TaylorMade Golf has never been content with the status quo – even if the status quo means being No. 1 in the industry. That’s why the company that has owned the driver market for years has just introduced a new driver, one the company says is the most adjustable in the game.
TaylorMade literally transformed the face … or at least the color of the game when it introduced the white-headed R11 and Burner SuperFast 2.0 drivers just a year ago. Collectively, they have dominated the driver marketplace since their launch and the adjustable R11 became one of the single most successful launches in a long line of sales success stories from the company that introduced the metalwood some 30 years ago.
The white heads were easily recognizable – both in retail shops and on television – and it seemed that nearly everyone, from world No. 1 Luke Donald to the hacks in your Saturday morning foursome, was armed with either an R11 or the white Burner. Sales were so brisk that sales associates in golf specialty shops, like Edwin Watts, adopted their own little catch phrase, “White is right.”
But true to its nature, TaylorMade wasn’t content with the success of the R11, as phenomenal as it had been. So now, the unquestioned pacesetter in the driver market has introduced the R11S, with an even more adjustable soleplate and an adjustable sleeve in the hosel that adds up to three degrees of Flight Control Technology. The new R11S retains the two widely spaced weight ports – one heel, one toe – that allow the player to further “dial in” their preferred ball flight.
Given all the combinations available utilizing the alphabet soup of technology incorporated into the new R11S – ASP for the five-way adjustable soleplate, FCT for the Flight Control Technology represented by the hosel sleeve that connects shaft to club head and MWT or Movable Weight Technology – the club can be tuned to 80 different launch settings, making it the most adjustable driver in golf.
And hey, that doesn’t even consider the nearly endless possibilities you can concoct if you want to invest in a few, or a few dozen, extra movable weights in differing denominations!
But back to basics, one big difference between the R11S and its predecessor is the more adjustable soleplate. Whereas the R11 allowed for three set-ups – open, neutral and closed – the R11S offers five, with slightly open and slightly closed positions now added. And the FCT sleeve can be used to further accentuate or counter the selected face angle by allowing five loft settings in 0.75-degree increments.
Think of it this way. As you close the club face, you effectively increase loft and vice versa. So let’s say you prefer an open club face, as most skilled players do, and you adjust the ASP to the open position. Now you’ve reduced your original loft of 9.5 degrees to eight. But using the FCT, you can regain the 1.5 degrees of loft. Or you can leave it. Or, if you’re one of those rare golfers can launch a 6.5 degree driver, you can go the other way with the hosel. The combinations are sure to keep the guys with the launch monitors busy for the foreseeable future.
The R11S, priced at $399 in most shops, comes with an Aldila RIP Phenom 60 shaft in four flex options. The 60-gram shaft features a medium-firm tip profile. Right-handers can pick from three loft options from 9 to 12 degrees. Left-handed models are available in 9- and 10.5-degree options.
The R11S TP comes standard with an Aldila RIP Phenom TP 65 shaft in regular, stiff and extra-stiff flexes, although 25 shaft choices are also available. Priced at $499, the club is available in 9 and 10.5 lofts for both righties and lefties.