With the first PGA TOUR event of the new year, it’s not any particular surprise that new drivers like the TaylorMade SIM2 MAX D are hitting the USGA conforming clubs list. It is, after all, “release SZN,” and that means a veritable cornucopia of new products will be launching over the next three weeks.

Even in a year when the PGA Merchandise Show will be entirely virtual, the industry’s cadence will not be disrupted … at least not any longer.

When the TaylorMade SIM2 and SIM2 MAX landed on the USGA list last month, we fully expected the SIM2 MAX D (the draw version) would follow. And so here you go.

A USGA photo of the TaylorMade SIM2 MAX D Driver

TaylorMade SIM2 MAX D – What We Can See

As is typical for USGA photos, there’s much left to the imagination but there are bits that are plenty obvious.

As we’d expected from a draw-biased driver, there’s a fixed weight in the heel. The weight placed near the heel suggests TaylorMade will look to keep MOI high.

The sole suggests TaylorMade is once again leveraging a significant amount of carbon fiber. Barring some radical departure from industry convention, that story will be one of saving weight and reallocating elsewhere – almost certainly low, back and to the heel.

Most notable, perhaps, is that the USGA references “Forged Aluminum” as one of the markings on the driver. We don’t see much (if any) aluminum outside of the putter space so I’d expect that will play heavily in the materials story when the full details are released in a couple of weeks.

Unanswered Questions

Whatever the story behind the TaylorMade SIM2 MAX D turns out to be, my questions will be entirely about performance.

Last year’s SIM MAX D was a bit of an enigma among draw-biased drivers. It was apparently neutral enough that it received some Tour play and while it was a surprisingly strong performer across the board in our 2020 Most Wanted Driver test, the results suggested a driver that was lightly draw-biased at best.

I’m particularly curious to see if the SIM2 MAX D stays in that same space – a driver for someone who needs a little bit of help or if the company will more aggressively challenge massive slice killers like PING’s SFT.

We’ll find out soon enough.