March 18, 2020
The brand-new Mossberg MC2c is the company’s second 9mm handgun introduced in the last two years. Before the MC1sc was introduced in 2019, Mossberg had not produced a semiautomatic handgun in the company’s 100-year history. The subcompact MC1sc was a big hit, and now the company has released the MC2c that is a little bigger in size and magazine capacity. It’s still small enough to conceal easily, but its barrel is 0.5 inch longer, and magazine capacity has been doubled.
Like the MC1sc, the MC2c has a polymer frame and a striker-fire mechanism. The barrel is 3.9 inches long. The double-stack magazines hold 13 and 15 rounds of ammunition. The 15-rounder is extended, whereas the 13-rounder fits flush with the bottom of the grip frame. Made in Italy by Mec-Gar, both magazines have “Mossberg” stamped on one side and “MC2” on the front of the bodies. The bodies are metal and finished in black, and they have witness holes and round counts stamped into them. The followers are polymer, and the polymer bases are removable. While the MC1sc accepts Glock magazines, the MC2c does not. It uses only the proprietary magazines.
According to Mossberg, five versions of the MC2c are planned: all-black; two-tone (black frame with natural stainless slide); with or without a crossbolt safety (the crossbolt safety is reversible); and an all-black model with TRUGLO TRITIUM PRO night sights. All models of the MC2c have stainless-steel slides and barrels. The barrels and the black slides have a Diamond-Like Carbon (DLC) coating for corrosion resistance.
DLC is a nitride-type finish, and it creates a hard protective coating while enhancing lubricity (slickness). It reportedly does have some of the properties of diamonds. As one writer put it, “Although DLC appears smooth to the naked eye, it actually has the form of a microscopic cobblestone street.”
My MC2c is the all-black version with no crossbolt safety, and it is 7.10 inches long and 4.90 inches tall (from the bottom of the flush-fitting magazine to the top of the rear sight). Surprisingly, the MC2c is quite thin for a high-capacity pistol. The slide is just 0.90 inch thick, and the thickest part of the pistol (the slight palmswell of the grip frame) measures only 1.10 inches according to my caliper. The grip circumference at that place is 5.38 inches. According to my digital scale, with an empty 13-round magazine inserted into the grip frame, the MC2c weighs 22.9 ounces.
Compared to the Glock 48, the MC2c is smaller in every dimension and holds three more rounds. Compared to the Smith & Wesson M&P9 Shield, the MC2c is an inch longer, the same in height as the Shield with a seven-round magazine, and as thin as the Shield except for the palmswell area.
The face of the MC2c’s trigger is flat and fairly wide. It measures 0.38 inch wide. Flat triggers are said to aid in squeezing the trigger straight back, which in turn should help keep the sights on target during the trigger pull, making repeat shots more precise. My pistol’s trigger pull averaged 6.2 pounds over a series of five measurements with an RCBS trigger pull scale. It wasn’t particularly short or crisp, and the variance between trigger pull measurements was 20 ounces. It felt more consistent than those figures would indicate, and that good feel along with the wide, flat trigger allowed me to shoot the pistol well, but I’ll get into the details of my shooting results later.
The sights on my MC2c are steel. The rear sight has two white dots, and the front sight has one white dot, and it’s slightly larger than the rear dots. I like this feature because when acquiring the sight picture, the front dot appears quickly, and draws my eyes to it. I learned to shoot handguns the old-school way by focusing on the front sight (as opposed to the new-school way of using a red dot positioned where the rear sight would be as is de rigueur these days), and the MC2c’s setup makes concentrating on the front sight pretty easy. I would do better if the rear sight was all black or if it had a white-outline notch instead of the two white dots because I have never been able to shoot pistols with two-white-dots-type rear sights very well. But that’s a personal matter.
The MC2c’s slide grasping grooves are forward-angled and located at the front of the slide and also at the rear of the slide. They are designed to provide a secure purchase. The rather large magazine release is steel, has the same texturing as on the grip frame, and is reversible.
The grip has the texturing on the sides in two distinct areas and shallow finger grooves on the front. And there are shallow horizontal grooves on the front and back of the grip frame. Also, the grip frame has the same angle as the classic Model 1911 pistol.
Interestingly, the area of the frame above and ahead of the trigger guard is dished in. It is designed as a place for the thumb of the support hand to rest while shooting. The trigger guard has a unique oval shape with a flat front, and the front part is textured. The frame has a single-slot accessory rail for mounting a light or a laser.
The MC2c features the same takedown process as the MC1sc. Unlike other polymer-frame, striker-fired pistols, there is no takedown lever, but there is a striker cover plate at the rear of the slide. Also, the trigger does not need to be squeezed during the takedown process.
To disassemble, first lock back the slide, remove the magazine, and make certain the pistol is unloaded. Push in the striker cover plate button and pull downward. This reveals an orange-colored polymer striker assembly housing. Pull the striker assembly out the rear of the slide. Then lower the slide lock and move the slide forward off the front of the frame. A tip here is to grip the slide and pull it back slightly, letting the low-profile slide lock drop out of the way. By the way, Mossberg calls the disassembly process the Safe Takedown System.
During my shooting session, I fired an assortment of 9mm ammunition through the new MC2c, including hollowpoint bullets, bullets with full metal jackets, and synthetic-jacketed bullets. The pistol ate all 16 factory loads without choking. The loads were Barnes’s 115-grain TAC-XP, Hornady’s Critical Defense 115-grain FTX, HSM’s 115-grain XTP, Winchester’s 115-grain Silvertip, Black Hills’s 124-grain JHP, Federal’s HST 124-grain JHP, Hornady’s American Gunner 124-grain JHP, Nosler’s Match Grade 124-grain JHP, Remington’s 124-grain Golden Saber Black Belt JHP, SIG SAUER’s Elite Performance 124-grain V-Crown JHP, Hornady’s Critical Duty 135-grain FlexLock, Federal’s HST 147-grain JHP, Hornady’s 147-grain XTP, SIG SAUER’s Elite Performance 147-grain FMJ, Federal’s HST 150-grain JHP, and Federal’s Syntech 150-grain TSJ.
Before I started the shootout, I had spoken with Linda Powell, Mossberg’s director of media relations, and she informed me that my pistol is a preproduction gun, and other reviewers had infrequently experienced the magazine dropping out while shooting and having some occasional feeding issues with some steel-case ammunition. I did not have those problems with my pistol (I didn’t have any steel-case ammo to try, and the magazines stayed put during my shootout), but Powell said that Mossberg had redesigned the magazine release, the magazines, and the extractor in the slide for production guns, so there shouldn’t be any function problems with them.
My top load in the MC2c was Nosler’s 124-grain JHP load. Out of the 3.9-inch barrel, it achieved an average velocity of 1,042 fps, with an extreme spread of 24 and a standard deviation of 16. It hit exactly to point of aim, and overall average accuracy at 25 yards was 2.38 inches. The best five-shot string measured 2.21 inches.
At the distance of 25 yards, all 16 factory loads produced five-shot group averages that measured less than 4 inches. That was with the gun fired over sandbags, not mounted in a machine rest, and for four, five-shot groups with each load. As I said. the tightest group average was 2.38 inches; the largest group average was 3.92 inches.
I also fired the MC2c offhand through two drills. The first involved a series of cardboard targets set at varying distances from seven to 25 yards plus two steel plates. Each cardboard target was fired on with two shots and then the two steel plates had to be rung to count. The drill required the shooter to move.
The other drill used seven steel plates set up in a row and placed seven yards from the shooting line. The object was to see how fast the plates could be fired on and hit. I ran this drill at least three times.
All in all, the MC2c performed very well. In fact, I’d say it performed better than the shooter. I’m not so quick and light on my feet these days, but I managed to hit all of the cardboard targets without much trouble. I was producing one-hole groups in the cardboard targets at the close distances, and I easily rang the steel plates placed out at 25 yards. Granted, I had done enough shooting from the bench previously to become well acquainted with the pistol’s trigger and sight picture. The speed with which I finished the drill would never win any competitions, but that’s not the pistol’s fault.
Shooting the row of steel plates was easy, and my speed improved with each pass on the plates. I’ve said it before: Shooting steel plates lined out in a row like that is pure, unadulterated fun.
When all that fun was had, like my friend writer Layne Simpson often does, I fired the pistol right side up, left side up, and upside down. It functioned perfectly throughout the shooting sessions.
This pistol has a relatively low bore axis, and I found it pointed naturally, like an extension of my arm. Also, I was able to get my entire hand on the grip with the flush magazine in place.
The MC2c is a reliable, concealable, shootable, made-in-America pistol with steel sights and good ergonomics. Its stainless-steel construction and double-digit magazine capacity make it a practical choice considering its excellent MSRP of just $490 (the version with TRUGLO TRITIUM PRO sights lists for $595).
Mossberg MC2c SpecsManufacturer:
O.F. Mossberg & Sons; mossberg.comType:
13 and 15 roundsBarrel:
3.9 in.Overall Length:
4.9 in.Weight, Empty:
Integral to polymer frameFinish:
Drift-adjustable two-dot rear, dot frontTrigger:
6.2-lb. pull (as tested)Safety: