With essentially one gun design developed in 1982, Glock has progressed over the past 32 years into an innovative leader in military, law enforcement and civilian firearms. With cutting-edge concealed carry subcompacts complementing all of its standard-size models, there has never been a true pocket-sized pistol from Glock until now. With the new G42, the company has again proven its design paradigm works regardless of gun size or caliber.

The polymer-framed, striker-fired G42 has every desirable feature needed for a .380 pocket pistol, including interchangeable dovetailed white-dot sights, an easily operated slide, a reversible magazine catch and a slide that locks back after the last round is fired. The G42 uses Glock’s proven Safe Action system, which consists of trigger, firing pin and drop safeties, which disengage when the trigger is pulled and automatically reengage when the trigger is released.

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While brand new, the Glock 42 is not a Gen4 design. It is its own combination of features with a newly engineered dual recoil spring unique to the model and a cold-hammer-forged, 3.25-inch barrel. Even more interesting is that the G42 fires with the barrel and slide locked together, instead of using the traditional unlocked blowback design like most .380s. This results in more manageable recoil.
The G42 is small but not what one might refer to as “undersized.” It measures 5.94 inches in overall length with a 3.25-inch barrel, 4.13-inch height, a very pocket-friendly 0.94-inch width, weight of 13.76 ounces (unloaded), and a capacity of 6+1. Glock will soon be shipping a six-round magazine for the G42 that features an extended base plate for an enhanced grip.

CQB-Ready .380

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For testing, ammunition choices consisted of traditional 95-grain full metal jacket (FMJ) ammo from American Eagle, Hornady Critical Defense 90-grain FTX and Speer Personal Protection 90-grain Gold Dot hollow points (HP). Modern personal defense loads like Hornady FTX and Speer Gold Dot offer ballistic performance that is nearly equal to a 9mm round, and this is one of the contributing factors to the ongoing popularity and abundance of new .380 designs.

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The Glock 42 proved extremely easy to sight, handle and get back on target. Recoil was less than expected. The grip texture is Gen4-based but with a less aggressive surface. The slide release is a snap to trip on the reload, and the large, serrated reversible magazine catch, though requiring firm pressure, allows the empty magazine to drop smoothly. Accuracy was quite good, as shown by the accompanying chart.

Overall, as a pocket pistol, the G42 has more going for it than almost any other .380 in its class.

For more information, visit or call 770-432-1202.


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