To design Callaway’s latest driver, the 2013 Razr Fit Xtreme, company engineers broke down the key ingredients of its most successful drivers models, realigning them with new technology that makes the Razr Fit Xtreme lower spinning, more forgiving and deliver more ball speed than its predecessor, the 2012 Razr Fit driver.
The Razr Fit Xtreme is also Callaway’s widest ranging driver offering according to Evan Gibbs, manager of performance analysis and club configuration for Callaway. This is because the lower-lofted Razr Fit Xtreme drivers (8.5 degrees, 9.5 degrees and 10.5 degrees) have different performance characteristics than the higher-lofted drivers (11.5 degrees and 13 degrees).
The OptiFit Hosel adjusts the face angle to an Open, Square, or Closed position at address and the OptiFit Weights (13 grams and 1 gram) also shift the clubhead’s CG to help you play a Draw or Neutral ball flight off the tee.
The lower-lofted Razr Fit Xtreme drivers are modeled after Callaway’s FT Tour drivers, which were extremely popular on the PGA Tour. While the Razr Fit found its way into the bags of many better players and tour players, Callaway received feedback that many preferred the lower-spinning FT Tour drivers to the higher-spinning Razr Fit.
“We took a step back and looked at how each loft was going to be played,” Gibbs said. “We saw that better players wanted a smaller footprint and a more penetrating trajectory, while higher-handicappers wanted larger, more forgiving footprint and more spin for optimum distance.”
In order to lower the spin rate of the Razr Fit Xtreme, Callaway engineers needed to lower the driver’s center of gravity (CG), which they did by removing weight from the driver’s “Forged Composite” crown. Engineers also thinned the perimeter of the “Speed Frame Face” that was used on the Razr Fit driver.
This Speed Frame Face creates incredibly fast ball speeds all across the face for longer, more consistent distance.
The thinner face, combined with Callaway’s updated “VFT” and “Hyperbolic Face Technology,” adds more speed to mishits according to Gibbs. The face also has more curvature than in previous Callaway drivers, which helps straighten out off-center strikes.
The weight saved from the face (about 3 grams) was moved to more optimal positions such as the rear toe section of the sole, where it deepens the center of gravity and makes the Razr Fit Xtreme’s adjustable weights more symmetrical, adding stability to the head.
These changes have resulted in more distance and less spin for Callaway Staffers like Luke List, who led all tours in driving distance in 2012. Gibbs said that during testing List picked up 16.6 yards with the new driver compared to his Razr Fit, adding 0.6 mph of ball speed and reducing his spin rate by almost 500 rpms.
Like the Razr Fit, the Razr Fit Xtreme driver allows golfers to adjust the face angle to one of three settings: neutral, open and closed. But the lower-lofted and higher-lofted models have two very different appearances at address.
The lower-lofted models measure 440cc and have a 1-degree open face angle at the neutral setting. Changing the Opti-Fit Hosel to the open setting on these drivers will open the face another 1.5 degrees, resulting in a face that is 2.5 degrees open at address. If they are adjusted to the closed setting, the face will rest 0.5 degrees closed.
The higher-lofted drivers measure 460cc and are longer heel-to-toe than the lower-lofted versions. This places the sweetspot of the club closer to the hosel, which increases draw bias. The higher-lofted models also sit in a square position when set in neutral, meaning they can be adjusted to either 1.5 degrees open or closed.
On both the lower-lofted and higher lofted drivers, changing to the face angle will also change the loft of the club. The closed setting adds 1 degree of loft to the neutral setting (a 9.5-degree driver becomes a 10.5-degree) while the open setting subtracts 1 degree (a 9.5-degree driver becomes an 8.5-degree). According to Gibbs, Callaway’s testing showed that better players had a tendency to use the Opti-Fit Hosel to adjust loft, while higher handicap players used it to correct a hook or slice.
One of the most important features of the Razr Fit Xtreme drivers to consumers could potentially be the stock shaft offerings. Many OEMs install stripped-down versions of popular shafts in their drivers that have altered characteristics. For Callaway’s newest lineup, the company decided to use an unmodified Aldila Trinity shaft, as well as unmodified Matrix Black Tie7M3 shaft. The Matrix shaft alone carries a $300-plus price tag at retail, making the retail price of the Razr Fit Xtreme, $399, all the more impressive. The Callaway Razr Fit Xtreme drivers will be available at retail on Jan. 18, 2013.
[colored_box color=”grey”]Additional Tech Specs and info:
- Composite materials such as the Forged Composite that the Razr Fit Xtreme driver uses in its crown have a tendency to mute a driver’s sound and cause a “thud” feeling at impact. According to Gibbs, Callaway engineers worked hard on the acoustics of the Razr Fit Xtreme, making sure it had a “loud and metallic” sound.
- Callaway received feedback that the 2012 Razr Fit’s swingweight of D6 was too heavy, so the 2013 Razr Fit Xtreme drivers will have a D4 swingweight, which was accomplished by reducing the head weight 5 grams. Standard shaft lengths with be 45.5 inches.
- The tip diameter of the Opti-Fit Hosel has been changed from 0.350 to 0.335 to match industry trends. Previous Opti-Fit Hosels will fit in the Razr Fit Xtreme drivers, but their 0.350 shafts will not fit in the new Opti-Fit sleeves.
- A weight kit of 4, 6, 8 and 10 grams will be available to adjust CG and swingweight. No Tour Authentic model is planned at this time, nor is there an Opti-Fit Hosel with more options in the works according to Gibbs.
- The green color of the Razr Fit was inspired by the popularity of the 2012 Razr Fit Tour Authentic driver, which also has a green color scheme. It also matches the color of the most playable shaft option, the Aldila Trinity.
- Callaway’s UDesign for the Razr Fit Xtreme driver will launch on Jan. 18 with the driver. Consumers will be able to choose from eight different color options — black, white, blue, red, orange, green, purple and yellow — which can be placed on the sole, crown, or both. Laser etching on the sole will also be available, although pricing is still undetermined. Expect for it to be around $50.[/colored_box]
Check out the shaft specs and photos below, and and click here for more discussion in the “Tour/Pre-release equipment” forum.
Unmodified Aldila Trinity
X Flex 68g, 280cpm, 3.9deg torque, 104mm tip flex. .335″ tip diameter
S Flex 67 g, 269 cpm, 4.5 deg torque, 112mm tip flex, .335″ tip diameter
R Flex 64 g, 247 cpm, 5.4 deg torque, 124mm tip flex, .335″ tip diameter
L Flex 63g, 229cpm, 6.3 deg torque, 129mm tip flex, .335″ tip diameter
Unmodified Matrix Black Tie 7M3
X flex 74g, 265cpm, 4.1deg torque, 85mm tip flex, .335″ tip diameter
S Flex 71g, 253cpm, 4.2 deg torque, 90mm tip flex, .335″ tip diameter
R Flex 69g, 243cpm, 4.4 deg torque, 93mm tip flex, .335″ tip diameter
Members’ Choice: The top-5 drivers that golfers want to test in 2018
Golf’s “off-season” is upon us and the PGAM Show in Orlando is quickly approaching in January, which means it’s time to start thinking about the upcoming driver releases.
We’ve seen a few companies launch their “2018” lines already — such as Cobra with its new King F8 and F8+ — while speculation swirls around the companies who have yet to announce their newest products. For instance, we’ve spotted a new “TaylorMade M4″ driver, and a new “Rogue” driver from Callaway. If history repeats itself and Titleist remains on a two-year product cycle, then we’ll see a replacement for the 917 line sometime in 2018, as well.
The question we posed to our GolfWRX Members recently was, which new or unreleased driver has you most excited heading into 2018? Below are the results and a selection of comments about each driver.
Note: The comments below have been minimally edited for brevity and grammar.
Titleist (7.39 percent of votes)
BDoubleG: I know it’s well down the road, but the Titleist 919 is what I’m most looking forward to. I played the 910 until this year and loved it, but I realized that I wasn’t getting much in the way of distance gains with the 915/917, and I was just leaving too many yards on the table. I know it’s a cliche, but I was seeing considerable gains with my G400LS, then my M2 I have now.
I feel like Titleist has been hurting in the driver market share category (and probably elsewhere), as I think a lot of people think that the 913, 915 and 917 have been minor refreshes in a world where almost everyone else has been experimenting with structure (jailbreak, turbulators) or with COG (spaceports, SLDR, G-series extreme back CG). I think if Titleist is going to recapture some of their market share, they will need to start taking an interest in stepping outside of their comfort zone to catch up with everyone else. Maybe I’m hoping for too much, but a D2-style head with ample forgiveness and low-spin (maybe a back-front weight), with the same great sound of the 917, and hopefully getting rid of the “battery taped to the sole” look would be a huge hit in my book.
I’m really looking forward to seeing what they come up with…and I hope I’m not disappointed.
Mizuno GT-180 or otherwise (8.87 percent of votes)
mrmikeac: After thoroughly testing the Mizuno ST-180 and seeing the distance gains I was getting from my Epic, I can’t wait for the GT to get here. Cobra would be next in line for me, but Mizzy really did something special with that JPX-900 and it seems to look like they’re going the same route with these drivers. Excellent feel, forgiveness and simple but effective tech.
Callaway Rogue, Rogue Sub Zero or otherwise (17.73 percent of votes)
cvhookem63: It seems like we’re not getting a lot of “NEW” this time — just some same lines “improved” on a little. I’m interested to try the Rogue line and M3/M4 line to see if they improved on their previous models. The Cobra F8+ is intriguing to me, as well. I’d like to compare those three to see how they stack up.
tj7644: Callaway Rogue. It’s gotta make me hit straighter drives right? It sure can’t be my swing…
Equipto: Callaway Rogue Sub Zero, and that’s about it. Most of my testing will be with shafts I presume.
bangabain: Excited to give the Rogue a shot, although with the hope that there’s a little more fade bias despite the lack of sliding weight.
TaylorMade M3, M4 or otherwise (27.09 percent of votes)
DeCuchi: TaylorMade M3 of course, and the F8+. I’m more interested in the fairways this year though. TaylorMade M4 fairways and Rogue fairways are top of my list.
elwhippy: TaylorMade M3 and M4. Not owned a TM driver for several seasons and want something with a bit more power than the Ping G Series…
cradd10: M3. Still rocking an OG M1. Super solid driver. Curious to see if the updated version can beat it.
Cobra F8/F8+ (33.66 percent of votes)
WAxORxDCxSC: I sure want to like the F8 based on looks (I understand I’m possibly in the minority on that one at GolfWRX).
TWshoot67: For me, it’s three drivers: the Cobra F8, F8+ and TM M4.
The General: Cobra F8 is going to dominate everything, just wait, on the F8
Ace2000: Definitely F8/F8+. Love my Bio Cell+ and can’t help but wonder if these perform as good as they look.
True Linkswear goes back to its spikeless roots
True Linkswear is getting back to its roots, while expanding the singular golf shoe brand’s reach at the same time.
The Tacoma, Washington, company’s Director/Partner, Justin Turner, told us that with the release of the two new models, the company is course-correcting from a move toward the mainstream, spiked golf shoes, and a loss of identity.
In addition to durability issues, Turner said the core True Linkswear customer didn’t appreciate the shift — or the deluge of models that followed.
So, in a sense, the two-model lineup both throws a bone to True devotees and casts a wider net.
Turner and company asked: “If we wanted to restart the brand….what would we value?” A commitment to the brand’s core outsider identity, style as articulated in early models, and an emphasis on quality led Turner on multiple trips to China to survey suppliers in early 2017. Eventually, the company settled on a manufacturing partner with a background in outdoor gear and hiking shoes.
“We’ve spent the last few years scouring the globe for the best material sourcing, reputable factories, advanced construction techniques, and time-tested fundamentals to build our best shoes yet. No cheap synthetics, no corners cut.”
Eventually, True settled on two designs: The Original, which, not surprisingly, has much in common with the zero-drop 2009 industry disrupting model, and the Outsider: a more athletic-style shoe positioned to attract a broader audience.
True Linkswear Original: $149
The company emphasizes the similarity in feel between the Original and early True Linkswear models, suggesting that players will feel and connect to the course “in a whole new way.”
- Gray, White, Black
- Waterproof full grain leather
2-year waterproof guarantee
- thin sole with classic True zero-drop heel
- 12.1 oz
- Sockfit liner for comfort
- Natural width box toe
True Linkswear Outsider: $169
With the Outsider, True Linkswear asked: “What if a golf shoe could be more? Look natural in more environments?”
- Grey/navy, black, white colorways
- EVA midsole for lightweight cushioning
- Full grain waterproof leather
- 13.1 oz (thicker midsole than the Original)
The company envisions both shoes being worn on course and off.
True Linkswear introduced the more durable and better-performing Cross Life Tread with both models. Turner says the tread is so good, you can wear the shoes hiking.
Both models are available now through the company website only. True Linkswear plans to enter retail shops slowly and selectively.
Sean O’Hair and Steve Stricker’s Winning WITBs from the 2017 QBE Shootout
The team of Steve Stricker and Sean O’Hair closed the QBE Shootout with an 8-under 64 for a two-shot win over Graeme McDowell and Shane Lowry. O’Hair made a timely eagle on the par-5 17th hole at Tiburon Golf Club to lock up the first place prize of $820,000 ($410,000 each).
Here’s a look at their bags.
Driver: Titleist 917D2 (9.5 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Tensei CK Pro White Prototype 60TX
3 Wood: Titleist 917F2 (15 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana S+ Limited Edition 70TX
5 Wood: Titleist 915F (18 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Rayon Diamana S+ Limited Edition 80TX
Irons: Titleist 716 T-MB (4-iron), Titleist 718 AP2 (5-PW)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100
Wedges: Titleist Vokey Design SM7 prototype (50, 54 and 58 degrees)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400
Putter: Scotty Cameron prototype
Golf Ball: Titleist Pro V1
Related: Sean O’Hair WITB
Driver: Titleist 913D3 (8.5 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Motore Speeder VC 8.2X
3 Wood: Titleist 915F (13.5 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Rayon Tensei CK Pro White 80TX Prototype
Hybrid: Titleist 816H1 (17.0 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Motore Speeder VC 9.2X
Irons: Titleist 718 CB (3-9)
Shafts: KBS Tour Prototype
Wedges: Titleist Vokey Design SM6 (46, 54 and 60 degrees)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold S400 w/ Sensicore
Putter: Odyssey White Hot 2
Golf Ball: Titleist Pro V1x
Related: Steve Stricker WITB 2017
Note: We originally reported Stricker had a Scotty Cameron putter in the bag, per Titleist’s equipment report. Stricker did, however, have a Odyssey White Hot putter in play during the final round of the QBE Shootout.
Spotted: A TaylorMade “M4” driver (via Instagram)
Tiger Woods WITB (2017 Hero World Challenge)
Match of the Ages: 30 Years of Tech Goes Head to Head
Hybrids or Long Irons? A Teacher’s Perspective
See what GolfWRX members are saying about Titleist’s new AVX golf balls
Spotted: Titleist’s new Vokey SM7 wedges
Callaway Rogue and Rogue Sub Zero drivers hit USGA conforming list
10 things you need to know about Cobra’s new King F8 lineup for 2018
The hottest blade irons in golf right now
Hello USGA, we need to talk….
Golf Gum: Could this chewing gum really lower your scores?
If Jordan Spieth’s gum chewing at the British Open inspired you to chomp a stick on course yourself, you might...
Bob Parsons, Paige Spiranac’s new video blog: “Why are PXG clubs so expensive?”
Golf’s favorite disruptive, ultra–premium golf brand is serving up a heaping portion of PXG brand red meat to its core...
PGA Tour suspends Mark Hensby for violation of Anti-Doping Policy (but that doesn’t mean he doped)
Mark Hensby joins the group of Doug Barron, Bhavik Patel, and Scott Stallings as the only players (we know of)...
Golf bids goodbye to viewer call-ins for rules violations. Should it?
The nearly 40-year era of viewer call-ins resulting in penalties being assessed to professional golfers will have come to an...
pga tour2 weeks ago
Tiger Woods WITB (2017 Hero World Challenge)
Equipment1 week ago
Callaway Rogue and Rogue Sub Zero drivers hit USGA conforming list
Opinion & Analysis5 days ago
Hello USGA, we need to talk….
pga tour1 week ago
Rickie Fowler’s Winning WITB: 2017 Hero World Challenge
Instruction7 days ago
Left Arm Bend: The Difference Between PGA Tour Players and Amateurs
19th Hole2 weeks ago
Tiger Woods driver swing video, on-site reports as he prepares for Hero World Challenge
Equipment2 weeks ago
TaylorMade is turning the tables, accuses PXG of patent infringement
19th Hole2 weeks ago
Tiger’s short game “a lil off” during Monday’s practice round (updated with video)