Magpul FDP-9 folding pistol is coming—but would it be legal in Canada?

When Magpul first showed its futuristic folding carbine at SHOT Show back in 2008, it was an exciting idea. However, the company said it wasn’t planning on production then. Things change, though. Now Magpul says it’s collaborating with Zev Technologies to put two 9 mm versions of its folding firearm into production, known as the FDP-9 and FDC-9.

To explain Magpul’s folding design, it’s easiest just to show the experimental firearm as originally demonstrated years decade ago. As the video below shows, the FMG9 was itself based on the earlier Ares FMG design.

Depending which write-up of the original FMG9 concept you believe, the first prototypes were built around a Glock 17 or Glock 18 action. As the video above shows, Mapgul built at least one prototype around a full-auto Glock 18. Supposedly Magpul wanted sales to law enforcement and other government agencies. Obviously, anything with full-auto capability is banned in Canada. Even in the US, full-auto firearms are prohibitively expensive for most shooters. This is probably why Magpul never saw a commercial market for the original FMG9 concept. Not only would the licencing be pricey, the firearm itself would have most likely required expensive manufacturing procedures. It just wasn’t worth Magpul’s time.

Now, Magpul is teaming up with Zev Technologies on a new folding pistol/carbine design, with obvious inspiration from the FMG9 concept.

In 2019, Zev Technologies introduced its OZ9 modular pistol. This two-piece frame separates the receiver block from the handle. This allows Zev Technologies to sell highly customizable pistols. It also allows Magpul to easily adapt its folding firearm design to incorporate this action, instead of the one-piece Glock frame.

Since Zev Technologies developed the OZ9, Magtech has collaborated with the company to develop the new Folding Defensive Pistol-9 (FDP-9) and Folding Defensive Carbine-9 (FDC-9). Here’s how the Magpul website explains it:

The intent, with preliminary ATF approvals in place, is for ZEV Technologies to offer the FDP-9 firearm as a complete, large-format pistol. From there, the purchaser can enjoy the firearm as a self-enclosing large-format pistol. They may also choose to file the appropriate ATF Form 1 and, after approval, purchase a conversion kit to legally assemble it into the FDC-9. It will then be classified as a short-barreled rifle (SBR) and subject to all NFA laws. Although not certain at this time, the FDC-9 might also be offered straight from ZEV and would transfer to the purchaser as an SBR on an ATF Form 4 through their local dealer. The FDP-9 and FDC-9 will not be available from Magpul; they will be available from ZEV Technologies and through distributors and dealers that carry ZEV Firearms.”

Basically, all that legal mumbo-jumbo is tied to US regulations over conversion of pistols to rifles. Zev Technologies will offer the FDP-9 as a pistol; if users pay for appropriate licences, they can buy parts to turn it into a carbine. Zev Technologies is also considering offering the carbine as a standalone option.

Legal in Canada?

If the FDP-9 pistol and FDC-9 carbine had their magazines pinned to 10 rounds, it looks like they’d be Canada-legal.

Unlike the old Glock 18-based prototype, the OZ9 is semi-auto only. The FDP-9 and FDC-9 are based on a legal, all-new design. The FDP-9 would be restricted as a pistol; the FDC-9 would also be restricted based on barrel length.

That still leaves two other roadblocks for Canadian availability: Government officials could make an arbitrary decision to ban these firearms anyway, despite them meeting legal requirements. And, it’s possible they’d be too expensive for Canadian buyers anyway. With firearms selling like mad in the US right now, it’s unlikely Zev Technologies is anxious to figure out our market requirements. They’ll easily sell every FDP-series firearm they make in the US, most likely.