Concealed Carry

Review: Taurus G3

Taurus G3 Semi-Automatic Pistol

At the SHOT Show and across America, most of the handgun introductions I see are polymer-frame, striker-fired handguns.

The pistol illustrated is similar to other polymer-frame handguns, but just the same, the Taurus G3 is a welcome addition.

In common with the new SIG P365 XL and full-size CZ P10F, the Taurus G3 is a full-size, high-capacity version of a compact 9mm.

These handguns offer proven reliability, while polymer construction offers affordability not possible with steel-frame handguns.

The Taurus G3 operates in the same manner as the popular G2 series. The lockwork, takedown and operation are the same.

The 9mm Luger is a powerful cartridge well-suited to defense use. Just the same, the 9mm is controllable and downright pleasant to fire in full-size handguns.

This makes for enjoyable practice sessions.

Taurus G3 with TruGlo Combat Light
The Taurus G3 9mm shown with a TRUGLO combat light. This is a good combination for home defense.

What is the Taurus G3?

The G3 is a four-inch barrel handgun with a full-size, hand-filling frame. The pistol is supplied with two steel magazines, a 15-round version and a 17-round magazine with an extended base pad.

This makes for a good reserve of ammunition for home defense. The 9mm is controllable and, with this type of capacity (ammunition reserve), a trained shooter is a formidable opponent against home invaders or a take-over gang.

The Taurus G3 is similar in size to the GLOCK 19 handgun. This is a good spot to be, with a size that many of us find ideal for both concealed carry and home defense.

The pistol will be offered in versions with a stainless steel slide or black slide.

Taurus G3 Grip Frame and Mag
The pistol is supplied with a 15-round, flush-fit magazine and a 17-round magazine with an extended base pad.

The pistol is an ideal size at 7.3” long. The Taurus G3 9mm weighs just 25 ounces. This isn’t a burden on the belt during a long day or when traveling, and it handles quickly.

The pistol features a modern light rail for mounting combat lights such as the TRUGLO combination light/laser. This light offers both illumination and an aiming index.

The light may be set for white light only, red laser only, or a combination of the pair. The TRUGLO Tru-Lite setup is a good one for combat shooting and is offered at a fair price.

When carrying the handgun, I noted that the base pad equipped magazine with two more cartridges adds only 1/10 inch to the pistol’s height.


The pistol breaks down in the now-standard GLOCK-type, using spring-loaded levers on the frame to release the slide.

Disassembled Taurus G3 Pistol
Takedown is simple enough.

A significant difference between the Taurus G3 and the GLOCK — and most every other striker-fired, polymer-frame handgun — is that the G3 is a single-action handgun.

Rack the slide and the action is cocked for single-action fire. Press the trigger and the sear trips the striker. Since this is a single-action pistol, the G3 should always be carried with the safety on.

The frame-mounted safety is positive in operation and falls under the thumb easily as the pistol comes to the ready on target. Trigger compression is a manageable 5.7 pounds.

When practicing with this trigger, I noted considerable take-up before I hit a ‘wall’ and then there was a solid break. The trigger isn’t difficult to manage, but like most, it must be learned for best results.

The G3 pistol has a second-strike feature. If the first shot does not ignite the cartridge, the Taurus may be fired again with a long, heavy trigger press. This is interesting.

While some like a second strike, others feel that the cartridge in the chamber should be cleared immediately after a misfire. Taurus offers an option.

The sights of the Taurus G3 9mm are well-suited to fast combat shooting. They set low, snag-free and feature white, three-dot inserts.

The handle features a nicely pebbled grip section that offers both adhesion and abrasion.

Taurus G3 Sight Picture
The G3’s sights ride low.

Shooting the Taurus G3

I began the firing test with Winchester’s USA Ready FMJ ammunition. This is affordable, but clean-burning and accurate ammunition.

The pistol comes on target quickly and is manageable in rapid-fire. The 9mm isn’t hard kicking, but there is a lot going on with a 9mm self-loader and you must pay attention to the grip, trigger press and sight picture.

The pistol was fired at five, seven and 10 yards. It isn’t difficult to keep all of the magazine in the X-ring. I burned up more than 100 rounds in this test with good results.

I also fired a magazine of the Winchester 147-grain PDX. This is an accurate load that puts them all in one hole at 10 yards when I do my part.

My favorite Winchester 9mm defense load is the 124-grain PDX +P. This loading breaks 1190 fps from the G3. Recoil is increased, but I like the wound potential of this formidable loading.

The Taurus handles this load well. All in all, the firing results were impressive for an economy-grade handgun. At a long 25 yards, average five-shot groups were four inches, with some a bit smaller and a few larger.

Firing Taurus G3
The Taurus G3 proved reliable and controllable in rapid-fire.

Carry Options

Carrying a concealed handgun isn’t easy and the holster is a big part of the equation. I have tested the Crossbreed Reckoning holster extensively and find it not a good, but an outstanding choice.

The Reckoning was intended to provide a smaller footprint than the original Crossbreed, while offering the same Kydex-over-leather advantage.

The Reckoning is supplied with an anti-rollout device that combats one of the few drawbacks of appendix carry. The appendix position often allows the handle to ‘roll out’ forward.

The Crossbreed anti-rollout addition is a solution.  The device may be removed if not needed.

The Reckoning also features a magazine carrier that is easily removed if you prefer a carrier on the weak side rather than attached to the holster.

The GLOCK 19 size Crossbreed is a good match for the Taurus G3.

Taurus G3 and Spare Mag in Crossbreed Holster
The Crossbreed Reckoning is a highly-advanced holster.

The G3 is an affordable performer that offers baseline performance for personal defense.

Taurus G3 Specs:

Type Striker-Fired, Semi-Automatic
Cartridge 9mm Luger
Capacity 15rds Standard, 17rds Extended
Barrel 4 Inches
Length 7.3 Inches
Height 5.2 Inches
Width 1.25 Inches
Weight 1 Pound, 9.3 Ounces
Finish Matte Black, Stainless
Slide Carbon Steel, Stainless Steel
Grip/Frame Polymer
Sights White Three-Dot, Dovetailed
Trigger Pull 5 lbs 8 oz SA, 6 lbs 4 oz DA
Safeties Striker-Block Plunger, Manual Safety Lever, Trigger Safety Lever

Are you interested in trying the new Taurus G3? Have you tried a G2? Let us know in the comments section below!

About the Author:

Bob Campbell

Bob Campbell’s primary qualification is a lifelong love of firearms, writing, and scholarship. He holds a degree in Criminal Justice but is an autodidact in matters important to his readers. Campbell considers unarmed skills the first line of defense and the handgun the last resort. (He gets it honest- his uncle Jerry Campbell is in the Boxer’s Hall of Fame.)

Campbell has authored well over 6,000 articles columns and reviews and fourteen books for major publishers including Gun Digest, Skyhorse and Paladin Press. Campbell served as a peace officer and security professional and has made hundreds of arrests and been injured on the job more than once.

He has written curriculum on the university level, served as a lead missionary, and is desperately in love with Joyce. He is training his grandchildren not to be snowflakes. At an age when many are thinking of retirement, Bob is working a 60-hour week and awaits being taken up in a whirlwind many years in the future.

Published in
Black Belt Magazine
Combat Handguns
Rifle Magazine
Gun Digest
Gun World
Tactical World
SWAT Magazine
American Gunsmith
Gun Tests Magazine
Women and Guns
The Journal Voice of American Law Enforcement
Police Magazine
Law Enforcement Technology
The Firearms Instructor
Tactical World
Concealed Carry Magazine
Concealed Carry Handguns

Books published

Holsters for Combat and Concealed Carry
The 1911 Automatic Pistol
The Handgun in Personal Defense
The Illustrated Guide to Handgun Skills
The Hunter and the Hunted
The Gun Digest Book of Personal Defense
The Gun Digest Book of the 1911
The Gun Digest Book of the 1911 second edition
Dealing with the Great Ammunition Shortage
Commando Gunsmithing
The Ultimate Book of Gunfighting
Preppers Guide to Rifles
Preppers Guide to Shotguns
The Accurate Handgun
The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (3)

  1. Taurus has been one of my favorite manufacturers for Price point compared to performance since my very first pistol which was their 380. the reliability, simplicity, and ease of maintenance are beyond any other firearm in the same price range. the biggest downside to buying a Taurus firearm is the fact that there’s not very many companies that make aftermarket accessories specifically for Taurus. A lot of the accessories for the Glock17 like holsters and lights etc will fit the G3 fairly well

  2. Love the G2. Super ergonomic for me.
    Small eough for conceal carry.
    Thats why I want a G3 for open carry or around the farm during SHTF.

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