In golf, talk is expensive, and sometimes performance is cheap. Well, at least in a sense it doesn’t add up to the advertising and product claims.
In the case of TourEdge, and their Hot Launch 3 irons and woods, there is a definite match between the claims and performance. They say they match the performance of clubs at one half the price. So let the games begin, a bold claim, but does the performance match the claims?
The HL3 irons and woods were designed to give the average golfer a custom club at a reasonable price. Made and assembled in the USA, there is a lifetime warranty for all their clubs. All this sounded good, so off I went to purchase two HL3 clubs to test. Moreover, even more interesting, from ordering to arrival was just 48 hours, which is the typical turn around time. Nice not to have to wait two weeks for your clubs!
My Cobra Irons and Driver are excellent. And since I was custom fit at the PGA Tour Superstore, I had all the fit data. The clubs picked for testing were the HL3 iron-wood in a 6-iron loft and configuration, and a 10.5 driver. In the irons, same shaft (KBS Tour Steel), same set up in length, lie angle and grip. The only difference was the iron wood is just slightly more substantial in swing weight than the Cobra iron. The real difference was in price. The complete set of the HL3 iron-woods in steel is just over $500, while the same set of Cobra irons were just shy of $900. If you choose the get the more traditional cavity-back HL3, the iron set is only $419.
After a warm-up, I alternated five shots with each six iron until I had used 40 golf balls. The results were that the HL3 went just as far, but was far easier to hit consistently, likely from the iron-wood design. Easy-to-hit is an essential factor in that I like to play golf, yet time for practice is very limited. The Cobra iron was just a tad more precise if I wanted to work the ball, but only a slight difference. My overall impression was the performance for how I can devote time to golf was very good for quite a bit less money. I should note, I don’t always carry a handicap as time is tight, but will consistently score in the 80s. I have been told I have a relatively sound and repeatable golf swing.
On to the drivers, where there was a real difference in price. $189 for the HL3 in a 10.5 head, and about $400 for the Cobra in a 10.5 head. Once again, I alternated balls with each club. Four shots with the HL3, then four with the Cobra. Granted, it is a little challenging to tell distance without a launch monitor, but with that many golf balls, you get a feel for the club and performance parameters. The result was that the Cobra went little farther, maybe 3-5 yards. However, the HL3 Driver was more natural to hit consistently. They each have a different sound, but after 20 balls total with each, I was used to each sound. My bottom line is I would probably trade 5 yards for keeping it in the fairway more of the time with the knowledge that I can swing a little more confidently. For those with a slice tendency, the driver also comes in an off-set model.
Traditionally, TourEdge has been an exceptional hybrid, wood and driver company, and irons didn’t get much attention. The Hot Launch 3 irons all the way to driver are worth consideration because they perform well, and in the dollar per performance factor competition, they are the clear winner for the average golfer.