Jim Grant gives readers a look at the Taurus GX4XL 9mm EDC Pistol, including some shots at the range.
U.S.A. -(AmmoLand.com)- The new Taurus GX4XL 9mm EDC Pistol is a compact, affordable carry gun with excellent magazine capacity. On paper, it should be the go-to concealed carry gun – but in a market saturated with solid alternative carry pistols, can Taurus’ latest iteration of its GX series of handguns hold its own? Let’s take a closer look at the Taurus GX4XL T.O.R.O. 9mm EDC Pistol and find out.
Taurus GX4XL 9mm EDC Pistol
If you’ve read or watched my review of the standard Taurus GX4, you know that I had a great time with the little gun and that it ran flawlessly for me. This is great news if you’re in the market for the GX4 XL since it is mechanically identical to the standard GX4.
If you’re unfamiliar, the GX4 XL is a striker-fired, locked-breach, tilting barrel, semi-automatic, magazine-fed pistol chambered in 9mm. In simpler terms, this means that the GX4 XL unlocks its action VIA, a camming barrel that interlocks with the ejection port on the slide. It feeds from stagger-columned magazines, which hold 11 rounds of 9mm ammunition. The new GX4 XL also includes a variant of this same magazine that features a +2 baseplate, bringing the magazine capacity up to 13 rounds.
And just how large is the new GX4 XL with the extended magazine? With the magazine inserted, the GX4XL T.O.R.O. standard measures 6.41inches in length, 4.4 inches tall, and just 1.08 inches wide.
Taurus GX4 XL Features
There are essentially two different versions of the GX4XL available for purchase. The T.O.R.O model ships with a removable sight plate cut for Shield RMSc optic, while the standard model I previously reviewed is just the GX4 with a longer barrel and slide. How much longer? Well, the standard GX4 features a 3.06in barrel, while the GX4 XL has a 3.7in barrel. The difference might seem negligible, but the longer barrel and slide have three main advantages.
First off, it increases the projectile velocity, which means both flatter-shooting and increased terminal ballistic efficacy. Another advantage is reduced felt recoil – this is a combination of two factors: longer dwell time/slower slide velocity and increased weight which translates into more mass resisting the recoil impulse.
Lastly, the increased distance between the iron sights, AKA sight radius, means the GX4XL has a more precise sight picture since the front sight will appear smaller due to being further away from the rear sight notch.
Speaking of the sights, just like the standard GX4, the XL ships with post-and-notch iron sights, where the front post is fixed, and the rear is drift-adjustable for windage. These are good sights and intelligently designed as the rear sight is flat black with horizontal anti-glare serrations, while the front sight post incorporates a white dot to draw the shooter’s eye to it.
Below the sights, the slide features angled cocking serrations at the front and rear, providing ample grip for charging the weapon or clearing malfunctions. Continuing downward, the frame features molded stippling throughout that in testing struck a good balance between ‘grippyness‘ and being too abrasive.
Integrated into this grip is a triangular magazine release button which can be swapped from one side to the other to accommodate left-handed shooters. Above that, the GX4 XL features a flat-faced trigger which, according to my Lyman trigger scale, broke at around 6lbs. This might seem a little heavy, but it’s a good weight for a carry gun like the GX4 XL – especially given that the Taurus GX4XL 9mm EDC Pistol has no manual safety. And speaking of which…
The Taurus GX4XL 9mm EDC Pistol is a pure striker-fired pistol, so it lacks any sort of second strike capability.
Taurus GX4XL EDC Handgun Problems
Since this isn’t a puff piece or paid advertising, I want to address some of the issues I had with the gun. Regarding mechanical reliability, the gun was flawless when feeding from the standard 11-round magazine. My issue was that the 13-round extended-mag occasionally would unlock from the magazine catch, but after the first 200 rounds fired through the gun, this issue totally disappeared.
I noticed after the fact that the mag catch on the inside had a small piece of bare steel shining through its black finish. I can only assume this was due to a machining burr breaking off and bringing the gun back into proper tolerances. Whatever the issue may have been, it remedied itself after some break-in.
The other issue I have with the gun is the trigger. While the weight of the trigger is fine, the break on it is a combination of nebulous, sudden, and inconsistent. Now in all fairness, after dry-firing the gun a few hundred times while watching TV (much to my poor wife’s dismay), the trigger certainly got better. And even in its initial state, it was far from unserviceable. But if you’re accustomed to Gucci-Triggers (and if so, why are you reading a Taurus review?), this gun may leave you wanting more.
Taurus GX4XL T.O.R.O. 9mm EDC Pistol Specs:
- Brand: Taurus Arms
- Item Number: 1-GX4XLP941
- UPC: 7-25327-93712-8
- Caliber: 9MM LUGER
- Capacity: 13 Rounds
- Front Sight: Fixed
- Rear Sight: Drift Adjustable
- Magazines Included: 2
- Action Type: SAO
- MSRP: $420.00
So, is the new Taurus GX4XL T.O.R.O. EDC worth its $420 MSRP? (less $$ online) If you already own the original Taurus GX4, no. The XL is harder to conceal and, while easier to shoot, doesn’t increase performance to a large enough extent to warrant buying a new pistol. But if you don’t have a good subcompact pistol and aren’t flush with cash, the GX4 XL will do the job.
Though I would definitely recommend both a thorough break-in of at least 300 rounds, and if you’re going to buy this model, spend an extra $30 and buy the TORO model with an integral optic plate.
About Jim Grant
Jim is one of the elite editors for AmmoLand.com, who can wield a camera with expert finesse in addition to his mastery of prose. He loves anything and everything guns but holds firearms from the Cold War in a special place in his heart.
When he’s not reviewing guns or shooting for fun and competition, Jim can be found hiking and hunting with his wife Kimberly, their son, and their dog Peanut in the South Carolina low country.
*”The Taurus GX4XL T.O.R.O. 9mm Pistol is a competent design that will serve you well” ~ Jim Grant. How would you rate the Taurus GX4XL T.O.R.O. 9mm Pistol?