August 14, 2019
By James Tarr
The G19 has been Glock’s best seller around the world since it was introduced, but the stock G19 is not legal in Canada because its barrel is too short and its 15-round capacity is too large. The new Glock 48, on the other hand, has been specifically designed to be the “Canadian Glock 19,” but the end result is an interesting handgun that should be of great interest to Americans as well.
The Glock 48 is a 9mm with a 4.17-inch (106mm, the minimum barrel length in Canada) barrel and a 10-round magazine capacity. It is 7.28 inches long and 5.04 inches tall—the exact same height as a 15-round Glock 19. And even though the barrel is 4mm longer, the gun overall is .08 inch shorter than a G19.
To keep this pistol slim, Glock went with a new grip frame and what I call a stack-and-a-half magazine. These aren’t single-stack or double-stack magazines, but somewhere in-between. As a result, this pistol is just 1.1 inches thick, compared to the 1.26 inches of a G19/G17, and weighs 2.9 ounces less than a G19.
(A sidenote: At the same time the Glock 48 was introduced, Glock also brought out the G43X. Both are part of the company’s Silver Slimline family, with the Glock 48 classified as a compact and the G43X a subcompat. The G43X has a 10-round capacity, which is four more rounds than the G43. The Glock 48 has the exact same new frame as the G43X but paired with a longer slide/barrel.)
The Glock 48 doesn’t feel like any double-column 9mm in your hand. The grip frame is very slender. Because it is so thin it feels smaller in the hand than its actual dimensions. Currently the two-tone gun you see here is the only model available from Glock.
The silver slide has a nPVD coating meant to be very corrosion and chemical resistant. I like that it is not slick. The slide has a somewhat rough, matte texture, which aids in manipulation. So do the forward cocking serrations.
The Glock 48 is available with three sight configurations—standard Glock factory plastic sights, Glock night sights and AmeriGlo Bold sights. My pistol wears the latter.
These sights are the commercial version of the AmeriGlo sights the FBI requested on its new contract Glock duty guns, and they are fabulous and totally worth the extra money. The rear sight is plain black and serrated, with tritium dots on either side of the notch. The front sight has a tritium insert surrounded by a large orange circle, so it works well in daylight or low light.
The magazine catch on this pistol is reversible. The texturing on the frame consists of small raised squares and is a bit subdued, and I wish it was a little bit more aggressive, but the frame size allows just about everybody to get their whole hand on the gun, which makes up in controllability—not that there’s a lot of recoil in a midsize 9mm. You’ll also see a little bitty beavertail on the back of the frame to help reduce the chances of slide bite.
The 10-round magazines feature high-visibility orange followers. (Here’s another point regarding the Glock 48’s stablemate, the G43X: The magazines for the G43 and G43X are not interchangeable.)
Glock has listed the trigger pull for the Glock 48 as 24N. I’m not sure which engineer started this practice of listing trigger pull weights in Newtons, but he should be slapped. Anyway, 24 Newtons works out to 5.39 pounds, and the trigger pull on my sample weighed in at a crisp 5.25 pounds.
Shooting the Glock 48 was the typical boring Glock exercise—unrelenting reliablity and average accuracy.
If you wanted something a little easier to conceal than the Glock 19, or perhaps have small hands, the Glock 48 seems meant for you. Yes, the new G43X is shorter, but neither of these new guns is small enough to conceal in a pocket, and the longer slide/barrel of the Glock 48 will make it easier to aim and get more velocity out of your ammo.
This is a gun that just begs to be carried concealed. Unfortunately, concealed carry permits are about as rare as unicorns in Canada. I find it both funny and sad that a pistol designed specifically for the Canadian market will only reach its full potential down here in the States.
It’s worth noting the Glock 48 qualifies under Glock’s Blue Label program, which gives discounts to law enforcement officers, EMTs, firefighters, military personnel and other qualified people. Visit Glock’s website for full details.
GLOCK G48 SPECIFICATIONS
TYPE: striker-fired semiauto
CALIBER: 9mm Luger
BARREL: 4.17 in.
OAL/HEIGHT/WIDTH: 7.3/5.0/1.1 in.
WEIGHT: 20.7 oz.
CONSTRUCTION: silver nPVD-finished steel slide, black polymer frame
SIGHTS: AmeriGlo BOLD tritium, orange front (as tested)
TRIGGER PULL: Safe Action; 5.25 lb. pull (measured)
SAFETY: trigger lever, striker drop
PRICE: $524 (as tested)
MANUFACTURER: Glock, us.glock.com