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Review: Kel-Tec SUB 2000

The SUB 2000 is a unique pistol caliber carbine that folds into an extremely small (and non-shooting) package. Chambered for both 9mm and .40 S&W, the weapon offers small size, good accuracy, and increased velocity over a handgun. What it doesn't offer is the ability to stick it in a holster for concealed carry. But you can put it in a small backpack or briefcase, providing a portable, easy to shoot weapon with better accuracy than a sidearm.

Unfortunately, even with the increased barrel length you won't get a massive bump in power from either the 9mm or .40S&W. At best you can expect an extra three hundred feet per second, and this from only the very hottest rounds. In comparison, the Remington 125 grain .357 magnum gains nearly six hundred feet per second from the same barrel length. So if you're looking for something with a little more punch to complement a sidearm, you may want to consider a .357, .41, or .44 magnum lever gun.

The two real advantages of the SUB 2000 are its portability and the ease with which one can engage targets out to around 100 yards (mine shoots 4” groups). Although the grip feels like a P-11, it does have a better, single action trigger. The gun also shoulders surprisingly well, and while the sights aren't anything special, they are serviceable for the weapon's intended purpose as a handy, close range, self-defense weapon.

The market for such a weapon is limited, although Kel-Tec was smart enough to make the guns compatible with Glock and Smith & Wesson magazines. Because of this it makes a nice addition for someone who already owns one of the aforementioned handguns.

Pistol caliber carbines are marketed to civilian shooters as being ideal home-defense weapons. They offer good handling, lighter recoil, and increased accuracy over a handgun. What manufacturers fail to point out is that there are also a number of rifle caliber carbines on the market that offer all of the same advantages but chambered for much more powerful cartridges.

That being said, the SUB 2000 is a lot of fun to shoot, especially for people of smaller stature or those that just don't like the pounding of larger calibers. The same reasons also make it a good choice as a defensive weapon for those who either can't, or won't acquire a more serious weapon.  I enjoy the rifle because it is cheap to shoot and folds down into a tiny package for transport.  After almost a decade there still aren't any other rifle like it on the market.

Pros: Handy, compact, light, fairly accurate, low recoil, totally reliable, and easy to shoot.

Cons: Too much plastic, poor grip ergonomics, sights could be better.


Model: Kel-Tec Sub 2000

Action: SA

Sights: Fixed

Caliber: 9mm (.40 S&W)

Overall length: 29.5 inches

Folded Length: 16.1 inches

Barrel length: 16 inches

Magazine capacity: 10

Weight: 4 lbs