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Spotted: Ping G400 Driver

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Update: We captured in-hand photos of the Ping G400 driver at the U.S. Open at Erin Hills. We also captured photos of Ping’s new G400 Fairway Woods, Hybrids and Crossover, as well as Bubba’s custom G400 driver (see end of the story). 

A new driver from Ping, the G400, has landed on the USGA’s Conforming Club List and is on the range at the U.S. Open. As in previous Ping driver releases, the driver is listed on the USGA Conforming Club List in three different models:

  • G400: 9 and 10.5 degrees (RH and LH)
  • G400 LST: 8.5 and 10 degrees (RH and LH)
  • G400 SFT: 10 and 12 degrees (RH and LH)

In previous Ping launches, LST stood for “Low Spin Technology,” while SFT stood for “Straight Flight Technology.” Those two specialty driver models from Ping have served to meet the needs of a minority golfers who need to reduce spin (LST) or add additional draw bias (SFT) to their tee shots, while the standard model (G400) meets the needs of the majority.

USGA Photo: Ping G400 Driver

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USGA Photo: Ping G400 LST Driver

Ping_G400_LST

USGA Photo: Ping G400 SFT Driver

Ping_G400_SFT

Ping isn’t commenting on the new drivers at this time, but it’s clear that the company has made several important changes compared to its current driver line, the Ping G.

Each of the three G400 drivers appear to have a tungsten weight on their soles, a design that was last seen in a Ping driver in its i25 driver. The addition of the weights to the back of the driver’s sole in previous models helped push weight lower and deeper in the club head, improving moment of inertia (MOI), a measure of forgiveness that’s predictive of a driver’s ability to retain ball speed on mishits.

It’s also clear from that photos that Ping will carry on its “Vortec” aerodynamics package on the back of the driver, which in the G drivers worked synergistically with the company’s Turbulators, or “speed humps,” on the driver crown that helped reduce drag to improve swing speed.

The G400 drivers also appear to use dimples on the back portion of their crowns, which are equipped with ribbed structures known in the G drivers as “Dragonfly Technology.” Ping says Dragonfly improves structural stability and enhances weighting properties for more distance. As in golf balls, dimples on golf clubs can be used to improve aerodynamics.

We also captured photos of a G400 driver that could be used by Bubba Watson this week at Erin Hills.

Related: See more photos of Ping’s G400 Drivers, Fairway Woods, Hybrids and Crossover in our forum. 

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34 Comments

34 Comments

  1. Jose Pro Se

    Jun 22, 2017 at 12:19 am

    Ok Zak, Bubba is playing a practical joke on you.

    That’s pan dulce. Good one Bubba.

    I’m not buying the pink jaw breaker trick either.

  2. SoonerSlim

    Jun 20, 2017 at 2:23 pm

    I’ve always liked Ping clubs, but won’t be buying any new metal woods anytime soon. Clubhead is way too busy for me. I like an clean looking driver head. I seriously doubt that all that fancy technology makes that much difference in distance if you hit the middle of the clubface. Sorry Ping. If I buy one of your drivers, it will be a previous version with a clean looking clubhead.

  3. Orvill

    Jun 14, 2017 at 10:36 pm

    Pinky Pingy Pimpy

  4. Ill take the other

    Jun 13, 2017 at 9:36 pm

    PingXG 0811X!!!!!

  5. KCCO

    Jun 13, 2017 at 9:28 pm

    busy……i like the head cover;)

  6. BigBoy

    Jun 13, 2017 at 2:00 am

    If it comes with a blow off valve, I’ll buy it.

  7. CrashTestDummy

    Jun 12, 2017 at 7:08 pm

    It is really ugly but if it hits quality golf shots over and over again, then it doesn’t matter. Function over fashion.

  8. Anthony

    Jun 12, 2017 at 6:14 pm

    If you made that in your garage, you would be a very wealthy person….

  9. Deegee

    Jun 12, 2017 at 5:40 pm

    It will be 1/2 % faster, have better dragon flies, turbulence turbulators…and mugs will spend spend spend on a product that’s no friggin different to last year. These manufacturers are B.S.

  10. Old Putter

    Jun 12, 2017 at 5:35 pm

    I know this will never happen but….
    How bout a lie a lil flatter than 58*

  11. ooffa

    Jun 12, 2017 at 5:06 pm

    No, you are taking it the wrong way. I think you are great. I love your posts. It’s very rare to get to watch someone spiral downward so quickly. I wish i could help you get past this obvious tragic portion of your life. Unfortunately I cannot, so I am just observing your decline into delusion.

  12. Prut

    Jun 12, 2017 at 4:48 pm

    Are the turbulators bigger?

  13. The Dude

    Jun 12, 2017 at 4:48 pm

    let’s get some numbers…….with the Volvik please..

  14. Egor

    Jun 12, 2017 at 2:55 pm

    My TaylorMade rep and I spent the day sipping mimosas and laughing at how hard Ping is trying to play catch up to the best club manufacturer in the world. Wild clubhead graphics are so 2014. If Ping would just get with the times, they might have a small chance of getting close to the greatness that is TaylorMade.

    • Alec

      Jun 12, 2017 at 3:55 pm

      Ummmmmmmmmmm ok

    • Barry

      Jun 12, 2017 at 8:57 pm

      Yea so that’s a complete lie. Taylormade is not a great company… they screwed themselves by having such a short product release cycle and ruined their reputation with green grass facilities. I know many courses that don’t carry Taylormade because it is a waste of money on inventory when they know they will have to discount it to sell it. They make decent clubs but throw money at the tour pros to play it. That’s the only reason that they are so “popular”

    • Desmond

      Jun 12, 2017 at 11:16 pm

      I think you drank a few too many…

    • LC

      Jun 13, 2017 at 9:27 am

      Egor, for one you were “sipping” mimosas (lose credibility there)… I am not against TM but Ping is up TM’s you know what as far as technology goes.

    • Count Dracula

      Jun 13, 2017 at 11:11 am

      Well said, my humble servant

      • SlapMyForehead

        Jun 13, 2017 at 9:21 pm

        ….. LC, Desmond, Barry have drunk too many… of each other’s Koolaids. You guys would be a hoot at a party not.

    • Boyo

      Jul 14, 2017 at 12:44 pm

      TM hahahaahahhaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa
      How long till they go under?
      The biggest bunch of bullshirt artists out of all of them….

  15. SH

    Jun 12, 2017 at 2:29 pm

    Pretty soon somebody will bring out a driver with a cover that has the dimples from a golf ball. After all, we all know the ball is the most aerodynamically efficient design there is. Why tease us like this, Ping?

  16. xjohnx

    Jun 12, 2017 at 1:49 pm

    MOI is a measurement of the ability to resist twisting. Does it also have an effect on ball speeds or is that a mistake? Not calling you out, just asking.

    • Zak Kozuchowski

      Jun 12, 2017 at 2:30 pm

      Thanks for the question, xjohnx. Yes, there is a direct correlation between the amount of twisting and ball speed retention. The less twisting, generally, the more ball speed.

  17. Tom1

    Jun 12, 2017 at 1:20 pm

    awww the co0lor pink, it brings out the best in all of us……

  18. Phil

    Jun 12, 2017 at 1:06 pm

    Sweet Nike Vapor Flex 2017!

  19. LOLyoucantbereal

    Jun 12, 2017 at 12:33 pm

    I would like to think you are kidding, but there are people in life that do not get it, that is why others succeed.

  20. ND Hickman

    Jun 12, 2017 at 12:20 pm

    Now if they could sell the Bubba version at a reasonable price I’ll upgrade from my G30. Stick to pricing it higher than Callaway charge for the already ridiculous priced Epic’s then you’ve lost a sale.

  21. KC

    Jun 12, 2017 at 11:20 am

    That pink driver will look great in Bubba’s den as he watches the 3rd and 4th rounds of the US Open from home.

    • BMF

      Jun 13, 2017 at 8:08 am

      Belive it or not, i had a dream of bubba sending missiles all over the place after i read your comment. Even duffed afew shots. Lmao!

  22. drkviol801

    Jun 12, 2017 at 10:37 am

    Those turbulators are sick though

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Whats in the Bag

Sebastian Munoz winning WITB: 2019 Sanderson Farms Championship

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Driver: Ping G400 LST (8.5 @9 degrees)
Shaft: Project X HZRDUS Yellow 6.5

3-wood: Callaway Epic Flash (15 degrees)
Shaft: Project X HZRDUS Yellow

Irons: Ping i200 (3), Ping i210 (4-PW)
Shafts: Graphite Design Tour AD-DI Hybrid 85X (3), True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100 (4-PW)

Wedges: Ping Glide 2.0 Stealth (50), Titleist Vokey Design SM7 sand (56, 60 degrees)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400

Putter: Ping Sigma 2 Valor

Ball: Titleist Pro V1

Grips: Golf Pride Z Grip Cord

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Whats in the Bag

Danny Willet’s winning WITB: 2019 BMW PGA Championship

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Driver: Callaway Rogue (9 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana DF 60X

3-wood: Callaway Rogue (15 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana W 70X

Irons: Callaway Apex UT (18), Callaway X Forged (21), Callaway X Forged (5-9 iron)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold SuperLite X100

Wedges: Callaway Mack Daddy Forged (46 degrees), Callaway Mack Daddy 4 (50, 56, 60 degrees)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Superlite X100

Putter: Odyssey Stroke Lab Tuttle

Ball: Callaway Chrome Soft X

Related to Danny Willett WITB

 

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Equipment

New Mizuno MP-20 irons now available at retail

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The 2019/2020 Mizuno MP-20 irons family, the next series of MP irons to connect golfers to the classic  “Mizuno Feel,” with four new models (MP20 Blade, MP-20 MMC, & MP20 HMB – Hot Metal Blade), are now available at retail.

The MP-20 series was born from tradition and the idea of creating the ultimate set of irons for every player. Mizuno has accomplished that goal with modern design and an attention to detail on every level with all three models. Speaking to the Mizuno tradition, and something they touched on when these were originally teased on social channels with #LayersOfFeel, Mizuno is going back in time to the TN-87s and reintroducing a copper underlay to their irons—all of them!

Mizuno MP20 iron copper underlay

“Mizuno Feel”

It is part of the golf vernacular. It’s ingrained in golf (nerd) culture—it’s a real thing.

But where does it comes from, how did it get here, what is it really, and how is it a component of 2019 Mizuno MP-20 irons?

I’m here to give you some answers and introduce you to MP-20 family of irons from Mizuno.

2019-mizuno-mp-20-irons-7-iron-

2019 Mizuno MP-20 irons: 7-iron

Born from tradition, and the idea of creating the ultimate set of irons for every player, the 2019 Mizuno MP-20 family is the next series of MP irons that will connect golfers to the “Mizuno Feel.” Speaking to tradition, and something I touched on when these were originally teased on social channels with #LayersOfFeel, Mizuno is going back in time to the TN-87s and reintroducing a copper underlay to their irons—all of them! (Before someone tries to correct me: yes, I realize that they have done this for more recent Japan market model)

What does this copper layer mean? Here’s the funny thing, even Mizuno has had a hard time trying to quantify it. Through multiple rounds of extensive blind prototype testing with all of their staff players, the irons with a copper underlay won on feel EVERY SINGLE TIME! How’s that for dominance?

But why? They are truly still trying to 100 percent figure that out. Mizuno has used its HIT (Harmonic Impact Technology), metallurgy analysis, and every test it can to try and figure out why. Engineers even went as far as trying to prove the hypothesis the copper underlay “feel” was based on nostalgia but time and time again Cu won in blind testing. At the end day, the human element was still the deciding factor because humans are the ones that ultimately hit shots.

2019-mizuno-mp-20-7-iron-address

2019 Mizuno MP-20 irons

This brings us to the flagship MP-20 (Blade) (The Ultimate Tour Blade as described by Mizuno’s Product Manager & Engineer Chris Voshall). Evolving from the tradition built into the MP-18, and taking design cues from historic models like the TN 87 and MP14, the MP20s provide more flow throughout the set from top to bottom leading to even more control over ball flight. This flow also increases forgiveness (please remember it’s still a blade) and launch in the longer irons, with an increased ability to flight the ball in the scoring clubs…all of this AND a thinner top line.

Now about that top line: it’s an extremely important part of the look of the club, but what many don’t realize is it also plays a big role in feel and acoustics too. Let’s simplify for a moment: think of a clubhead like hunk of metal—a cube—now when you hit that thick piece of metal on something it doesn’t reverberate much and when it does, it’s at a different frequency making it sound heavy and “thuddy,” or as some would say, SOLID.

2019-mizuno-mp-20-7-iron-face

Now imagine if that same piece of metal, and same mass, was stretched out like a saw blade. Have you ever hit something with the side of a large saw blade? It’s wobbly, loud, and generally unpleasant, that’s what happens when an unsupported part of a club gets too thin, it acts like an amplifier of bad sound, creating terrible feel. By blending a small channel (think MP5) with the classic looks of yesteryear you get a club that feels and performs like no Mizuno before it, and as I said, with a thinner look from address.

What’s all this talk of “Flow”?

Center of gravity and mass placement (or as a Mizuno Engineer explained to me “Vertical Moment of Inertia”). Since each club is designed individually, you need the center of gravity to shift throughout the set to help control launch/trajectory (or “traj” as the kids say), and make sure spin is also at an optimal level.

For the MP-20, it means long irons that are “easier” to hit (air quotes, because like I said before, it’s still a blade), and short irons that can be more easily flighted lower with greater spin and control. Just like with the MP-18s, Mizuno is keeping with the continuous reduced blade length into the short irons for a look preferred by better players and for improved grass and turf interaction.

But What About the Rest?

You might have noticed off the top I called it the “MP-20 Family.” Here’s why: In golf, like with any other industry, data is important. But it’s only as good as you use it and well…let’s just say Mizuno has been paying close attention to how golfers and fitters have been making combo sets over the last few years. It’s all about understanding what golfers really need and thanks to some proprietary data they went even deeper when it comes to designing each and every iron in this family to make sure its performance is maximized. This is why I continue to emphasize how each set has a flow—to make sure each club in your bag is just right for you. Now to introduce you to the rest of the family members…

2019 Mizuno MP20 MMC irons (Multi-Material Construction)

2019-mizuno-mmc-irons-1

2019 Mizuno MP-20 MMC irons: 7-iron

I know, you think you’ve heard this story before but…NOT LIKE THIS!

The new MP-20 MMC is a BIG shift in design, not just because of the Cu underlay, but a radical change in how the whole club is put together. I know it sounds very “big biz,” but in the world of manufacturing it truly comes down to how “parts” are manufactured. Now, with Mizuno, I will reiterate a well-known story. All of its forged irons are single-sourced from one foundry (Chuo) in Japan through a handshake agreement that has been in place for decades.

Now back to the MMC. Before the MP-20 the MMC always had one tiny design difficulty (not a bad one, just a truth) and that was the titanium piece in the back was the same size throughout the whole set. This lead to a set with almost constant sole width. That doesn’t mean previous generations were constructed poorly, but it just means there were improvements that could be made to how the set flowed (there’s that word again) from top to bottom…which leads us to the tech story.

2019-mizuno-mp-20-mmc-irons-3

For the first time in the MMC’d life, the titanium piece of the iron will actually vary in mass depending on the club. It will be broken up in the middle of the set to allow better CG placement, and like its blade cousin, improved turf interaction in the shorter irons.

What is also very cool from a build and engineering perspective is the way the titanium gets into the club in the first place. Here we go down a metallurgy rabbit hole, buckle up…

  • Titanium has a mass density (rounded) of 4.5 g/cm3 – cubed
  • Carbon steel has a mass density of (rounded) 7.9 g/cm3 – cubed

That means that from every cubed cm of steel volume you replace with titanium in the head, you save 3.4g… which might not seem like much, but in a 4-iron for example that has an average mass of 248g for (4) cm3 you save 13.6g or just over five percent. I realize this is DEEP into the mass property weeds, but when you think of what a club head weights and how every half percentage point matters, five percent is a lot! That’s more forgiveness, more MOI, more spin control, and overall better performance.

2019-mizuno-mp-20-mmc-irons-3

What is also very cool is all of these parts (titanium and tungsten) have ZERO chemical bond—no epoxy. They all fit snug based on the shrinkage rates of the different materials. Ti & W( tungsten – W comes from the ore Wolframite) shrinks less than the steel so as the steel cools around the titanium and tungsten pieces it creates a mechanical (solid) bond.

All of this together adds up to an iron that looks smaller than the previous version, offers more “flow” in CG, something we mentioned earlier that creates more forgiveness and control throughout the set, and at the end of the day it means a better-engineered version than the one before it.

Hot Metal 2019 Mizuno MP-20 HMB irons

YES…you read that correctly. Mizuno is bringing Hot Metal tech to the MP line!

A hollow body blade looking iron using the same strong yet highly flexible Chromoloy material as the 919 Hot Metals except this time forged to create an iron like they never have before. The look and shape of a blade the speed of a Hot Metal.

Let’s break things down.

The look is clean as clean can be, from there the face of the HMB is thin and fast, while hidden inside the back of the club is complex geometry for both acoustics and precisely positioning mass. These will be the replacement for the MMC Fli-His but unlike that set, only going to the 6-iron, the new HMB will go all the way to the pitching wedge.

What is also different for the HMB vs. the MMC Fli-Hi is the way tungsten is used in the head to create different impact dynamics. The Fli-Hi had all the tungsten (20g worth) in one place in the head (low and towards the toe). The CG was still located right in the middle but through in-depth testing some players found that the Fli-Hi was a more difficult club to turn over and draw.

2019-mizuno-mp-20-hmb-irons

To improve the workability of the new HMB, the Tungsten was split into two 12g pieces (four more grams than previous Fli-Hi) and positioned into precisely formed pockets on the heel and toe in the back of the club. This allows the unsupported face to flex and makes the club more workable while still maintaining all the forgiveness you would expect from a hollow body iron built for speed. Seriously who doesn’t like the sound of that?

Since the new HMB is a full set and not just long irons, there is more to the tech story… here is comes… better flow and CG positioning throughout the set. This is hugely important for the mid and short irons where loft is already going to create spin so controlling ball flight and traj on approach shots is vital for scoring better.

This is again where the MP-20 Family discussion comes into play. Mizuno knows they are going to sell a lot more HMB long irons vs. blade and MMC long irons, so the entire family is designed holistically for every player to find each and every head that optimizes them on the course.

The Full Package

Like with previous generations going back almost a decade, Mizuno is keeping its industry-leading matrix of shaft and grip options available at NO upcharge. BUT… based on the growing demand for more exotic options the newly expanded shaft line up will include a few shafts that will come with a slight upcharge.

Whatever you end up being fit for, it’s important to realize that there has never been family of Mizuno irons designed like this, which could also mean you could be bringing home some new family members soon.

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