Springfields new subcompact model, the XD 3 is a well thought out design in the realm of striker fired polymer-framed pistols. It's designed for use by CCW/open carry practitioners, in home defense, or for law enforcement tasking. With that in mind, let's see how it stacks up against its two closest rivals-the Ruger SR and the Baby Glock.
The Springfield XD 3" Sub-Compact is DAO striker-fired semi-auto with a doublestack magazine. Coming in at just 6.25-inches overall, it's actually shorter than a Bersa 380. The 3-inch barrel provides decent accuracy while the dual spring recoil system with full-length guide rod keeps the pistol from being prone to muzzle flip. In two basic variants, a 13-shot 9x19mm Parabellum, or a 9-shot 40S&W, there is something for most who would want a small subcompact.
Weight is 26-ounces empty. With a forged steel slide with a Melonite finish over a polymer frame, the gun is durably made for harsh field use. MSRP is $690. Of course, keep in mind that MSRP is subject to local availability and product demand.
The Ruger SR9c/SR40c
Sturm, Ruger and co has a very similar double stack compact pistol series that compare favorably with the XD 3, the SR series. Another striker-fired DAO semi-auto with a safe trigger system, these Ruger guns are slightly lighter, at 23.4-ounces. They are also longer at 6.85-inches and do not have an accessory rail like the XD. The SR-series has a lower MSRP at $529, which makes them more attractive that either the Baby Glocks or the XD. A 17-shot 9mm and 15-shot .40S&W also make them attractive.
The Baby Glocks
Glock has for more than a decade rolled out successive generations of their subcompact safe-action pistols. These include guns chambered in 9mm (the Glock 26) and .40S&W (Glock 27) as well as other more exotic models in 10mm, .45GAP, .357SIG, and the always-popular .45ACP. For the sake of argument, we will stick at looking just at the G26/27 so that we are comparing apples to oranges and not apples to handles of single malt scotch. The 6.29-inch Glock 26 with its 3.46-inch barrel packs 10-rounds of 9mm in a flush fitting double stacker with a 26-ounce weight. The Glock 27 almost exactly repeats these dimensions with the exception of using a 9-round 40S&W magazine and picking up an extra ounce in weight. MSRP on these is not published on Glock's site but by checking a few big box retailers, the average retail is about $530.
How they stack up
The XD picks up points for being marginally the shortest of these three series as well as being the only one to have an accessory rail. The Ruger is slightly lighter than the others (the Glocks and XD are a tie for second place out of three comparisons) and carries more rounds for arguably the lower MSRP. The Glocks have the longest record of accomplishment of success and the greater reputation as being hard to kill.
With that being said, the XD's retail price is nearly always higher on their website than in the stores, usually coming very close to Glock and in some cases beating it. Glock's new 4th generation guns have had some teething problems dealing with the slide springs that are being worked out but still give a moment of pause. The Ruger SR series is almost brand new and can be thought of as almost in a beta-test currently.
With all things considered, any of these three are good pistols that should serve the end-user well, but the XD 3 seems like it is an inch a head of the competition.
Or is it three?