The Wonderful Walther Q4 Steel Frame Gun (A Top Pick for Concealed Carry?)

If the name Walther is mentioned, people can instantly associate it with that compact PPK from James Bond or maybe even the weapon that Adolf Hitler used to kill himself with, but Carl Walther GmbH has been making handguns for more than a hundred years.

Walther continues to manufacture firearms for the military, law enforcement, and civilians. That includes handguns like that Walther P99, one of the company’s most iconic pistols and one that law enforcement professionals around the world trust; and the PPQ, one of the latest updates to the P99.

Walther has continued to innovate and manufacture handguns that meet virtually all requirements and are neither shaken nor stirred.

This years SHOT Show Walther presented the Q4 SF (Steel Frame) 9 millimeters, a small pistol with a steel frame that was precisely made from a solid steel billet. It also contained a wraparound grip plate, a Picatinny rail and a recessed slide release. The frame and slide are also machined, not cast, and the slide lock and pick-up pin have been designed to be as flat as possible while the slide lock is ambidextrous.

Walther was not a company known for its humility, describing it as “the ultimate display of premium performance in a covert carry package not found anywhere else”.

While such marketing speeches could be ignored, the fact is that the steel frame exceeds expectations as the company claimed. In a world of stamped parts and loose tolerances, this is the kind of craftsmanship old Carl Walther would have expected. The result of the machined process is improved ergonomics and superior weight distribution, which has dramatically improved the guns Recoil while aiding the shooter’s performance and keeping the Q4 SF on target. The visors are also serrated while the stern is darkened.

Walther has always been known for its good grips, and the Q4 FS features a uniquely aggressive texture made up of tiny tetrahedra that ensure a firm hold without being overly rough or abrasive.

The Q4 FS is notIt’s as compact as the PPK, but only 7.4 inches overall length, 5.4 inches high, and 1.3 inches wide. This makes it small enough for everyday use while still offering a full fifteen rounds in the magazine (an expanded seventeen round magazine is also available). Perhaps in the future this could be a weapon carried by a certain polite super spy.

The Q4, which shipped in February, is available in a standard version (MSRP: $ 1,399) and a second optic-ready model (MSRP: $ 1,499) that has a sliding cut for red dot sights.

Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer who has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers, and websites. He is the author of several books on military headgear, including A gallery of military headdresses available on

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