The Glock 48 is one of Glock’s newer handguns. It was introduced to be a slimmer version of the Glock 19, so this comparison of the Glock 48 vs 19 seems natural, in my opinion. For years, the Glock 19 was considered the ultimate concealed-carry firearm or do-it-all handgun.
It could work well as a duty pistol as well as a concealed-carry firearm as it was in the “Goldilocks” size category but since then, things have changed. So is there a major advantage or disadvantage in the G48 vs G19 debate?
Styles in clothing have gotten a little bit slimmer and guns tend to have gotten smaller. Is the Glock 48 actually the new Glock 19 in terms of versatility and comparable features? Maybe, maybe not. In this comparison of the Glock 48 versus the Glock 19, we’re going to go over both firearms in-depth and show you all the pros and cons of each option. On the surface, these guns might appear similar, but there are a lot of important differences.
Table of contents
- Glock 48 vs 19 Concealed Carry: Buyer’s Preference
- Sights G48 vs G19
- Controls Glock 48 vs 19
- G48 vs G19 Aftermarket
- Glock 48 vs 19 Aesthetics
- G48 vs G19 Price/Value
|Metrics||Glock 19||Glock 48|
|Weight w/ no mag (Oz)||21.4||18.6|
|Weight w/ empty mag (Oz)||23.9||20.9|
|Weight w/ full mag (Oz)||29.4||25.2|
|Height (top of slide to bottom of magazine baseplate) (Inches)||4.89||4.92|
|Width of grip (Inches)||1.18||1.02|
|Width of slide (Inches)||1.00||0.86|
|Width across controls (Inches)||1.33||1.05|
Glock 48 vs 19 Concealed Carry: Buyer’s Preference
The length of these guns from the bottom of the magazine baseplate to the top of the slide is virtually identical. There is a slight disadvantage to the Glock 48, but it’s negligible and not going to make a difference when it comes to concealment. However, the width of the guns is quite different. You’ve got three-sixteenths of an inch difference in width, which might also sound negligible but is actually fairly significant.
Depending on the clothing you’re wearing, that extra width can make a huge difference on whether or not you’re printing. For certain types of concealed carry, especially types like OWB with a pancake-style holster, a thinner gun is always going to be better. For people who wear the gun at four o’clock or the appendix, thinner will be better as well.
Weight is also a consideration. With the 19, the gun is going to weigh almost four ounces more with five extra rounds. Now there are 15-round magazines available for the Glock 48, but I don’t have the exact weight with those attached. The gun unloaded with no magazine weighs almost three ounces less. You can assume that the Glock 48 is still going to weigh a little bit less than the Glock 19, even if you get one of the aftermarket 15-round magazines for the gun.
The weight of both these guns is reasonable for their size. I don’t think the 48 is going to give you a huge advantage with those four ounces. Although if you are carrying a gun without a belt, it is going to be a little bit easier to carry than the Glock 19. Both are doable as long as you’re carrying a holster that has Discreet Carry Concepts clips.
The ergonomics of the firearms are dang near identical. The frame on the 48 is obviously much slimmer vs. the Glock 19, but if you’re looking at a Glock 48 vs. a Glock 19 Gen5, you’re not going to see a big difference in the two beyond the width of the gun. It’s easier for me to grip and shoot a Glock 19 just because the frame feels a little bit better in my hand due to its thickness.
The Glock 48 will probably work much better for small-handed individuals. It has no removal backstraps or any kind of modularity, whereas the Glock 19 in the Gen4 and Gen5 variants have the ability to add larger backstraps (two with a beavertail and two without) to adjust the size of the grip to your hand if they are larger. They’re both Glocks, so it’s really hard to state that there’s much difference here. There simply isn’t.
Now, the texture is going to vary a little bit differently depending on the generation. The Glock 48, I believe, is a Glock Gen5 according to the manufacturer. In my opinion, it’s a Gen4 gun as it seems to have more Gen4 features. It has the same trigger as the Glock 43, which ironically seems more like a Gen3, but has the texturing and frame of a Gen4. We’ll cover the 19 in all three current product generations and then review the 48 separately.
Glock 19 Gen 3 Texture
The texture on the Glock 19 Gen 3 is very slick. There were select limited-edition guns made with the Glock RTF2 texturing — which, in my opinion, is the best texture ever made for a polymer striker-fired handgun — but those guns are fairly rare and hard to find. I would avoid a Glock Gen 3 texturing if you can.
Gen 4 Texturing
Glock Gen 4 texturing is much more aggressive than the Gen 3, but it’s still not as aggressive as the Gen 5. It’s shaped like little checkered squares and it works pretty well. This is the exact texturing found on the Glock 48.
Glock 19 Gen 5 Texturing
The texture of the Glock 19 Gen 5 is a little more aggressive than the Gen 4, and, in my opinion, just about perfect for a production handgun. It’s aggressive enough you don’t have to worry about the gun slipping out of your hand, but it’s not going to cause you discomfort when you’re carrying the gun up against your body.
As stated earlier, the Glock 48 has the Gen 4 texturing, which is perfectly usable, although not as good as the Glock Gen 5. I would’ve preferred that Glock had gone with the Gen 5 texture on this gun since they released this gun after the Glock Gen5 was introduced, but it still works well enough. If texturing is important, this is a key metric for G48 vs G19.
These slides are virtually identical in every way except width. See a pattern forming here? The Glock 48 slide is going to be just a little bit harder to manipulate because it’s not as wide and you can’t get as much of your hand on it as you can with the 19. That said, they’re both pretty close to equal.
Sights G48 vs G19
Again, we’re looking at similar sighting options for both guns. The Glock 19 comes with plastic slot fillers as well, which is an option for the Glock 48. You can also get both of these guns with factory-installed Ameriglo sights.
If you don’t want to install your favorite set of Glock sights and you’re pretty happy with just having a “good” set, I would definitely suggest checking out the Ameriglo sights for the Glock. These are some of the better factory-installed sights out there. The front sight has an orange luminescent ring around a tritium vial, so the orange is visible in the daylight and the tritium visible at night while the rear sight is blacked out but does have two tritium vials around the square notch.
It’s a good sight picture, and for factory sights, they really are hard to beat. I know I’ve stressed that a lot, but in this case, I just can’t stress enough.
Aftermarket Glock 48 vs 19
The Glock 48 uses Glock 43 sights, so there are a ton of options on the market. There aren’t quite as many as there are for the Glock 19, but probably 90 percent or more of the options are available for both. You really can’t go wrong with either.
Both of these guns now have current red-dot optic mounting options. Glock has their modular optic system (MOS), which they offer in the Glock 19 and now the 48, although the MOS on the Glock 48 isn’t quite the same as the Glock 19.
Glock really screwed up on the 48 by adding features that don’t mesh with some of the more popular red-dots on the market. They partnered with Shield to introduce a red-dot specifically for the Glock 48, and it cuts into the 48 itself. Despite its convenience for Shield products, it makes it a little harder to mount other dots of your choice. You either have to send your slide off to be milled or buy an aftermarket mounting plate that, due to the recoil bosses, adds a lot of height to where your Glock 48 optic is sitting.
On the other hand, the Glock 19 MOS variant comes with multiple mounting places that will work with pretty much any optic on the market. On top of that, there are a ton of aftermarket mounting places as well. I really think Glock screwed up on the Glock 48 MOS by only allowing it to work with that one optic.
There are currently options from Trijicon and Holosun that are really well-liked by the American market, but I think the Austrian marketing team had a lot to do with this decision, not the American team. I really would like to see Glock change this feature, but it’s Glock, so I won’t count on it for a while. I’ll probably have to run a mounting plate on my Glock 48 that will make the optics sit a lot higher than I would like.
Controls Glock 48 vs 19
The trigger on these guns is going to be a little bit different. I have felt multiple Glock 48s and the trigger on them is very inconsistent. It’s somewhere between a Glock Gen 3 and Gen 4 trigger. Some of them have very hard walls while others lean more towards a rolling break.
However, neither is as good as a Glock 19 Gen 5 trigger. That trigger has a nice rolling break and is my preferred trigger feel. On top of that, most of the Glock 19s I’ve handled have a pretty consistent trigger for their prospective generations.
Some of the Glock 48 triggers feel like a straight-up Glock 43 (which feels like a Gen 3 Glock 19), or they feel more like a Gen 4 trigger. Due to those inconsistencies, I can’t really give you a straight opinion on what the better trigger is or even how the trigger on the Glock 48 you handle might react or feel.
Slide Lock G48 vs G19
Again, these pistols are going to be virtually identical in slide lock placement and design. The only difference is that the Glock 19 Gen 5 has an ambidextrous option, and that may be an advantage for some people when comparing G48 vs G19.
The magazine release is going to be a little bit easier to reach on the Glock 48 for anybody with smaller hands. I can still reach the magazine release in the Glock 19 without having to break my grip. But I have medium-to-large hands, so your mileage may vary.
Glock 48 vs 19 Magazine Well
The Glock 19 is a lot thicker, and a Gen5 has a huge magazine well that has a nice flair on the inside bevel that makes this gun very easy to reload. The Glock 48 is trying to be thin, so there’s no bevel on the inside of the magazine well.
These guns are both Glocks and the quality is pretty much equal. I really can’t say any more than that. It’s a Glock.
G48 vs G19 Aftermarket
There are a lot more aftermarket options for the Glock 19, but there are still a ton for the Glock 48 since it accepts pretty much all Glock 43 and 43X accessories. You’re going to have a hard time finding an option that you find for the 19 not being available for the 48. The only difference is if there’s one option available for the 48, there’ll be 5 to 10 comparatively for the 19.
Now, one thing I feel that is important to mention are these Shield Arms S15 magazines. These magazines hold 15 rounds and allow you to get a lot more capacity in the Glock 48 while still being thinner than the Glock 19. These magazines cost around $40. And while that may seem expensive, when you compare them to $25 Glock OEM mags, the price really isn’t that bad. When you compare them to magazines like the SIG mags, that’s where the pricing significance begins.
Now, a lot of people are using this gun as a 50-state legal firearm, meaning it doesn’t have what is considered high- or standard-capacity magazines. In that case, having the 10-round Glock magazines is actually a nice feature.
Glock 48 vs 19 Aesthetics
These guns are both Glocks and have a similar outline because of it. I think the Glock 48 does look just slightly better as a more balanced and proportional firearm than the Glock 19, but neither of these guns is a showstopper. They’re definitely something designed with utility in mind over appearance. At the end of the day, comparing looks of G48 vs G19 isn’t going to be the determining factor.
In my opinion, there’s no doubt that the Glock 19 shoots better. The gun has a much softer recoil, and it’s just a better-shooting and easier gun than the Glock 48. If I had to go 48 vs. 19, and I knew I had to get in a gunfight, I’ll take a Glock 19 all day long. That said, the Glock 48 shoots pretty well considering how slim it is.
If you have smaller hands, the Glock 48 might actually shoot better for you. But for me and my oversized hands, the Glock 19 is just a lot softer of a shooter that allows me to get more meat on the grip. The Glock 48 is definitely good enough, it just has a lot more felt recoil. I wouldn’t want to shoot the Glock 48 all day at the range, whereas I have no problem shooting the Glock 19 over and over again.
When you shoot the Glock 48, you can definitely feel it. I shot a thousand rounds with two of my friends through the Glock 48 in less than 30 minutes, and it wasn’t fun. We shot the Glock 19 afterward, and that gun felt like shooting a .22. It was so much softer and easier to shoot than the 48.
G48 vs G19 Price/Value
A Glock 19 can usually be purchased for somewhere between $500 and $620 depending on the sight installed. On the other hand, the Glock 48 will run you $450 to $500. The versatility of Shield S15 magazines for the Glock 48 is a game-changer — it’s easier to conceal a Glock 48 and if you get a couple S15s, you’ll be at the same cost as the Glock 19 on its own.
Because of that, I feel there is a little more value in the Glock 48 when you take its versatility into account. You can run 15-round magazines, and if you’re traveling into capacity-restricted states, you can run the 10-round mags that come with the gun as well. If having a slim gun doesn’t matter to you, then I’ll say the Glock 19 is better, but many (if not most people) will benefit from a slim profile.
Glock 19 Pros
- Multiple magazine options
- Size for concealment
Glock 48 Pros
- Thin profile
This is an opinion piece, but I always aim to eliminate bias. Look, we’ve all read them before. Gun reviews that claim to be helpful, but they’re really thinly veiled hit pieces trying to get you to buy something before you’ve even started your research. Or, even worse, a review put together by a content writer who has never even held a gun.
I’ve trained with some of the best in the business to learn various shooting styles and ideologies to better serve our customers. I’ve purchased guns of all price points, calibers, and action types to build the best products for the market. I want you to walk away knowing you have the information you need to make a sound purchasing decision.