Micro-compact handguns designed specifically for everyday concealed carry are a must for any firearms manufacturer these days. FN's new Reflex line of 9mm pistols looks very promising if you're shopping for a concealed carry handgun.
So I haven't had one of these handguns to test yet, but on paper, I like what I see. All the photos are directly from the official FN America website.
All-New Reflex 9mm Handgun from FN—
The FN Reflex size is roughly smack dab in the middle of the P365 and P365 XL, but I'm sure that was just a coincidence. It's size places it in the micro-compact category along with the aforementioned Sig Sauer P365, Glock 42/43 etc, Springfield Hellcat, and S&W Shield handguns.
In the table below, you can compare the dimensions of the new FN Reflex, the Sig P365/365XL, and the Glock 43/43X.
|Specs||FN Reflex||Sig P365/365 XL||Glock 43/43X|
|Capacity||11 or 15||10,12 or 15||6,10 or *15|
|Weight||18.4 oz||17.8/20.7 oz||17.9/18.7 oz|
|Action||Internal Hammer SAO||Striker||Striker|
*Aftermarket 15-round magazine from Shield Arms.
As you can see from the table, besides size, the FN Reflex has a similar capacity to other guns in the micro-compact category. The handgun comes with two magazines, an 11 round with a pinky extension, and a 15 rounder that extends the grip. I would love to see 3 magazines become the standard, but that is just a personal gripe.
Features of the FN Reflex—
Some features that make the FN Reflex appealing are its ergonomics and grip texturing. With few exceptions, I find stock guns never have enough grip texture. From appearance, the Reflex grip texture covers the places it should, and looks fairly aggressive. The magazine release is reversible, and the gun has an extended slide stop.
The gun comes with 3-dot iron sights, with the front having a high-visibility orange ring circling a tritium dot. Of course, there is an optics-ready version (Reflex MRD) that is ready to accept Shield RMSc and Holosun K-series optics.
Each model is available in black or flat-dark-earth color, which some people seem to like.
If you like a weapon mounted light (WML) on your everyday carry gun, the Reflex has an accessory rail compatible with sub compact WMLs.
What Makes the FN Reflex Different?
What sets this gun apart from the others is that the FN Reflex has a single-action, internal hammer, instead of a striker. This isn't new. In fact, the M&P Shield EZ uses a similar action. The benefit of an internal hammer vs. a striker is that it makes the gun easier to rack. Many people struggle to rack the slide, especially on these micro-compact semi-auto handguns. So, combining the internal hammer with aggressive slide serrations, the FN Reflex should be easy to manipulate, even if you have weakened hand strength.
The Reflex design also allows disassembly without needing to first press the trigger. This is not uncommon for many handguns, and manufacturers present this design as a safety feature. It's true that many firearm accidents happen during disassembly. However, I'm not keen on calling this a “safety feature”.
I say this because as long as the gun doesn't malfunction, everything being equal, one gun isn't safer than the other. The person is either safely handling the gun or not. But if it's a feature that you like, I'm all for it.
FN says the new Reflex has an incredible, 5-lb trigger. I've never heard of a company saying the trigger on their new gun was horrible, and I haven't got to play with one yet, so I can't attest to how good it really is. But, trigger feel is really subjective. In my opinion, I find that generally, FN triggers are adequate from the start, and I don't suspect this gun would be any different.
Now on to the MSRP of this gun. The standard Reflex runs $599, and the optics-ready, Reflex MRD's retail price is $659. Not a bad price at all.