New For 2024: KelTec SUB2000 GEN3

posted on January 17, 2024
KelTec SUB2000 GEN3 folding pistol-caliber carbine shown outdoors in the hand unlocking the folding mechanism grass trees soft focus background man watching.
Images courtesy of KelTec Weapons.

KelTec introduced its first folding Pistol Caliber Carbine (PCC) in 1997 with its SUB9. Four years later, that model was superseded by the more affordable SUB2000.

It quickly became one of the most popular PCCs on the market, due to its versatility and unique features. This doesn’t mean that KelTec was satisfied to rest on its laurels. In 2015, the company updated the SUB2000 with a GEN2 version. New for 2024, the company has announced the SUB2000 GEN3. Along with a few subtle changes, the GEN3 SUB2000 has one big improvement over previous versions.

Right side of the KelTec SUB2000 Gen3 folding carbine.The KelTec SUB2000 GEN3 offers some subtle changes and one major improvement over previous versions of the rifle.

What has changed since the SUB2000 was originally introduced in 2001? First, mounting accessories, like foregrips and flashlights, on a rifle became popular. The GEN2 SUB2000 made provisions for this, by adding Picatinny rail sections to the top and bottom of its handguard. The second is that the use of electronic optics has become standard, even for minimalistic folding "truck guns" like the SUB2000. The unique aspect of the SUB2000 design, its ability to fold for compact storage and transport, prevented conventional optics mounting (although the aftermarket did supply several unique solutions). To address this issue, KelTec has introduced the SUB2000 GEN3.

Left side of the folded KelTec SUB2000 Gen3 carbine.While it hinges in half to fold, the GEN3 version of the SUB2000’s fore-end and barrel assembly rotates to allow accessories and optics to remain mounted. Image courtesy of KelTec.

A quick glance at the specs will show you that a GEN2 and GEN3 SUB2000 are nearly the same, with the overall length, weight and even the look nearly identical. Where the two models differ is in how they fold. To accommodate optics or accessories mounted at the 12 o’clock and 6 o’clock positions on the handguard, the SUB2000 GEN3’s fore-end and barrel assembly rotates as it folds, placing the side of the handguard against the top of the action and stock. To see this new style of folding demonstrated, watch KelTec’s introduction video.

Charging handle on the KelTec SUB2000 Gen3 carbine.Other updates include a redesigned charging handle and ambidextrous bolt hold-open slots. Image courtesy of KelTec.

The other updates on the SUB2000 are minor. As the rifle is optics-ready, no iron sights are supplied. Other improvements include a redesigned charging handle and ambidextrous bolt hold-open, allowing for an "easy-pullback action," a lightened trigger pull with an updated aluminum trigger and a small viewing port so that the user can verify if the rifle has a round in the chamber.

Trigger and magazine release on the KelTec SUB2000 Gen3 carbine.The SUB2000 GEN3 has an improved trigger unit with a lighter pull and an aluminum trigger. Image courtesy of KelTec.

While previous generations of SUB2000 had multiple options when it came to the type of magazine they fed from, the initial SUB2000 GEN3 uses Glock 9 mm magazines, feeding from G19 (15 round) magazines and larger. The KelTec SUB2000 GEN3 has a MSRP of $499. For more information, visit


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