I have to admit, my first experience with Taurus firearms was not favorable. Years ago, a friend purchased a .357 revolver and brought it over for me to look at. He was proud of the gun, and I reserved telling him exactly how I felt because I didn’t want to hurt his feelings. It was the early ’70s and at that time, I had a Colt Python and a S&W Model 19. I still consider those two guns to be the pinnacle of revolver design.
The Taurus was crude by comparison. The single-action trigger was acceptable, but double action was extremely heavy. Sights were fixed and the finish was far below the standards of base models of S&W and Colt at the time.
My later impressions were similar. Taurus revolvers were heavy and had poor triggers. The semi-automatics were less than reliable and didn’t provide real accuracy. But in the last half dozen years, my opinions have changed.
I don’t like to review guns I can’t recommend to the average buyer so I didn’t review many Taurus guns. Then an editor asked me to do a review on the then new TX22.
My primary business is as a firearms trainer. Many of my clients are new to shooting, and I often use .22 Rimfire in the introductory stages of training. The TX 22 was so good, I bought two for use on my range with new shooters. They are incredibly tough and reliable, easy to operate and affordable. These guns have now had thousands of rounds put through them with virtually zero attention or problems.
In the last few years, people who never would have considered owning a gun for personal protection have decided gun ownership is a good idea. My average week involves individual training to a lot of new gun owners and many have already purchased a gun.
As might be expected, many purchase guns based on price and as a result, I see a lot of Taurus concealed carry guns. I decided it was time to review a 9mm Taurus concealed carry gun, so I chose the GX4XL T.O.R.O. The XL version has a longer slide and the T.O.R.O. designation indicates it comes optics ready.
I was already impressed by the reliability and utility of the GX4 line because of my experience with client’s guns, but after spending some time with my test gun, I’m even more impressed. With a weight of 20 ounces, a slim just over one-inch width and the 3.71-inch barrel, it’s the perfect size and weight for a daily carry pistol. The magazine capacity sits at 10 rounds with the standard mag and 13 rounds with the extended magazine. I don’t recommend daily carry guns larger than this because of the temptation by many gun owners to leave a heavy and bulky gun at home. It will do you no good there if you should need it.
The grip surface is plenty grippy, the flat faced trigger is very good and breaks at a good level for a defensive gun. Sights are a white dot front and a dovetailed rear. There are no dots on the rear sight, something many experienced shooters prefer. Of course, it’s a simple matter to add a red-dot sight to the gun if you feel the need. I particularly like the grippy surface in front of the takedown pin. It’s a great reminder of where the trigger finger and support thumb should be with a proper high, thumbs forward grip. As have all the recent guns in this line, it ran flawlessly with any ammunition I tried.
It would be an oversight to not include mention of the G3 series as well. I’m equally impressed with them and especially like the second strike capability of the G3 series. The standard GX4s are commonly discounted for about $330 and base model G3s can be had for just over $250, all extremely reasonable pricing.
At any price they’re reliable, user friendly and an excellent choice for a daily carry, defensive pistol.
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