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Have Cobra lost their momentum in the Driver market?


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#31 chisag

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 08:37 PM

 Milfordlefty, on 08 January 2018 - 03:11 PM, said:

Now I recognize this is GolfWRX and everyone sees more distance with their new driver every year, that is why a GolfWRXer buys the newest/greatest driver every year. I thought the everyone agreed the idea of more distance with every new driver is just marketing/advertising blabber.


... This has been posted so many times and it just isn't true. Even the biggest golf forum ho doesn't think every new driver every year will produce more distance. I have reviewed and played new drivers every season for 13 straight years now and the best new driver every year is usually a better sound/feel, a better look at address, a spin change or a better trajectory. And these are only for my 100 mph swing with a smooth transition and swing tempo. The SLDR produced more yards for me because it was the first low spin driver I could hit high enough to take advantage of its performance in a higher loft. Then the Fly Z consistently produced more yards on average, as I just never seemed to miss with it, and my normal little high and toward the toe miss was almost as good as center contact. So while my best drives did not travel farther than my SLDR, it averaged longer and I had my best driving season ever. After hanging around a 0 index for several years it helped me get to  + index. For me at least there were no distance gains until I played the Epic this past season and while it was not quite as automatic for dispersion, I gained about 5 yards and was almost as accurate.

... So I am looking forward to the Cobra F8 and hope it gives me the consistency of the Fly Z and the distance of the Epic. After 13 years of new drivers I have gained 5-10 yds with the SLDR and another 5 with the Epic. But year in and year out I see no distance gains and think my experience is probably similar to many here. Yet if I did not try new drivers I would not have found those 10-15 yards, but I was never under any illusions that every new driver would produce more distance. I think most here feel the same, a new driver may maximize something for their swing and they may indeed find some additional yards, but it will be a pleasant surprise and not an expected result.

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#32 vietnameeh

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 09:20 PM

Just purchased a cobra Ltd pro!
Cobra LTD PRO 7.5F* UST Mamiya Attas Proto 7x
Callaway XR16 Pro 14* Graphite Design PM902X
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#33 raynorfan1

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 09:45 PM

I'm inclined to say that yes, Cobra has lost momentum in the driver market.

The King LTD was a breakout design. But it was launched in late summer 2015, and its replacement (the King F8) still isn't in market 2.5 years later. If the F8 isn't a hit, it will be a huge step back for Cobra because of all the lost time.

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#34 Bomber_11

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 09:59 PM

 raynorfan1, on 08 January 2018 - 09:45 PM, said:

I'm inclined to say that yes, Cobra has lost momentum in the driver market.

The King LTD was a breakout design. But it was launched in late summer 2015, and its replacement (the King F8) still isn't in market 2.5 years later. If the F8 isn't a hit, it will be a huge step back for Cobra because of all the lost time.

We just gonna act like King Ltd Black and F7 never existed?
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#35 B-Nads

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 10:04 PM

My local Golftown has loads of Cobra stuff on liquidation stretching back tot eh FlyZ stuff.  I loved my F6 hybrids, and almost played the 3 wood as well, so I really wanted to like the drivers, but nothing up to the 7 compares for me in feel and performance to my current driver.  I would add, however, that my local market is a very big-name driven group, and is probably less apt to buy something that isn't TM, Cally, Ping or Titleist.

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#36 raynorfan1

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 10:25 PM

 Bomber_11, on 08 January 2018 - 09:59 PM, said:

 raynorfan1, on 08 January 2018 - 09:45 PM, said:

I'm inclined to say that yes, Cobra has lost momentum in the driver market.

The King LTD was a breakout design. But it was launched in late summer 2015, and its replacement (the King F8) still isn't in market 2.5 years later. If the F8 isn't a hit, it will be a huge step back for Cobra because of all the lost time.

We just gonna act like King Ltd Black and F7 never existed?

I mean, they painted the driver black. Is that really a new model?

F7 was never the flagship of the line.

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#37 MrFlapjack

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 10:36 PM

 vietnameeh, on 08 January 2018 - 09:20 PM, said:

Just purchased a cobra Ltd pro!

It's ridiculously good..
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#38 MrFlapjack

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 10:38 PM

Gonna try the F8+ and see how it compares to the LTD Pro.  I'm hoping it's an improvement.
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#39 Belmont148

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 10:39 PM

Then why did Rickie and Bryson bag it if the F7 wasn't the flagship?
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#40 DFinch

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 10:58 PM

They have had a great run of top shelf drivers that could compete with anything and at a lower price point. Jailbreak broke everyone’s momentum but the Epic, M1/M2 and LTD were neck and neck performers. Cobra did a good job from the Fly-Z to the LTD marketing CG location and reached a space with the LTD that nobody had before.

The F7 looked like a cosmetic/weight system redesign of the F6. They changed the paint on the LTD with no other changes or refinement. I was hoping for LTD 2.0. They went away from CG marketing as if wasn’t the magic sauce they thought it would be.

The F8 is all about the face. I think that’s better than TM’s twist face, which Cobra has already been doing with the E9 face, and time will tell if Jailbreak 2.0 with the Rogue is anything other than a rebadged Epic.

So yes, I think they’ve lost some momentum from losing their identity as an industry leading “unicorn” CG chaser and the popularity of the Epic due to jailbreak. They’re never going to top the marketing machines of TM and Callaway but they were pushing the tech envelope for several years. I’m just not sure that milling the face gains ground back in the momentum department.

PS: Tiger and Dustin are going to sell a ton of drivers for TM this year.

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#41 joliver233

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 10:59 PM

 raynorfan1, on 08 January 2018 - 10:25 PM, said:

 Bomber_11, on 08 January 2018 - 09:59 PM, said:

 raynorfan1, on 08 January 2018 - 09:45 PM, said:

I'm inclined to say that yes, Cobra has lost momentum in the driver market.

The King LTD was a breakout design. But it was launched in late summer 2015, and its replacement (the King F8) still isn't in market 2.5 years later. If the F8 isn't a hit, it will be a huge step back for Cobra because of all the lost time.

We just gonna act like King Ltd Black and F7 never existed?

I mean, they painted the driver black. Is that really a new model?

F7 was never the flagship of the line.

Uh, yeah it was. The F7+ was in almost every staffer's bag, and Rickie replaced his LTD Pro with it. I think they just realized they didn't need two "pro" type drivers in their line. It's really kind of pointless to offer more than two options IMO.
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#42 joliver233

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 11:01 PM

 DFinch, on 08 January 2018 - 10:58 PM, said:

They have had a great run of top shelf drivers that could compete with anything and at a lower price point. Jailbreak broke everyone’s momentum but the Epic, M1/M2 and LTD were neck and neck performers. Cobra did a good job from the Fly-Z to the LTD marketing CG location and reached a space with the LTD that nobody had before.

The F7 looked like a cosmetic/weight system redesign of the F6. They changed the paint on the LTD with no other changes or refinement. I was hoping for LTD 2.0. They went away from CG marketing as if wasn’t the magic sauce they thought it would be.

The F8 is all about the face. I think that’s better than TM’s twist face, which Cobra has already been doing with the E9 face, and time will tell if Jailbreak 2.0 with the Rogue is anything other than a rebadged Epic.

So yes, I think they’ve lost some momentum from losing their identity as an industry leading “unicorn” CG chaser and the popularity of the Epic due to jailbreak. They’re never going to top the marketing machines of TM and Callaway but they were pushing the tech envelope for several years. I’m just not sure that milling the face gains ground back in the momentum department.

PS: Tiger and Dustin are going to sell a ton of drivers for TM this year.

Don't forget about Rory! haha.

But Cobra, in addition to milling the face, changed the shape of the face on the F8 as well, but just as has been stated, they don't spend a ton of time marketing, so it's less talked about than the milling or the twist face from TM.
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#43 vietnameeh

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 11:20 PM

 MrFlapjack, on 08 January 2018 - 10:38 PM, said:

Gonna try the F8+ and see how it compares to the LTD Pro.  I'm hoping it's an improvement.

Would love to know what your results are... I buy a few generations old usually so when they are cheaper
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#44 raynorfan1

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 08:23 AM

 Belmont148, on 08 January 2018 - 10:39 PM, said:

Then why did Rickie and Bryson bag it if the F7 wasn't the flagship?

Plenty of TM guys played the M2. The PGA guys play whatever works best for them (and I'm sure the OEM doesn't mind having them play the 'lower' model club, either...).

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#45 raynorfan1

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 08:24 AM

 MrFlapjack, on 08 January 2018 - 10:38 PM, said:

Gonna try the F8+ and see how it compares to the LTD Pro.  I'm hoping it's an improvement.

I'm also in for an F8+ and "hoping" it's an improvement to the LTD Pro...but honestly, I'm not sure how it could be. For my swing, the LTD Pro has been amazing.


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#46 spineshank

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 08:27 AM

I only played a F6+ for a bit but i liked it. The sound though..
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#47 jar59

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 09:51 AM

Cobra seems to have lost a lot of the buzz it had here with the 1,000+ posts on several driver models.  Has anyone generated any actual driver sales numbers, even within a company or region?

When Cobra was owned by Acushnet it was treated like a B team with Titleist having the prestige position.  Cobra lost a lot of respect at that time following their success with Greg Norman and Hale Irwin as players and pitchmen.  I think it would very hard to jump back to the top level when being relegated to the bench as a second line player for those big growth years in the game at that time.

I believe the progressive tech in Cobra technology does not really get out to most mainstream am players and they do not have superstars using their products anymore so it would be hard to get and keep any momentum.  The buzz on this site was the outlier imo but the drivers now are better than the “hot” drivers of 3-4 years ago.

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#48 J13

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 10:00 AM

Cobra is still the B team which is the problem.  Puma seems to use Cobra to support soft goods.   The major problem they have is letting apparel designers design golf clubs.
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#49 morgan1819

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 10:00 AM

Cobra picked up all kinds of momentum with the LTD.  Outperformed the Epic and M2 for me each time I have tested drivers.

...

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#50 chisag

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 11:06 AM

 J13, on 09 January 2018 - 10:00 AM, said:

Cobra is still the B team which is the problem.  Puma seems to use Cobra to support soft goods.   The major problem they have is letting apparel designers design golf clubs.

... Not trying to be argumentative but that is just ignorant. I have talked with the engineers at Cobra and they are every bit as qualified as any OEM and have zero to do with Puma. Cobra's Tom Olsavsky in charge of club design came from Taylormade and was largely responsible for the slot technology that changed metal woods and has brought his expertise to Cobra. And I could talk to Mike Yagley, Director R&D Research & Testing, for hours about why Cobra has done anything they have done in any given head and why it improves performance. These guys are passionate about their clubs and are always looking to get better.  

Cobra F8 ... Even Flow Blue 65s
Cobra F8 15* ... Even Flow Blue 75s
Cobra F6 Baffler stock shaft
Exotics CBX Iron Wood 17* ... HZRDUS Black 85hy
4-pw TaylorMade P790 Recoil Prototype 95's
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#51 rgk5

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 11:45 AM

 chisag, on 09 January 2018 - 11:06 AM, said:

 J13, on 09 January 2018 - 10:00 AM, said:

Cobra is still the B team which is the problem.  Puma seems to use Cobra to support soft goods.   The major problem they have is letting apparel designers design golf clubs.

... Not trying to be argumentative but that is just ignorant. I have talked with the engineers at Cobra and they are every bit as qualified as any OEM and have zero to do with Puma. Cobra's Tom Olsavsky in charge of club design came from Taylormade and was largely responsible for the slot technology that changed metal woods and has brought his expertise to Cobra. And I could talk to Mike Yagley, Director R&D Research & Testing, for hours about why Cobra has done anything they have done in any given head and why it improves performance. These guys are passionate about their clubs and are always looking to get better.  

Sam, I agree with everything you posted.  Cobra's tech is as good as any and better than some OEM's I could name but will not. They take no back seat to any other model when fit correctly.  Just because they do not spend an avalanche of money on Tour players and marketing does not relegate them to a "B" status. Callaway wallowed in the weeds for years until the advent of the XR Series and the models that followed.

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#52 North Butte

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 12:16 PM

Anyone who thinks "momentum" in golf club sales figures has jack squat to do with the technical merits of the club designs will believe just about anything, I guess.
Everything has its drawbacks, as the man said when his mother-in-law died, and they came down upon him for the funeral expenses.

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#53 J13

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 02:40 PM

 chisag, on 09 January 2018 - 11:06 AM, said:

 J13, on 09 January 2018 - 10:00 AM, said:

Cobra is still the B team which is the problem.  Puma seems to use Cobra to support soft goods.   The major problem they have is letting apparel designers design golf clubs.

... Not trying to be argumentative but that is just ignorant. I have talked with the engineers at Cobra and they are every bit as qualified as any OEM and have zero to do with Puma. Cobra's Tom Olsavsky in charge of club design came from Taylormade and was largely responsible for the slot technology that changed metal woods and has brought his expertise to Cobra. And I could talk to Mike Yagley, Director R&D Research & Testing, for hours about why Cobra has done anything they have done in any given head and why it improves performance. These guys are passionate about their clubs and are always looking to get better.  

Yes but the designs and color schemes are a joke and Puma wants it to support the clothing.  Problem they face is adults don't want orange drivers.  I know a few Cobra guys myself and they are rock stars in what they do.  Cobra has a great R&D team but the design and marketing arm of Puma/Cobra is not good. It's a shame because they make a great product but numbers dont lie.

Edited by J13, 09 January 2018 - 02:51 PM.

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#54 xjohnx

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 02:45 PM

I'm going to offer up a point of discussion that I believe to be a factor but I don't believe anybody has mentioned yet. Cobra made a drastic change to their target demographic and the timing turned out to be really bad. I'm not sure if this aligns directly with the Puma acquisition but it may be close. Cobra was always a safe brand that, if anything, was revered by the older crowd and catered wonderfully to the higher handicaps through large heads with high moi and good speed. The "speed series" was a great time for them. It was easy to understand and looked and performed great. Fast forward to the "new" cobra and it was all about being different. You have Fowler spearheading the image with bold and loud colors both on the clothes and on the clubs. This was clearly to target a younger demographic of golfers and happened to come at the same time that the statistics show those ages of players plummeting from the game. There have been many players that were given a perception of the "new" cobra since then that has just turned them off from the brand. Performance has been consistently great but you are still going to have to battle these guys that can't think outside the box and perceive the brand differently. Everyone wants to point at marketing vs. TM and Callaway don't look directly at dollars spent or yards promised. Think also about brand image.

EDIT: of course J13 comes in and says something similar as I'm typing this up! lol

Edited by xjohnx, 09 January 2018 - 02:46 PM.


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#55 J13

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 02:50 PM

 xjohnx, on 09 January 2018 - 02:45 PM, said:

I'm going to offer up a point of discussion that I believe to be a factor but I don't believe anybody has mentioned yet. Cobra made a drastic change to their target demographic and the timing turned out to be really bad. I'm not sure if this aligns directly with the Puma acquisition but it may be close. Cobra was always a safe brand that, if anything, was revered by the older crowd and catered wonderfully to the higher handicaps through large heads with high moi and good speed. The "speed series" was a great time for them. It was easy to understand and looked and performed great. Fast forward to the "new" cobra and it was all about being different. You have Fowler spearheading the image with bold and loud colors both on the clothes and on the clubs. This was clearly to target a younger demographic of golfers and happened to come at the same time that the statistics show those ages of players plummeting from the game. There have been many players that were given a perception of the "new" cobra since then that has just turned them off from the brand. Performance has been consistently great but you are still going to have to battle these guys that can't think outside the box and perceive the brand differently. Everyone wants to point at marketing vs. TM and Callaway don't look directly at dollars spent or yards promised. Think also about brand image.

EDIT: of course J13 comes in and says something similar as I'm typing this up! lol

haha it happens :D

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#56 chisag

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 03:08 PM

 J13, on 09 January 2018 - 02:40 PM, said:

 chisag, on 09 January 2018 - 11:06 AM, said:

 J13, on 09 January 2018 - 10:00 AM, said:

Cobra is still the B team which is the problem.  Puma seems to use Cobra to support soft goods.   The major problem they have is letting apparel designers design golf clubs.

... Not trying to be argumentative but that is just ignorant. I have talked with the engineers at Cobra and they are every bit as qualified as any OEM and have zero to do with Puma. Cobra's Tom Olsavsky in charge of club design came from Taylormade and was largely responsible for the slot technology that changed metal woods and has brought his expertise to Cobra. And I could talk to Mike Yagley, Director R&D Research & Testing, for hours about why Cobra has done anything they have done in any given head and why it improves performance. These guys are passionate about their clubs and are always looking to get better.  

Yes but the designs and color schemes are a joke and Puma wants it to support the clothing.  Problem they face is adults don't want orange drivers.  I know a few Cobra guys myself and they are rock stars in what they do.  Cobra has a great R&D team but the design and marketing arm of Puma/Cobra is not good. It's a shame because they make a great product but numbers dont lie.

... Cobra stoped offering orange drivers with the f6 quite a few years ago and it was a special order color only, which makes sense giving the young loyalists an option but positioning themselves for the masses. And the F7 was offered in a wood like finish for real old timers. The F8 is Black and Nardo Gray which has been widely complimented as they have a driver color for the younger crowd and older crowd. While what you are saying may have had merit 5 years ago, it is just no longer the case.
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#57 J13

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 03:37 PM

 chisag, on 09 January 2018 - 03:08 PM, said:

 J13, on 09 January 2018 - 02:40 PM, said:

 chisag, on 09 January 2018 - 11:06 AM, said:

 J13, on 09 January 2018 - 10:00 AM, said:

Cobra is still the B team which is the problem.  Puma seems to use Cobra to support soft goods.   The major problem they have is letting apparel designers design golf clubs.

... Not trying to be argumentative but that is just ignorant. I have talked with the engineers at Cobra and they are every bit as qualified as any OEM and have zero to do with Puma. Cobra's Tom Olsavsky in charge of club design came from Taylormade and was largely responsible for the slot technology that changed metal woods and has brought his expertise to Cobra. And I could talk to Mike Yagley, Director R&D Research & Testing, for hours about why Cobra has done anything they have done in any given head and why it improves performance. These guys are passionate about their clubs and are always looking to get better.  

Yes but the designs and color schemes are a joke and Puma wants it to support the clothing.  Problem they face is adults don't want orange drivers.  I know a few Cobra guys myself and they are rock stars in what they do.  Cobra has a great R&D team but the design and marketing arm of Puma/Cobra is not good. It's a shame because they make a great product but numbers dont lie.

... Cobra stoped offering orange drivers with the f6 quite a few years ago and it was a special order color only, which makes sense giving the young loyalists an option but positioning themselves for the masses. And the F7 was offered in a wood like finish for real old timers. The F8 is Black and Nardo Gray which has been widely complimented as they have a driver color for the younger crowd and older crowd. While what you are saying may have had merit 5 years ago, it is just no longer the case.

King LTD Pro had a Halloween theme which is horrendous and they already set the tone for their style with Orange and other colorful heads.  They did make a shift because of non existent sales but failed to market that shift to the consumer.  Hence why the giant, Golf Galaxy, pulled their stuff.

Edited by J13, 09 January 2018 - 04:19 PM.

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#58 xjohnx

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 03:45 PM

 chisag, on 09 January 2018 - 03:08 PM, said:

 J13, on 09 January 2018 - 02:40 PM, said:

 chisag, on 09 January 2018 - 11:06 AM, said:

 J13, on 09 January 2018 - 10:00 AM, said:

Cobra is still the B team which is the problem.  Puma seems to use Cobra to support soft goods.   The major problem they have is letting apparel designers design golf clubs.

... Not trying to be argumentative but that is just ignorant. I have talked with the engineers at Cobra and they are every bit as qualified as any OEM and have zero to do with Puma. Cobra's Tom Olsavsky in charge of club design came from Taylormade and was largely responsible for the slot technology that changed metal woods and has brought his expertise to Cobra. And I could talk to Mike Yagley, Director R&D Research & Testing, for hours about why Cobra has done anything they have done in any given head and why it improves performance. These guys are passionate about their clubs and are always looking to get better.  

Yes but the designs and color schemes are a joke and Puma wants it to support the clothing.  Problem they face is adults don't want orange drivers.  I know a few Cobra guys myself and they are rock stars in what they do.  Cobra has a great R&D team but the design and marketing arm of Puma/Cobra is not good. It's a shame because they make a great product but numbers dont lie.

... Cobra stoped offering orange drivers with the f6 quite a few years ago and it was a special order color only, which makes sense giving the young loyalists an option but positioning themselves for the masses. And the F7 was offered in a wood like finish for real old timers. The F8 is Black and Nardo Gray which has been widely complimented as they have a driver color for the younger crowd and older crowd. While what you are saying may have had merit 5 years ago, it is just no longer the case.

You're suggesting that it's "that easy" to change the comumer's perception of a brand. I wish it was but it's not. If Fubu started making clothes for old white dudes, that wouldn't change what people think the brand is.

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#59 chisag

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 05:23 PM

... Ya cant have it both ways. Cobra was for old farts and mostly game improvement and that is who they are. Cobra had a youth movement and it was all about orange and Rickie and that is who they are. I am not arrogant enough to know the answers, but what I do know is Cobra makes some of the best drivers in the game. And the Amp Forged/Fly Z+/Forged Tours are maybe the most under appreciated players irons of all time. But in my opinion, Cobra has made the best drivers for the widest range of golfers over the last 10 years and I think they have made enough of an impact that the F8 will be a viable driver and garner Cobra some momentum again. I know on another forum I put at least 15 guys into the Fly Z and many are still playing it. How much they are back in the game remains to be seen and I am certainly not saying they will over take Callaway or Taylormade, but anything is possible after that. I will say I was on staff with Tommy Armour when they were red hot, Wilson when the Whale was introduced, Titleist and Maxfli and the very hot Revolution Black and VHL irons for one year. Out of those 4 that were very much big players at the time with the exception of Maxfli, only Titleist is still a player. At age 64 I have seen many OEM's image come and go. I don't know what most consumers think about Cobra the brand at the moment, just my friends and acquaintances as well as players I get paired up with as I play a lot as a single. And of course going to the Show every January and talking with others in the industry. And all of them do not view Cobra as an orange spin off of Puma.
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#60 xjohnx

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 05:58 PM

My only point is that there is a separation between the intended image of the brand and the perceived image by the consumer base. Look at it another way. Let’s say you have a brand that puts out products for a year that has serious quality control issues and they break left and right. From there on, the company can get their production under control but there will be damage done and some people that will always perceive that this particular vendor makes garbage clubs that all break. Or all the people that said “Nike clubs are junk” for no real reason. There will always be a separation.


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