Hands on with the New Glock 42


LAS VEGAS — Glock Inc., put its new Glock 42 on the firing line at SHOT Show Monday. The slim .380 pistol is ultra compact but is still large enough for a good, stable grip.

Glock’s decision to go with the smaller .380 round has puzzled some of its fans, who are concerned about the tiny round’s lack of stopping power. Mike Robinson, marketing director for Glock, explained the gunmaker’s decision on the range.

“We have had a lot of requests for it over the years, so we wanted to meet that demand. On the other side, Glock looks at product development on a global scale. Outside of the U.S. there are very few places you can actually own a 9mm because it’s … military and considered weapons-grade, so .380 is really a global pistol for multiple markets,” Robinson said. “Here’s the deal, it’s all about shot placement. If I hit you four times in the head with a .380, it’s probably going to stop you.”

Glock also had its new .45-caliber Model 41 on the range. Glock spokesman R. Lee Ermey, retired Marine Corps gunnery sergeant and accomplished military actor and TV star, talked about it on the range.


About the Author

Matthew Cox
Matthew Cox is a reporter at Military.com. He can be reached at matthew.cox@military.com.
  • VTGunner

    I don’t know why anyone would want this. There are plenty of slim 9mm subcompacts and most others, like me, will just stick with our 26’s.

    • Don from CT

      I don’t know if you have ever taught anyone to shoot, but this is an ideal gun for someone who is recoil sensitive. My wife does just fine with my Glock 34 but does not handle my 26 well at all. This is the perfect gun for her to carry properly, on body, about the same size as the 26 but slimmer with less recoil. Of course many women carry off body, which is idiocy. But for off body carry, a G17 is the better choice.

  • John

    Four times in the head? Really? What happened to center mass? In a stressful, CQC situation, I would like to know how many people could actually put 4 rounds in the head of their assailant. Navy Seals or other properly trained military personnel but the average lay person, I highly doubt it. I will stick with my XDS .45 caliber and aim for center mass. One round of 45 ACP in the chest may not kill the person immediately but it sure as hell will knock him down and give me time to reassess the situation. At which time, maybe I will consider using the Glock 42 to put 4 rounds in the head. Geez!!!!!!!

    • Mike in Fort Worth

      I agree with most of what you wrote but don’t count on a handgun round to knock someone down, even the much vaunted 45. There just isn’t enough energy in a handgun round to knock a man to the ground. That’s why most instructors today are recommending multiple shots before assessing your situation.

      Re: the .380. It’s a good round for a very small pistol. This pistol makes no sense. It should have been a 9mm.

      • Tony C

        Agreed, for its size and magazine capacity there are other competitive options in 9mm and 45. Shields and XDs come to mind but if priced right it could sell.

    • seans

      Might want to rethink you 45 if you it is going to be knocking people down. With modern rounds, .45s only have around a 2-3 percent advantage in terminal ballistics than a 9mm these days.

    • guest

      I don’t know why he said “4 times in the head” but that was a silly mistake. 1 round in the head is more than enough to do the job. The Mausaud only used 22 cal weapons and did quite well with them. If you feel the need for your 45 cannon, by all means carry it but get some suspenders to hold up your pants. I’ll stick with my Walther 380 or Beretta 92S 9mm. Lighter and room for more ammo.

    • guest

      everybody is on that xds bandwagon…hope you dont encounter multiple assailants. make your shots count under pressure. i dont carry anything under 10 rounds. not saying i am a bad shot, but i have ran simulators, and you would be surprised how many rounds you actually shoot under a stressful situation. i guess having 5 shots is better than none. hope you use all 5 well…

  • DGR

    4 times in the head, you only have 6 shots in the mag so you better not miss!

  • Stormcharger

    Which is better? A pistol that almost everyone would carry all day, everyday? Or a pistol some would carry all day, every day?

    That’s the appeal of the .380, smaller and lighter for carrying all the time. The myth of caliber and “stopping power” is not shown in the actual data of shooting incidents. By the numbers, the .22LR accounts for more one shot stops of assailants than any other caliber.

    Worst case scenario aside, the vast majority of encounters will be resolved without shots being fired or only one round hitting an attacker and the attacker giving up. Now if a heavy, large caliber weapon suits those criteria and makes you feel safe, by all means carry on. However, if you only want to protect yourself and have a weapon always at your side, you’ll seriously look at a .380.

    • Pat

      The assertion that a 22 is as good a one shot stopper as any other caliber is simply wrong…. not even close! It is actually at the bottom of the list down with the 25ACP. Don’t lose your life because of an urban myth.

      • Total

        That’s not what he said.

      • Stormcharger

        The difference between the number of one shot stops is less than 8% across the board of all handgun calibers, .22 to .45ACP. I highly encourage you to go get some data, then come back and discuss this some more.

        Though I will note that at no point did I say .380ACP is superior to any other caliber. In small light weapons it is superior only because it will be carried more often. Having it and not needing it is far better than not having it at all.

      • ???

        Tell that to all those killed by a 22LR firearm. A single 22LR round can kill you just as well as any round can. Happens all the time.

    • Guest

      “By the numbers, the .22LR accounts for more one shot stops of assailants than any other caliber”

      Really, where did you get this info from? Looking at the DOJ/FBI annual reports for the last 9 years – it says quite the opposite….

    • rah214

      Don’t mind the hate from the big caliber junkies. Not one of them will stand down range and let you unload your .380 on them now would they?

    • Dash

      That’s why I carry a pf-9. It’s ugly and cheap but stupid thin and light. A true “pocket pistol” even with jeans.

  • Lance

    Just too dang small for a comfortable shoot. If they make boots for the mags this can be fixed but apart from that its too small to be a good shooter. rather go with a mid size 9mm then.

    • guest

      Sounds like a man who has never actually had to shoot any one. A BB gun is just too dang small, all the rest are lethal and then it depends on how macho you think you are.

    • Bob

      Have you actually shot the Glock 42 or are you merely moving your lips? I can’t speak to the Glock 42 but the perceived recoil in most Glocks is lighter than the same caliber in other firearms. As for a mouse gun, my EDC is a Ruger LCP. Much smaller than the G42 but not that bad to shoot. I’m not going out plinking with it for hours at a time but it WILL do the job it’s intended to do.

      At what distance to the greatest majority of “encounters of the worst kind” occur? Right! and the LCP and the rest of these mini’s cover that zone nicely.

      Would I rather be carrying my G30 when the SHTF? Sure, but it’s just not practical FOR ME for EDC.

      As somebody else here points out, the best gun for EDC is the gun you’ll you’ll always have with you. The LCP, like my AMEX card, is always in my pocket when away from home.

  • moondawg

    It makes sense as a concealed carry weapon, particularly in a hot climate where more than shorts or cut offs and a T-shirt is over dressed, or for women, particularly elderly women with small hands that don’t deal with recoil very well. Modern .380 ammo is pretty effective. Probably more so than military hardball, and our military seems to thing 9mm hardball is all anyone needs in CQC.

  • franco

    380 in a short barrel with the right ammo isnt that far behind 9mm in a short barrel. I will still take the 9 all else being equal but a good hit with a 380 will do the job and a bad hit with a 9 will not. I have both and would rather have a light weight small gun for pocket carry. Had a LC9 and even that was too heavy for comfortable pocket carry. I have found that the only gun that always goes with me is my NAA 22mag. And for those who say nay to a diminutive round, are you carrying your 9mm super gun everywhere you go? I guess if I lived in dangerous territory I might do otherwise but most of my self defense use has been for snakes and an occasional feral dog. Most of the time my G27 is in my car since the business world is not very accepting of carrying of firearms and removing and replacing a gun from my pocket every time I go in a prohibited area is dangerous.

  • Jim. Kelly

    Money people want this saw a 380 in Austria yrs ago same same m 27 or very close if you can’t handle the 40go to the 9 . The 380 is the weak sister.

  • Rafael Borrero

    4 times in the head? How about a double tap at center mass? Bigger target, wastes less ammo.

  • Rafael Borrero

    Oops…forgot to mention, why an employee of a gun manufacturer bring up head shots?? Does he think we will be shooting at zombies??

  • Steve

    I believe there was a .380 out in Austria years ago ( G28 ). Is the G42 smaller?

  • Ferreira

    What is he shooting at? How do we know it is accurate? when we can’t see the target he is shooting at. Great gun? for what? In the last few years Glock has become more unreliable than most other weapons especially when used hard. Not even good marketing, are people so stupid to believe this video? It seems Glock are not only skimping on quality nowadays, they are also skimping on marketing costs. That is why Glock is a cheap weapon now.

  • WillieS

    It’s evident by the majority of these posts that the purpose for the release of the .380 was misunderstood by the responders. Glock manufactured the .380 in order to compete in the international market where, in many countries, it is illegal to own a gun that is used by the military. The 9mm is a military weapon. The 9mm and the .45 are superior to the .380. Glock did not argue that point. Evidently some of you didn’t even get past the video and know not where of you speak. To those of you that believe the .380 is not effective, have someone shoot you in the gut with one or two hollow point rounds.

    • Guest

      Agreed, I work in a hospital ER and have seen numerous one shot 22 mortalities, and many multiple shot recipients from all calibers walking around like nothing happened. It’s about bullet placement. Hit a guy in the chest on his left with a 22lr and one little hole in the heart says adios, and pretty quickly too. I’ve seen multiple 9mm, .380, and .38 superficial wounds from a glance off the head from point blank range.

    • Balais

      Of course 380 is effective in the right hands.

      But military rounds ARE allowed here in the United States, therefore, there really is no reason to own a 380 and its glaring disadvantages unless it tickles your fancy.

  • Douglas

    Long Slide .45 looks great! A sub-compact .380, well gotta try it!

    MADE IN USA! Winner!

  • Chris

    I am big Glock fan but I like to wear shorts year round if the weather cooperates. Heavier subcompacts are just not all that practical for pocket carry. Currently carrying a S&W Bodyguard 380, but would prefer to carry a glock. This is an ideal fit for me.

  • Randy

    Don’t forget the fact that the slide on a typical 380 will be much easier to rack than similar 9mm pistols. This is a huge factor for smaller those who have a hard time racking the slide on larger caliber pistols. My wife loves her Sig P238 for exactly this reason.

  • Noah

    So .22 is prob one shot stop leader because more people own .22’s then any other caliber thus more one stop shots. Any gun is better then no gun!

  • Noah

    Also lets see you keep all of your rounds in a tight pattern , i carry a beretta m84 and its 13+1 i can def send 5 your way on target better then any 9mm thus putting more lead down range quicker then any 9mm .380 def a round to contend with.

  • Bill

    I look forward to trying out both the G41 and G42. Thanks Glock!

  • Garry Owen

    As they told us in Viet Nam – it is not how many times you hit them it is where you hit them!

  • Stephen Messinger

    I have had a Glock 22 and presently own a Glock 17. The Glocks , in my experience work first time, every time Those of you who argue against the 380 ACP have valid points. As for me, I sharpen my accuracy at the range with my 380 without experiencing any fatigue. I then follow up with 50 rounds of 9mm and about 20 rounds of 45ACP.
    For concealed carry here in New York, we are limited to seven rounds in the magazine. If Pearce cooperates with my suggestion and manufactures a plus one mag extension for the new Glock 42, .it would be ideal. for me.

  • bulldog

    i agree with stormcharger. a weapon your carrying will always carry the $1400 kimber sitting in the safe. if the smaller size gets more people to carry all the time then i say great job. i have seen a lot of people cease to exist due to a gut shot with a 22. very small rounds will bounce around inside tearing up everything in their path. i have also talked to a nra range instructor/police who put multiple hits of 45 acp on an offender who was not on any drugs or booze and stopped him with the last round in his last mag. it’s shot placement and speed. put as many rounds in the target as you can accurately in vital places. pratice pratice pratice

  • Yellowrose

    Everyone has a different opinion, but I’ll still ask the question. I am a woman with strong hands. I had a 380 SW Bodyguard but did not like the long pull of the trigger. I also have a Ruger SR22 but don’t seem to be as accurate with it.
    I’m most accurate with my daughter’s Ruger LC9. I am thinking about either a Beretta Nano 9mm or the Glock 42 380. I really love the Sig Rainbow 380 for it’s size (and color). For easy trigger, less recoil and accuracy, which would y’all recommend? Thanks — I need all the help I can get !!

    • Tom

      Go onto youtube and do a search for a review of whatever make and model you are interested in. You’ll be surprised at the info you find. Hope this helps. It worked for me.

      • Yellowrose

        thanks! I’ve searched the net but didn’t think about youtube.

  • Ben

    For a 6shot single stack 380 this is NOT a small pistol compared to other offerings. Glock missed the mark with this pistol big time. People like me who carry a 380 do so due to extreme limitations in conceal ability due to what I wear at work an my slim body type. The Springfield XDs 45 is almost the same size, why chose this over that?

  • Shomer

    What ammo were they using at SHOT? Thanks!

  • Balais

    “Outside of the U.S. there are very few places you can actually own a 9mm because it’s … military and considered weapons-grade, so .380 is really a global pistol for multiple markets”

    Pardon my abrasiveness, but in most countries outside of the US, you cannot even carry a handgun concealed…so what is the $*@!ing point!?

    That is a very poor excuse for ignoring the large pool of shooters that have been putting the “9mm single stack” idea in Glock’s ear.

    In America, where a single stack concealable pistol is most likely going to be widely sold (heh…okay scratch “most likely” and replace it with “the only place it’s”), shooters do not desire the 380, they desire 9mm because 380 has no advantages that the 9 doesn’t have. With a 380, you have increased recoil, more expensive and scarce ammo for a round with inferior ballistic capabilities, especially penetration.

    Sometimes glock really pisses me off (and I own Glocks)

  • Mark

    Just put down payment to reserve a glock 42 today,,,was looking for a small conceal weapon,LCP or body guard and dealer had this little bad boy.its a little bigger than the other two by about 1/2 in in barrel length but it felt nice and the size still made it easily concealable,,I own a glock27 40cal. And it’s just to bulky to be comfortable for wearing in the warmer weather,,my main concern in buying a smaller hand gun was wanting to carry it all the time,it wouldn’t do me any good if it was in my glovebox,,,I think 380 is still a powerful round but if you can’t hit a target then it doesn’t matter what caliber you have

  • viper 98

    if ur a true glock intusius why u be hateing?