Brand new: Walther Q4 SF, the short version of the 9mm Steel Frame pistol

At the beginning of December 2019 the team received a mail from Ulm: Carl Walther invited us to the presentation of a new pistol. Of course, we didn't need to be asked twice and so we went to Ulm in the middle of December. We were confronted with something very special: two new versions of the proven Walther Steel Frame pistol, but with a shorter 4 inch / 102 mm barrel.

The 9mm Walther Q4 SF compact pistol in detail

Walther Q4 SF and magazine out of the pistol
The shorter barrel makes the pistol more compact than the Q5, which also makes it suitable for concealed carry. 

Both versions of the new Q4 come as all-steel, striker fired guns with no external hammer. The polygonal barrel is 4 inches long, or 102 mm. The difference between the two is immediately visible to the attentive observer in the sights. While one gun comes with a drift-adjustable rear sight, Walther also has an OR (Optics Ready) version up its sleeve. This features a factory fitted LPA micrometer sight, which can be replaced by a red dot sight using 3 different, separately available plates. The dimensions of both guns are approximately the same as their polymer-framed counterparts and the pistols hold 15 or 17 rounds (optional) in their steel magazines.

Walther Steel Frame Q4 - first impression

Walther Q4 SF Steel Frame pistol
Walther Q4SF: the feel in firing position is right: grip dimensions and texture make a good impression. 

When "picking up" the pistols for the first time at the presentation in Ulm, the testers were briefly surprised: such a weight (more than 1 kg) is not usual for a striker-fired pistol. But this is not a disadvantage, since you buy an all-steel gun for such a massive feel. The hand position on the gun also makes a good impression: the grip pleasantly fits in the medium-to-large hands of the testers. The one-piece grip profile keeps the pistols securely in the hand when firing, but without cutting into the hand unpleasantly. The checkering on the steel front strap and trigger guard also ensures a secure purchase.

Size comparison of the Walther Q4 SF with the Q5 Match Expert
Size comparison of the Walther Q4 SF and the Q5 Match Expert (right): also note the differences in the beavertail. 

In Ulm, the feedback of customers is listened to, because at the back of the gun Walther has redesigned the beavertail compared to the Q5 series. This is now shortened by a good piece. Previously, many shooters had problems with the too-long tail – so the gun can now be holstered more easily.

The workmanship of the pistol is on the high level typical for Walther. The gun makes a valuable impression, nothing rattles and tool marks are to be found neither inside nor outside.

Video: Walther Q4 SF in 9 mm on the shooting range

New Walther Q4 SF technical data and price

Walther Q4 SF PS
Walther Q4 SF OR (Optics ready)
1.699 euro (prices may vary in your country due to VAT and import duties)
1.769 euro (prices may vary in your country due to VAT and import duties)
9 mm Luger
9 mm Luger
Magazine capacity:
15 / 17 + 1 rounds
15 / 17 + 1 rounds
Dimensions (L x W x H): 
7.4 x 1.4 x 5.39 in (188 x 36 x 137 mm)
7.4 x 1.4 x 5.47 in (188 x 36 x 139 mm)
Barrel length:
4” / 102 mm
4” / 102 mm
Sight radius:
6.1” / 155 mm
6.1” / 155 mm
Trigger pull weight:
91.7 oz / 2600 g
91.7 oz / 2600 g
39.8 oz / 1130g
40 oz / 1135 g

With the new Walther Q4 SF in 9 mm on the shooting range

The first shots already seemed promising: the pleasant balance of the pistol is immediately noticeable and handling the recoil is very easy. One reason for this is that the center of gravity of the gun is almost in the middle, directly behind the trigger blade. On the other hand, the high weight of the Q4 SF does the rest. The gun is sweet and much faster on the target than, for example, the 4-inch polymer versions. The good hand position already mentioned also contributes, of course. The shortened beavertail doesn't prove to be a disadvantage here. The controls are easy to reach and can be manipulated safely. The front and back serrations are easy to grip, which makes it easy to cock the pistol.

Walther has given the Q4 SF a trigger with always the same travel and pull. When released, it shows no scratching or creaking – the testers might have wished for a more clearly defined break point. However, this is also a question of taste. Another outstanding feature is the particularly short reset of the trigger. According to Walther, the trigger only has to be left 2.5 mm forward for the next shot to be fired. In terms of accuracy, an tester succeeded in achieving a 5-shot group of 1" / 25 mm at a distance of 25 m from the sandbag. That is very neat in this class.

Walther Q4 SF: the standard version and the optics-ready model with LPA micrometer rear sight
Both available models in comparison. On the left, the standard version; on the right, the optics-ready model with LPA micrometer rear sight.
Rear sight of the Walther Q4 SF
Walther Q4 SF: three different adapter plates are available separately to accommodate an MRDS.

Walther 9 mm Q4 SF: wrap-up of test impressions

The two Q4 SF models have an important and unique selling point in the market for large caliber pistols: they are an option for all shooters who appreciate the weight and durability of all-steel construction, but do not want to do without a modern striker fire system. In addition, these are the pistols in typical Walther quality. No matter if you are a sports shooter (for whom the 5" versions are too long) or a concealed carrier: those who appreciate the combination mentioned above are advised to choose the Q4 SF with confidence. Both pistols come with 2 magazines, a loading aid and a lock.

More videos of the pistol at SHOT Show 2020 can be seen on on Facebook in the next few days.

Find all the news from SHOT Show 2020 on / 

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