Riding the success of last seasons’ Hot Launch line, which allowed Tour Edge to grow by connecting with budget-conscious consumers who’ve been mostly abandoned by the larger OEMs, Tour Edge is doubling down with a new generation of its flagship Exotics line. While Exotics has traditionally spoken to the better player – and with that came a reputation for high-performance at a higher price – this latest iteration seeks to expand the Exotics audience through broad-reaching technology and a lower barrier to entry.
Packed with the kind of technology largely reserved for much higher-priced offerings, the Exotics EXS Driver is, according to Tour Edge, for the discerning golfer on a budget. The tagline is simple Pound for Pound, Nothing Else Comes Close.
That may sound like hyperbole, but if you convert those pounds to actual dollars, there’s something to the Tour Edge story.
That story isn’t much different than you’d expect to hear from any OEM as it rolls out its latest and greatest. Billed as a collection of exotic materials of sorts, the ESX leverages a TSP 910 Beta Titanium face plate (Tour Edge’s thinnest ever), an 8-1-1 Titanium chassis, and a carbon fiber crown, as well as carbon fiber plates located near the toe to create exceptional weight savings. I’d wager you know the rest.
All that savings allowed Tour Edge to drive the center of gravity lower and deeper to create optimal launch and spin characteristics while boosting MOI. Tour Edge also claims acoustical benefits, but perhaps the bigger (though not uncommon) story is that all of that discretionary mass allowed for the integration of an adjustable hosel and Tour Edge’s new Flight Tuning System (FTS).
The adjustable hosel design is straightforward. It allows for 2° of adjustability on either side of neutral (4° total), and also includes three upright positions, which in theory should cause golfers to start the ball a bit more left, which often helps mitigate a slice.
Flight Tuning System
FTS is comprised of 2 movable weights. A 9-gram and 3-gram weight come stock, but 6, 11, and 14-gram weights are also available. Placing the heavier weight in the rear promotes higher launch and a bit more spin while boosting MOI. Placing the heavier weight in the heal should result in lower launch and spin with slice reduction.
The implementation of FTS speaks to Tour Edge’s desire to reach a broader audience with its Exotics line. Not that long ago, Exotics was considered Tour Edge’s offering for better players. With the addition of shot shape correction – specifically technology to help mitigate a slice – Tour Edge hopes to extend the reach of the EXS line across a broader range of abilities.
Following one of the biggest industry trends right now, Tour Edge is claiming improved aerodynamics in the EXS by way of a more sloping crown and wider channels in the SlipStream sole. It’s worth pointing out that SlipStream was originally designed for improved turf interaction on Tour Edge’s fairways and hybrids. Its inclusion on a driver is a bit superfluous and rings of the type of addition that marketing departments love, but for which the practical value is disputable. That Tour Edge is claiming it offers an aerodynamic benefit is interesting, I suppose.
Also new to the EXS driver is technology Tour Edge calls RollFace, and I’m guessing you can see where this is going. Perhaps more limited in scope than TaylorMade’s TwistFace, RollFace features modified bulge and role in the toe section of the club to help create straighter shots from toe strikes, where, according to Tour Edge, the majority of miss-hits on a driver occur.
We can debate the effectiveness of the technology some other time, but it’s at least a little bit odd to me that Tour Edge would take measures to address toe strikes with bulge and roll, while not giving golfers the ability to move weight to that area to increase ball speed on those same toe strikes.
You can’t have it all, I guess, at least not at the price at which Tour Edge is offering the Exotics EXS Driver.
What you’ve read so far suggests a driver much like most any other on the market. Where the story diverges…where Tour Edge separates itself from a rack full of $450+ dollar drivers, is with the sticker price.
Despite a list of technologies as long as most any in golf, the Tour Edge Exotics EXS will retail for $299.99. With that, you get a 30-day play guarantee (love it, or you get your money back) and a Lifetime Warranty.
The stock shaft offering is the Mitsubishi CK Blue 2G. It’s available in 50g in ladies flex, 60g in regular, stiff, and x-stiff, and 70g in stiff and x-stiff. Retail availability begins 11/1/2018.
For more information, visit TourEdge.com or call (800) 515-3343.