Designed by none other than Gaston Glock, the founder of Glock Ges.m.b.H, the Glock 19 is a multi-generational handgun that has been around since 1988. It’s arguably the most popular pistol on the market, along with its older brother, the Glock 17.
Having been around for almost 35 years, the G19 has a pretty rich history. Not only are there five different iterations of the firearm (Gen-1 to Gen-5); there are also different variants! The Glock 19X, for instance, is designed as a hybrid between the G19 and the G17, whereas the Glock 19C is designed with extra compactness in mind.
In this Glock 19 review, we cover all you need to know about the latest iteration of this iconic handgun. So, whether you’re interested in buying the G19 or you’re simply curious about its specs and features, you should stick around!
Glock 19 Review: Specifications
The specs of the Glock 19 Gen-5 are as follows:
- Length: 7.28 inches
- Width: 1.34 inches
- Height: 5.04 inches
- Weight (No Magazine): 21.52 ounces
- Weight (Empty Magazine): 23.63 ounces
- Weight (Full Magazine): 30.16 ounces
- Slide Length: 6.85 inches
- Slide Width: 1.00 inches
- Barrel Length: 4.02 inches
- Sight Radius (Polymer): 6.02 inches
- Sight Radius (Steel): 5.98 inches
- Sight Radius (GNS): 5.94 inches
- Trigger Reach: 2.76 inches
- Trigger Pull: 5.84 pounds (26N)
- Caliber: 9mm Luger
- Trigger System: Safe Action (Trigger Safety, Firing Pin Safety, and Drop Safety)
- Barrel Rifling: Hybrid Rifling
- Standard Capacity: 15
- Magazine Options: 17, 24, 31, and 33
Glock 19 Review: Overview
When it was first introduced, the G 19 took the gun world by storm with its unprecedented blend of functionality, concealability, and capacity. It became so popular that it helped the Glock brand transcend to international fame.
Fast forward to 2022, the Glock 19 is still one of the most popular handguns on the market and is still used by law enforcement agencies, security agencies, and even military units. If this isn’t a testament to how reliable and well-designed this Glock pistol is, we don’t know what is!
As we stated earlier, there are five different generations of the G19, with Glock Gen-3, Gen-4, and Gen-5 being the only ones still in production today. It’s possible to find a Gen-2 version of the Glock 19 if you look hard enough, but the Gen-1 is pretty much a thing of the past.
The differences between the five generations are considered minor. For instance, the Glock 19 Gen-3 featured finger grooves that the Gen-2 didn’t have, as well as a light rail. Comparably, the Glock 19 Gen-4 had a smaller base grip than the Gen-3 and allowed users to add additional back straps.
The latest iteration of the G19—the Glock Gen-5—removed the finger grooves that were found on the Gen-3 and Gen-4 versions, and it went back to the solid grip design that was present on the Gen-1 and Gen-2 versions.
Another notable difference between the Gen-5 and previous generations is that its texturing is more aggressive, but not too aggressive that it can cause skin chafing. The Gen-5 also features the match-grade Glock Marksman barrel, which makes it more accurate than its predecessors.
Glock 19 Review: Breakdown
Now that you know a little bit about the G19’s history, let’s assess the specs and features of the Gen-5 to determine whether or not it’s the right firearm for you.
Size and Weight
All five generations of the G19 are about the same size, with very slight differences here and there. They’re all highly compact pistols, regardless.
The G19 Gen-5 is 7.28 inches in length, 1.34 inches in width, and 5.04 inches in height. It weighs 30.16 ounces with a fully loaded magazine and has a long Marksman barrel that measures 4.02 inches.
All in all, the Glock 19 Gen-5 is just as compact as its predecessors. And in our experience, it offers more comfort and balance. It’s slightly heavier, but that’s not really a drawback. In fact, it’s well-established that heavier pistols tend to have less recoil.
Is the Glock 19 Gen-5 suitable for concealed carry? Absolutely!
As long as you have a suitable concealed carry holster, whether it’s an IWB holster or an OWB holster, this compact pistol will be an excellent concealed carry option.
Generally speaking, IWB concealment tends to be the most effective.
In our experience, the lack of finger grooves on the Gen-5 is an improvement over the Gen-3 and Gen-4. It’s just more comfortable to have your fingers bunched together than to have them separated by a piece of polymer.
Granted, there are people who like finger grooves, but they seem to be a very small minority.
The Gen-5 is an ergonomically designed pistol that features four removable backstraps that sit over the frame. You can use these backstraps to customize the circumference of the grip for a better, more comfortable fit.
The G19 has a different grip angle than 1911-style pistols, which is one of the reasons why a lot of people aren’t too fond of Glock ergonomics.
What those people seem to miss, however, is that the pistol is designed in such a way that ensures ease of shooting under stress. This makes it ideal for defensive use.
We agree that Glock pistols don’t always feel great in hand, especially when compared to SIG Sauer pistols, but they always seem to offer the most leverage. This leverage ensures better control over the firearm and better recoil management.
Out of all the Glock 19 generations, the Gen-5 has the best texturing. It’s a lot similar to the RTF 2 texturing on some Gen-3 Glocks, but a bit less aggressive. This ensures a lot of leverage and a firm grip without any risk of skin chafing.
That said, we should note that texturing is a bit of a controversial topic. Some people don’t really care for factory texture jobs because it’s common nowadays to get custom stippling. We, ourselves, are fond of stipple jobs because they help add more aesthetic flare.
The thing about custom stippling, however, is that it usually doesn’t last as long as a factory texture job, especially if you do a lot of dry shooting. The average stipple job will most likely last a year or a year and a half. Afterward, you’ll have to get it redone.
In comparison, the G19’s texturing will last you a long time, as it doesn’t wear out easily. It’ll ensure a solid grip and enough bite for a comfortable shooting experience.
The Glock 19 Gen-5 has a standard magazine capacity of 15 rounds. It has quite a few extended magazine options, including 17, 24, 31, and 33-round extended magazines. What’s more, the G19 is compatible with G17 magazines.
Seeing as it’s arguably the most popular pistol of all time, you can expect to find plenty of aftermarket magazine options for the Glock 19, so you won’t be stuck with Glock magazines if you buy it.
One of the things we like the most about the Gen-5’s magazine design is the cutout found on the front of the magwell. This simple cutout helps make it easy for you to strip out a magazine in the event of a malfunction, which is a very rare event when it comes to Glocks.
The Gen-5’s flared magwell is just as good as most aftermarket options, if not better! So, if you do buy the Glock 19 Gen-5, you won’t have to worry about replacing the magwell. This is good news for competitive shooters, as some competitions don’t allow the use of aftermarket parts. A good example is the USPSA competition.
It’s worth noting that the Gen-5 has the same magazine release function as the Gen-3 and Gen-4. Note also that the Gen-5’s magazines are a bit longer than traditional Glock mags, which affects compatibility with other Glocks.
The trigger design of the Glock 19 Gen-5 is another one of its strong selling points. It’s a major improvement over the Gen-3 and Gen-4 triggers, in our experience. It’s a lot lighter than you’d think, which is good for self-defense use.
When you pull the Gen-5’s trigger, you’ll be a heavy take-up before you reach the wall. After you get past the wall, it’ll move into a rolling break with a bit of creep.
After the break, you move into the reset, which feels pretty short. By the end of the reset, the trigger will be back in the wall stage.
For a factory component, the Gen-5’s trigger is simply exceptional. If you tried the Gen-3 and Gen-4 versions and you weren’t thrilled with their trigger pull, trust us, the Gen-5’s trigger will impress you!
As far as trigger safeties, the G19 Gen-5 is similar to the Gen-3 and Gen-4, as they all feature Glock’s Safe Action System, which consists of three mechanical safeties—trigger safety, drop safety, and firing pin safety—that ensure a consistent pull throughout the entire length of the magazine.
Note that this isn’t a manual safety system; it’s entirely automatic! Also, there are no external safeties.
The G19 Gen-5 comes equipped with Glock’s standard polymer sights (slot-filler sights). If you’re not fond of polymer sights, you can also get it equipped with AmeriGlo iron sights right from the factory.
If you don’t plan on using aftermarket sights, we recommend getting the Glock 19 with the AmeriGlo iron sights. They’re some of the best factory sights out there. If you do plan to use aftermarket sights, then get the G19 with the polymer sights to lower the cost.
If you’re into using red dot optics, we highly suggest buying the MOS version of the Glock 19 Gen-5, which has a modified frame that offers many options for optics. Otherwise, you’ll have to get the standard slide custom-milled to allow for red dot mounting.
The G19 Gen-5 is equipped with ambidextrous slide stop levers, so it’s convenient for right-handed and left-handed Glock owners. The slide stop is on the slicker side, though, which may not appeal to some shooters.
Though the slide design is quite functional, there are plenty of aftermarket alternatives that you can resort to if you want to replace it.
We don’t usually pay that much attention to rails, but in the case of the Gen-5, we have to mention that the gun’s rail is a bit taller from the bottom than a traditional Glock rail. This is because it’s a Picatinny-based rail.
Why is this significant? Because it can affect the gun’s holster compatibility, especially if it’s equipped with a light. In this case, it’s best to avoid standard holsters and to get one designed specifically for your gun’s setup.
The G19 Gen-5 isn’t that much different from most other Glocks. All Glocks have the same boxy look, after all. In our opinion, though, it’s more aesthetically appealing than its predecessors. The removal of the finger grooves gives this gun model a more uniform and proportional look that we really like.
That being said, if you were never a fan of how Glock guns look and feel, it’s highly unlikely that the Glock 19 Gen-5 is going to change that.
So, is the Glock 19’s legendary status justified? We’d have to say yes!
We really like what the G19 Gen-5 has to offer. It’s an accurate, flat-shooting pistol that works perfectly in a defensive situation. It’s also very fun to shoot this pistol at the range.
Compared to the Gen-3 and Gen-4 versions, the Glock 19 Gen-5 is definitely an improvement, especially when it comes to texturing, ergonomics, and trigger design. Not to mention that it’s available in an MOS version, which is right up your alley if you’re a red dot fanatic.
The G19 Gen-5 is an eminently shootable pistol that’s ready to impress right out of the box. You don’t need to upgrade anything to enjoy shooting it, given that you go for the AmeriGlo sights instead of the plastic sights.
All things considered, we highly recommend the Glock 19!