Who doesn’t love a good old Glock debate? With its storied history, there is a good reason, why the brand exploded in popularity here in the States. If you’re in the market for a new firearm that’s designed for concealed carry, you may be considering the renowned Glock 43 and 43X models. Each model boasts a unique history and characteristics, serving specific user needs and preferences. But what makes the 43X so special? In this blog, we’ll set the stage for the ever-spirited Glock 43 vs. 43X debate.
Glock 43 vs. 43X: The History
Let’s start the Glock 43 vs. 43X debate by briefly diving into the history of each firearm. The Glock 43 was proudly introduced to the market in 2015 at the NRA Annual Meeting, as Glock’s response to increasing demand for single-stack 9mm pistols that are easier to conceal carry. In fact, it is still regarded as one of the lightest and most reliable single-stack handguns on the market. Score one for Glock?
The 43 was well-received and quickly became a popular choice for concealed carry among civilians and law enforcement officers who needed a durable backup weapon. Its success led to the creation of variants like the Glock 43X.
The 43X hit the market in 2019. It is part of Glock’s “Crossover” line of models that includes firearms like the Glock 19X, which combine elements from different Glock generations and sizes. When it was first launched, the Glock 43X featured a unique two-tone color scheme with a black slide and a silver PVD-coated frame. This was (thank God) a bit of a departure from Glock’s traditional all-black color scheme, though they later released an all-black version of the 43X.
Sharing the same 9×19 frame design as the Glock 48, the 43X is another popular choice for concealed carry, providing a balance between compactness for concealability and increased capacity for self-defense scenarios. It continues to be well-regarded in the firearms community for its reliability, durability, and ease of use.
Alright, class dismissed. Let’s actually chat about what makes these two firearms unique, shall we? What really is the difference between the Glock 43 and 43X?
Glock 43 vs. 43X: Key Differentiators
Continuing the Glock 43 vs. 43X comparison, you’re getting a single-stack, subcompact 9mm designed for concealed carry. The choice between the two models will largely depend on individual user preferences and what they prioritize in a Glock concealed carry firearm.
The first noticeable difference between the Glock 43 and 43X would be the overall size. Does size really matter, though? Kind of. While the Glock 43 is smaller by about three-quarters of an inch and easier to conceal, the 43X was designed to be beneficial for people with larger hands or those who prefer a full-hand grip. The slightly longer grip on the 43X can also help improve handling and control.
When analyzing the Glock 43 vs. 43X, you may also take into account the magazine capacity of each firearm. The standard Glock 43 has a magazine capacity of 6 rounds, while the Glock 43X holds an impressive 10 rounds.
This also affects the difference in weight. Unloaded, the Glock 43 and Glock 43X weigh practically the same. When fully loaded, however, the Glock 43X weighs in at 23.1 ounces compared to the Glock 43’s 20.9 ounces.
Comparing the Glock 43 vs. 43X trigger, you may notice a slight difference in the overall feel. While the Glock 43’s trigger feels more like a Gen3 firearm, the 43X features a Gen3/4 hybrid feel that pulls a lot closer to the 4, meaning it has more of a rolling break.
Overall, the two will have a good amount of recoil when shooting, but the 43X’s larger grip may make a difference for those looking to achieve more leverage.
Are Glock 43 and 43X slides the same? More or less. The two are 100% interchangeable, which means you could remove a 43X slide and easily attach it to a base model 43. This allows owners to get a little more creative with the overall look of their firearms, which we happily welcome.
With a longer grip, many say the 43X wins the Glock 43 vs. 43X battle in the ergonomics department. For many, the 43X’s similarities to the Sig P365XL give it a more comfortable feel when firing.
With the Glock 43X, you may also be able to add a built-in accessory rail in front of the trigger guard, which can accommodate a tactical sight or laser. This feature is unfortunately not available with the base Glock 43 model. If you’re reading this, Glock, make it happen.
Glock 43 vs. 43X: Aftermarket Customizations
Where the two models enjoy a mutual benefit is through aftermarket customizations. At Zaffiri Precision, we specialize in the production of high-quality precision cut parts, such as slides, barrels, and even Cerakote. Every product we offer is 100% Made in the U.S. and designed to help you stand out in the world of all-black firearms (boring!).
If you’re the proud owner of a Glock 43 or 43X, be sure to check out our selection of custom slides and barrels if you’re looking to put a personalized spin on your favorite firearm to show off next time you’re with friends or at the shooting range.
Which is better? The Glock 43 or Glock 43X?
Both models have their pros and cons. For those looking for a full-hand grip, for example, the 43X may be the better choice. Overall, though, the two are very similar in performance.
Are the Glock 43 and 43X the same size?
No. The 43X has a wider grip and is larger by nearly three-quarters of an inch.
What is the difference between the Glock 43 and 43X width?
The 43X is designed to fit larger hands, as reflected by its 1.02-inch grip compared to the Glock 43’s 0.92-inch grip.