The first Glock compact, slim frame, single stack pistol has arrived. What many have wanted, but most considered would never arrive, has finally materialized in the form of the Glock 42 in .380 caliber. The long awaited “mini” Glock is finally a reality.
Meet the Glock 42:
Overall Length – 5.94”
Barrel Length – 3.25”
Width – 0.94” (0.836” slide width)
Height – 4.13”
Weight – 12.35 oz. (without magazine); 13.76 oz. (with unloaded magazine); 14.36 oz. (with loaded magazine)
Sights – Polymer white dot front, white bar notch rear
Caliber – .380 ACP
Capacity – 6+1
MSRP – $475
You may notice that the length and weight are slightly different than some adds released prior to SHOT, but I’ve provided the information listed in the 2014 Glock SHOT Show magazine.
The Glock 42 has been received with mixed emotions and reviews. For many, so much anticipation had been put into a 9mm version, that the Glock 42 in .380 has been received without as much fanfare as would be expected of a mini Glock. Regardless, I had to visit the Glock booth at Media Day to see if the wait was worth all the trouble.
My first impression upon seeing this mystery gun was that it looked exactly like a Glock, just shrunk down into a “mini” form. Even the sub-compact Glocks have a tapered barrel at the muzzle that gives them a slight distinction, but not the Glock 42. Many of the competitors’ .380 handguns have little resemblance to larger pistols from the manufacturer, however, there is no mistaking the Glock 42 for where it belongs.
Holding the Glock 42 in my hand I couldn’t help but notice how familiar it felt. Despite being much smaller and thinner than even my sub-compact Glock, the design is kept so similar that I imagine I would recognize this pistol as a Glock even if I picked it up blindfolded. My hands were a little more crowded grabbing the smaller frame than the larger Glock frames. My fingers had more wrap around than usual, however, with a little adjustment I could establish a similar grip to the larger frames. The weight distribution feels comparably the same as the larger frame Glocks, though obviously in a lighter package.
All of the standard Glock features are present on the Model 42. The frame has a less aggressive texture but is similar in design as the latest Gen IV line. The grip also comes without finger grooves or interchangeable back straps. For as small as the Glock 42 is, I actually think this was a smart move by Glock making the pistol more adaptable to a greater audience of shooters. Those features really are not necessary on the Glock 42.
The Glock 42 trigger has the same feel as any other Glock trigger, except for perhaps one feature. In my opinion the length of pull is slightly shorter than my other Glocks, actually making the Glock 42 even more pleasant to shoot. Trigger pull felt the same as my other Glocks, and trigger reset is just as crisp as one would expect on a Glock. Recoil was very manageable, and noticeably less snappy than some competitors.
Like the Gen IV line, the magazine release catch is enlarged, which is a great benefit for easily acquiring the release on this small pistol. The magazine is single stack, but with a very Glock appearance. The Glock 42 comes with standard Glock single dot front sight and the white bar notch rear sight, but in polymer instead of steel.
Shooting the Glock 42 was very nice. The familiar and consistent trigger made shooting easy, and accuracy was very good. Though the frame is noticeably thinner, the similar angles made gripping the 42 fairly easy. Hitting steel poppers at 15 yards was not a problem. I believe the familiar Glock trigger will be a huge advantage over several competitor’s .380 triggers that tend to have an overly long length of pull.
Though not the pistol everyone was expecting, I can say that my impression of Glock’s first single stack, slime frame, compact pistol have dramatically improved sense the first announcements made their way into the public arena. The demand for compact .380 handguns continues to be very high, despite the popularity of the single stack 9mm’s, so Glock may have made a sensible business decision in its first entry into the market. I’m sure, however, that the long-awaited single stack 9mm pistol is just around the corner.