Arex Delta Gen.2 in 9mm Luger: three different polymer pistols for different purposes

Slim guns from Slovenia: The Arex Defense Delta Gen.2 pistols not only look sleek, but also have a lot to offer in terms of shooting practice for little money. 

Compared. to the renowned service pistol manufacturers from German-speaking countries such as Glock, Heckler & Koch or Carl Walther, Arex Defense is probably not yet as well known among shooters and hunters here. This Slovenian company has only been in existence since 1994 and, in addition to handguns, also makes barrels on a contract basis and plastic training ammunition. A detailed and up-to-date company portrait with video can be found here.

The Arex REX Zero 1 pistol, which has been known for several years, was strongly inspired by the successful classic SIG Sauer P226 and therefore has a metal frame for a double-stack magazine with a capacity of 18+1 cartridges and a double-action trigger in combination with a spring-back decocking lever.

As the successor to its Rex Zero 1, the manufacturer presented the ergonomically enhanced Zero 2 model at the IWA 2022, also with an aluminum frame. However, service pistols with polymer frames generally dominate the market today and Arex Defense is also well positioned here with the Delta Gen.2, which has also been modified. We were able to take a close look at two of the three variants of this polymer pistol and, of course, test fire them in the field.

The Arex Delta Gen.2 semi-automatic pistol comes in three sizes

Arex Delta: The compact M model in 9mm Luger has a barrel length of 102 mm and is fed from magazines with a capacity of 15 or 17 rounds. The frame shown here in olive green is apparently only offered standard in black, FDE (Flat Dark Earth) and Gun Smoke Gray. 

The full-size Delta Gen.2 L version has a barrel length of 114 mm and a magazine capacity of 17 or 19 cartridges. The more compact Delta Gen.2 M has a 102 mm barrel and the sheet steel magazines, which are strongly reminiscent of the CZ P-10, hold 15-17 cartridges. The Delta Gen.2 X is a "crossover" model with a long L-frame and short M-slide. All models are also available as OR (Optic Ready) versions, with all five available adapter plates included in the scope of delivery. This means that the following mini red dot sights fit: Noblex (Docter Sight), Eotech & Insight (MRDS), Meopta (MeoSight), Vortex (Viper, Venom), Burris (FastFire), Trijicon (RMR, SRO), Holosun (407C, 507C, 508T, 407K, 507K), Vector Optics Frenzy 1x22x26 MO, Swampfox (Justice 1x27, Liberty 1x22, Kingslayer 1x22), Leupold (DeltaPoint Pro), C-More (RTS2, STS2) Delta Optical Dot HD 24, Vortex (Razor), Shield (RMS, SMS), J-Point (MRD).

We determined the trigger pull weight to be around 2,700 grams, whereby the engineers did well to provide the trigger, which is similar to a single-action type, with a preference of around 1,500 grams. The reset travel was a pleasingly low 1.5 mm. The manufacturer itself calls the trigger system "Striker Double Action" (SDA) trigger. But what is behind it?

Arex Delta: the full-size L-model in 9x19 has a barrel length of 114 mm and the double-stack sheet steel magazine holds up to 19 cartridges. This model is also available in a factory-fitted "Optic Ready" version for an additional 50 euros. 

Similar to Glock pistols, this is a partially pre-cocked system. When the slide is closed, the striker is pre-cocked by a certain amount, in this case about 8 mm. The remaining 1.5 mm travel is then overcome using the trigger, i.e. just before the shot is fired. This provides additional safety because the preloaded striker does not have enough energy to ignite the cartridges. However, if you want to reduce the trigger  resistance, the options are far more limited than with pure single-action trigger systems. While we are on the subject of safeties, in addition to the typical Glock safety in the trigger blade, there is also an automatic striker safety.

Incidentally, the Arex Delta Gen.2 is one of those pistols that can be operated from both sides without compromise. In addition to the ambidextrous slide stop, the magazine can always be released from the right or left. This means that the magazine can also be released with the index finger of the firing hand, which automatically complies with the safety rule "no finger on the trigger for all gun manipulations other than intentional firing at an identified target". On the other hand, the ambidextrous magazine release button can also be a source of controversy. Because the service pistol was also designed for concealed carry, the controls are very flat. In the case of the low magazine release button, which is almost flush with the surface of the grip frame, pressing it in deeply is the order of the day. If you can't manage this, well, you can order an extended version from the manufacturer's online store for little money.

Technical architecture of the Arex Delta Gen.2 pistol models

Arex Delta Gen.2 in 9mm Luger: after disassembly, the classic and proven design and the rather narrow frame are revealed.

The grip itself is very ergonomic, a raised spur in combination with a deep undercut at the grip front and the underside of the trigger guard allows the Delta Gen.2 with its already advantageous low overall height to sink even deeper into the hand. With a width of 28 mm, the grip is around 2 mm narrower than that of a Glock G17/19. This may not seem like much in terms of numbers, but when gripping the gun you will notice a difference that shooters with small hands may appreciate. Shooters with larger hands can make their own adjustments with the three enclosed interchangeable backstraps of different aizes. The surface texture of the frame is reminiscent of fine skateboard tape or stippling and provides a good grip.

Incidentally, the frame itself does not bear a firearm serial number, but the fire control unit does. This means that frames can easily be purchased if a change of color comes to mind. However, all small parts must be removed from the frame. Unfortunately, it is not possible to change them easily, as is the case with the patent-protected system of the SIG Sauer P250/320 with an encapsulated stainless steel frame that can be removed as a unit. Despite the low price, the pistols have been given proper sights. Both the rear and front sights are cross-ribbed, with only the front sight having a white dot, which we consider to be sufficient. If you want to upgrade them, you can fall back on the wide range of sights that are suitable for the SIG Sauer P220/226.

Test fire: the Arex Delta Gen.2 pistols on the shooting range

The Arex Delta Gen.2 models have a visual and tactile loaded chamber indicator. 

The Delta Gen.2 L and M test guns were tested for accuracy with five types of factory ammunition in a sitting position using a sandbag. Right from the start, the large L version was at a certain competitive disadvantage because we could only shoot this pistol with mechanical sights, while the more compact M version could also be shot with a mini red dot sight in the form of a Leupold Delta Point Pro. In the latter case, this made it considerably easier to check the shooting performance. The best result with Delta Gen.2 L with mechanical sights was achieved with the Magtech 147-grain JHP, with 75 mm. This was followed by the Fiocchi 115-grain FMJ with 90 mm and the GECO Red Zone – a soft-loaded defensive cartridge – with 104 mm. The average was 102 mm. With the smaller M version with Leupold Delta Point Pro, we achieved 53 mm (GECO 124-grain Red Zone), 60 mm (Magtech 147-grain JHP) and 74 mm (Sellier & Bellot 124-grain FMJ).

In view of the primary purpose of use, these results are certainly acceptable.  Incidentally, both versions did not suffer any malfunctions during the dynamic drills that followed. The low barrel axis and the grippy polymer frame made the guns easy to control even with the hard Magtech 147-grain JHP. So there is no need to make any compromises here compared to other European service pistols.

Arex Delta Gen.2 in 9mm Luger specs and prices

Arex Delta 2 L (The information in brackets applies to the Arex Delta 2 M variant)
9mm Luger
Magazine Capacity:
17/19 (15/17) rounds
Polymer with steel inserts
Steel, black coated
Barrel Length, Rifling:
114 (102) mm, 6-groove
Groove-Land Diameter:
9.07-8.87 mm/k.A.
Rear Sight:
3.7 mm, ribbed, side driftable
Fron Sight:
3.5 mm, ribbed ramp, side driftable
Sight Radius:
173 (163) mm
Trigger, striker safety

Trigger Action, Pull Weight* / Span:

Striker Double Action (SDA), mean value: 2,690 g / 14 g

Weight (incl. Magazine):

690 (593) g
Dimensions (LxWxH):
191 (180)x30x148 (138) mm
Hard case with spare magazine, 4 backstraps, cleaning kit
Price (RRP in Germany):
680 euro approx.,  730 euro approx. for O.R. Version  (630 euro approx., 680 euro approx. for O.R. version)
* Average of 10 measurements with the Trigger Scan System

Test results: how good are the Arex Delta Gen.2 pistols?

Arex Delta: the adapter plates for mini red dot sights are available for over 30 red dot models. They are made of plastic, into which a nut is inserted with a positive fit. 

The Delta Gen2. pistols make a good impression and the slim grip, which offers a lot of control, is particularly impressive. Good features with ambidextrous operation and high functional reliability are further characteristics of the Slovenian polymer models, with the L changing hands for just €680 and the M for €630. The Optic-Ready versions cost around 50 euros more in each case.

Finally, a comparison with European competitors naturally comes to mind. The CZ P-10 from the Czech Republic, which is known for its good price/performance ratio, costs around 100 euros more, while German-speaking manufacturers charge a little more. The Arex Defense Delta Gen.2 pistols are therefore very attractively priced.

Further information about the manufacturer and its catalog can be found here on the Arex website.

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