Last week, Springfield Armory announced its new SA-35 pistol. Like the company’s 1911 handguns, this iconic design is a modern riff on a highly-regarded John M. Browning design.
While single-stack 9mm pistols seem to be all the rage in modern concealed carry, subcompact pistols that hold a bit more ammunition shouldn’t be dismissed by anyone interested in personal protection.
In this Springfield Armory XD Subcompact pistol review, I take a look at the smallest gun in the company’s Defend Your Legacy Series of handguns. While thicker than the XD-S Mod.2 pistol, it is still small enough for most people to easily conceal but offers significantly more ammunition.
After several years of only 9mm and .45 ACP, Springfield Armory finally introduced .40 S&W to the XD-S line of pistols. The new gun comes in the 3.3″ version, though I would expect a 4.0″ version to also be introduced later.
Like the original models, the new XD-S is a single stack pistol designed to be a good balance between concealability and shootability. The gun is small enough to carry on an ankle, yet is not abusing to shoot.
These guns are thin: 0.9″ to be exact. This is the same size as the original .45 ACP and 9mm guns.
Springfield Armory includes a normal sized fiber optic front sight on the gun. That is a lot better than some of the subcompact pistols hitting the market, and it helps you get on target fast.
The pistols have a grip safety, but do not have a thumb safety. In my prior experiences with the XD and XD-S lines, I have never encountered any problems with the grip safety.
Springfield Armory ships the guns with a flush fitting 6-round magazine and an extended 7-round magazine. According to the company, 8-round magazines will also be available.
The external dimensions are the same and the original calibers: 4.4″ tall, 0.9″ wide and 6.3″ long. Since both the .45 and 9mm fit the same holsters, I expect the new .40 to be able to fit all of the existing carry rigs as well.
Springfield Armory advised the guns should be available by mid-February 2016.
.40 S&W XD-S Specifications
|6+1, 7+1 with extended magazine
|Trigger Pull Weight
|fiber optic front, two white dots rear
|black or stainless slide, black polymer frame
|not given, ~$599 black and ~$669 two-tone
I’ve had the chance to shoot all of the XD-S variants thus far, and I have been impressed by them. I think they make an excellent CCW and backup gun depending on your needs. The 4.0 version (reviewed here) is particularly good for inside-the-waistband concealed carry as the handle is chopped for less obvious printing while still retaining the longer sight radius and increased velocity that a 4″ barrel provides.
The XD-S series pistols go head-to-head with guns like the Smith & Wesson Shield, Walther PPS and Glock 43. While I like the XD-S quite a bit, of the thin, subcompact pistols, I settled on the G43 for my own needs. My wife chose the Shield. Frankly, I think any of the four are amazing weapons and would serve you well.
So, what do you think? Has the lack of .40 kept you from buying an XD-S? Or, is this really not of any interest to you at all? Sound off in the comments below.
Last Update: October 17, 2022
…under exceptionally rare circumstances, some 3.3 XD-Sâ„¢ 9mm and .45ACP caliber pistols could experience an unintended discharge during the loading process when the slide is released, or could experience a double-fire when the trigger is pulled once.
Springfield Armory stressed no one has been injured by this problem and that the recall was voluntarily initiated by the company.
(Ed. note: Springfield Armory finally announced the new XDS 40. The details on the new gun are here.)
Rumors of the Springfield XDS 40 have been floating around since the introduction of the original XDS 45 at the 2012 SHOT Show. Â At the time of this writing, there has not been any official word from Springfield Armory, but people believe an announcement is close. Â I would expect the .40 caliber version to be rolled out in January at SHOT Show 2014. Â But, I would not be surprised to see the gun at the 2013 National Association of Sporting Goods Wholesalers (NASGW) show this fall.