It’s a story as old as man.
You fall in love, adorn your adored with all kinds of bling, bring her with you everywhere you go, become BFFs.
Then something new comes along. You flirt a little. Hang out once or twice. And all the sudden that original BFF doesn’t look so BFF anymore.
Dang it Glock.
Though a bridesmaid to the Sig Sauer P320’s bride, the new Glock 19X is a lot more than simply a runner-up handgun. You may remember that the iconic company was a finalist in the Army’s Modular Handgun System program and sort of gamed the system with a single gun that met all the minimum and maximum specs for the program.
Released earlier this year, the G19X is essentially the same gun submitted to Army testers (minus a manual safety and optic cut) and is Glock’s first “hybrid” pistol. As many of you already also know, the 19X is the love child of a G19 and G17, with a 19 slide and barrel atop a G17 frame.
(What am I, sloppy seconds?)
For larger sized shooters with big-ish hands, its the perfect balance between magazine capacity, grip size and overall length. There’s something serendipitous about the size of the 19 — it’s always struck the right balance for me, and for a lot of shooters (including Army and Marine SOF).
So a few months ago, Glock sent along a 19X for this intrepid GearScout tester to play around with. I’ll say up front: I am NOT a firearms tech geek. I’ve shot a lot of things, but try never to get too deep into a this gun versus that gun argument — I simply can’t compete with detailed firearms engineering expertise.
That said, it seems to me the Glock is like a Honda Accord or a Toyota Tacoma truck. It’s going to run forever, take you practically anywhere you want to go, and makes for a great first car or truck. Heck, it’ll probably still be running on all cylinders when it’s time to pass it along to the kids.
“These characteristics were designed for the 5th Generation Warfighter,” said Glock’s director of government affairs Shelby Lasater. “The weapon is designed to perform in a wide variety of environments giving the warfighter high confidence derived from first round hits.”
With that in mind, our team tested out the 19X on the range and at two shooting matches — a local 3 gun match and a Tier 2 IDPA match, where the scores counted.
Obviously there are a lot of factors that go into how a gun shoots — mostly focused on shooter technique. But suffice it to say, the 19X was hands down one of the most accurate stock pistols we’ve shot at a match.
“This is based on the Glock Marksman Barrel,” Lasater, a former Marine Corps chief warrant officer, explained. “The barrel manufacturing consists of a new hybrid polygonal rifling process that creates a better bullet to bore seal with extreme accuracy with quality ammunition.”
“Along with a new crowning process that protects the muzzle; it is the most advanced barrel Glock has made to date,” he added.
Running pretty basic Remington UMC ammo through it, we had no issues with stoppages or misfeeds. The 17 and 19-round magazines that come standard with the 19X package (2x19, 1x17) worked just fine, though I did have to strip the mag a couple times for lack of dropping free on a reload.
One gripe I had was that the 19-rounders kinda put a beating on my reload hand during a match where speed counts. Pretty sure that’s just me being a wuss, though.
The 19X also might help shooters broaden their options with a potential one-and-done handgun. It’s small enough to IWB conceal on a larger-framed person (that 17 frame and grip are a tad on the large size for an appendix carry) but can be the go-to Zombie Apocalypse handgun for SHTF situations.
Heck, hasn’t the G19 proved itself in combat time and time again?
“We saw the Army requirements and saw we could build a one-gun solution to the two-gun requirement,” Lasater added.
The 19X includes all of the refined components of Glock’s higher-end models, including a weather-resistant nPVD coating on the metal parts, night sights, an ambi slide stop lever and Glock’s Marksman Barrel with polygonal rifling.
Maybe that’s why it shot so true in these middle-of-the-pack hands.
Look, there are a lot of awesome handguns out there. We loved the blinged-out Sig Sauer P320 X-VTAC that recently went through our evals, and there are others still to come with all kind of pros and cons that may be considered better by some. (Not to mention our old standby M&P9).
We’ll surely keep an open mind.
But sometimes a bright, shiny object comes along that makes you leave the comfort zone of a longtime companion and consider a new life together with something new. The 19X may have done just that.
Christian Lowe is senior editor for digital operations and is a competitive pistol and rifle shooter.