The Walther P5 compact (P5c) is a shorter and lighter version of the full size P5. Production of the compact started in 1988 at serial number 150000. Approximately 24000 P5c’s were produced and the first 800 pistols (up to serial number 150800) can be considered as the early variation. These early pistols are fitted with wooden grips. Pistols with serial numbers above 150800 commonly have plastic grips.
All full sizes Walther P5′s have the magazine release in the heel of the grip. A few compacts were produced with a comparable heel release but these are considered to be very rare.
Walther P5 compact with magazine heel release
The majority of P5c pistols produced have a button on the triggerguard to released the magazine. This button can be operated with the thumb and therefore this type of release is sometimes called “Thumb release”.
Magazines for the P5c are exactly the same in size and dimension as the magazines used for the full size P5. The only difference is that P5c magazines have a half-moon-shaped cut in the front of the body. This cut is used to secure and release the magazine by the thumb release.