2013 was a very good year for the Callaway Golf company. In addition to having it's marquee player win the Open Championship, the company released a couple of very popular line of clubs, the RAZR Fit Xtreme and the X Hot. The X Hot in particular did very well and many golfers ended up putting these clubs in the bag and adding more than a few yards to their drivers and woods. According to the company, the X Hot products were longer from everywhere, by up to 30 yards in some situations, but this year the company thinks that it has something even better in the X Hot's sequel, the X2 Hot. While the X Hot was the company's most popular line from the past year, probably the most iconic line of Callaway clubs is the Big Bertha, and in 2014 we will see the reintroduction of this line.
Coming in February, the company will be releasing both the Big Bertha and the Big Bertha Alpha drivers, both of which have some features not seen before. The new Big Bertha debuts the company's new Adjustable Perimeter Weighting technology. The club will have a sliding weight that moves around the perimeter of club allowing golfers to tune the driver to their specific needs. The club also has a new Hyper Speed face that is 10% lighter and produces high ball speeds across the entire face, meaning you don't necessarily have to hit the center to get the ball way out there.
The Big Bertha Alpha driver is the first driver that allows golfer to independently make adjustments to four of the most important performance characteristics. Like the other current Callaway drivers (the Big Bertha, X2 Hot, FT Optiforce) the Big Bertha Alpha will have Callaway's newest adjustable hosel which allows for adjustment of the loft and face angle of the club independently. Using this hosel, players will be able to increase the loft by 2° or down by 1° (in one degree increments) from the clubs stated loft as well as setting either a neutral or draw bias. That's kind of old news though, what is new with the Alpha is the ability adjust the height of the clubs center of gravity. This is done with the new Gravity Core, which is found in the center of the clubs sole and lets the player adjust the spin of the club independent of the launch angle. With all these factors of adjustability, the golfer now has the opportunity to hone the club in to fit their swing perfectly and maximize their distance.
The Big Bertha driver comes stock with the Fubuki Z shaft and is available in 9°, 10.5°, and 13.5°. The retail price of the club is $399. Also, the club is available through the company's Udesign program allowing for multiple body colors as well as different paint fills and custom laser engraving on the sole. The Big Bertha Alpha is only available in a 9° head and comes stock wight eh Fubuki ZT shaft. The retail price for the Alpha is $499.
Along with the Big Bertha and the Big Bertha Alpha drivers, will be the matching fairway woods in 3-, 5-, and 7-wood models. The fairway wood will maintain the same adjustable hosel as the drivers allowing for the one degree down, two degree up adjustably as well as allowing alterations to face angle. The woods use the company's Hyper Speed Face Cup technology to maintain ball speed and will come with a stock Fubuki shaft.
For those who can't wait until February, the company will also be following up its popular X Hot series with the X2 Hot starting in mid-January. As with the original X Hot line, the focus of the X2 Hot will be on distance. The new big sticks in the X2 Hot line will feature the new Hyper Speed Face technology which helps to boost the average ball speed. The clubs also have a new lighter weight construction and now feature the updated adjustable hosel (last years version had the old Optifit hosel, so those shafts won't be interchangeable). This hosel is the same one found on the FT Optiforce as well as the upcoming Big Bertha and Big Bertha Alpha and allows for loft adjustments of up to +2° or -1° as well as a neutral or draw bias.
Callaway has realized that there is no singular recipe for distance for every golfer and so, this time around there are some options in the X2 Hot line. The standard version of the driver is 460cc and is avail be in 9°, 10.5°, and 13.5° lofts. The Aldial Tour Blue shaft is the stock shaft. There is also a pro model, which is available with an 8.5° head and is a more compact 440cc. The pro has a lower, more neutral center of gravity and a 7 gram external weight. The Aldila Tour Green shaft is the stock shaft here. Both clubs carry a price of $349.99.
Like last year's line, the X2 Hot is just drivers, as there are also woods, hybrids and irons to be had. Like the driver, there is also a pro and standard version of each one of those. While the X Hot driver was long, probably the most popular item in the original line were the fairway woods as the company's market share in that area doubled in 2013. To keep pace, the company has added Hyper Speed Face Cup technology to the fairway woods that uses a thinner face for increased ball speed, especially for shots struck low on the face. Through their own testing, the company as found that the X2 Hot fairways add an average of 1.4 mph in ball speed over last year's club. There are multiple head offering for this year's fairways; in the standard model the options include a 3-, 4-, 5-, 7-, 9-, and 11-wood and in the pro model there are 13.5°, 15°, 17° and 19° heads. The Deep series will also continue with the addition of the X2 Hot Pro 2Deep, 3Deep, and 5Deep. The stock shafts are the same as those found on the driver and the retail price is $229.99.
The new hybrids will also incorporate the Hyper Speed Face Cup technology for the first time. This has led to a club that has a sweet spot that is thirteen times larger than its predecessor. The club has a new, more contemporary head shape due to some feedback received from the tour and has a straighter, flatter leading edge with less offset. The standard model is avail be in 3-, 4-. 5-, and 6-Hybrid models and the Pro can be had with lofts of 16°, 18°, 20°, and 23°. Stock shafts are the same as above. The clubs carry a price of $199.99.
As with the above, the new irons are available in both a standard and pro model. The standard model, according to Callaway, sets the new standard for distance irons. It has a new Deep Central Undercut that boost ball speeds. The clubs also have a stabilizing arch to optimize the stiffness distribution across the face to give great sound and feel while moving the hot spot lower on the face where many tend to hit it. The Pro model has a thinner face and a stabilizing arch that moves the weight low and central, and manages to retain the high ball speed and distance advantages of the standard model without the deep undercut. The pro model also has greater progression in offset and CG hight allowing them to create forgiving long irons while having shorter irons that are more controllable, all in a package that a better player will find appealing. The standard model comes in both steel (True Temper Speed Step 85) for $799.99 or graphite for an additional $100. The Pro model comes with the Project X 95 Flighted shaft and retails for $899.99.