the company has a rich history with handguns. John Browning designed the earliest FN carry guns, starting with the Model 1900, then progressing through the Model 1903, Model 1905 Vest Pocket and Model 1910. More recently, though, the company has built upon its full-size 509 with several carry-size variants, though none was a true micro-compact. That option came with the Reflex, which is an entirely new design. Watch the video above to see the FN Reflex in use on the range.

American Rifleman GUN OF THE WEEK title screen text overlay FN Reflex MRD handgun FDE color right-side view

To start with, the Reflex uses a hammer-fired operating system rather than the striker-fired mechanism incorporated into FN’s other recent designs. The benefit of this feature is that it provides a smoother, cleaner trigger pull and also reduces the amount of force needed to rack the slide. The action makes use of a hinged trigger rather than incorporating a blade safety, and the spring-loaded hinge within the trigger shoe must be overcome through finger pressure to fire the gun. There is no manual safety on the Reflex, and controls are limited to a single slide-stop lever, a takedown lever and a push-button magazine release all located on the left side of the frame. The magazine release is reversible.

The frame itself makes use of multiple textures designed to anchor the gun well within a shooter’s hand and is comprised of a waffle-pattern texture on the frontstrap and backstrap paired with rough, skateboard-tape-like texturing on either side of the polymer grip. An undercut trigger guard provides more room for a shooter’s strong hand, and there’s a single-slot Picatinny accessory rail located on the frame’s dustcover for the addition of a light or laser.

American Rifleamn GOTW GUN OF THE WEEK FN Reflex MRD nine images arrangement tiles mosaic detail closeup man shooting

At the top of the gun, a well-contoured slide includes a beveled nose that matches a similar bevel on the front of the frame to ease reholstering. Slide serrations located fore and aft make it easy to manipulate the pistol into action. A set of dovetailed steel sights of FN’s 509 pattern provide a prominent sight picture, and a tritium-illuminated front dot aids in low-light aiming. FN offers models of its Reflex that include a milled section of slide compatible with red-dot optics of the Shield RMSc footprint. Just forward of the optics cut is a relieved window within the barrel hood that displays the rim of a chambered cartridge.

Despite the diminutive size and weight of the FN Reflex, American Rifleman staffers agreed that it was one of the most comfortable and accurate micro-compacts we’ve yet shot. Though the hinged trigger does detract a bit from the trigger pull, it didn’t negatively impact our range experience with the gun. Worth noting were the included 11- and 15-round magazines, both of which functioned flawlessly and included baseplates that added a bit more real estate for a solid grasp.

American Rifleman GUN OF THE WEEK FN Reflex MRD left-side view with RMSc optic

For a defensive handgun from one of America’s most notable arms makers, we felt the FN Reflex checked all the boxes and is worth consideration for concealed carry.

FN Reflex MRD Specifications:
Action Type: recoil-operated, semi-automatic, centerfire pistol
Chambering: 9 mm Luger
Barrel: 3.3" stainless steel
Slide: stainless steel; nitride finish
Frame: fiberglass-reinforced polymer
Sights: steel, drift-adjustable, three-dot; Tritium front, U-notch rear
Magazine: 10-, 11- and 15-round detachable box
Trigger: hammer-fired, double-action; 4-lb., 15-oz. pull
Overall Length: 6.2"
Height: 4.3"
Width: 1.05"
Weight: 18.5 ozs.
MSRP: $659


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