Taurus Gx4 Micro Compact and Why It has Earned My Trust

by Vern Evans

Alright, it is no secret, Taurus used to have a quality control issue. I remember when I first started in this industry, and I heard stories of Taurus revolvers failing (cylinders falling out and rolling down the firing line) and semi-auto pistols jamming at media events. It wasn’t pretty, to say the least. Their reputation of lackluster quality began to follow them around.

Now, anytime anyone mentions Taurus on the web, you can hear the echo chamber banging away on their keyboards, “I hope it doesn’t blow up on you,” “Good luck with the South American POS,” “Be prepared for fails and repairs,” “You’re better off buying X brand, because PERFECTION!” You get the idea.

However, something happened at Taurus about eight years ago. They released the Taurus G2, a striker-fired pistol that worked, and you didn’t need to send it in for repairs. Yes, the trigger sucked, but the gun worked and was reliable. Then came the G3 shortly thereafter, with an improved trigger, better ergonomics, great reliability and, as Taurus was quoted as saying, “performance-to-cost ratio is outstanding.” After that came the G3c and the G3 TORO, all of which proved to be reliable handguns.

There are still people out there who will call the Taurus G3c a “POS,” even though they haven’t shot one. Or any Taurus, recently. I implore you to try one and keep an open mind. You will be surprised.

Enter The Taurus GX4

The next step for Taurus after the G3 series is their own micro compact, the GX4 in 9mm. This GX4 is assembled in the U.S.A., Georgia, to be exact.  When you pick the gun up in your hands, it feels solid, and the aggressive stippling is a very nice touch. Overall, the pistol has nice lines and looks smart. It came with two palm swells, one with a slight swell and the other with a high-swell backstrap. I preferred the high-swell, as it just fits my hands better.

The trigger on this pistol is a step above the G3 series. I dare say this might be Taurus’ best trigger on a striker-fired handgun. There is a tiny bit of take-up, which is also true of the reset. It’s a quick, short trigger.

Sights on it consist of a white dot front and serrated, drift-adjustable rear. Taurus kept this simple to keep the cost down and because most shooters will install the sights they prefer anyway. I was a little disappointed it didn’t have a fiber-optic front, but hey, I can put that on myself.

The 3.06-inch barrel features a satin black DLC treatment, while the slide has a gas nitride coating. The DLC helps reduce friction and wear, and increases corrosion resistance, while the slide treatment helps surface hardness. The remaining operational control parts received a Teflon coating.

GX4 Capacity & More

The capacity of the GX4 as it comes is 11+1, and it comes with two magazines. Taurus will offer an a la carte 11-shot magazine with a finger extension and a 13-shot extended magazine. It will also come with a 10-shot magazine for those who live in restricted states.

The GX4 has no takedown lever, rather a takedown pin/screw on the right side. With a flathead screwdriver (a 9mm shell rim works, too), turn the pin counterclockwise. Make sure the magazine is removed beforehand and that the pistol is cleared and empty. Press the trigger, and the slide comes off.    

The GX4 retails for just under $400. Out of all the current micro-compact pistols out there, the Taurus Gx4 is the least expensive. This doesn’t mean it’s cheap. It just means Taurus is proving itself.

Raining Lead with the GX4

I have put over 500 rounds of 9mm through my GX4 without any malfunctions, slide flying off the frame, or the pistol locking up. I first tried shooting with the standard palm swell but found myself shooting low, and the pistol just didn’t feel right. After switching out for the high swell, I was surprised at how well the GX4 sat in my hand. I found it easier to bring the pistol to the target, and I wasn’t shooting low anymore.

The serrations on the slide could be cut a bit deeper or more aggressive. Trying to manipulate the slide in several different ways, I found myself slipping a few times. As long as you use the hand-over-the-slide method, you are fine. 

Cross My Heart

I am hands-down impressed with the little GX4—so much so that it has become my daily carry pistol. Yes, I am trusting my life with a Taurus pistol. There can be no greater compliment than that. Taurus is heading in the right direction, and I am excited to see what they come out with next. In the meantime, check out what they have to offer at TaurusUSA.com.

Taurus GX4 Micro Compact Specs

Caliber 9mm
Barrel 3.06 inches
OA Length 6.05 inches
Weight 18.5 ounce (empty)
Grips Polymer
Sights White-dot front, serrated drift adjustable rear
Action Striker-fired
Finish Gas nitride
Capacity 11+1
MSRP $394


Load Accuracy
Hornady Critical Duty 135 FlexLock 1.61
Sig Sauer 124 V-Crown JHP 1.28
Sig Sauer 147 V-Crown JHP 1.93
Speer Gold Dot 135 Carry 1.45

Bullet weight measured in grains and accuracy in inches for best five-shot groups from 7 yards.

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