Review: Mossberg MC2sc Pistol

Mossberg’s subcompact MC2 pistol evolves into something smaller.

by
posted on February 22, 2022
Mossberg MC2sc

During early November 2018, Mossberg invited a school bus full of gunwriters to Gunsite Academy. Three days and 10,000 rounds later, the consensus was that Mossberg had done its homework and developed a micro-compact defensive pistol that fit large and small hands very well; a pistol that retailers and consumers could relish. It proved reliable, durable, comfortable to shoot and delivered precision on target that was unexpected from a pistol of less than 20 ounces with a 3.4-inch barrel. That pistol was the MC1sc and it won Shooting Illustrated’s Golden Bullseye Award for Handgun of the Year in 2020. Now, after another field test at Gunsite in 2022, Mossberg has a new version of that handgun called the MC2sc.

The MC1sc was a surprise to many, especially those who only thought of Mossberg as a manufacturer of a lot of shotguns and a few rifles. Swedish immigrant Oscar Mossberg began building guns in 1919 and what might surprise you was that the first firearm he made was a pistol. It was a four-shot, .22-caliber pistol called the “Brownie.” So, while Mossberg might be a shotgun company, it began its now 103-year history with a handgun.

The most innovative feature of the MS1sc was how it disassembled, and this same innovation has carried over to the MC2sc. After removing the magazine and making sure the pistol is unloaded, you lock the slide to the rear, remove the plate at the rear of the slide, and then easily pull the striker assembly from the side. Finally, after grasping the slide, the slide stop is depressed and the slide slips off the frame, allowing the barrel and recoil spring to be removed. You do not need to pull the trigger to disassemble, and the pistol can—very safely—be fieldstripped and then reassembled in less than 20 seconds.

The primary difference between the MC1sc and the MC2sc is that the MC2sc uses a double-, as opposed to a single-stack, magazine. This ups the capacity from an at-best seven+1 for the MC1sc to 14+1—with the extended magazine—for the MC2sc. The grip width of the MC1sc is only .851 of an inch and the grip of the new MC2sc is less than a quarter-inch wider. You’re probably wondering how Mossberg made a new pistol nearly the same size as the old pistol, but with double the magazine capacity. That’s a valid question, and the difference is the magazine material.

The MC1sc pistol utilized a plastic-bodied magazine made from see-through polymer. This meant that at a glance you could determine exactly how many rounds were inside. These magazines were quite durable and extremely practical. However, the polymer walls of the magazine were thicker than with common aluminum magazines. With the new MC2sc, Mossberg went with an aluminum magazine. The pistol ships with one flush-fitting, 11-round magazine, and one extended, 14-round magazine, with a sleeve that effectively extends the grip by about a half-inch. Weight wise, the MC1sc tipped the scales at 19.4 ounces, empty. The MC2sc, with twice the capacity, weighs virtually the same as its predecessor.

Mossberg MC2sc features
Surprisingly manageable, the trigger combines the newly popular flat face with the now nearly ubiquitous safety blade • Takedown is simple, though rather unique, and is accomplished without pulling the trigger • Texturing is stylish on the MC2sc, but not at the cost of effectiveness • The dovetailed front and rear sights can work in conjunction with an MRDS, allowing you to co-witness them with the red dot • Beveled to ease reholstering, the muzzle of the new Mossberg is clean and handsome • Although it comes with a plate installed, an MRDS with the proper footprint easily installs on the pistol, low enough to work with the fixed OEM iron sights.


The other major difference in these two pistols is that the MC2sc’s slide has been pre-cut to accept a miniature reflex sight. The pistols are shipped with a steel plate filling this slide cut-out, which is held in place with two screws. Once removed, the cut-out fits the industry-standard J-Point footprint, which is also the same footprint used by the Shield RMSc and the new Crimson Trace CTS-1550. Any miniature reflex sight with this footprint can be attached directly to the MC2sc’s slide. Mine has the CTS-1550 attached, and what I found very appealing was that even with this sight installed, it was situated low enough to permit the use of the standard-height factory sights. This means it’s possible to install a miniature reflex sight and not have to swap out the factory sights for suppressor-height sights in order to have a redundant, co-witnessing sight system.

With regard to fixed sights, there are two options for the MC2sc. The base sight system is of the common, three-white-dot configuration. As an option, a version ships with TruGlo Tritium Pro night sights. That version of the MC2sc increases the suggested retail price by $106, which may or may not be worth the money, depending on your intentions with regard to installing a reflex sight.

Another addition to the MC2sc is a textured reference pad just above the forward portion of the trigger guard on both sides. It’s there to provide the shooter with an index point for their trigger finger when it is off the trigger. Is it a necessity? No. However, a tactile reference point does serve as a reminder—though maybe only needed by new or inexperienced shooters—as to where the trigger finger should be when it should not be on the trigger. As I’m sure many other shooters will, I appreciate its inclusion and enjoyed its presence during all range sessions.

The MC2sc also has a forward rail section molded into the dustcover under the barrel. It is slot-less and short, measuring only 1.16-inches long. Because of this, options for the attachment of lights, lasers or combo units might be limited. However, these aftermarket accessories continue to shrink in size and I’m sure there are some that will fit this rail. I’m also sure that there will be more that are compatible with it soon.

Other than the differences mentioned, the MC2sc is identical to the MC1sc. It has the forward and rear grasping grooves, alternating textured pads on the grip, a reversible magazine release, and the now quite common, Glock-like passive safety lever in the trigger. Also, like with the MC1sc, the MC2sc is offered in a version with a crossbolt safety located on the frame just to the upper rear of the trigger. Though it might seem a bit odd in function and placement, I can see where it might have appeal to shooters who want the added peace of mind that a manual safety can provide, particularly when holstering. And of course, for those living in Second Amendment-lite jurisdictions that limit magazine capacity, a 10-round version is offered.

When that referenced bus load of gunwriters traveled to Gunsite Academy to be introduced to the MC1sc in 2018, all were surprised at the level of precision the pistol offered. Many were bragging about the distances at which they could make headshots. I must say that the MC2sc shoots just as well as the MC1sc; I had no trouble at all consistently ringing my 50-yard reduced-size steel IPSC target. This was no doubt aided by what I would call a good trigger for a striker-fired handgun. Yes, it is a mushy plastic pistol trigger, but the mush is smooth and consistent, with a clean break at about 5 pounds.

However, I did have an issue with the trigger. If I allowed my finger to ride down the face of the trigger during rapid fire, during reset the pad of my finger could get slightly pinched between the trigger and the trigger guard. This was not painful when it happened, but after several hundred rounds my trigger finger became tender. It could be avoided by not putting too much finger on the trigger and/or by keeping the finger centered on the trigger during rapid-fire engagements. You might think I’m picking nits, but that’s what I’m supposed to do in a gun review. You also might think I’m being a sissy, but about half the firearms journalists involved in the unveiling of the MC2sc at Gunsite in mid-2021 experienced the same.

Mossberg MC2sc shooting results

Regardless, the trigger issue did not negatively impact mine or anyone else’s ability to shoot the MC2sc accurately. At 3 yards, I could easily accomplish failure drills (from concealment) in less than 2.5 seconds. I also ran the Forty-Five Drill from concealment—five shots at a 5-inch circle at 5 yards in less than 5 seconds—10 times with only a couple shots landing just outside the 5-inch circle, and with an average time of 3.87 seconds. And at 10 yards, sub-2-inch slow-fire groups from offhand were the norm. Like its predecessor, the MC2sc is a very precise-shooting pistol, providing duty-pistol accuracy with micro-pistol concealability. And as for reliability, to date I’ve fired almost 800 assorted rounds through my MC2sc and have not experienced a single stoppage.

Additionally, my two teenage daughters and my wife borrowed three MC2sc pistols from Mossberg, also equipped with the CTS-1550 reflex sights, to take a one-day tutorial defensive-handgun class at venerable Gunsite Academy. By the way, none of them experienced the finger-pinching issue that I did and even though a sub-20-ounce pistol is a bit light for smaller hands when firing full-power loads, they all shot the guns quite well and liked them. They did have a few stoppages toward the end of the day. I’m convinced this was due to fatigue and limp-wristing the handgun. This is, of course, something you cannot do with any ultra-compact, lightweight, 9 mm pistol.

The Mossberg MC2sc fits perfectly in the genre of handguns currently in demand by those searching for a concealed-carry pistol. It delivers 9 mm power in an easily concealable, compact package, that’s extremely accurate, reliable and reflex-sight compatible. Mossberg is doing an outstanding job bringing quality handguns to the market at prices that will not make blue-collar Americans pull out their credit card or cause them to become engaged in divorce proceedings. With inflation as it is, and with no relief in sight, that’s a good thing.

For what it’s worth, my wife has been carrying a Mossberg MC1sc for 3 years now. Now, though, I’ve noticed her casting a covetous eye towards my MC2sc. I told her we could maybe work something out, but that with times as they are, nothing was for free. I’m curious as to what gun my wife will offer in trade. Of course, she might just go buy her own. And I’m fine with that; it means I get to keep mine.

Mossberg MC2sc features
The extended magazine allows a full grip and continues the backstrap texturing, assuring firm purchase • Made as wide as possible, the magazine well makes reloading fast and sure • Though stubby, the barrel of the MC2sc provides accuracy on par with that of a much larger pistol • Unlike most other pistols, takedown of the MC2sc begins with removing the plate at the rear of the slide.

The MC2sc also has a forward rail section molded into the dustcover under the barrel. It is slot-less and short, measuring only 1.16-inches long. Because of this, options for the attachment of lights, lasers or combo units might be limited. However, these aftermarket accessories continue to shrink in size and I’m sure there are some that will fit this rail. I’m also sure that there will be more that are compatible with it soon.

Other than the differences mentioned, the MC2sc is identical to the MC1sc. It has the forward and rear grasping grooves, alternating textured pads on the grip, a reversible magazine release, and the now quite common, Glock-like passive safety lever in the trigger. Also, like with the MC1sc, the MC2sc is offered in a version with a crossbolt safety located on the frame just to the upper rear of the trigger. Though it might seem a bit odd in function and placement, I can see where it might have appeal to shooters who want the added peace of mind that a manual safety can provide, particularly when holstering. And of course, for those living in Second Amendment-lite jurisdictions that limit magazine capacity, a 10-round version is offered.

When that referenced bus load of gunwriters traveled to Gunsite Academy to be introduced to the MC1sc in 2018, all were surprised at the level of precision the pistol offered. Many were bragging about the distances at which they could make headshots. I must say that the MC2sc shoots just as well as the MC1sc; I had no trouble at all consistently ringing my 50-yard reduced-size steel IPSC target. This was no doubt aided by what I would call a good trigger for a striker-fired handgun. Yes, it is a mushy plastic pistol trigger, but the mush is smooth and consistent, with a clean break at about 5 pounds.

However, I did have an issue with the trigger. If I allowed my finger to ride down the face of the trigger during rapid fire, during reset the pad of my finger could get slightly pinched between the trigger and the trigger guard. This was not painful when it happened, but after several hundred rounds my trigger finger became tender. It could be avoided by not putting too much finger on the trigger and/or by keeping the finger centered on the trigger during rapid-fire engagements. You might think I’m picking nits, but that’s what I’m supposed to do in a gun review. You also might think I’m being a sissy, but about half the firearms journalists involved in the unveiling of the MC2sc at Gunsite in mid-2021 experienced the same.

Regardless, the trigger issue did not negatively impact mine or anyone else’s ability to shoot the MC2sc accurately. At 3 yards, I could easily accomplish failure drills (from concealment) in less than 2.5 seconds. I also ran the Forty-Five Drill from concealment—five shots at a 5-inch circle at 5 yards in less than 5 seconds—10 times with only a couple shots landing just outside the 5-inch circle, and with an average time of 3.87 seconds. And at 10 yards, sub-2-inch slow-fire groups from offhand were the norm. Like its predecessor, the MC2sc is a very precise-shooting pistol, providing duty-pistol accuracy with micro-pistol concealability. And as for reliability, to date I’ve fired almost 800 assorted rounds through my MC2sc and have not experienced a single stoppage.

Additionally, my two teenage daughters and my wife borrowed three MC2sc pistols from Mossberg, also equipped with the CTS-1550 reflex sights, to take a one-day tutorial defensive-handgun class at venerable Gunsite Academy. By the way, none of them experienced the finger-pinching issue that I did and even though a sub-20-ounce pistol is a bit light for smaller hands when firing full-power loads, they all shot the guns quite well and liked them. They did have a few stoppages toward the end of the day. I’m convinced this was due to fatigue and limp-wristing the handgun. This is, of course, something you cannot do with any ultra-compact, lightweight, 9 mm pistol.

The Mossberg MC2sc fits perfectly in the genre of handguns currently in demand by those searching for a concealed-carry pistol. It delivers 9 mm power in an easily concealable, compact package, that’s extremely accurate, reliable and reflex-sight compatible. Mossberg is doing an outstanding job bringing quality handguns to the market at prices that will not make blue-collar Americans pull out their credit card or cause them to become engaged in divorce proceedings. With inflation as it is, and with no relief in sight, that’s a good thing.

For what it’s worth, my wife has been carrying a Mossberg MC1sc for 3 years now. Now, though, I’ve noticed her casting a covetous eye towards my MC2sc. I told her we could maybe work something out, but that with times as they are, nothing was for free. I’m curious as to what gun my wife will offer in trade. Of course, she might just go buy her own. And I’m fine with that; it means I get to keep mine.

Mossberg MC2sc

Mossberg MC2sc specs

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