When Glock introduced its ultra-concealable single-stack G42—chambered in .380 ACP—at the 2014 SHOT Show, enthusiasts gave it a warm welcome. Some, however, questioned the wisdom of cartridge selection, particularly from a company with decades of experience producing 9 mm Luger-chambered sidearms so reliable that military units and law enforcement agencies across the globe field them.
The company responded one year later when it unveiled the G43, chambered in 9 mm Luger. The semi-automatic uses a single-stack magazine capable of holding six cartridges, and when topped to capacity the handgun tips the scales at an all-day-carry comfortable 20 ozs. (18 ozs. empty).
The added stopping power, Glock’s reputation for quality and gun’s diminutive size immediately drew attention, particularly those with carry permits. Overall width is 1.06", length comes in at 6.26" and height with the magazine inserted is 4.25". The chances it prints through garments is minimized by the stature and, combined with light weight, the pistol was quickly in demand.
Barrel length on the polymer-framed semi-automatic is 3.41". The gas-nitrided steel slide on the standard model has the familiar Glock flat-black look. Different colors and finishes are available in dealer exclusives today, in everything from blue to dark earth. Standard sights are a white dot up front and drift adjustable with white outline U-notch at the rear.
The striker-fired handgun employs dual recoil springs and its generously sized magazine release is reversable for southpaws. It uses Glock’s Safe-Action trigger and, despite the pistol’s small size, “The spacing within the trigger guard and the trigger itself are the same as the double-stack models,” wrote B. Gil Horman when he reviewed a G42 for American Rifleman. “This creates a familiar feel for those who already use Glocks.”
The frame’s beavertail design allows a high grip to better manage recoil. Glock doesn’t list MSRPs on its websites but a search for new standard models from reputable dealers found some listed at slightly more than $600. Prices go up with colored frames.
Glock has also recently released an optics-ready G43X MOS—with the company’s Slimline Rail for lights or lasers—and a G43X Black with the company’s nDLC finish. Magazine capacity on both goes up to 10 cartridges, moving size up proportionately and increasing loaded weight to 23 ozs.