Springfield Armory 4″ XD-S Makes Tiny Nines (and .45s) A Bit Less Tiny

Image Courtesy Springfield Armory

If you’ve gotten over the XD-S trigger recall — and I’m not telling you you should — Springfield has a new version of their tiny single-stack concealed carry pistols that you (just) might enjoy shooting enough to actually practice with. The secret ingredient for improved accuracy and ergonomics? Added size and weight. Imagine that . . .

The latest Croatian sensation wears a 4-inch barrel, instead of the 3.3-inch tube of its predecessor. This adds a smidge more velocity, but more importantly it adds muzzle weight and sight radius for better handling and accuracy. This XD-S may be wafer-thin, but it’s got the same barrel length and sight radius as the benchmark Glock 19.

Will this added size and weight detract from the XD-S’s primary mission of daily concealed carry? Probably not. The extra 2.5 ounces and 0.7 inches all sit down at the end of the muzzle at the bottom of your holster where you won’t notice them, but it means the 4.0 is unlikely to fit in many previous XD-S holsters.

Grip dimensions are far more important to concealability than barrel length is (within reason), and the XD-S 4.0 has the same grip size and the same magazines as the 3.3-inch model. With a +2 extended magazine it feels and handles more like a ‘compact’ 9 than a ‘micro’ 9.

So what’s not to like in this $599 MSRP carry gun? Probably (still) the trigger.


  1. avatar S.CROCK says:

    if you want a great gun with a 4″ barrel, get a regular xd. if you want a concealed carry gun, get the regular xds. this new xds 4″ looks like it will be good at some things, but great at nothing.

    1. avatar Mark Horning says:

      Sounds like this is basically an XD-S version of a CCO 1911. Commander length slide on an officer frame. (almost universally held up as the “perfect” size CCW). for various definitions of perfect of course.

      For a Belt gun, going from 3.3 to 4″ isn’t really a handicap of any sort.

    2. avatar Mina says:

      I bought a 4″ XD 9mm last year. Love it. I liked the Sig P226 E2 9mm better but with a $600 price difference I am not a good enough shooter to justify the additional expense.

    3. avatar matt says:

      eh, I disagree. the xd is a fatty like the glock 26 this retains all the benefit of the xds and adds .7″ of barrel. unless you try and pocket carry the xds 3.3 the 4.0 is perfect.

  2. avatar Jon Templeman says:

    I have the original XDs .45 and although I hated how the safety recall was handled, I still love the weapon….including the trigger. It’s much crisper than the trigger on my XDm .45 compact.

    1. avatar Dryw says:

      If you desire better response out of your XDm45C, it’s difficult to undersell the Powder River kits: http://shop.powderriverprecision.net/product.sc?productId=37&categoryId=3

      I have upgraded both my XDm45 and XDm45C with PRP trigger kits. It is measurably crisper/better in every way. The over-travel stop triggers supplied with the kits are not strictly required, but I’ve found I prefer them over stock. The more expensive sear-included kit is the full treatment, but even without the PRP sear there is a noticeable difference.

  3. avatar Michael B. says:

    Is this their answer to the Glock 36? I don’t really get the point of it.

    1. avatar KCK says:

      Do you mean that, If Glock has a size and caliber covered, why should any other gun maker bother?

      1. avatar Michael B. says:


    2. avatar El Mac says:

      I hope not, seeing as how the Glock 36 is rather pathetic.

      1. avatar Jim Travets says:

        The only 45 better than the 36 glock is the 30S glock

        1. avatar El Mac says:

          @Jim Travets, I’ll respect your opinion, but we will just have to agree to disagree.

    3. avatar Hobbez says:

      Glocks don’t fit everyone. I’ve tried to get used to them several times but, they are just too chunky in the grip. My XDS 45 fits my hand like a glove with the extended grip. I have yet to find a mid or full size gun that fits me as well as my XDS. Even the XD and XDm is too wide for me. This new 4″ model with the +2 mag possibly gives me a mid sized option that will actually fit well.

    4. avatar rawmade says:

      Sit a XDs and a Glock 36 next to each other and come back to us

  4. avatar TJ says:

    Apendix carry will be harder with the 4″ barrel, that’s about the only negative. The gun should be easier to shoot than the 3.3.The proportions remind me of some of the earlier browning pistol designs where the barrel looks longer than the grip as is kind of front heavy. Maybe browning had the right ideas all those years ago.

    1. avatar CA.Ben says:

      Wouldn’t be the first time

    2. avatar NDS says:

      I think it’s safe to say Browning had one or two good ideas.

      1. avatar WRH says:

        Browning? Never heard of him.

  5. avatar PapaChop says:

    Love the trigger on my XD(M) 9mm 3.8. I’m just not sure where this would fit in. My next handgun purchase will be an LCP or similar for ankle carry, and the XD(M) 3.8 just isn’t very hard to carry with a good IWB holster.

  6. avatar former water walker says:

    And why is a 4″ barrel on a 9mm a big deal? Tiny .45 good…dozens of tiny 9mm to choose from…that aren’t 5 or 600bucks.

  7. Parson me while I stifle a yawn.

    1. avatar Lucas D. says:

      I’m not familiar with “parson” as a verb. Does it mean to ignore smarmy elitism and make my own decisions about what works for me? Because, thanks for the invitation, but I was already doing that.

      1. avatar Martin B says:

        He is inviting a clerical person to whump him with a Bible in an effort to keep him awake.

  8. avatar Matt in FL says:

    I think I still prefer the shorter barrel.

  9. avatar NYC2AZ says:

    I bought a Shield (9mm) during the XDs recall. At the time, Springfield hadn’t even come up with a fix yet. After getting the Shield, I’m looking to unload the XDs (9mm). It’s a shame. I really like the feel of XDs, but I like the Shield’s trigger and recoil much better. Maybe this incarnation will be a bit better with the recoil at least.

    1. avatar detroiter says:

      I’ll send you the address of my ffl….

      1. avatar NYC2AZ says:

        If you’re serious and your ffl will receive a transfer from a private address, RF has my e-mail address if you’d like to talk price. I have the full case with owb holster and mag holder and 4 extra 9 round mags.

  10. avatar Tyler Kee says:

    I REALLY want to put hands on this since it might be a nice solution for those with smaller hands who still want a gun that shoots like a full sized pistol. I had a Shield for awhile and promptly sold it because it wasn’t nearly as easy to shoot as my 3.8 XD(m) Compact and was worse for my wife. However, the grip on the 3.8 Compact is juuuuusssttt a touch too big for my wife’s small hands (and is borderline for me).

    10 rounds of single stack shooting pleasure with a grip safety? As long as it has a nice trigger and is reliable, call me interested.

    1. avatar Bryan P says:

      That pretty much sums up exactly why I want one. I have very small hands for a guy (my wife has bigger hands) and I have had a very difficult time finding a pistol that fits. The XDs 4.0 gives me everything I am lookings for: concealable, slim single stack grip, modular back straps, full size barrel, and magazine options. Its like a striker fired, polymer 1911 and thus far, nothing has fit my hand as well as a 1911.

      1. avatar Anonymous says:

        “Its like a striker fired, polymer 1911..”

        Wait, what?

    2. avatar Hannibal says:

      I ended up getting a Taurus PT145 to get that nice 10 round package… plus a bit of ammo money over the XD. Good gun if you can get past the reputation of Taurus although the trigger has too much take-up compared to a nice double-action.

  11. avatar El Mac says:

    I think its brilliant marketing. An extra half inch will make the gun handle/point a bit better. Love the XDs. Finally a polymer that doesn’t feel like a brick.

  12. avatar Renegade Dave says:

    I recognize there will be a handful of people where this is a perfect solution, but I just can’t see where this would fit in for me personally. The old one seems appropriate for a single stack nine, but I fill that niche with a shield. If I wanted a 4″ barrel it’s not too much more to take a full on XD Service or my G19g4.

  13. avatar Michael says:

    This gun may convert me to XDs.
    Longer barrel does not effect concealabiity.
    Wish Glock would make a G26 with a G19 barrel

    1. avatar Charles5 says:

      Buy a used G19 and cut off the grip a bit. I have a friend that did this and he loves it. He did a real nice job making the grip look as much like the G26 grip as possible.

      Here is a picture of a similar one, though my friend does not have the stippling:


      1. avatar RockOnHellChild says:

        Or, if you really want the extra barrel length, just buy the G19 barrel and put it in the G26, it’s compatible.

        And, it’s cheaper and easier than buying another gun and hacking on it.

      2. avatar RockOnHellChild says:

        Charles, I just checked out that linked pic… So, did he cut the grip off and then added the mag (pinky) extension, effectively putting the grip length back on it? If so, why?

        1. avatar Charles5 says:

          I don’t know the owner of the gun in the photo, so I don’t know why he did what he did except for looks maybe. It was the only photo I could find online with a similar looking grip mod to my friends G19. My friend uses the flush fitting G26 magazine. As to the idea of just dropping in the G19 barrel, that would give you added velocity, yes, but it would only increase your technical accuracy, but not your functional accuracy. From a bench rest or vice, a longer barrel should yield better accuracy than a comparable shorter barrel. However, for practical shooting you would need a longer sight radius to actually increase your functional accuracy.

        2. avatar RockOnHellChild says:

          Seems like a whole lot of work for not a lot of gain… But, to each his own, I guess

  14. avatar Dryw says:

    I know a lot of people (myself included) who would be interested in a full size single-stack polymer frame.45. Such in an XDm would make it all the more appealing as I am already sold on the platform.

    While the forty five flavor of the XD-S is/will be perilously close to that concept, my opinion mirrors many of those above: a long-slide ‘compact’ feels like a solution looking for a problem.

    Now… upscale that, keep the slim frame and single-stack… and I’ll be begging you to take my money.

    Design it to take 1911 mags and I’ll Snoopy-Happy-Dance (wishful thinking).

    1. avatar Charles5 says:

      “…a long-slide ‘compact’ feels like a solution looking for a problem.”

      Oh contrare, I absolutely hate it when gun makers just chop off barrel and grip to make a gun more compact and I know there are a lot of other people who agree with me. For 3-4 o’clock carry, barrel length presents no problems for concealment. A longer grip, however, does. What I would prefer to see is standard barrel length pistols (4 – 5 inches) and a shortened two finger grip with the option of an extended magazine with a grip extender to boost you up to a full size if you so desire. As to the single stack polymer .45, see Kahr pistols. Some people dislike their triggers but I have no problem with them. Plus, their budget line is pretty affordable.


      1. avatar Dryw says:

        Appreciate the point-to re: Kahr. Test drove several and just couldn’t warm to them. Trigger (as you mentioned) was indeed a factor.

        While I agree with you regarding super-chopped compacts, the opposite end of the spectrum is bothersome to me. It is interesting that you mention a preference for compact frame/long slide, as on first glance of the XD-S 4.0 I rolled my eyes because it was reminiscent of the old XD 45 Tactical Compact. That pistol just looked/felt… wrong.

        e.g. http://www.gunreports.com/media/newspics/selector/JULY-SPRINGFIELD-ARM-1207C-1_1.jpg

        1. avatar Charles5 says:

          I agree, the appearance can be rather off putting. To me, the whole point of a larger pistol, capacity aside, is to have a longer barrel and sight radius. That being said, at self defense distances (i.e. 15 yards or less) I can discern no difference in accuracy between my G19 and my G26.

  15. avatar Don from CT says:

    Amazing. 13 years late they’ve recreated the long forgotten Kahr P9 Covert.


    1. avatar El Mac says:

      Ummm….not really. This idea has been around in one form or another well before Kahr was even in existence.

  16. avatar SteveInCO says:

    If weight is actually a good thing, and I think with very small handguns shooting 9mm and up it generally is, the best way to increase it is to go to a metal frame. That way you don’t *need* to go larger. Though the increased sight radius might be enough reason to want a longer slide–up to a point.

    I’d like to see a *slim* gun (which the Glocks aren’t) with a metal frame (which the Glocks haven’t), and which isn’t so gratuitously blocky it prints (which the Glocks are) in this size class. My fave brand (CZ) unfortunately has nothing like this; the RAMI is fat (but at least isn’t a brick of a slide, so it might not be that big a deal in an IWB).

    1. avatar Brandon says:

      The Sig P938 is all metal.

  17. avatar k Longo says:

    I have both Shields (.40 and 9MM) and a XDS .45 and I LOVE this new 4″ version. I appendix carry so I like the grip safety of the XDS line and this longer version is a bit nicer to shoot then the Shield 9. I am an awesome shot and I find the XDS line much more accurate than the Shields if you are trying to shoot for points …. But the reality of it is that both brands are good enough for self defense. However I do prefer the XDS as a carry gun and the 4″ version is well worth it. I also prefer the steel finish which isn’t offered on the Shield.

  18. avatar Pam Wood says:

    Got an XDS 4.0 bicolor, in 2 words – IT ROCKS, accurate sites out of the box feels secure in hnad w/ minimal kick off target, and believe it or not prefer the 7 mag to the 9 xtension, now my ccw of choice, but my S&W 3913 satin is will always be my choice for in home grab & GO protection

  19. avatar Brett says:

    So. I had an XDs 45 3.3. Loved it, but had to sell it because, in my larger hands, it just flipped too much. I also have an XDm 45. 3.8 and LOVE it. I ended up selling the XDs because, no matter what I tried, extension on the mag plate, Talon Grips, etc. I just never could get good control on the flip. Lots of what I’m reading, video reviews, etc., are saying this longer barrel should help with that. I have one on order at my local store. I’m not obligated to buy it, I just get first dibbs on it. I will admit, a little gun shy (pun in tended) on buying it because of my 3.3 experience. Thoughts? (and if all you are going to do is bash it, please move on, I’m looking for GOOD advice, constructive criticism, not SW, Glock, (insert brand name) fan boys.

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