August 31, 2022
It didn’t take long for Taurus’ GX4 family to grow, figuratively and literally speaking. The newest member of the GX4 line, the GX4 XL, comes with a 3.7-inch barrel. That’s considerably longer than the 3.06-inch barrel on the standard GX4, but at 6.05-inches long the new XL version of the GX4 is hardly difficult to conceal and that extra barrel length is designed to extend the sight radius and help control muzzle rise.
Width stays the same (1.08-inches), so the XL version of the GX4 tucks close to the body just like the original gun. Both the original pistol and the new XL version are available with 10, 11, or 13-round magazines and measures 4.40-inches tall. The standard GX4 comes with 10-round magazines with 11 and 13-round options, but the larger XL comes with one 11 and one 13-round mag. For those who live in capacity limited parts of the country there’s also a GX4 XL that sells with a pair of 10 round magazines.
The GX4 XL comes with fine texturing on the frontstrap, backstrap, and grip panels. The pistol has no manual safety but does come with a striker block and a trigger safety. There’s also a cutout in the rear of the chamber that allows you to visually inspect the chamber. The GX4 has a bladed flat-front trigger. Take-up with the Taurus trigger is light and short, and the break weight is just above six pounds.
The pistol comes with two interchangeable backstrap inserts, and they can be swapped by knocking out a transverse pin. Molded finger rests on the polymer frame provide landing points for your fingers and thumbs on the pistol and promote a high handhold, as does the grip and trigger undercut. GX4 XL pistols have a user-friendly control layout. The safety is trapezoidal in shape, and the slide stop minimized but still functional. The shooter can drop the locked slide without a lot of twisting and finagling.
The GX4 XL design makes it very comfortable to carry, with rounded and beveled edges that neither dig into the flesh nor print under light clothing. With a belly band or minimalist IWB holster, the gun virtually disappears, and it’s light enough to wear during exercise. The GX4 has proven to be capable and well-designed platform With so many options available, you’ll have a tough time choosing the right stack-and-a-half micro 9mm, but the Taurus GX4 XL deserves a spot on that list, and at a suggested retail price well under $500, it’s an option that won’t break the bank. Be sure to check out the full review of the gun in a future issue of Handguns magazine.