What do cops look for in a backup gun? On the one hand, a secondary gun must be compact and capable of being kept discreetly and unobtrusively on the body. On the other hand, it has to be powerful, chambered in a caliber sufficient to resolve decisively the emergency that warranted the use of the gun in the first place. It’s a tricky balance, one struck by just a handful of manufacturers, among them Springfield Armory, whose new XD-S 9mm is a 1-inch-slim, lightweight polymer pocket pistol packing 7+1 rounds of assailant-unfriendly 9mm ammunition.

Of course, dimensions aren’t everything—the gun has to be reliable, easy handling and accurate, too. As Guns & Weapons contributing editor Doug Larson discovered, the striker-fired XD-S 9mm is all of those things—and more. To read Doug’s full review, and to see how the XD-S performed during a battery of accuracy tests, check out the November 2013 issue of Guns & Weapons for Law Enforcement, available on newsstands and digitally August 27, 2013. To subscribe, go to

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