The .45 GAP Glock 37

By Chuck Hawks

G 37
Illustration courtesy of Glock, Inc.

Glock has responded to the perceived demand for a true .45 caliber cartridge in a medium frame pistol by introducing the first cartridge bearing the Glock name and a gun in which to shoot it. The cartridge is the 9mm GAP (Glock Automatic Pistol), and the gun is the Model 37.

The .45 GAP was developed as a joint venture with Speer. It is a unique cartridge, based on no existing case. In form it is a typical rimless, straight wall, pistol case similar in length to the 9x19. Bullet diameter is .452", the same as the .45 ACP. Note that the .45 GAP is not interchangeable with the .45 ACP and its cases cannot be formed from .45 ACP brass.

This short .45 was designed to use bullets weighing 200 grains or less. With bullets weighing 185-200 grains it equals the performance of standard .45 ACP factory loads, although the old Colt cartridge is superior with heavier bullets.

Factory loads are offered with 185 and 200 grain bullets. The 185 grain bullets are loaded to a muzzle velocity (MV) of 1020 fps and muzzle energy (ME) of 427 ft. lbs. The 200 grain bullets are loaded to a MV of 950 fps and ME of 401 ft. lbs.

The new Glock pistol for the .45 GAP cartridge is the Glock 37. A simplified description of the new pistol for persons familiar with the Glock line is a Glock 17 (9x19) frame modified to accept a Glock 21 (.45 ACP) slide.

Of course, the development of the new pistol was not that simple, and the slide is actually not quite the same as a G21 slide, but that's the general idea. The .45 GAP cartridge generates more recoil momentum than the 9x19, so the new slide was necessary to retain the slide balance and reliability for which Glocks are justly famous.

In appearance there is no mistaking that the G37 is a Glock. It has the typical boxy slide, ergonomic grip angle, double stack magazine, squared-off trigger guard, and controls as other Glocks. The front corners of the slide are beveled in a manner similar to the sub-compact Glocks. The finish is over-all matte black.

In operation the G37 is identical to other Glocks. It has the typical long trigger pull and similar inherent accuracy. Big bore fans with small hands should be pleased with both the .45 GAP cartridge and the Glock 37 pistol that shoots it.

Note: Complete reviews of several Glock pistols can be found on the Product Reviews page.

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Copyright 2004, 2016 by Chuck Hawks. All rights reserved.