The Taurus G3 well represents modern handgun technology. It's very well made, light and has many innovative features. The "second strike" trigger could truly be a lifesaver.
The model that I chose comes with a 15 round and a 17 round magazine made by Mec-Gar.
These are some of the finest magazines made or offered by any manufacturer. Viewing the number of rounds is very easy since each port is numbered. They also have bright yellow followers, just another way to visually verify that the magazine is unloaded.
The G3 fits my hand exceptionally well and the stippling is very "grippy" without being harsh. Empty, it weighs-in at just under 25 ounces.
When I first received the G3 I spent some time looking over the workmanship. This is a very well finished gun and all parts worked together smoothly just as they should. I also spent a good bit of time time dry firing it. I used a BarrelBlok dry fire safety device for this https://bloksafety.com/
Disassembly is straight-forward and easy. Remove the magazine and check the chamber to make sure it's empty. Pull the slide back about 1/8", push the disassembly latches down, release the slide, pull the trigger and push the slide off the frame.
The manual safety is easily manipulated and is well located to prevent accidental activation. There is a visible loaded chamber indicator, easily seen in lighted conditions.
"The G3 continues the proven polymer-frame profile now in a full-frame configuration, with generous stippling patches across the grip for maximum control and retention in any shooting condition, an ergonomic palm swell and side-frame Memory Pads that provide quick, positive hand positioning. The frame has an integrated Picatinny rail.
A manual safety and slide release lever are optimally positioned above the thumb for easy manipulation. A refined element of the G3 is the 6-lb. trigger, designed with a smooth take-up and a surprisingly crisp, clean break exceeding that of typical striker-fired pistol trigger performance. A short reset promotes quick, controlled follow-up shots."
I took a variety of shells to the range. Most were standard velocity but I did take some +P shells, since the G3 is rated for them.
Inceptor ARX 74 gr 1475 fps, G2 Research Telos 92 gr 1210 fps, Hevi-Shot 100 gr 900 fps, S&B 115 gr , L-Tech 124 gr 1150 fps, Speer G2 147 gr 950 fps, and Federal HST 150 gr 900 fps.
For this portion of the evaluation, I used both the open sights and the new TRUGLO SIGHT-LINE Compact Handgun Laser Sight http://www.truglo.com/firearms/lasers.asp
My initial tests are always about reliability, since if it doesn't function reliably nothing else really matters. Toward that end, I always inspect, clean and lubricate every new gun prior to my evaluation. I A fair evaluation, in my opinion, means going through this process prior to range time.
How Did the G3 Perform?
I'd really like to say that the G3 ate everything I fed it, without a failure to feed or eject. I'd really like to say that...and I can because that's exactly what happened!
Different bullet shapes, different bullet weights and different velocities did not make any difference. The G3 handled them all without a hiccup.
The G3 is a soft-shooting pistol. It's easy to control and get back on target quickly. The "memory pads" are excellent reference points for both the strong and support hands and really help with hand positioning.
I have been using a "Male Torso Hit Zone" Target for all my recent work with defensive handguns. That target is 17" long and 11" wide. It is designed to use at 7 YARDS (21') for point and shoot drills. It allows the shooter to determine if he can place quick hits in the torso area. I have found it to be very helpful in my evaluations.
MALE TORSO HIT ZONE TARGET
With the G3, I routinely placed 4 round groups in 2" or less with a two hand hold at 7 yards. I see this as a very realistic test with a defensive handgun.
My intention was to evaluate the G3 in a very practical manner. I really spent a lot of time with it, a good bit just looking at its construction, machining and tolerances. Most importantly I wanted to know if it was a gun that I'd consider using to defend my life or that of others.
I would recommend the Taurus G3 to anyone considering the purchase of a 9mm pistol for duty, concealed carry or home defense. It is very well made, accurate and reliable.