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Zev Technologies is perhaps best known for creating purposeful and attractive upgrade kits for other guns. But the new for 2019 Zev Technologies O.Z-9 (sometimes written as simply OZ-9) is a modular 9 mm semi-automatic pistol made from Zev’s own components. And this explains the cryptic O.Z-9 moniker, which stands for Original Zev 9 mm. The result is an impressive package that’s 8” long, 5.5” tall, 1.6” wide and, at 28 ounces, weighs 1.75 pounds.

The gun’s nucleus is Zev’s innovative in-house designed steel receiver / frame that serves as the chassis to attach all the other modular components. Not only is the Zev receiver very tough, rigid and sturdy, it has extra-long rails that make slide operation ultra-smooth. The short under-muzzle accessory rail is built into the receiver. The receiver also houses the trigger. More about the trigger later.

Zev has paid extreme attention to aesthetics and tactile feel. Let’s address the looks first.

The standard slide has diagonal serrations both at the front and back of the slide. In most guns, all the serrations lean forward. However, the Zev O.Z-9’s rear serrations lean back. This may or may not add real functionality, but it does make the gun stand out visually from the crowded field.

There are textured grip pads for the forefinger rest above the trigger, tall grip panels with integrated thumb rests along both sides of the grip and texturing along the back strap. However, the top of this area is directly under the beavertail is not textured in order to inflict less recoil torsion on the user’s hand.

The trigger is a Zev PRO flat face trigger with a 4.5 pound consistent trigger pull.

Sights include a dovetail rear with a fiber optic front on the standard and compact guns or a Bushnell Red Dot First Strike 2.0 Reflex Sight on the Zev Technologies O.Z-9 KC Competition Model. This latter model is different not only in its reflex sight, but also in its titanium gray slide and gray grip. Most other parts stand out in black.

As mentioned previously, the O.Z-9 receiver houses the trigger. This provides extraordinary flexibility since now owners can change out entire grip kit assemblies. And frankly, that’s sheer genius.

The grips come in three colors: black, flat dark earth (FDE) and gray. They also come in the standard length and the aptly named easier to conceal “Shorty Grip” grip kit that shaves half an inch off the height and accepts 15 round magazines.

At the bottom is Zev’s PRO Plus one-piece magwell. A shorter ZEV PRO magwell is also available. In both cases, they conveniently attach to the grip with just one pin.

The standard O.Z-9 comes with a black DLC (diamond-like coated) match barrel whose muzzle is flush with the front of the slide. Optional barrels include a threaded black DLC that’s .3” longer, a non-threaded bronze, and a threaded bronze barrel. The standard slide has various ports on either side and along the top. The bronze barrels are particularly visible and fetching as a result.

The standard O.Z-9 has a pair of 17 round Magpul PMAG 17 magazines. The compact O.Z-9 comes with two 15 round Magpul PMAG 19 magazines, the Shorty Grip and a compact slide that brings overall length down to 7.3”, height to 5.0” and weight down to 26.25 ounces. Width remains 1.6” as with the standard O.Z-9.

Both the standard and Shorty Grip kits are compatible with Glock 17 round G17 magazines, while the forward angled Shorty Grips are also compatible with the smaller 15 round G19 magazines. In all cases, these grip assemblies come with their own take-down pin and Zev Gen-4 magazine release. This single pin attaches the grip kit to the receiver. In most guns, separating components such as this would be much more complicated.

Zev Technologies is ISO-9001 certified. Its experience in design and manufacturing results in impressively tight tolerances between various pieces. All this aforementioned work results in a remarkably well-balanced gun that garners absolutely rave reviews for both its concept and its reality. These guns are Made in USA at Centralia, Washington.

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