2024 Drivers – COBRA, PING, PXG and TaylorMade
Drivers

2024 Drivers – COBRA, PING, PXG and TaylorMade

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2024 Drivers – COBRA, PING, PXG and TaylorMade

I hadn’t previously thought of the RSM Classic as one of the PGA TOUR’s seminal events but given that it coincides with the arrival (at least as far as the USGA is concerned) of new 2024 drivers from COBRA, PING, PXG and TaylorMade, it suddenly feels (to me, anyway) like the second biggest tournament of the year played in Georgia.

Here’s what hit the USGA conforming list.

COBRA

Apart from the typical Version 1, Version 2, stuff common to the list, COBRA has three new DARKSPEED models on the list. If you’ve kept up with COBRA at all over the past few seasons, what’s on the way shouldn’t come as any huge surprise.

COBRA DARKSPEED LS

You can bank on the “LS” denoting “Low Spin” as that’s become almost industry-standard nomenclature.

The USGA photo clearly shows an updated three-weight system which suggests COBRA is giving golfers seeking low spin a new option to increase forgiveness beyond what the AEROJET LS offered.

Other key COBRA technologies (PWR BRIDGE, PWRSHELL, H.O.T FACE) are noted in the USGA description.

While not noted specifically, aerodynamics was a huge part of the story with the current model (it’s the Aero in AEROJET) and we expect that to evolve for 2024.

COBRA DARKSPEED X

COBRA DARKSPEED X Driver

For my money, the LTD X was the best of COBRA’s 2022 lineup so it was a bit of surprise when the X disappeared in favor of a standard model that lacked adjustable weights.

For 2024, indications are that the X is is back (DARKSPEED X) along with COBRA’s front-to-back flip weight system that debuted with the FLY-Z.

As with the DARKSPEED LS, a laundry list of COBRA technologies is noted in the description.

X should prove to be the most popular of the DARKSPEED family.

COBRA DARKSPEED MAX

COBRA DARKSPEED MAX Driver

“MAX” is how the equipment industry typically describes their highest MOI offerings, so it’s reasonable to assume that will be the case with the COBRA DARKSPEED MAX.

If the MAX moniker wasn’t enough, the heel-toe weighting shown in the USGA photo is relatively common in MAX designs as it gives golfers a choice between slice correction (heel bias) and maximum forgiveness by way of higher MOI when the heavy weight is in the back position.

PING

It’s a bit strange, dare I say unexpected, to see a new PING driver hitting the USGA list. By PING standards, we’re not particularly deep into the G430 driver life cycle and one would think they’ve got the market more or less covered. Nevertheless, here we are.

PING G430 MAX 10K

PING G430 MAX 10K Driver

The USGA won’t be winning any photography awards for this one so we don’t have quite the detail we’d like.

From the provided material, two things are notable about the PING G430 MAX 10K.

The first is that the rear weight appears to be fixed as opposed to the adjustable options found in current models.

Second, the USGA description denotes “CARBONFLY WRAP” printed on the crown. As you may recall, CARBONFLY is the term used to described the carbon-fiber crown which was previously unique to the G430 LS.

So what about the “10K” stuff?

Given its recent collab with Hideoki, I suppose it could suggest gold inlays and a $10,000 price tag. More likely, the evidence (fixed weight, carbon crown and PING’s brand identity) suggest a maximum forgiveness play that exceeds that of the current G430 MAX.

The fact that it’s still a G430 suggests the current MAX will stay in the lineup. To borrow from a PING competitor, the 10K is likely just MAX-IER.

PXG

It’s hard to know what to make of the new PXG drivers on the USGA conforming list. The company has previously stated a commitment to 0311(mainstream) and 0317 (better players) labeling for its products. Of course, everything at PXG can change with less than a moment’s notice.

Is BLACK OPS a prototype (maybe), a model name under the 0311 umbrella (probably) or a golf shaft brand that most of you forgot about (definitely).

Regardless, the USGA currently lists three PXG BLACK OPS drivers including a Tour-1 and a Tour-3. The whereabouts of the Tour-2 might be the most compelling mystery in all of this.

PXG BLACK OPS

PXG BLACK OPS DRIVER

The only PXG listing without a “Tour” designation hints at mainstream option. The USGA denotes “0311” on the sole, suggesting we may be past the prototype phase.

The standard BLACK OPS features a three-weight system and, as the case has been with the last couple of PXG releases, the weights are positioned to the extreme (or is it XTREME?) heel and toe.

In past iterations, the position of the weights has functioned to keep MOI extremely high while keeping spin in check.

PXG BLACK OPS TOUR-1

PXG BLACK OPS TOUR 1 Driver

The most glaring difference between the standard and the TOUR-1 model is the position of the weights. The TOUR-1 still offers a three-weight system but, in this version, the heel and toe weights are placed more centrally while the rear weight is behind the pulled-down section of the sole.

To me, this suggests a more forward center of gravity design which presumably offers lower spin, albeit with lower MOI.

While the USGA’s photos are anything but conclusive (scale is always a challenge), they could suggest a driver that is a bit more compact front-to-back than the others.

The current 0311 lineup doesn’t offer anything that would challenge the lowest-spinning drivers on the market so there is room in the PXG lineup.

PXG BLACK OPS TOUR-3

PXG BLACK OPS Tour 3 Driver

It’s unlikely that both the 1 and the 3 will make it to retail (I’m still holding out for that 2). The underlying tech appears identical to the TOUR-1 though the 1 has sole accents that are missing from the 3. As noted, the USGA photos suggest the 3 is a bit longer front-to-back but, again, with scale lacking and the 3 showing a bit more loft in the image, that’s anything but a certainty.

TaylorMade

2023 was an off year for TaylorMade, both in terms of sales numbers and the faces on their Stealth 2 drivers. The company has said in no uncertain terms that it’s committed to carbon-face tech so our assumption was that that tech would carry on but after two years (Stealth and Stealth 2) on the market, TaylorMade would rebrand its driver flagship carbon/metalwoods lineup.

TaylorMade Qi10 LS

TaylorMade Qi10 LS Driver

The only new driver from TaylorMade currently on the USGA conforming list suggests TaylorMade has ditched the +/plus naming convention in favor of the “LS” designation.

Love it. Isn’t it better when everyone is on the same page? Now, let’s talk shaft adapters and shaft flex.

No?

Moving on.

While you can bet there’s a story behind Qi (and probably 10 too), I’m willing to go out on a limb and say the LS will be the lowest-spinning Qi10 driver and, while they’re currently unlisted, there are almost certain to be at least two more options when the embargo lists.

The photos suggest the TaylorMade Qi10 LS will again pair a fixed rear weight with TaylorMade’s signature sliding (SLDNG?) heel-toe/draw-fade weight system.

What’s interesting is that the photos suggest a relatively compact weight track. That could mean TaylorMade is providing less ability to move the center of gravity around or that it’s using a heavier weight to accomplish the same result over a shorter distance.

To leave no doubt about its commitment to the technology, CARBONWOOD is noted on the sole which is a heavy suggestion that carbon-face technology persists.

BONUS: Costco

This one was technically added to the USGA list last week, but, given the affinity among our readership for both Costco and inexpensive alternatives to the mainstream (I suppose those two go hand-in-hand), we felt the need to include this.

Kirkland Signature Driver

Costco Kirkland Signature Driver

I suppose it’s reasonable to call this the one you’ve been waiting for. Like the irons that have seemingly been on the USGA list forever, we don’t have a release date for the driver. Frankly, we don’t have the highest of hopes for this one but the target audience isn’t likely to care.

The USGA photo suggests a no-frills design with just a single fixed rear weight. Unlike mainstream brands who pepper soles, crowns and skirts of drivers with buzzwords, the Kirkland offering is devoid of any signature tech.

Only a single loft (10.5 degrees) is listed and I don’t expect that will change. I’m also not expecting much in the way of shaft options though the Kirkland Signature driver will offer hosel-based adjustability.

The play here is almost certainly value-first. If the Costco can deliver performance within sniffing distance of the big names with a price tag significantly below $600, it should do just fine.

Thoughts?

2024 is shaping up to be a surprisingly rich year for drivers. From what you’ve seen so far, what are you most looking forward to trying?

For You

For You

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Tony Covey

Tony Covey

Tony Covey

Tony is the Editor of MyGolfSpy where his job is to bring fresh and innovative content to the site. In addition to his editorial responsibilities, he was instrumental in developing MyGolfSpy's data-driven testing methodologies and continues to sift through our data to find the insights that can help improve your game. Tony believes that golfers deserve to know what's real and what's not, and that means MyGolfSpy's equipment coverage must extend beyond the so-called facts as dictated by the same companies that created them. Most of all Tony believes in performance over hype and #PowerToThePlayer.

Tony Covey

Tony Covey

Tony Covey

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      William Dickman

      2 months ago

      Let’s just get rid of the U.SG.A. they have done nothing to help the real problem in golf which is 6 hour rounds!

      Reply

      GospelnGolf

      3 months ago

      According to Golf.com, Rory McIlroy will be testing TaylorMade’s new Qi10 LS driver this week at the DP World Tour finale in Dubai. McIlroy says he has been testing and fine tuning and finally wants to see how it will perform in competition. I think this will be rather pivotal for TM and their new driver. Definitely watching to see how he does off the tee!!! Caveat: I acknowledge that his performance with the new driver will not transfer even remotely equally to the amateur hordes, but it can still provide information that is valuable to us mortals in one way or another (especially for those who are playing on some pro or semi-pro golf circuit). And unfortunately, like others have accurately stated on this comments section, when the Qi10 (LS) et al (as well as other brands) is eventually released, it will be highly-priced ($600s-$700s) with base shafts.

      Reply

      Steven Gagen

      2 months ago

      So TaylorMade is coming out with a new driver. It’s the QI-10. QI is pronounced “chi” so the new driver is actually called chi10 or Cheaten!!! lol that’s marketing genius.

      Reply

      Kevin Rand

      3 months ago

      I have a Titleist TS2 with a blue tensei stiff shaft. I hit it well. Is there any benefit to a new driver in terms of distance?

      Reply

      CryptoDog

      3 months ago

      Ah come on you know you’re just trying to trip us up huh?
      😜

      Reply

      Tammy

      3 months ago

      I’ve tried just about every driver out there and the Calloway Paradym is the most forgiving and lo gest driver. It’s also beautiful

      Reply

      GolfSpy SAM

      3 months ago

      Hey all – just a heads-up that these pics are pulled directly from there USGA conforming list website, and ALL pictures are in black and white. Those aren’t the color schemes – some will be black, of course, but they only post black and white photos.

      Just thought this might help, as the question seems to have come up repeatedly.

      Reply

      Brendan

      3 months ago

      But I want the Cobra to remain blacked out haha

      Reply

      CryptoDog

      3 months ago

      The LS is all black.
      The other ones have a tiny little bit of color to them

      scott

      3 months ago

      No labels needed, I could tell each manufactorer by theIR head design. The only thing that changes are, weights placement, color and price. The USGA COR is what stopping company’s from going any farther then the one they built last year and many year before. They can’t make the face any hotter but they can build in more forgiveness. I just bought a brand new old driver. A Rogue ST I had the old Rogue which was 6 years old . Is the New Rogue better yes it flies straighter but farther if it does not by much. If your looking for more distance look to get fitted for the right shaft. I went to a lighter flex and gained 10 yards . That 10 yards might not sound like a lot but it is, when you coupled that with a tight dispersion from the Rogue ST head. I demo the Paradym they both performed the same the only difference ( last years model ) was the price. Back to my point there head shape were the same, other then color of the head matted black to a pretty blue and color of the weights.

      Reply

      scott

      3 months ago

      Much of the same

      Reply

      john young

      3 months ago

      Each year, they tweak here, tweak there… doesn’t seem to be much difference in the performance. Questions for Tony… Is there any wiggle room for performance other than finding a shaft that gives you something different?? Does the autoflex shaft offer enough of a difference to justify the expense ? thanks

      Reply

      CryptoDog

      3 months ago

      We have maxed out the CT and COR, so no. All they can do is move weights around and hope to have something that enough people like, that they can sell.
      They can’t continuously say there’s a grain of 3 yards every year, especially a company like a TM, but what a company like TM is afraid of, is that the other companies like Mizuno or Wilson or PXG will finally, one day, catch up to them completely and may be even pass them a little bit.
      And that little bit better would be enough to draw consumers away, which is all the competition that’s happening between them and that’s all.
      As far as tech, no, we’re at the limits of speed, by the Rules of Golf.

      Reply

      Midwestern Golfer

      3 months ago

      @CryptoDog….I bought a Mizuno ST-Z 230 driver last year and completely love it. It’s priced lower that TM and gives comparable performance with a wider range of “Stock” shafts to choose from. What’s not to like in that value proposition?

      CryptoDog

      3 months ago

      Bingo buddy

      Will

      3 months ago

      I hope these are just early prototypes pictures, because if that’s the final look they’re all boring as hell. What is this, a driver funeral?

      Reply

      ericsokp

      3 months ago

      Personally, I’m more interested in seeing somebody (anybody?) review the new line-up from MacGregor (both woods & irons) … does anyone know of such a review out there? I think the Kirkland could be interesting depending on the price and the shaft that is offered.

      Reply

      JJGolf

      3 months ago

      I’ve seen the photos and they look nice. To me, the real value of this brand and Takomo and a few others is to give the big brands a moment of pause on pricing. Not only on clubs but balls as well. For 2024, ProVs and TP5s will have a $55 retail price.

      If people buy them and they work for them… great, but I want every product guy to have in the back of his head the thought of “maybe we are too high priced on this lineup and that’s why we aren’t selling more.”

      Reply

      Charles Becker

      3 months ago

      There are other highly rated drivers. I just bought a Srixon ZX5 LS model and got a big distance boost over my old Ping G400. Srixon is growing and well represented on the tour.

      Reply

      James

      3 months ago

      Was your G400 LS?

      Reply

      Trusty rusty

      3 months ago

      Cobra, yet another performing driver that well in my neck of the woods, sits on shelves and is rarely seen on any golf course. I do not believe Cobra resonates with the consumer as a tour driver. Thinking back Cobra would be better off appealing to the masses of recreational amateur golfers, with a heavy anti slice off set head.

      Taylormade, Titleist, Ping and Callaway offer premium products, with protected MSRP and cycle life, why the consumer would bother looking beyond these 4 ( and I’ll give an honorable mention to XXIO for older guys) which leaves Cobra, PXG, Wilson, Mizuno, Cleveland and a few others fighting for the remaining 10-15% market share. Nike, despite their 100s of million if not a billion spent only garnered 2-3% market share- even with tiger woods spear heading the cubs.

      Our game/sport has too many manufacturers and a consolidation is needed.

      Lastly Kirkland, much like touredge was in the early days, no tour sponsorship, no commercials, no add blitz, and keeping price to a minium. Kirkland can succeed for 10-25 rounds per year player

      Reply

      Brian G.

      3 months ago

      Do you play with a lot of more “mature” golfers & seniors? Cobra is huge with the younger demographic and I see Cobra drivers everywhere where I play. They are definitely a mainstream brand and to group them with Wilson, Cleveland & Mizuno in the woods category is not accurate. Cobra appeals to the youth (under 40) golfer and they have a hold on that marketplace 100%.

      Reply

      Owen

      3 months ago

      Totally agree with Brian. I’m willing to bet “Trusty Rusty” is in the Over 50’s demographic. Cobra is definitely relevant and consistent leader in the metalwood space. Cobra is a hip, non-conformist, younger leaning brand (along with Puma). As an early 30s golfer, my buddies have been playing Cobra drivers for years (F9 – Aerojet)…The LTDx was a missile launcher

      CryptoDog

      3 months ago

      The annual GolfDigest Hot List reviews don’t help, and the actual side by side testing on here along with all the yahoos on YouTube doing the same don’t help the others to catch up, because those top 4 brands do perform better than the others and that’s the problem right there, but if they are able to make clubs every year and have them on the shelf then they must all be doing OK, they don’t need to do great like the top 4 as these smaller ones don’t pay their players as much in endorsements either.

      Reply

      King Simpkins

      3 months ago

      I was told by the ping rep the ” new ” 430 had a MOI of 10,000, I didn’t bother calling him on it. The ? then becomes 10000 what. USGA max MOI is 5900 +/- 100g/cm2 so lets just go with it being max’d out

      haven’t seen new TM yet but I’ve seen to many heads come back for vender repair to be enthusiastic

      I play a PXG Gen4 in all my woods, and I like them a lot , there’s something to be said for playing from the short grass, but I haven’t hit a new one yet that was any better really

      So the one I find most intriguing is the Cobra, the Aerojet has had good comments from those that played it, so I’m looking forward to trying them out in the TrackMan

      Reply

      Dale Doback

      3 months ago

      5900 with a tolerance of 100 is the moi limit for the XY axis. The driver is also measured with a vertical axis so when Ping says it’s achieved 10,000 moi it’s a combined MOI. The Ping G425 max had a 10,000 moi and the big surprise for me was the g430 LST is 9700 which makes it more forgiving than all other OEMs forgiving models. Ping is seems to be forgiveness first so the MOI is what really differentiates them from competitors considering my Cobra LTD LS had an MOI around 4400 it’s a legitimate sales point for ping. Hope this helps.

      Reply

      Mark Harr

      3 months ago

      10K for MOI was what I first thought of when I read it. I remember an independent putter line a few years ago that advertised they were the only putter with 10,000 MOI, and they called it 10K (I believed company was called L2, but I may not remember that correctly).

      Reply

      Hugo Lazarde

      1 month ago

      If the PXG BLACK OPS is better than the GEN6, we have a winner. I played GEN4 driver & woods and NEVER liked GEN5, but ( a big BUT) the VERY first time I tried the 0311GEN6 was, It was long, straight and consistent… A real bomber for ME (56 years, hcp Index 3.1, 96 mph CHS)

      Reply

      Dean

      3 months ago

      Love this preview! Looks like PXG has taken a page from Sim/2 with it’s inertia generator. Out of the lot, I really like the new Cobra Darkspeed LS. While the weight ports are not pushed to the extreme edges like PXG, at least you can fine tune. I think every premium driver should come with three weight ports, or perhaps one + slider. Thanks Tony!

      Reply

      bob

      3 months ago

      Should PING sue PXG or should PXG sue PING? Those drivers not only have the same color scheme, they are close to identical. It is like one company came out with Pepsi and the other company said, “Oh, we just came up with the idea of RC Cola for our new release”. What gives with every company going black? Just odd. The TaylorMade driver with the slider weight technology? Hate it. The slider driver and any driver with a sliding weight just seems cheap and outdated. Plus, the slider is behind the Speed Pocket so it is like two open gaps really close to the face. One Speed Pocket is great (thank you Adams) but a slider weight pocket behind the Speed Pocket just feels like a bad move.

      Reply

      Robin C Owens

      3 months ago

      CryptoDog that’s not true anymore. Cobra puts out more than anyone, it seems to me…
      TaylorMade has slowed down there driver production, even there irons to.

      Reply

      JRD

      3 months ago

      Love the fact that every single option here is blacked / greyed out to the max. It’s like their colluding or something….. hmm….

      Reply

      Jimmy

      3 months ago

      lol…”or something” is at least partially correct

      Reply

      CryptoDog

      3 months ago

      Seriously, why does a company like TM have to release a new one every year???? Why not a 2-year cycle??? I’m sure then that warranty covers and parts would be easier to keep and stock, rather than having to re-tool every 9 months or whatever. Unless, the current model falls apart, or doesn’t perform as well as they expected etc
      Even iPhones are not done every year lmao

      Reply

      Cam MacMaster

      3 months ago

      Because there are enough idiots out there who are willing to throw money away. Lol.

      Reply

      Tim

      3 months ago

      Prices north of $650 with stock shafts on the horizon?

      Reply

      RENNIE CRABTREE

      3 months ago

      Would love to have you review Bryson DeChambeau’s diver, and all of Krank’s other driver and fairway offerings.

      Reply

      Larry

      3 months ago

      The move to make a new driver comes every year with a ton of new advertising, Just pick up a copy of Golf Digest from any year say 2009 and you will find advertising for the longest and most forgiving drivers ever. Amazing how it only takes a year, sometimes two, for a driver to become old tech and needs to be updated. Is the truth there really isn’t much difference just a new shape, color, added weights so the company can have a new patent and control the selling price of the new driver(irons, putters, balls). Safe bet any NEW club is going to play better than most already played a round club.

      Reply

      mrpriceisright

      3 months ago

      I won’t buy a new club unless I can see a meaningful improvement over my current club and usually then to last yrs model (current driver is 2 gens back). Fact is with COR restrictions, drivers haven’t improved in the last 10 yrs, except in terms of spin control and forgiveness (the entire face is the sweet spot now). Not sure where we go from here as even those are practically maxed out.

      Reply

      Howard Janis

      3 months ago

      Very interested to see if Kirkland will have a left handed version.

      Reply

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