A subcompact pistol is the smallest version available of a full-sized, full-power handgun. Typically retaining the features you love about the full-sized models, a subcompact pistol shrinks the length and height—and only marginally shrinks the capacity—into a model that is ready for deep concealment, backup use and other specific purposes. While you can’t use subcompact magazines in full-sized pistols (they aren’t long enough to get the top round in line with the feed ramp), most subcompact pistols can accept the larger-capacity magazines of their full family line.

Some manufacturers have started shipping their subcompacts with a full-sized grip extender that is a component of the magazine. This makes target shooting more fun with subcompacts, and, if you can conceal the slightly taller pistol with that magazine installed, it gives you the additional capacity and ergonomics that extend the subcompact gun’s utility. Whatever your lawful purpose and practical need, a subcompact pistol provides you a solid, reliable platform for deep-concealment primary and backup guns.


FNS-9 Compact

Beretta Px4 Storm Subcompact

Glock 26 Gen4

Glock 30 Gen4

Ruger SR9c

Sig Sauer P224

Sig Sauer P250 Subcompact

Smith & Wesson M&P45c

Smith & Wesson M&P9c

Springfield Armory XD Mod.2 3″

Springfield Armory XD Mod.2 3.3″

Taurus 24/7 G2

Taurus Millennium PT-140 G2


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12 Autopistols From the COMPLETE BOOK OF HANDGUNS 2016 Buyer’s Guide

Tactical Reloads: Retaining Your Ammo For The Next Fight

Too Close For Comfort: Stalking Warning Signs & Safety Tips

This article was published in the 2017 edition of the Complete Book of Guns. For information on how to subscribe, please email or call 1-800-284-5668.

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