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concealed carry 2017

The Best Concealed Carry Guns That Came Out In 2017

2017 is rapidly approaching its close, but some fantastic concealed carry guns came out this year. In fact, a concealed carry pistol could be found for nearly any and every sensibility from 2017's crop of CCW guns.

Let's take a look back at the best concealed carry guns of 2017. You either can right now or will soon be seeing them in gun stores, so these are some carry guns to keep an eye out for.

Springfield XD-E

xde springfield

Springfield Armory surprised everyone with a pistol that no one expected them to make, the Springfield XD-E. Heretofore, their province had pretty much been either 1911 platform pistols or striker guns. However, they did something that most gunmakers frankly don't: they tried something different.

The XD-E is a hammer-fired, double-action single-stack compact. It does have a polymer frame, along with a small accessory rail and their Grip Zone texturing. It isn't a full-on Wonder Nine; it's slim, compact and geared for concealed carry.

The XD-E can be carried cocked and locked in single-action mode, or in double-action mode with the safety on or off, as the manual safety also functions as a decocking lever. The compact size makes it great for concealed carry, and the polymer frame makes it nice and light. In other words, you get the controls and function of a double-action gun with none of the traditional drawbacks. It doesn't even cost that much either. How much more can you ask for?


Glock 19 Gen 5

glock 19

One of the most popular concealed carry guns on the market is the Glock 19. Big enough to shoot like a service gun, small enough to carry everyday and holds a respectable 15+1 of 9mm. It is a standard by which other carry guns are judged. The Glock 19 Gen 5 is the latest product refresh. While Glock hardly reinvented the wheel with this one, they did make some significant changes.

The Glock Marksman Barrel has been made standard, increasing barrel length to 4.02 inches and widening the slide to 1.34 inches. Weight goes up to 23.99 ounces unloaded from 23.65 ounces. Capacity remains the same. The magazine well has been flared for easier reloading and the finger grooves, which a good number of shooters found irritating, have been removed. The Modular Back Strap remains, and ambidextrous slide stop levers are now standard, so left-handed shooters have less to change out of the box.

That adds up to something that few believe is possible: a better Glock 19.


Beretta APX

apx pistol

Not content to let Glock and the other plastic fantastic specialists dominate the submissions as the Beretta 92/M9 is being phased out, Beretta cooked up their own poly striker gun for the army handgun trials: the Beretta APX. The APX ultimately wasn't selected for the M17 pistol program, but regardless has added a product to Beretta's lineup that will connect with a lot of shooters.

The APX is a duty gun, through and through, but was designed with modularity in mind. The frame itself is swappable for smaller diameter grip sizes, to better fit different shooter's hands. The backstraps are also exchangable for the same reason. The magazine release can be switched to the right or left and features ambidextrous slide stop levers.

This gun is geared to run. While maybe not the smallest of concealed carry guns, it could be carried on the daily without too much effort. However, early reviews indicate that it's a serious shooter, so expect to start seeing more of them about.


S&W M&P Shield M2.0

m&p shield

Smith and Wesson has been refreshing their M&P line of pistols, and the most hotly anticipated of said product updates is the M&P Shield M2.0. The Shield is one of the concealed carry pistols that others are judged by, so a design revision had better have something to offer.

The Shield 2.0 isn't a reinvention of the wheel, just an improvement on the breed. The basic specs remain the same. However, the trigger has been tuned for improved response with a crisper break, smoother travel and less take-up. The slide machining has been updated to a more aggressive fish-scale pattern, making it easier to get good purchase on.

The M&P Shield M2.0 - currently available in 9mm or .40 S&W; no Shield 45 2.0 yet - isn't a whole new gun. It's an already great gun, made a bit better.


Arex Rex Zero 1 Compact

rex zero

The Arex Zero 1, imported by FIME Group from Slovenia, is clearly inspired and arguably cloned from the Sig P226. Just like the Sig P226, it's pretty big, so it's not the best option for carry...which is why they also make the Arex Rex Zero 1 Compact.

The Compact takes after the P229 like the full-size takes after the P226. It looks almost the same, and has a lot of the same features. 15-round capacity, DA/SA operation with a decocking lever in the same spot, and an accessory rail. However, the Arex Zero 1 Compact also adds ambidextrous manual safeties at the top of the grip.

If you like the Sig P229, you'll love the Arex Rex Zero 1 Compact. You'll also love the discount of about $400 in purchase price compared to the real Swiss deal.

S&W M&P Compact M2.0

s&w compact m2

Since their introduction about a decade ago, one of the better concealed carry guns on the market has been the S&W M&P Compact series, including the M&P9C, M&P40C, M&P45C as the gun is offered in 9mm, .40 S&W and .45 ACP. (It was briefly offered in .357 Sig.) While maybe not perfect, they are some of the best guns for the task for the money asked. Tough to do much better...but leave it to S&W to find a way to make a better gun, which is what the M&P Compact M2.0 series is geared to do.

Barrel length has been increased to 4 inches, leading to a more uniform size and enhancing accuracy. The grip has been slightly lengthened, but capacity increased to 15+1 of 9mm or 13+1 of .40 S&W, as the M&P45C M2.0 hasn't been released just yet. The trigger has been tuned for a crisper breaker and shorter take-up. The slide gets a new fish-scale machining to improve grip.

It gets a bit bigger, a bit better, and still offers a whole lot of gun for the asking price. Apparently you can improve on perfection.


Springfield Armory Range Officer Elite Compact

officer elite compact

Another new concealed carry gun was added to the Springfield 1911 lineup: the Springfield Range Officer Elite Compact, a CCO-pattern 1911 pistol. For those unaware, a CCO or Concealed Carry Commander is a Commander-length slide and barrel on an Officer frame. Depending on who makes it, barrel length is 4 to 4.25 inches, frame height is usually about 5 inches. Chambering in .45 caliber is customary, but they usually will get offered in 9mm as well.

Springfield's Range Officer Elite Compact is offered in both 9mm and .45 ACP, with a 4-inch barrel. Ambi safeties are standard, as are a set of combat sights with the front post being a red fiber optic. The barrel bushing is omitted in lieu of a bull barrel, so lock-up will be tight and groups should be tight. Operation should be smooth, as the guide rod is full-length.

Springfield's lightweight but high-strength alloy brings the weight down to a respectable 29.5 ounces. So yes, it's a bit big for a carry gun, but compact and light for a 1911. Capacity is 6+1 in .45 ACP, but the 9mm model is 8+1. Purists may whinge, but Colt actually developed the Commander frame with 9mm in mind back in the 1950s, so they're just wrong in this case.

Granted, you'll pay for the quality, with MSRP starting at $1,030, but you'll also get it in return for the purchase price.


Have you shot these firearms? What did you like, and what didn't you?
Let us know in the comments below!

About The Author

Writer sam hoober