The Federal Bureau of Investigation wanted new pistols to replace their Glock 22 (full-sized) and Glock 23 (compact) .40 S&W pistols. In specific they wanted the Sig Sauer P320 system, which was obvious to anyone who read their RFP.
F.B.I. Request For Proposals Requirements
First, the RFP requires manufacturers to provide a Compact, Full Size, Inert (Red Handle) Training, and Man Marker Training Pistols (Blue – Simunition), along with parts and armorer tools as needed. The firearm must be chambered in 9mm. For the most part, most major firearm manufacturers could provide all the necessary firearms and trainers.
- BARREL LENGTH – Full size must be 4.26″ to 5.20″; Compact size must be 3.75″ to 4.25″
- HEIGHT – Full size no more than 6.0″; Compact between 4.75″ to 5.6″
- MAGAZINE CAPACITY – Full size at least 16 rounds; Compact at least 14 rounds
- MAGAZINE DISCONNECT SAFETY – None allowed
- COCKING – Only by trigger pull
- TRIGGER – Firing pin/Striker fired only
- TRIGGER PULL – 4.5 lbs. to 6 lbs.
- MAGAZINE RELEASE – Laterally pushed, no levers
- MANUAL EXTERNAL SAFETY – None allowed
- DECOCKING LEVER – None allowed
- GRIP SAFETY – None allowed
- FRAME/RECEIVER – No finger grooves allowed, must have (3) sizes – small, medium, large; can be accomplished through inserts or different frame sizes.
- PICATINNY RAIL – Required for pistol mounted lights.
As is customary with RFPs written to down-select to the product that the end user wanted in the first place, this FBI RFP was written in such a way as to exclude virtually every gun that they did not want by both listing specific qualities that the desired gun has, while excluding other guns by listing qualities that they have the desired gun doesn’t.
You’ll note that in the FRAME/RECEIVER specification, finger grooves are specifically disallowed.
Guess what Generation 3 and 4 Glocks all have? Yup. Finger grooves on the frame.
Even though the RFP excluded Glocks by features and all but screamed, “We want the Sig Sauer P320!” Glock somehow walked away with the FBI contract. How is that possible?
Quite obviously, they created a new variant of the 9mm pistols with the frame grooves removed… or perhaps simply dusted off and modified the Generation 2 frames (you can go down the generations rabbit-hole here if you really must) with Gen. 4 backstraps.
We don’t know any more than that at this time because the contract award didn’t provide any details about the winning handgun design, and Glock hasn’t made any public statements at this time.