I love my GLOCK, more than any other pistol. My affinity for these handguns isn’t down to their looks or feel. It’s all about practicality. You can’t find a more widely used pistol than the GLOCK 19. I can easily find parts, holsters, and other accessories for it anywhere I go. However . . .
As a professional firearms instructor, I can’t ignore the existence of other great handguns — especially when it comes to the civilian shooter. So when RF handed me the M&P M2.0 and the FN 509, I jumped at the opportunity to see which gun is the best package.
Again, the G19 has been my first pistol. It’s the handgun I carry everyday. I’ve shot tens of thousands of rounds through it. Out of the box it’s nothing special. Like the Jeep Wrangler, you get a durable vehicle but without too many bells and whistles.
The GLOCK’s trigger is decent at 5.5 lbs. The grip comes with just enough stippling to keep it in your hand on a hot Texas day. Although some people think carry pistols should have a sub MOA grouping at 100 yards, the GLOCK’s accuracy is more than good enough.
Smith & Wesson M&P M2.0
My previous experience with M&P hasn’t been favorable. They always felt a little flimsy in my hand. After shooting just a few rounds through the M2.0, my opinion has changed 180 degrees.
The updated M&P 9mm’s low bore axis makes recoil almost negligible. The hold on the gun solid. The trigger is crisp and the grip angle makes the pad of the trigger finger fit perfectly.
The reset on the trigger is also more prominent than on the previous M&P9. Overall the gun performed phenomenally and delivered terrific accuracy. With a little practice, I’m sure I could outshoot my GLOCK 19 with it. The only downside: the thumb safety which I consider unnecessary. [ED: the M2.0 is available without a frame-mounted safety.]
I’ve been looking forward to shooting the FN 509 since it came out. The handgun looks and feels extremely durable. It comes with an ambidextrous slide stop. I’m a big fan of the 509’s front slide serrations [ED: available on the GLOCK’s 2017 “Summer Specials”].
Where the 509 really shined: its grip. Both the angle and the flat front strap made the grip fit perfectly in my hand. The 509’s trigger was my major complaint. It’s a little wide for my finger and sticky around the reset point. Initially, I was shooting low with the 509 and had to adjust my sight higher. I believe this was due to the FN 509’s grip angle, which I wasn’t used to.
The above groups were shot freehand from five and fifteen yards shooting CapArms’ excellent Target Match ammunition. I hate to say it, but I don’t think this test proves anything — except familiarity breeds accuracy.
After a few hours with these guns the GLOCK 19 was still my favorite. Out of the box, I believe that the Smith & Wesson M&P is a superior gun thanks to its ergonomics, low bore-axis and long slide (which is an issue for carry). After more practice I have no doubt that I’d outshoot my GLOCK 19 with the Smith. The 509 felt the most durable and comfortable, but I just couldn’t make friends with the trigger.
In the final analysis it’s not the gun that makes the ultimate difference…it’s the person shooting it. Jon Wayne Taylor will take it from here, shooting all three handguns from a rest to get something closer to an objective measure of accuracy. Watch this space.