Glock 43 vs Glock 48

Glock 43 vs. Glock 48 

Both the Glock 43 and the Glock 48 are immensely popular concealed carry options. If you walk into a gun store you are likely to see both in abundance, and it’s hard to read an article about concealed carry without hearing one or the other mentioned. On the surface they look pretty similar, at least to the uninitiated, so what’s the difference between these two pistols? Let’s take a look at a comparison between the Glock 43 and the Glock 48 and find out!

What is the Glock 43?

The Glock 43 is a single-stack, subcompact semi-automatic pistol chambered in 9mm Luger. Though not the first of the Slimline pistols, the Glock 43 was the first Slimline chambered for 9mm. It was immediately very popular upon its release in 2015, and it remains extremely popular today, and for good reason.

Until the Slimline Glocks came along, “compact” or “subcompact” usually just mean shortening the slide and the frame a bit, and leaving all other dimensions the same. This resulted in the Glock 17/19/26 (full size, compact, subcompact in 9mm, respectively) and 22/23/27 in (in .40 S&W). There’s nothing wrong with that, but the double-stack subcompacts have very wide grips relative to their lengths. This was great for some shooters, but not so great for others.

The Slimline series reduced not only the length of the slide and frame, but also the thickness of the grip by making the guns single-stack. This allowed an entirely new class of shooters to be able to adopt a Glock pistol, and marginal shooters to handle the new Slimline guns even better.

The Glock 43 is what many shooters had waited on for a very long time.

What is the Glock 48? 

And then the Glock 48 came out. The Glock 48 was a surprise introduction from Glock in 2019. Rather than size down, it actually scaled up and is essentially a larger Glock 43 (it can also be thought of as a single stack Glock 19). The slide is longer (longer even than the compact Glock 19) and the frame is longer.

Originally shipped with a silver slide, the Glock 48 has a black slide like all Glocks now. It also has some upgrades that are typical on Gen5 Glocks, even though the Slimline guns don’t belong to a particular generation. An upgraded trigger, front cocking serrations, reversible magazine release, and a barrel similar to the Glock Marksman barrel come standard, and a red-dot-ready version with an accessory rail is available, as well.

The Glock 48 is an interesting pistol as it isn’t subcompact like the Glock 43, but it’s also not quite a duty-gun candidate like the Glock 19. It does make an exceptionally good, concealed carry pistol, and is sometimes referred to as the “do everything Glock.”

Now that we know what these two pistols are, what are their differences?

Main Differences between the Glock 43 and 48


The biggest difference between these two pistols is size. While the Glock 43 is possibly small enough to be carried in an ankle holster, the Glock 48 isn’t. The first size difference is the slide length. This is usually the less important measurement for inside-the-waistband carry as a little extra slide doesn’t make a gun much harder to conceal. The Glock 43’s overall length is 6.26 inches from butt to tip. The Glock 48 is just over an inch longer at 7.28 inches.

The other major dimensional difference is height, as influenced by the grip length of the two guns. The overall height of the Glock 43, with a magazine inserted, is 4.25 inches. Meanwhile the grip frame of the Glock 48 gives it an overall height of 5.04 inches with a magazine inserted, almost an inch of extra length.

Though these differences don’t seem massive, they do make a difference. The smaller grip of the Glock 43 makes it easier to conceal, and the larger grip of the Glock 48 makes it easier for some to shoot and a better option for those with larger hands.


Obviously, there is some difference in weight, with one gun being larger and one being smaller. Magazine capacity also influences practical weight, and these guns have different capacities. The Glock 43 is light, both loaded and unloaded. The loaded weight of the G43 is 20.64 ounces, or about a pound and a quarter. Unloaded weight, without a magazine is 16.23 ounces, barely over a pound.

The Glock 48 is a bit beefier. It’s loaded weight is 25.12 ounces, or about 5 ounces heavier than the G43’s 20 ounces. The unloaded weight of the Glock 48, without a magazine, is 18.48 ounces. We can see that the extra ammunition in the bigger Glock contributes to its additional weight, but the gun itself is over 2 ounces heavier. That’s not a huge difference but it can be a factor with certain modes of carry.


The size and weight differences come with some pros and cons. First, the longer slide of the Glock 48 gives it a longer sight radius. The nominal sight radius of the Glock 48 is 5.94 inches while the G43’s is 5.20. Three quarters of an inch may not seem like much but it helps practical accuracy considerably.

The longer slide of the Glock 48 also means it has a longer barrel. The longer barrel has some advantages, the biggest of which is higher muzzle velocity. Many bullets intended for defense are designed for optimal performance from 4” barrels. The added barrel length of the G48 definitely gives it an edge in this department. The obvious downside here is the Glock 48 is heavier and hard to conceal than the G43.


Both pistols are aimed squarely at the concealed carry market. Both are also designed for concealed carry, with one being slightly bigger but more shootable, and one being smaller and more concealable. Largely the choice comes down to personal preference, but there are some differences in usability that you should be aware of.

Magazine capacity is one such difference. This is where the Glock 48 has a clear advantage with its 10+1 capacity, the longer grip allowing a larger magazine to fit flush. The shorter Glock 43 holds 6+1 rounds of 9mm. Another important thing to note is that unlike previous Glock models, there is magazines cannot be interchanged between these guns and any other Glock pistols. The Glock 26 (the original “baby Glock”) could take larger capacity magazines from the standard Glocks, the 17 and 19, but the that is not the case with the Slimline Glock pistols.

One other consideration for concealed carry is the easy of shooting these pistols. Generally, the larger the gun, the easier it is to shoot. The Glock 48 is somewhat easier to shoot than the smaller Glock 43. Those extra ounces help to absorb recoil. Weight out from helps, too, and the longer slide provides this, as well as some extra sight radius. The longer grip affords a larger magazine with some additional rounds, but it also helps you get your whole hand on the gun.

On the other hand, the extra size and weight can become a burden during every day carry. The smaller gun will be comfortable, longer. Fortunately, the popularity of both these pistols means that a myriad of holsters are available for either. The decision about which to carry mostly just comes down to priorities and personal preference.

Best Upgrades for All Glock Models

Both the Glock 43 and the 48 are outstanding performers as they come out of the box. Both are reliable pistols and both are excellent concealed carry options. Neither is perfect, however. A few modifications can go a long way toward squeezing some extra performance out of these platforms, or any other Glock model.

Aftermarket triggers are an excellent upgrade that can improve the performance of nearly any Glock. Aftermarket, drop-in trigger kits like those offered by Overwatch Precision can decrease the trigger pull length, lighten the trigger, and make it crisper. The flat-faced trigger an also aid in a straight-back pull of the trigger and consistent trigger-finger placement.

Factory Glock sights can sometimes leave a lot to be desired, as well. The Have Blue sights offered by Overwatch Precision offer a rugged, steel rear sight with a clean, crisp, fiber-optic front sight. The aggressive forward angle of the rear sight allows for easy one-handed manipulations, and all the angles are smoothed to be easy on the hands.

The Glock 19 and Glock 48 are both outstanding platforms. Overwatch Precision offers a host of other upgrades for your favorite Glock model, from the “Original” Glock 17 to the new crop of Slimline Nines, including the Glock 43 and the Glock 48.