X Hot and X Hot Pro Drivers
Most major equipment companies offer at least two drivers in their new product lineups. There’s usually a larger, more forgiving model aimed at average golfers and a more compact model with lower-spin characteristics for players who have more swing speed.
Along with Callaway’s RAZR Fit Xtreme driver, Callaway is releasing its X Hot and X Hot Tour drivers for 2013, which take individualization a step further. Not only was each head made specifically for a certain type of player — each loft was engineered with a specific player in mind as well.
The X Hot is the most forgiving driver of the pair. At 460cc, it is 20cc larger than the Pro version. It’s also 14 grams lighter than the Pro, which could allow slower swing-speed players to increase clubhead speed.
Dr. Alan Hocknell, vice president of R&D for Callaway, said data from Callaway’s fit bays across the country showed that most golfers who need more loft also need more draw bias, which is why the X Hot and X Hot Pro drivers have center of gravities that move toward the heel as the lofts increase, helping golfers square the club at impact. That draw bias is more severe in the X Hot driver line than it is in the X Hot Pro drivers, which are aimed at players who need less help squaring up the club face.
The X Hot Pro driver features a smaller head (440cc), with a deeper face that helps golfers reduce the spin on their tee shots. Unlike the X Hot, the X Hot Pro driver does not have any alignment markings on the crown, providing a clean at Callaway’s new dark grey matte finish.
Both all-titanium drivers use Callaway’s Forged Cup Face design, which Callaway says leads to high ball speeds across the face, and are adjustable with Callaway’s Opti-Fit Hosel System.
Face angle and loft
The X Hot driver is designed to have a square face angle in its neutral setting. Setting the face angle to the open (O) position on the Opti-Fit Hosel will open the face to 2.5 degrees and subtract 1 degree of loft. A change to the closed (C) setting will set the face 1.5-degrees closed and increase loft 1 degree.
The X Hot Pro driver is designed to have a face that is 0.5-degrees open in neutral. Setting the face angle to the open (O) position on the Opti-Fit Hosel will open the face to 3.5 degrees and subtract 1 degree of loft. A change to the closed (C) setting will set the face 1-degree closed and increase loft 1 degree.
The X Hot is available is lofts of 9.5, 10.5, 11.5 and 13 degrees. It comes stock with a proprietary True Temper Project X Velocity shaft in light, regular and stiff flexes. The standard length is 46 inches with a swing weight of D3.
The X Hot Pro is available in 9, 10.5 and 12 degree lofts, and comes stock with a “real deal” Project X Velocity shaft in the following flexes: 5.5 (64 grams — 4.6 degrees of torque), 6.0 (65.1 grams — 4.7 degrees of torque) and 6.5 (76 grams — 4.0 degrees of torque). The standard length is 45.75 with a swing weight of D3.
Callaway’s X Hot and X Hot Pro fairway woods look much like the company’s previous fairway woods, but changes to materials and construction make them top-tier performers.
The new fairway woods borrow the forged cup face design from Callaway drivers, which moved the weld line away from the face to allow Callaway more control over face thickness and tolerances. They also employ 455 Carpenter steel faces, which paved the way for faces to be constructed as thin as 0.047 inches in certain areas, 40 percent thinner than the previous RAZR X Black fairway woods.
These changes give X Hot and X Hot Pro fairway woods performance that is near the USGA limit without having to increase the size of the clubhead or add a slot to the sole or crown of the club.
“The reason we didn’t want to add a slot to the front of the sole is because the weight we would be removing is in a pretty good place,” said Evan Gibbs, manager of performance analysis and club configuration for Callaway. “We also wanted to keep it small so it would have the versatility and functionality of a true fairway wood.”
Both fairway woods have what Callaway calls dynamic weight projection, a structure with a “weight” that hangs over the cup face (shown in the video above) and moves the CG in the fairway woods lower and further forward, optimizing launch angle and spin.
The X Hot Pro has a more forward and CG than the standard model, giving it a flatter trajectory with less spin. It also has more camber and less offset for more versitility. Both models feature a modern version of Callaway’s warbird sole for enhanced turf interaction from less-than desirable lies.
The X Hot comes in lofts of 15, 17, 19, 21, 23 and 25 degrees, and is available with a proprietary Project X Velocity shaft in light, regular and stiff flexes. The standard length is 43.5 inches (3 wood) with a standard swing weight of D3.
The X Hot Pro comes in lofts of 13.5, 15, 17 and 19 degrees, and is available with a “real deal” True Temper Project X Velocity shaft in the following flexes: 5.5 (70 grams — 5 degrees of torque), 6.0 (74 grams — 5 degrees of torque) and 6.5 (75 grams — 5 degrees of torque). The standard length is 43 inches (3 wood) with a swing weight of D3.
The X Hot fairway woods have a square face angle, while the X Hot Pro fairway woods will sit 1-degree open at address.