KelTec; love’em or hate’em, you can’t deny that they are one of the more creative companies on the market. They never seem to settle with what’s normal and bring something different everywhere they go. The Sub 2000 is one of their older designs and seemingly one of their most popular designs. KelTec was pumping out Sub 2000s long before the PCC craze began.
The Sub 2000 is currently in its second generation. I’ve got my hands on what I consider the best model on the market. This specific model is the Glock variant with a full-length grip in 9mm. The other model is the multi mag model, and it will come with one magazine configuration but also the ability to swap mag catches to use various magazines.
Magazine compatibility includes the SIG P320, the CZ 75, the S&W 59, S&W M&P, the Beretta 92&96, SIG P226, and the Canik TP9. One of the best reasons to buy a KelTec Sub 2000 is to mix and match the rifle with your favorite handgun.
I like the Glock model simply because magazines are so cheap and readily available. Plus, finding extended magazines is easy. I also prefer the Glock 17/22 variant because the 19/23 variant features an extremely short grip that my big hands find uncomfortable.
The second big advantage of the Sub 2000 is that it folds.
Yep, and I don’t just mean the stock folds. The entire gun folds in half at the end of the receiver. Unfolded, the weapon is 29.25 inches long; when you fold it, you reduce that length to 16.25 inches. The Sub 2000 shrinks down to a compact package and weighs only 4.25 pounds unloaded.
The folding action is unlocked via the trigger guard. When the trigger guard is pressed forward, the barrel becomes unlocked and folds upwards, and locks at the rear of the stock. A simple tab locks it all in place, and unlocking and unfolding it takes no time at all.
The biggest advantage to a folding rifle is that it becomes a super compact rifle. It instantly becomes super easy to store and transport. You can zip it up in a laptop bag with absolute ease. The nature of the KelTec design keeps the gun very compact overall. It’s essentially two tubes connected at a square receiver.
The downside is the fact that anything attached to the top rail makes the rifle impossible to fold. Also, mounting an optic is impossible without a very creative optic mount. As you can see from my KelTec Sub 2000, those optic mounts are available. Because they are far from average, they aren’t exactly cheap, but well worth it. For those curious, my mount is the very awesome MCARBO variant you can find here.
The Rest Of the KelTec Sub 2000
We are past the fact that the Sub 2000 folds. Now let’s break down the rest of the gun. This is a blowback-operated, semi-automatic pistol caliber carbine that comes in either 9mm or 40 S&W. Sorry, 45 ACP and 10mm fans, there are no options for you, and to be honest, a 10mm direct blowback Sub 2000 sounds rough.
The Gen 2 model utilizes an M-LOK handguard and Picatinny handguard. The side slots are M-LOK, and the top and bottom use full-length Picatinny rails. The Gen 2 Barrel is also threaded so suppressor users can rejoice. KelTec installed a proper set of iron sights with an AR-style front sight and a rear peep sight.
The stock is ‘adjustable’ but not like AR-style adjustable. You have to remove a pin and choose one of three positions, then reinsert the pin at the chosen position. It’s less than stellar, but it works.
At the Range
Let’s go shooting! I love PCCs. They are easy to shoot, fun to shoot, and can be cheap to shoot most of the time. Off the bat, I will tell you the Sub 2000 isn’t perfect. First, the trigger is very average. It has a good bit of take-up, a spongy wall, and then it finally breaks. Trigger reset is fairly long. KelTec did way better with the Gen 2’s trigger, but it’s still only average.
Ergonomics are a mixed bag. You can pop the safety on and off without issue, and the grip is comfortable. It’s tough to get any kind of proper cheek weld with the Sub 2000. Getting low enough to use the peep sights, it’s super comfortable. A red dot on an MCARBO mount does wonders.
Accuracy isn’t bad by any means. It’s typical with that of most 9mm PCCs, and you can get 2.5 to 3 MOA from the gun at 100 yards. 9mm pistol rounds aren’t really made for 100-yard shooting, and that does affect accuracy. At 50 yards, I can produce groups below an inch as long as I use the red dot. The crappy cheek weld and iron sight aren’t great for accuracy, and a red dot makes a big difference.
All Hot Air
A blowback action requires you to have a hefty spring and heavy bolt. That heavy spring makes working the action difficult and far from smooth. The included charging handle is functional but scrawny, so I replaced it with the MCARBO recoilless charging handle. It’s thicker, easier to grab, and makes working the action easier.
Speaking of blowback actions, the main downside to blowback is recoil. These guns recoil harshly for a 9mm PCC. It’s no 12 gauge slug gun, and its recoil is roughly equal to a 5.56 carbine. That’s soft but a bit much for a 9mm carbine. The good news is the Recoilless charging handle also reduces recoil by adding weight. It’s not as much as a must-have as the optic’s mount, but a cheap and worthwhile upgrade.
The upside to a blowback action is the fact it ain’t picky about what it fires. This thing eats everything from nice brass-cased ammo to steel case garbage from Eastern European countries that might not exist anymore. It’s yet to fail to feed, fire, eject, or extract. Even those hard primered Eastern European rounds have no problems.
Shoot it, Fold it, Love It
The KelTec Sub 2000 provides PCC shooters a very affordable option that works with common pistol magazines. The folding action makes it well suited for transport and easy storage and gives it a unique edge over the competition. The ergonomics aren’t great, but I can live with them to keep the folding action and low price point. I think the Sub 2000 is a dandy of a rifle, and KelTec’s unique design makes it a winner.