TaylorMade have certainly started 2022 with a bang, yet again shaking up the golf manufacturing industry. While the last 5 years have seen companies battle each other to find the best and newest in golfing technology, TaylorMade have looked to the past when constructing their new metal woods. The use of Carbon faced woods was first tried in the early 2000’s but never really took off as expected. The main downfall of the material was a duller sound and slower ball speed than that of a traditional titanium face that we have become accustomed to.
Golf club engineers still believed carbon had its place in the industry, mainly due to its ability to displace discretionary mass from the crown and sole and being able to place it in other locations in the head to maximise spin, launch and stability. While the last 20 years has seen the continuation of titanium woods, the team at TaylorMade have persisted with the idea of carbon technology, and continued to research ways to introduce carbon back into their main line of woods.
“What we learned is there is no dramatic improvement for titanium, so we could see the writing on the wall about 3 to 4 years ago when we introduced the Speed Injection Technology. Now we were really at the limit of how good – and fast – we could make the face,” said TaylorMade’s Senior Director of Product Creation, Tomo Bystedt.
TaylorMade are so confident in their new “Carbonwood” technology that they have discontinued production of any titanium woods in the future. “We’re sunsetting the entire technology that brought us into the game, which is metalwoods. It’s going to be goodbye. We started this and now we’re killing it.”.
The reason TaylorMade are backing this new technology comes off the back of years of extensive research showing the performance benefits of carbon. Carbon helps to contain roughly 40% of face weight compared to titanium which has allowed engineers to increase the face size by 11% compared to the previous SIM2 model. This also allows more weight to be added to the body of the club for a higher Coefficient of Restitution.
The new woods have already been well received by TaylorMade’s tour players, with the likes of Tommy Fleetwood and Sergio Garcia saw an increase of over 2 miles per hour in ball speed compared to their previous drivers.
A polyurethane layer has been added to the carbon fibre to help improve spin in wet conditions. For dry conditions a microtexture has been placed in between the groves on the face to reduce spin at impact. To combat the dull sound and feel at impact of the carbon material, a titanium sole and internal sound ribs have been used to help give a more traditional “metallic” sound and feel.
The Stealth Driver comes in three head options. The Stealth (9, 10.5 & 12 degrees) has more weight placed low and deep in the head, resulting in 15% higher MOI compared to the Stealth Plus. The Stealth Plus (8, 9, 10.5) is a low spin option with an adjustable weight in the back, testing has shown 200-300 RPMs less spin compared to the standard Stealth driver. The final option, the Stealth HD (9, 10.5, 12) is a draw biased head. It displays similar spin rates to that of the Stealth Plus and hosts an Inertia Generator in the heel.
The Stealth fairway woods features a variation of the carbon technology and comes in two different options, the Stealth (15, 16.5, 18, 21 & 24) and the Stealth Plus (13.5, 15 & 19). The Stealth features a slightly larger head and a 3D Carbon crown allowing more weight low and deep in the head to promote extra launch and forgiveness. The familiar C300 Twist Face is also included as well the TaylorMade’s V Steel Sole.
The Stealth Plus fairway wood boasts a smaller 175cc profile, appealing more to the lower handicapped players. The ZATECH Titanium face is the same as the SIM and SIM2 models. This slim and resilient material allows for maximum ball speed. The V Steel sole helps improve overall forgiveness.
With all this new technology, and over 20 years of research going into one club, its hard not to get excited about what’s coming up for TaylorMade in 2022. Leave a comment below about what you think about the new Stealth Carbonwoods and click here
to find a Pro Shop near you to book a fitting.